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Red Velvet Cupcakes: the irresistible recipe for delicious, tender cupcakes

Total time: 35 Min
Difficulty: Low
Serves: 16 people
By Cookist

Red velvet cupcakes are beautiful baked treats that anyone can whip up with ease. This simple recipe is the cupcake version of the classic popular red velvet cake.

Red velvet cupcakes have a wonderfully chocolatey vanilla taste with a rich cream cheese frosting that makes it hard to have just one. As their name suggests, these delectable cupcakes have a velvety soft texture and bold red color.

Make these amazing red velvet cupcakes for birthday parties, potlucks, picnics, or as a sweet treat to sneak into your kids' lunchbox. Or enjoy them yourself with a cup of tea or coffee as a tantalizing mid-afternoon snack!


Red Velvet Cupcakes Ingredients

To make authentic, lighter-than-air red velvet cupcakes, you'll need buttermilk, eggs, sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and butter. Buttermilk and baking soda react to make the cupcakes extra fluffy.

Cocoa powder and vanilla give the cupcakes their characteristic sweet chocolate-vanilla flavor, while red coloring is essential for turning the cupcakes into red velvet (although you can always leave it out if you don't have any).

To make the exquisite creamy buttercream frosting, you'll need cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and sugar.


How to Make Red Velvet Cupcakes

Fluffy, delicious red velvet cupcakes are delightfully easy to make at home. Start by lining a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Set it aside. Sift all of the dry ingredients together in a large bowl – this will help prevent lumps from forming. Whisk to combine.

Add the diced butter into the flour mixture and combine it until it takes on a coarse texture. Mix the eggs, vanilla, buttermilk, and food coloring in a separate bowl until well-combined. Combine the buttermilk mixture with the dry ingredients then pour the batter evenly between the cupcake liners.

Bake the cupcakes for 15 to 20 minutes, then remove them from the oven to cool completely. While the cupcakes are cooling, cream the butter with vanilla, salt, and cream cheese. Gradually beat in the sugar.

If you want your frosting to be stiffer, pop it in the fridge before you decorate the cupcakes. Put the frosting into a piping bag and pipe it onto the top of each cupcake.


Tips for Easy Red Velvet Cupcakes

While you can certainly leave out the buttermilk if you don't have any on hand, it's well worth adding it to the recipe. Buttermilk makes red velvet cupcakes ultra-fluffy, light, and soft because it reacts with the baking soda in the recipe. If you don't have any, you'll still be able to make delicious cupcakes, but they won't be as airy.

If you prefer not to use eggs, you can substitute them for flax eggs, tofu, or other vegan egg substitutes.

Don't overmix the batter. If you do, your cupcakes will be dense rather than light and airy.

You'll know your cupcakes are ready when a toothpick inserted into the center of the cupcakes comes out relatively clean and crumb-free. The cupcakes should be light and spring back when touched.


How to Store Red Velvet Cupcakes

Keep your red velvet cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

You can keep them in the fridge for up to 4 days, but they might dry out slightly.

for the cupcakes
All-purpose flour
1 2/3 cups
Cocoa powder
2 tsp
Granulated sugar
1 cup
Baking soda
1/4 tsp
Baking powder
1 tsp
Kosher Salt
1/4 tsp
unsalted butter, diced
3/4 cup
eggs at room temperature
Vanilla Extract
2 tbsp
3/4 cup
Red food coloring
for the frosting
Unsalted butter
3 sticks
confectioner's sugar
1 1/2 lb
Cream Cheese
16 oz
pure vanilla extract
1 tsp
Kosher Salt
a pinch


Preheat your oven to 350F. Line a muffin tin with cupcake liners.

Sift flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into a bowl. Stir to combine. Add the diced butter into the dry ingredients then mix until it takes on a coarse, sand-like texture.

In a separate bowl, add the vanilla and buttermilk.

Beat in the eggs.

Add in the food coloring.

Mix until well-combined.

Beat the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients.


Pour the batter into the cupcake liners.

Continue until you run out of batter.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes then remove from the oven to cool completely.

For the frosting, cream the butter with vanilla, salt, and cream cheese. Slowly beat in the sugar.

Take a cool red velvet cupcake and grate it lightly to get some crumbs for decoration.

Put the frosting into a piping bag and decorate the cooled cupcakes with crumbs. Serve and enjoy!


Use room temperature ingredients to make your red velvet cupcakes.

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