I’m pretty sure something biological happened to me about the same time I became a mother.  At least that’s when I remember it happening.  That was the point when I realized I couldn’t live without chocolate.   I found myself thinking about chocolate, craving chocolate, scouring my pantry for spare chocolate chips that may have fallen out of a bag at some point and landed in some random corner.  And I wouldn’t by any means call myself a chocolate snob (because I’m pretty sure anyone who makes that proclamation wouldn’t be on their hands and knees in the pantry looking for old chocolate chips)  but I do have an appreciation for quality chocolate.  And I don’t like it overloaded with sugar- the darker the better in my book.  I even love bittersweet chocolate.  But when it comes down to it, if it’s got chocolate in it- I’m down.  So needless to say, a chocolate cake with chocolate frosting pretty much rocks my world.

Everyone in  my opinion needs a great, basic, go-to chocolate cake recipe.  And while there’s a time and a place for boxed cake mixes, everyone needs a good homemade, from scratch recipe.  I’ve used this Hershey’s recipe quite a bit over the years, and I still love it.  But several years ago I bought the “Best Recipes” issue of Cook’s Illustrated, partially because this cake was on the cover.  I finally had a great excuse to make it last month and I wish I would have done it years ago.  It’s definitely one of the best chocolate cakes I’ve ever tasted.

I started going through the pictures for this cake and realized the post would quickly turn into a novel, so I’m splitting it into two installments.  Frosting today, cake on Wednesday!  Don’t be turned off by the number of steps here.  I almost was and I’m so glad I stuck with the recipe and made this frosting.  It’s more labor intensive than beating some butter, powdered sugar, and cocoa powder together but it’s sooo worth it.

Start by melting some chocolate.  The glass bowl you see in the pictures is sitting on top of a pan of simmering water.

After the chocolate is melted, set the bowl aside and dump out the water that was in the pan.  Now you’ve already got a warm pan for the next step (butter melting).  Remember that when you read the recipe and it tells you to use 2 pans.  I’m all about one less dish to  have sitting in my sink for days wash.

To the melted butter, you’ll add a little corn syrup, vanilla, and granulated sugar.

As soon as it’s all melted together and the sugar is dissolved, add it to a large bowl along with…

the chocolate.  The beautiful, glorious, melted chocolate.  And no I did not stick my finger in that as it was pouring down like a chocolate waterfall just begging for someone to stick their finger in it…

And also some heavy cream.  You know, for good measure.

You’ll stir this all together and have sort of a chocolate sauce consistency. Place your bowl in a bowl of ice to bring the temperature down, and just keep stirring until the mixture starts hardening against the side of the bowl.  Then you can pop the paddle attachment on your mixer and start whipping.  Magically it turns thick and fluffy.

I was actually super impatient when I made this and didn’t wait for it to cool enough that the mixture was sticking to the sides of the bowl.  So my whipped frosting was reeealy soft.  I just popped it in the fridge for 10-15 minutes and it was perfect.

The flavor is so perfect.  It’s sweet, but not too sweet, so the great chocolate flavor really shines through.

and when combined with the chocolate cake, it’s perfection.

I should also note that the texture is so light and soft, and whippy, that this frosting would probably be best for slathering- like smeared all over a cake, or just plopped on top of cupcakes, as opposed to piping.  If you’re looking for a good chocolate icing for piping- try this one!

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119comments

  1. 1
    Stacia says:

    This looks so yummy! But here’s my question: whats the difference in taste/texture between this recipe, and the other chocolate frosting you have on the site (I use that one ALL the time, and everyone LOVES it).

    • 1.1

      Good question Stacia. I haven’t made that other one in a long time so I think I’d have to see them side by side to make a really good comparison. But I would say this one (in terms of texture) is lighter, more billowy, more whippy? Lol Totally a word! Because it has cream in it, the flavor is very luxurious. I’d say this one is better for smearing on a cake or cupcake whereas the other would be better for piping.

  2. 2

    maravilhoso este bolo adorei..bjs

  3. 3

    Yummeroos! I think I should make this and dip graham crackers in it! Or apple slices? or, or or maybe strawberries .. forget the cake! LOL :) can’t wait to try this (but I don’t have a paddle attachment for my mixer, what can be used in place of one)

    • 3.1

      No joke, this would be SO good for dipping stuff into. Graham crackers all the way! When I was a kid my Mom would always make graham cracker chocolate frosting sandwiches for treats. So good! Do you have the whisk attachment? I’m sure that would work fine.

      • Patti says:

        My mom did the same thing- graham crackers and chocolate frosting. I failed my own children as I did not give them that “gourmet” treat as often as my mom did for me!
        I’m just wondering how in the world did you refrain from sticking your finger in the chocolate waterfall? The only way I resisted while reading this post is because my finger couldn’t go through the monitor. You have mighty willpower, Sara!

  4. 4
    Heather says:

    This looks amazing! I have yet to find a chocolate frosting recipe that I love. I absolutely know what you mean about searching for chocolate chips in corners of the pantry. There was a blue M&M lodged under our computer desk for a while and I have to admit I thought about eating it often. But don’t worry. I just threw it away. I think . . .

  5. 5

    oh this icing looks like the icing from a cake i tried at a bakery a little while ago! I posted about it http://eatinginwinnipeg.blogspot.com/2011/04/chocolate-indulge-lilac-bakery-ltd.html

    check it out, i bet it’s a lot the same! I’m going to make it the next time i get the chance or reason to make a chocolate cake! it looks wonderful!

  6. 6
    Leslie says:

    This looks great and I will definitely be trying it out, but I’ve got a question for you. I recently whipped up a red velvet cake and cream cheese frosting (of course!) i assembled my layers with frosting between each. By the time the cake reached its final destination it was leaning to right! The layers were sliding because of the frosting! The layers were completely cooled. . .any tips on preventing this? Maybe a way to make stiffer frosting. . .

  7. 7
    Catherine says:

    I’m more of a yellow cake with chocolate frosting. This recipe makes me want to make one, NOW! I’m also a huge fan of Cooks Illustrated.

    • 7.1
      Jen K says:

      I agree with you, yellow cake with chocolate frosting is where it’s at! Can’t wait to try this on it!

      • So girls, in this same recipe book, on the very next page, is a recipe for their ultimate yellow cake with “no fail chocolate frosting”. I literally spend HOURS staring at both recipes trying to decide which to make. The yellow one is totally next on my list!

        • Hillary says:

          Ben and Jerrys has a yellow cake batter ice cream with chocolate frosting swirls… Just sayin’!

        • Jen K says:

          Sounds like the perfect cake!

          No lie, yellow cake with chocolate frosting is such a tradition in my family, it’s what my sister and her husband had for their wedding cake. Best cake ever!

  8. 8
    Holly says:

    It looks like this originally came from the March 2006 issue of Cook’s Illustrated. With your recommendation, I believe I will give it a try. thanks!

  9. 9
    Erin A says:

    I just laughed so hard while reading this because my dishes would also just end up sitting in the sink for days.

  10. 10
    Sara Smith says:

    Awesome! Just the other day, I made a chocolate cake and I was looking for a recipe for chocolate frosting that uses melted chocolate chips and of course, couldn’t find one. I knew I could count on you! ;)

    • 10.1
      Jackie says:

      I just read somewhere not to use chocolate chips, cause it is different from semi sweet chocolate. I am guessing it is in the form of bars. So I need to go back to the store to look for it.

      • Asia says:

        I know I’m way late but going to post anyway… The reason for “no chocolate chips” is they can have a wax like coating to keep them from sticking together. That being said, I have often used chocolate chips and *I’ve* never had a problem. I don’t cook gourmet stuff but in something like frosting it should be fine. The concern would be with chocolate that needs tempering (truffles, chocolate coated anything when you want a snap when you bite into it) and even then, my husband has made chocolates and had no problems with the chips.

  11. 11
    Ashley says:

    Seriously, are you totally trying to sabatoge my diet??? Hee hee, I am also more of a yellow cake fan, but this is making my mouth water.

  12. 12
    denelle says:

    love the look of this cake frosting!! i have noticed that you cook it with corn syrup…is there a substitute for the syrup that wont make the food your cooking taste different, i thought honey, but honey has a pretty distinct taste..just wondering cuz we don’t use or eat any corn syrup..thx so much!

    • 12.1
      sara says:

      Lol- Denelle I made a prediction when I wrote this post that someone in the fist 10 comments would ask for a substitute for corn syrup. I’m so good! In this recipe, honestly, nope. I mean, you could probably use honey, but like you said, it’s going to affect the flavor.

    • 12.2
      Trisha says:

      How about trying Agave nectar? It has the same consistency as corn syrup but supposed to be better for you…not sure that it really is though :) The brand I used was Xagave and I found it at the Bosch kitchen store but I’m sure it’s sold in lots of other stores too. Good Luck!

    • 12.3
      Emily says:

      Use Lyle’s Golden syrup. It is an import from England available in most grocery stores (just ask them to help you find it). I substitute with it all the time and like it just as well, if not better. It is more expensive though. I hope it helps!

      • denelle says:

        Thx for the help and ideas! I also just googled corn syrup substitute and It said I can just take however much light corn syrup it asked for and put that much white sugar.in then add water…and same with dark cs..just use brown sugar and water…I will check actual mesurments if anyone else would like to know…also if I make this frosting..and im pretty sure I will since my 2 yr olds bday is this sat. Ill let you know how it turned out and tasted..

  13. 13

    I really want some chocolate frosting now, that looks soooo good!

  14. 14
    Britani says:

    Ah! I need the cake recipe NOW! LOL! Tomorrow is my hudband’s birthday, I can’t wait until Wednesday! I guess I will have to try the frosting with my old chocolate cake recipe :) and try this one next time.

  15. 15
    Ashley says:

    I am sooo excited for the cake recipe! I have to do a chocolate cake this weekend and need a good recipe. Do you think the cake recipe is sturdy enough to stack and do a 3 tier? I hope so!!! :)

  16. 16
    erica says:

    I just want to eat it by the spoonful! How many calories you suppose? Nevermind, I’d rather not know. Thanks for the recipe ;)

  17. 17
    Stacey Giles says:

    So I’ve been wanting to get your book for a while now and yesterday my mom got it for me and my sisters! We spent about an hour pouring (drooling) over all of the wonderful recipes! So excited!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  18. 18
    Cami Harrison says:

    I don’t have a stand mixer or anything. Could I use a regular egg beater to do the last step?

  19. 19

    I think you could use sweetened condensed milk instead of corn syrup. I made a fudgy frosting with just sweetened condensed milk and melted chocolate chips, similar to an easy fudge recipe I have.

  20. 20
    Angie says:

    I’m surprised at the comments, which is why I always take the time to read them. Yellow cake never occurs to me. Not when I could make chocolate. It sounds good though and I might have to give it a chance, after I make the chocolate one, of course. I got my chocolate tooth when I started having kids too, but only in baked form. No chocolate bars here. Cake is so much healthier right? :-) I’ll be trying this as soon as I get the chance. I wanted to share a link with you though: http://www.amazon.com/SideSwipe-KitchenAid-Bowl-Lift-Stand-Mixers/dp/B0027YOW8S/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1304973463&sr=8-3.

    This is a SideSwipe blade. It’s just a paddle attachment (available for most mixers) but it’s like having a rubber spatula and paddle in one. No more stopping to scrape the sides. I bought one about a year and a half ago, and it’s the only thing I ever use, even for lighter breads! I sound like a commercial, but it’s seriously my favorite part of my KitchenAid.

    • 20.1
      Patti says:

      Angie, you’re right, these are great! I use mine ALL the time. Do you think we can get compensated for our endorsements? Probably not.

  21. 21
    Carrie says:

    Okay, this looks fabulous! However, I went to check out the chocolate cake recipe from “Cooks” and there are to many to count. How about some help as to where to find the recipe-better yet, can you send it my way? Thanks. I LoVe, lOvE, LOVE your blog and book! I also made lots of mother day cans for friends, family and my nursery kids “kissed” the pre-made cans leaving lipstick “kisses” from them to mom. They were a hit! What to do about 2 big bags of fruit cocktail is my dilemma now! Thanks

  22. 22
    Jen M says:

    This frosting looks to die for! I’m drooling at my keyboard and trying to figure out a reason to make this that will satisfy my husband who is trying to eat healthy and keeps getting mad at me when I make treats. What’s a girl with a chocolate craving to do though? It must be satisfied.

  23. 23
    Susie says:

    so i do not have a kitchen scale (I KNOW, I KNOW!) so how many cups of chips is that please :) i just want to make it and eat it by the spoon full! thanks sooooo much for the tips, i hope the cake isnt to hard cause my Boyfriends bday is coming up and he will love this! :)

  24. 24
    Alyssa says:

    I may have to invent a reason to make some cake and frosting. It’ll be my peace offering to all this blasted wind! Please tell me it ends!

  25. 25
    Angela says:

    Just in time for my 10 year old’s “Golden” birthday tomorrow. I already made the cake but was just checking your site for a great chocolate frosting recipe, you read my mind.

  26. 26

    Sara, this chocolate frosting looks out of this world delicious! Wonderful job on it, and thanks for sharing. I’m glad to have found your beautiful blog and am going to explore more of your recipes! :) – Georgia

  27. 27
    Alicia W. says:

    It’s good that you didn’t post the recipe for the cake today as well. And that I don’t have the stuff to make the frosting. I am already trying to think of an occasion to make this!

  28. 28
    Jill C. says:

    I could not wait for the cake recipe to post. I used the Hershey’s one you referenced. OMG the cake and frosting we UNREAL. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  29. 29
    Louise says:

    It reminds me of the cake on Pollyanna. Evey time I watch that movie I crave a homemade Chocolate Cake.

  30. 30
    Bea says:

    OHG, I loved the cake and I absolutely love this frosting, do you think it would hold its shape to be piped onto a cupcake???… I cant wait to try it!!!! THanks . Bea

    • 30.1
      sara says:

      It’s very soft Bea. You’d have to refrigerate it for a bit to pipe it. If it were me I’d just spread it on.

  31. 31
    Kimberly says:

    This post is perfect timing. How will this frosting freeze? I’m baking an ice-cream filled cake for a birthday party this weekend. I plan to frost the cake the morning of the party and stick it back in the freezer for a few hours until showtime. Will this frosting hold up? Would your other chocolate frosting recipe work better? Thanks!

    • 31.1
      sara says:

      No idea Kim, I’ve never frozen it. Let us know if you give it a shot!

      • Kimberly says:

        I did it! I used the other frosting recipe because use said it was better for piping. http://www.ourbestbites.com/2010/05/chocolate-frosting/

        I baked the cake on Thursday, filled it with ice cream and froze it. I frosted the cake at noon on Saturday and put it back in the freezer uncovered. I took it out at 4pm and let it sit on the counter uncovered until I could stick a wooden skewer through the ice cream–about 40 minutes. It looked and tasted great. The frosting froze and thawed perfectly.

        Next time I’ll let it sit out longer because the cake was still pretty frozen. But still yummy!

  32. 32
    Bea says:

    Thank you Sara!!.. I will definitely make this cake!!! Thank you . Bea

  33. 33
    Toni Black says:

    At last!!! A delicious frosting recipe that doesn’t taste and feel like straight butter! You have no idea how long I’ve waited for a recipe like this. I could just kiss you through my computer (but I won’t, because that would be weird).

  34. 34
    Shelli says:

    I have a question for you. How do you stay so THIN when you are constantly cooking yummy things like this?!?!?!

    • 34.1
      sara says:

      Answer: I don’t! lol Honestly though, it’s all about moderation. Good, healthy eating habits and regular exercise, and then you can enjoy the indulgences too!

  35. 35
    Amy says:

    I just made this for some cupcakes. To answer another person’s question, yes, you can pipe this on cupcakes. Just let it sit in the fridge for at least 15 – 30 minutes (or longer) beforehand and it firms up nicely.

    I did have a question though: has anyone tried this with milk chocolate and perhaps a bit less sugar? I like milk chocolate a lot better than semi-sweet and really tasted the semi-sweet chocolate in this recipe. Would it be too sweet with milk chocolate?

    • 35.1
      sara says:

      If you like milk, go ahead and try it. I bet it would taste great if you like it a little sweeter. I probably wouldn’t adjust the sugar *too* much though.

      • Amy says:

        I just tried making this recipe with milk chocolate…and for those of you milk chocolate lovers….YUM! Just buy yourself a bunch of Hershey bars (or your favorite brand of milk chocolate). I used a scant 1/3 cup of sugar and it turned out great.

  36. 36
    shawna says:

    I just made this frosting and it turned out like sugar cookie dough. Not light and fluffy. URGH! I didn’t have a food scale so I just eyeballed the chocolate chips, do you think I just maybe put too many in? So frustrating since this recipe takes so many steps. However, it does taste delicious! There is no way this would ever spread over a cake though. Too doughy.

    • 36.1
      shawna says:

      do you know of a way to save the frosting?

      • shawna says:

        I’m such a dork. I forgot to ADD THE CREAM! I added it after the fact and it still turned out. I’m an idiot!

        I’m glad I’m over here having a conversation with myself…

        • sara says:

          Lol! I was sitting here trying to figure out how you could possibly get a “doughy” consistency from that! Glad you figured it out :)

  37. 37
    Brooke says:

    Do you think this frosting would spread well over your sugar cookie recipe? How much frosting does it make, more or less than the sugar cookie recipe gives you?

  38. 38
    Erin says:

    What do you think about using white chocolate chips in this? If you can believe it my daughter does not like dark or milk chocolate. She does however love white chocolate. Her birthday is coming up so I may just give it a try. Of course I’ll have to make it before hand to test it.

    • 38.1
      sara says:

      I don’t know Erin…you would then have to leave out the cocoa powder as well and that would change things. You’d have to experiment with that one.

  39. 39
    Carrie M. says:

    I made this cake and frosting tonight and it was the bomb! The frosting is almost like a mousse. A bit more labor intensive than the “normal” chocolate frosting but soooo much easier to spread and super tasty. I wouldn’t make it w/ milk chocolate chips(as asked about in above comment) as it would sickening sweet. And I’m a milk chocolate kind of girl. I love how perfectly this cake cuts and presents itself. Too bad I ate way too much frosting before it was actually on the cake and then I couldn’t finish my piece.

  40. 40
    Ivy PM says:

    hi, what can you use if you don’t have corn syrup. Ivy@Malaysia

    • 40.1
      sara says:

      Hi Ivy- some other readers have suggested aAgave nectar, Lyle’s Golden Syrup, or honey. Although honey would change the flavor just a little.

  41. 41
    Eileen says:

    Do you think that I could use milk in place of the heavy cream? Thanks!

  42. 42
    Geneve Fallon says:

    I want to make this frosting for a birthday party on Sunday. But because the party is far away, I’d like to make it and the cake ahead so that I can put them together there. Will that work? I don’t want to ruin the frosting by making it too cold.

    • 42.1
      sara says:

      You know, I’m not sure Geneve! Depends on a lot of things. You might have to chill it or warm it when it’s time to use it depending on the temperature along the way. The note in the recipe says:

      Note: Don’t make the frosting until the cakes are cooled, and use the frosting as soon as it is ready. If the frosting gets too stiff to spread easily, wrap the mixer bowl with a towel soaked in hot water adn mix on low speed until the frosting is creamy and smooth. Refrigerated leftover cake should sit at room temperature before serving until the frosting softens.

      • Geneve Fallon says:

        Well it made me nervous not to follow directions, so I froze the cake overnight, made the frosting this morning and frosted the cake. Then I put it into the fridge until we left. By the time we ate it, it was thawed enough again and was perfect. Delicious! And it was a big hit!

  43. 43
    Emily says:

    THIS WAS AMAZING! I made a white layer cake and this frosting made it so good! There was enough frosting for all three layers. I am always on a hunt for good tasting frostings. I’m pretty picky. This was perfect! Thank you for the recipe!

  44. 44
    HeatherM says:

    I made this frosting for my sons birthday cake! It was perfect and everyone was RAVING about the frosting. Melt in your mouth delicious! I will never make a different chocolate frosting again. EVER! :)

    Link to the cake if you want to see it. :)
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/28774861@N08/5752369572/in/photostream

  45. 45
    kellee reilly says:

    any idea of how many cups of chocolate chips is 16 oz.?

  46. 46
    tish says:

    With the semi-sweet chips do I measure 16oz of chips then chop them or chop the chips first and measure 16 oz.

    Thank you.

    • 46.1
      sara says:

      Tish it doesn’t matter, you’re measuring 16 oz by weight, not by volume. So it weighs the same whether it’s chopped or not.

  47. 47
    Zosha Huemmer says:

    This frosting is the best we have ever tasted!! So amazing!! Its our new family favorite. Thanks!

  48. 48
    Angela Davis says:

    I feel like an utter failture. I tried making this several weeks ago and it was one of my biggest kitchen flops! After I added the chocolate and iced the bowl, it turned to a solid fudge state that no amount of whipping would fix! What did I do wrong?!? Can you think of anything that I may have done? Maybe I cooked the butter/corn syrup/sugar too long?

  49. 49
    Paige says:

    Super yummy. I made the cake into cupcakes and used tis frosting.. It was really good. I tried the other frosting to with the flour and it was yummy too. I made the rainbow cupcakes with the regular flour frosting and used lemon extract, my daughter loved these for her class for her birthday. I made the chocolate cake for her birthday cake.

  50. 50
    Andrea W says:

    uugghhh, I am soooo bummed. I just made the cake last night…. it completely fell. I finally read through all the comments and figured it was bc of my altitude (6200ft) and next time will add the flour, etc. but I was sure the frosting would still be a success. it has been going in the kithenaid for 10 minutes and is not whipping up at all. I cooled it, checked temp, went over all the steps. I (think) am pretty good in the kitchen, love to bake and this is the frist time I feel like a recipe I’ve tried has failed. The frosting is in the fridge right now, I’m hoping I can salvage it… of course I think it’s mostly cosmetic, I will prob still enjoy eating a plate of piled with chocolate (since I don’t see it holding any form! lol!) I’ll have to try it again tho….

    • 50.1
      sara says:

      That’s strange- I’ve never had it not work before. Better luck next time!

      • Andrea W says:

        One year later (my husbands bday again!) and I’m giving this cake another shot. FYI I baked using the High Altitude adjustments that Cady listed below and it is perfect!! Yay!! It would be super helpful if any known altitude adjustments are mentioned with a recipe. Thanks!

  51. 51
    denicash says:

    So does this cake need refrigeration because of the cream in the frosting? I hate refrigerated cakes.

  52. 52
    mrs. q. says:

    I made it many years ago. Since I usually need frostings I can tint and pipe, I forgot about this recipe. I just made a batch to frost a dark chocolate cake and WOW– It is wonderful. So chocolatey but light and fluffy. Definitely the right texture for a plop and spread frosting, as it would never hold up in a bag. Add some sprinkles and relive your youth!

  53. 53
    Tracy Janes says:

    I made this frosting for a cake and didn’t use it all. I put the rest in a tupperware in the fridge. A few days later I was cleaning out my fridge and thought, “That is probably rock hard, I’ll just toss it.” Wrong. It was the creamiest, most delicious, still very useable frosting. I ate the rest with a spoon.

    My large rear-end thanks you!!!

  54. 54
    Mylene says:

    Hello i just made this cake today, together with the frosting! I’m not sure about the taste yet cause it’s for a friend’s party… later haha. Anyway, my cake didn’t come out so dark, it was pretty light with a reddish tinge which I think is due to the fact that I used unsweetened cocoa powder (Cadbury Bournville). It was inconvenient for me to make an ice bath (just accept, don’t ask why!) and so I popped it in the freezer for like 5 mins and- voila!- all’s well! Will let you guys know of the taste but judging from previous comments, I think it shouldn’t be too bad at all!:)

  55. 55
    Aurora says:

    Thank you! I have been surfing the net for good chocolate frosting and yours is very well illustrated and look yummy! I’ll try this for my birthday cake.

  56. 56
    Lisa says:

    My dreams were dashed yesterday when my cake was ready to be frosted, sink was full of dishes BUT my chocolate frosting had hard clumps in it. Hah! I cooked my sugar stuff way too long I guess, I was trying to go the 4-5 minutes…but that was no bueno. So, disaster frosting turned into removing hard sugar and using now chocolate sauce over my consoling bowl of vanilla ice cream. Yummy! And today, with a new carton of whipping cream purchased, and baby down for a nap, I head to the kitchen. This frosting is mine! And I will be enjoying a thick ol’ slice of cake tonight!

  57. 57
    Abigail says:

    Hi Sara :)
    I’ve been searching for months for a chocolate frosting ACTUALLY made with real chocolate and was SO happy when I found this blog :D
    However I live in the UK and I don’t really know what I could replace the corn syrup with?
    Would a thick simple syrup work? Not sure what corn syrup is like.
    Thank you :)
    Abbie x

    • 57.1
      sara says:

      Since it’s just a small amount, I’d probably use honey. It’s as close to the texture as you can get, and because it’s just a couple of tablespoons, it shouldn’t affect the overall flavor too much. Enjoy!

  58. 58
    Cady says:

    This cake is absolutely delicious, but it is VERY finicky. For anyone wondering, if you make the recipe as written at a high altitude, it will fall every time and make you say bad words. The modifications that I’ve found for an altitude similar to Salt Lake City (4000 feet) are to follow the directions given, but change the ingredients to:
    12 tablespoons butter
    1 3/4 cup flour
    4 oz unsweetened baking chocolate, chopped
    1/4 cup cocoa powder
    1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon hot water
    1 1/2 cup + 3 tablespoons sugar
    1 teaspoon baking soda
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 cup buttermilk
    2 teaspoons vanilla
    4 large eggs, plus 2 egg yolks

    Also, heat the oven to 375 rather than 350.

    Oh, and one last thing. DON’T forget to flour the pans after greasing them, or your cake will stick and make you say bad words. There is a reason we call this the Sailor Cake around my house. It will make you swear like one.

    • 58.1
      Andrea W says:

      I’m at 6200ft and these adjustments worked perfectly!! Thanks! Just wanted others at high altitude to know I tried and it works! Thanks!

  59. 59
    T1ng says:

    Thank you so much for this incredible receipe! Love it to bits… To the point I am always missing a lot of it before I put it on my cakes… Culprit? My own self! Anyways, I do have a small question, I am using this frosting to pipe on my cupcakes, perfect when the cupcakes are not in the sun or the heat. But the frosting turns a little sloppy (aka melts) when it is under the slightest temperature rise. Is there a solution to my small dilemma? Or would I have to use another receipe altogether? :S

    Thx again for this wonderful receipe! :)

    • 59.1
      sara says:

      Yep, this recipe is so light, it’s pretty sensitive to heat. You could try chilling the cupcakes and just bringing them to room temp right before serving.

  60. 60
    Jasmine says:

    Is it just me or does this frosting take FOREVER to whip. Mine took at least 40 minutes. I;m not exaggerating! I even stuck it in the fridge for 10-15 minutes then kept whipping it. I have a kitchen aid with a paddle attachment and followed the recipe exactly. Did I do something wrong? Did it take yours this long to whip up? I love your guys’ blog :)

    • 60.1
      sara says:

      It takes like, a minute :) I see from your other comment that you didn’t measure your chocolate and that is definitely a must!

  61. 61
    Jasmine says:

    I read some of the comments and added more cream. It whipped up much better. I must’ve just had too much chocolate to begin with (I dont have a scale so I didnt weigh it)

  62. 62
    Kristy Fitzgerald says:

    This may be a dumb question but would salted butter work if I left out the salt in the recipe? SO excited to make this! You guys rock!

  63. 63
    Tori says:

    Can I use milk instead of cream? I just happened to run out. I only have a bar of semi-sweet bakers chocolate, will that work too?

  64. 64
    Melanie says:

    I LOVE CHOCOLATE!!!!!!!! This is my new favorite chocolate frosting! I’ve always been in love with all sorts of chocolate.

  65. 65
    David says:

    OK. So I have been looking for a frosting for everyday use. I do not like the thick lard of some frostings and the powdered sugar just seems too Continental. I have a feeling that no self respecting pastry chef would use powdered sugar if given the choice. So I again have been searching for a “go to” frosting.

    …FOUND IT!!

    Thanks its great and hard to mess up so just perfect for me. I even taught my daughter this one.

  66. 66

    […] Our Best Bites (and Cook’s Illustrated) have never steered me wrong.  Here’s the frosting recipe.  Blueberry Muffins- I don’t think you can ever have too many blueberry muffin […]

  67. 67
    JMI says:

    I was just curious if it is possible to use other things in this frosting instead of chocolate, like fruit for example?

  68. 68
    Jen says:

    I already made the old fashioned cake for a birthday tomorrow afternoon, and am trying to decide if I should frost it tonight or tomorrow. does it need to be refrigerated if I frost it tonight? I have ready bad things about refrigerating buttercream and having it “sweat” and melt off of the cake so I am nervous about doing it.

    Thanks!

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