snowy mountain

Chocolate Custard Frosting

This has been my go-to icing since I can remember making cakes. It may take some practice to make sure you don’t cook the egg yolks at the beginning, but I promise it is so worth it. And it doesn’t even take long to make! But the one extra step really adds volume and depth to the frosting, so I really recommend this. If you’re looking for a quicker chocolate frosting, try the Chocolate Ganache Frosting (coming soon) recipe, which only requires heavy cream and chocolate! And for a simple chocolate glaze, try the Simple Chocolate Icing.

Total time: 40 minutes (including cooling). Covers one 3-layer cake, or about two dozen cupcakes (depending on how much icing you like).

Materials: Small mixing bowl; electric beater; pot or double-boiler; whisk. Missing materials or ingredients? Look here.


  • ⅔ cup milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 cup confectioners sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 stick butter
  • 10 oz chocolate*

*I think of this like it depends on the cake. If I want deep chocolate icing, I use 8 oz bittersweet/2oz unsweetened. If I want lighter chocolate, I use 6oz milk chocolate/6oz bittersweet. If I want milk chocolate, I use 10 oz milk chocolate. If I want white chocolate, I use all white chocolate. Etc.


  1. On the stove in a pot (if you reeeeally pay attention, under very low heat) or in a double boiler, whisk together the milk, egg yolks, flour, and ⅓ cups of confectioners sugar. Whisk until the mixture thickens, but no further. Then quickly transfer into a cool bowl and beat with an electric beater.
  2. Add the remaining confectioners sugar, the vanilla, and ½ stick of butter. Continue beating to help the custard mixture cool.
  3. Melt the remaining ½ stick of butter with the chocolates to a smooth consistency. I do this in the microwave in 30-second increments until there are a few chunks left that melt as I stir.
  4. Add the chocolate to the cooled custard and beat for a minute or so. Then transfer the frosting to the fridge for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove the frosting from the fridge and beat again. Continue cooling and beating until you have the desired spreading consistency.
  6. Frosting can be spread onto cake immediately or refrigerated. If refrigerating, it may have to warm a bit to soften so you can give it another quick whip right before spreading.

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