Red Velvet Cupcakes (makes 24)
2 1/2 cups cake flour (not self-rising), sifted
2 tablespoons unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon red gel paste food color
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
Cream cheese frosting
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line standard muffin tins with paper liners. Whisk together cake flour, cocoa, and salt.
- With an electric mixer on medium-high speed, whisk together sugar and oil until combined. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated, scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Mix in food color and vanilla.
- Reduce speed to low. Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and whisking well after each. Stir together the baking soda and vinegar in a small bowl (it will foam); add mixture to the batter, and mix on medium speed 10 seconds.
- Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each three-quarters full. Bake, rotating tins halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer tins to wire racks to cool completely before removing cupcakes. Cupcakes can be stored overnight at room temperature, or frozen up to 2 months, in airtight containers.
- To finish, use a small offset spatula to spread cupcakes with frosting. Refrigerate up to 3 days in airtight containers; bring to room temperature before serving.
Cream Cheese Frosting (makes 4 cups)
8 ounces (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
1 pound (4 cups) confectioners' sugar, sifted
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Beat butter and cream cheese with a mixer on medium-high speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce speed to low. Add sugar, 1 cup at a time, and then vanilla; mix until smooth. Frosting can be refrigerated for up to three days.
I spent two hours making this recipe. I had to substitute buttermilk with milk and vinegar, and cake flour with regular flour and starch. I also made only a half of the recipe. Since I don't like using the food coloring in my cupcakes, I used a bit less. The recipe called for gel paste, but I used the liquid coloring. I used two spoons (four times as much as I would have with gel paste, although I was supposed to use much more, like a whole bottle or so), and while the mixture without the flour and milk was VERY red, the color then turned to brown. They look dark orange now. The recipe was supposed to make 12 cupcakes, but I made 17. They didn't rise too high, so they were perfect for putting the frosting on them. When I tried them without the frosting, I didn't quite like the taste. I expected them to be more chocolate-y, but they weren't. I liked the frosting though. The recipe says it makes 4 cups, I only made 1/4 of the recipe and it was enough to cover all (17!) cupcakes, so if you're making the whole recipe (24 cupcakes) it would be best to make one half of the frosting recipe. That's one package of Philadelphia cream cheese.
I'm starting to like cream cheese in my cupcakes a lot, although I have never tried it before. I won't be making these again in the future, because even though other people liked it, I didn't. I had to try it, because I thought it had the potential of being a great recipe. But it wasn't. Not for me, because I'm a chocoholic and the only thing these cupcakes have in common with chocolate, is the color.