February 12, 2017

The BEST Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

I'm so excited to finally be sharing one of my absolute favorite cupcake recipes with you.

When I was young, I had never heard of, or seen, a red velvet cupcake.  It wasn't until I was an adult when I first discovered red velvet cake.  Honestly, I think I first saw a red velvet cake on an episode of Paula Deen on T.V. and I had to try this interesting cake right away.

From the moment I first tasted red velvet cake, it instantly became my favorite and is still, to this day, my favorite flavor of cake.
There was a time when I was making a new red velvet cake recipe every weekend. I had to make up for lost time, right?  I tried recipe after recipe and none compared to this one.  It is a light cake with a beautiful red color and a slight chocolate flavor with a little tang from the buttermilk.  Red velvet cake is not meant to have a super strong chocolate flavor.    

I top these cupcakes with my go-to cream cheese frosting recipe.  I prefer my cream cheese frosting to have more butter than cream cheese, but if you like a super strong cream cheese flavor, you can double the cream cheese and cut the amount of butter called for in half.  

This has been my go-to red velvet cupcake recipe for years and years and I'm sure it will become your favorite too.  

You might also like:

The BEST Red Velvet Cupcakes
adapted from: Magnolia Bakery
(Printable Recipe)

3 1/3 c. cake flour (not self-rising)
3/4 c. (12 Tbl.) unsalted butter, room temperature
2 1/4 c. sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
2 Tbl. liquid red food coloring
3 Tbl. unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 c. buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp. white vinegar
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a muffin tin with paper liners and spray with cooking spray; set aside.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine butter and sugar and mix on medium speed until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  In a small bowl, whisk the food coloring, cocoa powder and vanilla together; add to the butter/sugar mixture and mix well.  Stir the salt into the buttermilk and add to the batter in three parts, alternating with the cake flour, starting and ending with flour.  In a small bowl, stir together the vinegar and baking soda; add to the batter and mix well.

Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full with batter and bake in preheated oven for 17-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Do not over bake.  Repeat with remaining cupcakes.  Cool completely and top with Cream Cheese Frosting.  Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cupcakes.

Cream Cheese Frosting:
From: Jenn@eatcakefordinner
1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, room temperature
1/4 tsp. salt
2 tsp. vanilla extract
4 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 Tbl. milk, plus more if needed

In a large bowl, mix together butter, cream cheese, salt and vanilla until smooth.  Add powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating well after each addition.  If frosting is too thick, add a little milk.  If you are planning to pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes, you want it thick enough to hold its shape.  This makes enough frosting to pipe a big swirl on the top of each cupcake.  I used a Wilton 1M piping tip.

*If you do not want to pipe a large swirl onto each cupcake and prefer to spread a small layer on top instead, the amount of frosting could be cut in half.  



  1. I love red velvet cake :) it's my next cake that i'm going to try baking!

    Rachael xx.

  2. hi jenn i really want to try out this recipe but is it possible for me to use plain flour instead? thanks!

    1. You can make a substitute for cake flour using a mixture of all-purpose flour and cornstarch. I'm not sure the exact measurements to do that though. I have only ever used cake flour in these.

  3. Hi! Can I use these batter to bake a loaf cake? I like cupcakes but I like pound cakes for tea time. Thanks and regards from Buenos Aires, Argentina. Laura

    1. This recipe makes a lot of batter and would make a lot of loaf cakes. It doesn't really taste like pound cake, so it might not be the recipe to try in a loaf pan if you are looking for a heavy pound cake texture.

  4. Hi! Do you think it would be possible to make these ahead of time and freeze them? I do that with all of my chocolate cake recipes, but I haven't made this one yet. They always turn out great, but wanted to ask :) thanks so much!

  5. What is the difference between this recipe and red velvet cake recipe?

    1. I bet you could just put the batter in a cake pan verses the cupcake tin. She mentioned above that it makes a lot of batter.

  6. Your recipe sounds amazing! Was wondering how many cupcakes will this make roughly?

  7. Just made this recipe today. I followed the recipe exactly and my cupcakes are absolutely delicious Thank you for posting it :)

  8. What did use to decorate on top of the frosting?

    1. I crumbled up one of the cupcakes and sprinkled the crumbs on each remaining cupcake.

  9. Is this this the recioe from magnolia bakery in New Zealand?