Print Recipe

Chocolate Italian Buttercream

Chocolate Italian Buttercream- perfect for layer cakes and cupcakes!
Prep Time25 mins
Total Time25 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: cake
Keyword: buttercream, chocolate, frosting, italian
Servings: 5 cups
Author: Heather Perine


  • 1 1/4 cups (248 grams) granulated white sugar
  • 5 large egg whites
  • pinch cream of tartar
  • 2 cups (16 ounces, 452 grams, 4 sticks) unsalted butter softened
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 8 ounces (227 grams) bittersweet, or semisweet chocolate melted, slightly cooled


  • In a small saucepan over medium heat, bring sugar and 2/3 cup water to a boil. Continue boiling until syrup reaches 238 degrees on a candy thermometer (soft-ball stage).
  • Meanwhile, place egg whites in the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, and beat on low speed until foamy. Add cream of tartar, and beat on medium-high speed until stiff but not dry; do not overbeat.
  • With mixer running, add syrup to whites in a stream, beating on high speed until no longer steaming, about 3 minutes.
  • Add butter tablespoon by tablespoon, beating until spreadable, 3 to 5 minutes; beat in vanilla. If icing curdles, keep beating until smooth.
  • Turn the mixer off and fold the chocolate into the buttercream with a spatula. Then mix on low in your mixer until fully incorporated.


Store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days in a sealed container. Re-whip again until smooth and creamy. You can also store this in the freezer for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw in the refrigerator overnight or at room temperature for 2 hours or so, and re-whip until desired consistency again.