One of the prettiest treats you can make for a celebration or gathering is red velvet cupcakes. I prefer cupcakes for these types of events because it’s easier for people to just take one. It’s a good recipe to have because its unique color adds to the decor and the overall atmosphere. Plus, the red and white combination makes it well suited to holidays throughout the year.
What is Red Velvet Cake?
We all know it has a distinctive red and white vibrancy to it, but what is it? There’s something strange about attributing the qualities of velvet to something you eat. We all associate velvet with smoothness, but not in any way you would want to put in your mouth. To me that adds to the mysterious aura surrounding this dessert cake. Besides the literal interpretation of velvet, there is also a sense of rich decadence and splendor that the crimson delicacy evokes.
Red velvet cake may have come about during the 19th century, but it became popular in the 1920s when the Waldorf Astoria began to serve it. It gained a lot of traction during the great depression thanks to a marketing ploy by an extract company that manufactured red dye. They placed red velvet cake recipes near the registers at stores where their product was sold.
Red velvet cake is very similar to a chocolate cake but it uses significantly less chocolate and offers a more tangy flavor thanks to the vinegar that most recipes call for. My red velvet cupcakes call for sour cream which does the same job and adds moisture and body to the cake.
What Flavor Is Red Velvet?
Since so little chocolate is used in red velvet cake it really doesn’t taste like chocolate. It has a subtler flavor with a brightness from the acid typically introduced to the batter. The result is a uniquely flavored cake that you are likely to have opinions about. Whether you love or hate it, you should give it a try to find out. One of the key components to the flavor of red velvet cake is the traditional cream cheese frosting. This is the most common type of frosting for desserts that add a bit of tartness to the sweet.
How to Make Red Velvet Cake?
Actually making a red velvet cake is not that different from making any other cake. Besides the measurements of the individual ingredients, it’s made basically the same way as any other cake. You mix your dry ingredients, you blend your wet ingredients and then you add and mix dry ingredients until the mixtures are combined.
The only complication is that when you make cupcakes you need to be more careful about the batter distribution, but I’ll get into that in a moment.
Why Do You Mix Wet and Dry Ingredients Separately?
This is not the only time this has happened. Although you may be used to it by now, you might begin to wonder why every baking recipe tells you to do the same thing: Mix dry ingredients, then in a larger bowl mix wet ingredients. Add dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and combine. While the reason for the larger bowl might be obvious, what’s the reason for using two bowls, to begin with?
The reason that there is a common order to all of these baking instructions is that that’s what works best so everybody does it. Adding wet to dry ingredients is too difficult and it results in inconsistent batter. Mixing dry into wet is the most efficient practice and it helps the ingredients blend more evenly. The reason you blend your dry ingredients together before adding them to the blend of wet ingredients is that by evenly distributing the wet and the dry ingredients respectively before combining, you create a more uniform batter in both flavor and function. In other words, each cupcake will look and taste the same.
Can’t I just alternate the ingredients and get the same results?
Some recipes do call for alternating between wet and dry ingredients, but you still typically have to blend the dry ingredients before doing this. The recipe may call for this when there is so much dry mix in the recipe that it will be hard to mix in all at once. Generally, this takes more work than the standard way so don’t do it unless a recipe specifically calls for it.
How to Evenly Fill Your Cupcake Liners
There are a number of ways to fill your cupcake liners with cupcake batter. They mainly involve scooping, pouring, or piping. It’s up to you which method you end up using, but there are pros and cons to each.
First, pouring is the messiest and the most awkward. It’s difficult to measure what comes out and you will most likely wind up using a spoon to push it out. At that point, you may as well be scooping. Scooping batter by spoon or measuring cup is less cumbersome, but it can still be a messy and slow process. even with a proper scoop, you may end up using your fingers to work the batter out. In the plus column, scooping is better for the even distribution of the batter across all cupcake liners.
Piping is the cleanest solution. It’s a fast and easy way to cleanly and uniformly fill your liners. You won’t be able to measure precisely, but it is easier to eyeball when you are squeezing your batter through a tube. You can use a pastry bag or snip the tip of a freezer bag for the same effect. to fill the bag place it in a pitcher or vase and fold the lips over the rim. Pour in batter, snip one corner and gently squeeze the batter out into each cupcake liner.
Red Velvet Cupcakes Ingredients
For the cupcakes
- Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
- Baking Soda
- Butter, room temperature
- Sour Cream
- Red food coloring
- Chocolate Chips
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
- Cream Cheese
- Powdered Sugar
(Actual measurements are in the recipe card below.)
How to Make Red Velvet Cupcakes
For the Cupcakes
- Preheat oven to 350° and line a muffin pan with liners.
- In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together until combined. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Next, add eggs, sour cream, milk, and mix together on medium speed until well combined. Add a couple drops of red food coloring and blend until fully incorporated.
- Add dry ingredients into wet ingredients and mix well.
- Gently fold in chocolate chips.
- Fill up each cupcake liner ¾ full and bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
- In a medium bowl, add cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar and mix on medium speed until fully combined.
- Place frosting into piping bag and frost cupcakes.
We Hope You Enjoy This Delicious Red Velvet Cupcakes Recipe
Here are a few more delicious recipes that can be found on the blog:
- Lemon Cupcakes
- Carrot Cake Cupcakes with Orange Buttercream Frosting
- Coconut Pecan Brownies
- Coconut Cream Cookie Bites
And here are some Mini Red Velvet Cakes from Deliciously Seasoned that you might enjoy. These are super easy to make and looks great on the dessert table.
A favorite cupcake recipe that is perfect for any occasion.
- 2½ cup flour
- ½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 cup butter, room temperature
- 1½ cup sugar
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 tsp vanilla
- ½ cup milk
- ⅛ tsp red food coloring
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
- ½ cup butter, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 3 cups powdered sugar
Preheat oven to 350° and line a muffin pan with cupcake liners.
In a medium bowl, whisk flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt together until combined.
In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy.
Next, add eggs, sour cream and milk. Mix together on medium speed until well blended. Add red food coloring and blend until fully incorporated.
Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and mix well.
Gently fold in chocolate chips.
Fill each cupcake liner ¾ full and bake for 20-22 minutes or until a toothpick is inserted and comes out clean.
In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese, butter, vanilla, and powdered sugar, on medium speed, until fully combined.
Place frosting into piping bag and frost cupcakes once they have completely cooled.
Recipe adapted from Allrecipes
Here are a few pins that are the perfect size for pinning to Pinterest.
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