Sorry, I’ve been quiet all week. Work has finally picked up again and I’m back to a regular working schedule. No more randomly baking at 7 AM on a Tuesday morning ☹. But today is a very special day, it’s the blog’s official third birthday. And we a celebrating with Red Velvet Cupcakes! This recipe is near and dear to my heart because it is the cupcake that started it all. It sparked my love for cupcakes, which led to a greater love affair with baking, and eventually this blog.
It must have been almost 10 years ago since I first made these red velvet cupcakes. Sh*t, I’m old. I still remember it as clear as day. I just barely graduated college, still living in an apartment with an old electric oven and mm retro ???? Formica counter top. My bf at the time (now husband) said he liked red velvet cupcakes. So I thought, what the heck, I should try to make some. I used this recipe, but have since modified it to my liking. One cupcake recipe led to another and another. Now 10 years later, I’m making things I never would have thought I could. Moral of the story: anyone can bake delicious homemade treats, you just need a little bit of willingness and patience.
Many red velvet cake recipes you will find out there call for vinegar. The reason for vinegar is when used in combination with baking soda, a simple chemical reaction occurs releasing carbon dioxide, which leavens the cake. They’re not secret ingredients of any sort. However, I don’t always have vinegar on hand, so I’ve omitted it from my recipe. I have been successfully relying on double acting baking powder and baking soda/buttermilk combination to leaven my cupcakes. ???? And a few words about the cream cheese frosting: not too sweet and just the right richness IMHO. So spare a half hour this weekend and try out these cupcakes, you won’t be disappointed!
- 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoon cocoa powder
- 3/4 cup buttermilk
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon red food color
- 8 oz. regular cream cheese – room temperature
- 4 oz. unsalted butter – room temperature
- 3/4 cup powder sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line a regular size cupcake pan with cupcake liner.
- In a small bowl, measure out flour, sugar, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and cocoa powder, mix thoroughly with a whisk and set aside.
- Measure out the buttermilk, oil, egg, vanilla extract and red food color in a medium bowl and beat with a whisk to combine.
- Slowly pour the flour mixture into the liquid mixture while slowly whisking with the other hand. Mix only until combine, use a spatula to scrape any flour on the side of the bowl and mix up anything at the bottom of the bowl.
- Divide batter equally among 12 cups.
- Bake for 17 minutes until an inserted toothpick in the middle of the cupcake comes out clean.
- Remove cupcakes from the oven and cool completely on a wire rack.
- Leave the cream cheese and butter out on the counter for a few hours until they reach room temperature and are softened, but not melted.
- Cream the cream cheese and butter together with an electric mixer on medium speed until fluffy.
- Add vanilla extract and mix to combine.
- Add powder sugar and mix to combine.
- Use a spatula to scrape the side and bottom of the mixing bowl as necessary.
- Transfer frosting to a pastry bag fitted with the star tip, top cupcakes with frosting.
- Optional garnish: crumble up a single cupcake and generously top the frosted cupcakes with crumbs.
2. Best enjoy within 1 – 2 days, but you can store cupcakes in an air tight container in the fridge for up to 5 days.
3. Let cupcakes come to room temperature before serving if stored in the fridge.