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The chocolate cream cheese frosting recipe has been a go-to recipe for a reason: It’s easy to make, has the perfect texture that’s ideal for piping, and tastes delicious. Plus who doesn’t love a chocolate and cream cheese combo? 

mini brownie bites with chocolate cream cheese frosting on top.

Chocolate buttercream vs chocolate cream cheese frosting

I think you’re going to love this cream cheese icing for many reasons. Such simple ingredients come together to create an incredible chocolate frosting recipe. It’ll amaze you at how easy it is and you’ll be so glad you tried it! 

All you really need to make this yummy chocolate buttercream frosting is cocoa powder, butter, cream cheese, and powdered sugar.  I used this with my chocolate cake recipe and oh my gosh was it a hit. It’s my go-to whenever I want a rich chocolate frosting for desserts. YUM!

I have tried many chocolate frostings and have always found myself back to this one recipe. It pairs so well with many desserts! 

Ingredients Needed

  • Cream cheese: I’m using cream cheese at room temperature since it’s easier to mix in. I’m using regular cream cheese but use any kind of cream cheese brand you have, they’re all delicious to me! 
  • Butter: unsalted butter to give us a delicious, creamier texture. 
  • Cocoa powder: I like to use unsweetened cocoa powder – you can use regular or Dutch process.
  • Salt: to balance out the flavors.
  • Vanilla: there’s something so delicious with vanilla extract and powdered sugar. It’s almost mandatory to add the two together. 
  • Powdered sugar: to give us the frosting consistency and to lightly sweeten it.

How to make chocolate cream cheese frosting

  1. Cream butter and cream cheese. You can either use a hand or a stand mixer. Just make sure the consistency is fluffy. 
  2. Mix in the cocoa powder until smooth. 
  3. Add the salt and vanilla to the mix.
  4. Slowly add a cup of powdered sugar at a time. 
  5. Mix everything together until smooth. You should have a spreadable consistency but if not, you can pour milk if the frosting seems to be too thick. 
chocolate cream cheese frosting in a clear jar.

Ways to use this frosting recipe

Expert Tips

  • To loosen up the frosting’s consistency, add up to 1 tablespoon of milk, 1 teaspoon at a time.
  • You can use full fat cream cheese or low fat for this recipe but just know that low fat cream cheese will cause a looser frosting.
  • Dutch process cocoa would make an amazing dark chocolate frosting.
mini brownie bites with chocolate cream cheese frosting on top.


How do you store frosting?

Transfer your chocolate cream cheese frosting to an airtight container, or right in a frosting pipe bag in the refrigerator. Should stay fresh for up to 2 days at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. 

Can you freeze cream cheese frosting?

Yes! You can freeze this frosting recipe for up to 2 months in an airtight container. 

Chocolate cream cheese frosting in a glass dish

Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

4.60 from 5 votes
Chocolate Cream Cheese Frosting is the best frosting recipe for cupcakes, cake or cookies! This easy homemade frosting is from scratch with cocoa powder and cream cheese – it's so good.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Yield 16 servings
Serving Size 1 serving


  • 8 ounces (226g) cream cheese softened
  • ½ cup (113g) unsalted butter softened
  • ¼ cup (20g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups (339g) powdered sugar
  • Milk if needed for consistency
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  • Using a hand or a stand mixer, cream butter and cream cheese until fluffy.
  • Mix in the cocoa until smooth. Mix in the salt and vanilla.
  • Slowly add in powdered sugar, one cup at a time. Mix until smooth. The frosting should be spreadable without milk, but if it seems too thick, you can add up to 1 tablespoon of milk, 1 teaspoon at a time.

Recipe Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 191kcal | Carbohydrates: 24g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 31mg | Sodium: 120mg | Potassium: 40mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 368IU | Calcium: 17mg | Iron: 1mg
Nutritional information not guaranteed to be accurate
Course Dessert
Cuisine American

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Last Updated on September 27, 2023

Dorothy Kern

Welcome to Crazy for Crust, where I share recipes that are sometimes crazy, often with a crust, and always served with a slice of life.

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Recipe Rating


  1. This recipe is excellent. I made it today to coat the tops of fudge brownies, sprinkling chunks of peppermint candy on the frosted brownies which I will deliver tomorrow for a holiday event at church. The frosting was sticky enough to hold the crunchy bits of candy without being runny or gooey. I did add a couple of teasoons milk, as suggested by the recipe, to soften it. The frosting is thick, very smooth and fudgy. It is tasty and not too sweet. This will be my go-to chocolate frosting recipe from now on.

  2. I am so glad I ran across this website, I am so enjoying it. I have saved a number of receipes. Thank you