Not long ago, Ben asked me what my favorite type of cake was.  Such a funny question.  You see, I make birthday treats all throughout the year for coworkers, friends, and families, always asking if they have a favorite flavor or what new type they want to try.  It is so much fun, and I enjoy nearly all of the flavor combinations that people pick.  Then when my birthday rolls around I tend to bake my own cake for the joy of trying some new, über decadent treat.  As a result, I just don’t tend to think about what my own true favorite is.  When Ben asked me, I really had to think hard about it for a while (okay, a few days).

It came down to a close decision, but red velvet with cream cheese frosting won out in the end.  I have made these cupcakes countless times this year, including as a three-tiered wedding cake plus 140 wedding cupcakes, and I’m still not sick of it.  That must mean something.  Some may think of red velvet as a Valentine’s treat, but for me this is a year-round type of love.  If you’ve never tried red velvet cake, you need to.  The flavor can’t really be adequately described, you just need to taste it to know.  I’ve made many versions but this is my favorite for sure, both for flavor and the perfect red coloring.  (And yes, I use the artificial coloring and I have no qualms about it.)  One thing I learned during the wedding cake and cupcake adventure is that using clear vanilla extract in the frosting makes for a prettier color and a better texture.  Normally I’m all about the natural stuff, but in this case I go for the clear kind.


For the cake:
2½ cups cake flour
1½ cups sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tbsp. cocoa powder
1 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
1½ cups vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
2 tbsp. (1 oz.) liquid red food coloring
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. distilled white vinegar

To finish:
Cream cheese frosting 


  • 01

    Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line cupcake pans with paper liners.  In a medium bowl, combine the cake flour, sugar, baking soda, cocoa powder and salt; whisk to blend.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the eggs, vegetable oil, buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla and vinegar.  Beat on medium speed until well blended.  Mix in the dry ingredients on low speed and beat until smooth, about 2 minutes.

  • 02

    Divide the batter evenly between the prepared liners.  Bake, rotating the pans halfway through baking, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean, about 18 minutes.  Let cool in the pans 5-10 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

  • 03

    Prepare the frosting according to directions.  Frost cooled cupcakes as desired. (I used a large, unlabeled star tip to frost these cupcakes.)  Enjoy!

  • I always make more icing than in the recipe:-) Are these more light and fluffy or a denser red velvet? I am guessing light based on the recipe but am curious.

  • Annie

    Definitely light…who wants dense cake?!

  • These sound and look yummy. I’m going to test these out tomorrow for a house warming I’m going to.

    I’ve not found THE red velvet recipe but this sounds good, no shortening to be seen :) (Shortening in the UK is not the same…)

  • Yum! I love red velvet. These cupcakes look amazing.

  • Lynn Brown

    So, funny I was just searching around for a delish red velvet cake recipe and decided to check your blog as I do daily and surprise!!! will try!

  • Those look so delicious! Red velvet is my brother’s favorite and he just got engaged….I’ll have to make some for his engagement party! :)

  • Those are beautiful. I’m going to have to try this recipe very soon.

  • I’m going to have to give these a try Annie. The last red velvet cake I made was a dismal failure. I blame myself and my (then) lack of experience. I love this recipe, the lack of shortening makes me happy :)

  • Mell

    Sounds soooo yummy! Is this full fat buttermilk or can fat free be used? I’ve only been able to find fat free?

  • I was searching around all morning yesterday to find a great red velvet cake to make. I ended up using a recipe out of “Confetti Cakes” that I have here at my house. Then this morning, your post pops up in my google reader and I see “Red Velvet Cupcakes”. So weird. I guess I’ll have to make another batch. ;)

  • Yum, yum, yum! :) Red Velvet is my favorite.

  • I made red velvet cupcakes last night! But I haven’t frosted them yet! I love how you did yours and I even have that same heart sprinkle…may just have to copy you! Thanks!

  • Deborah

    These sound and look really great. Did you make the little hearts that are on top or purchase them? It adds the finishing touch.

  • I have been wanting to make red velvet cupcakes for some time now, so I am so happy to see this post! I once had them with mini chocolate chips in the cake, and they were fabulous. Your photos are beautiful!

  • The frosting is, in my opinion, the best part of a red velvet cake. Your cupcakes look delicious.

  • Sarah

    This is my favorite red velvet recipe ever!! So moist. I have only made them as cupcakes, so I’m interested to try it as a cake. This is my birthday cupcake of choice until my kids figure out that they can request their favorite flavor;)

  • How funny; I actually made these two days ago and brought them into work yesterday. It was the most compliments I’ve gotten on any treat I’ve brought to work.

  • Rachel

    How do these compare to the recipe you posted a couple years ago? That’s been my go-to recipe and I’ve made it repeatedly, it’s hard to think there’s better. What’s your pick of the two?

  • Annie

    I think I addressed that in the post: “I’ve made many versions but this is my favorite for sure, both for flavor and the perfect red coloring. “.

  • Annie

    Any kind is fine.

  • Annie

    They are sprinkles.

  • Danielle

    Looks amazing…I guess I don’t really “get” red velvet cake, though, because I’ve never tried it…isn’t it pretty much chocolate cake with food coloring??

  • Annie

    Not at all. You just need to try it. If you notice, it only has a tablespoon of cocoa powder so any chocolate flavor is very mild.

  • The cupcakes look delicious. I just cant get over how amazing your photography is! It really looks professional quality!

  • Linda

    I love red velvet, but have only made twice! The first was with a co-worker, I fell in love with the cake, but then didn’t have the recipe and I lost touch with the co-worker! Then I made your red velvet whoopie pies. They didn’t work for me for some reason. So now I have a new version that I definitely have to try at the next family gathering.

    Question: I have never heard of clear vanilla extract. I assume the usual manufacturers make a version that will be in the baking section of the grocer?

  • I love red velvet cupcakes. As a little girl my grandmother would make red velvet for the holidays and I would always ask her to make them into mini cakes for me, which of course was a cupcake. They will always be my favorite.
    These are beautiful Annie!

  • Angela

    Hi Annie,
    I love red velvet…and I’m always trying by best to find a recipe that will taste just as good as what I might find at Sprinkles. Personally, I use a recipe that’s almost identical to yours (with the exception that has a tad more cocoa)…but I sometimes find the cupcake to be on the oily side. But the end result is always incredibly moist. I’ve tried recipes with butter as well, but I find the cake to be on the drier side…but it has that great flavor only butter can provide.

    I know there’s no real question here :P I was just wondering if you’ve ever felt the same or if you’ve ever tried a recipe that uses both to get the best of both worlds. Either way, I do love this recipe…and I find your work to be truly impeccable and you really inspire me!

  • I’m SO happy to see you finally posted a red velvet cupcake recipe!!! I tried one recently and was not happy with how it came out. I’ll have to try your recipe! :)

  • Annie

    Yes, grocery stores carry it.

  • Annie

    These aren’t oily at all, in my opinion. The blog where I got the recipe did a very thorough comparison of five red velvet cakes, so this is a real winner for sure.

  • Sandy

    If I had to pick a favorite dessert, it would be the Red Velvet from the Flying Cupcake. A required stop when we visit Indianapolis. Have you had one?
    Really, really amazing…with chocolate chunks in the red velvet cake.

    Thanks for your blog — my 13 year old daughter has made your Cherry Limeade cupcake recipe, a couple batches of the Oreo cupcakes, and drooled over so many more. Hope I can convince her to try these next…

  • Korina

    What’s the flavor of the cake? (It seems like it’s a light chocolate cake with red food coloring.) Have you ever made it the “original” way, with beets? I’m interested to see how that tastes. :)

  • Annie

    As I mentioned in the post, the flavor can’t be described with words – you just have to try it and see.

  • We must be on the same baking wave-length. I made red velvet cupcakes last night for a friend’s birthday today. Unfortunately I wasn’t impressed; I love cream cheese frosting, but I’d much prefer a carrot cake to the red velvet. Perhaps yours are tastier, I found mine to be a bland chocolate that left me wanting something a little more bold. Oh well, I hope the birthday dude likes them.

  • elizabeth

    I love making my co-workers and friends cupcakes and birthday treats too, but I always have a problem with how to carry them to work to keep them looking pristine….how do you package them?!

  • Annie

    I used to use bakery boxes, but in the interest of being more green, I now just put all my cupcakes on a cookie sheet and cover loosely with plastic wrap. Or I use my cupcake carrier, but usually I frost them too tall for that.

  • Jaune

    I love the idea of red velvet, but feel like I can always taste the dye used to make the cake red. When I see 2T of red food coloring it scares me…but every recipe of yours I have made has been divine, so I’m going to try it. What if I leave out the dye? Is there any down side besides not being red?

  • Beautiful pics of your cupcakes! Red Velvet always photographs so well! I couldn’t agree more with the description of red velvet.. you just have to taste it to know and it sure does taste good!!

  • Ah! Delicious looking! Really want to try these! That cake looks so moist! yum yum!

  • Jaune

    One other question, I’m assuming you used a piping bag and tip to frost, but what tip? They look beautiful!

  • Annie, I’m so glad you liked the recipe. Red velvet is my favorite, too! Too bad you don’t live closer, or I’d have you make my wedding cake and cupcakes!

  • Melissa

    These look beautiful (and delicious)! I was so glad to see you posted this today since my friend is pregnant (expecting next week) and these are her absolute favorite!

  • Annie

    I included this info in the post.

  • Annie

    I don’t know why it should scare you. I’m not aware of a downside to omitting it, though I suppose the food coloring may actually have something to do with the flavor of the cake itself. I’ve never made it without, so I’m not sure.

  • Angela

    I made these today for a cookout/shower where we are using a red and white color scheme! How appropriate! I made these in the mini muffin pans for easy eating. Thanks so much for your great ideas and beautiful pictures! Now to make your scallops provencal for dinner again.

  • Patti

    These look gorgeous…fantastic photos. I agree about the flavor of red velvet, it’s just something that you have to try. I don’t know what it is about it, perhaps the red dye lends the flavor, but it’s wonderful nonetheless.

    Oh and Jaune..I use a 1M tip when frosting cupcakes, looks like that’s similar to what Annie used. There’s also a 1B? I think that’s a pretty big star tip.

  • Ryan

    These look delicious! I’m interested to hear how you increased the quantities of this recipe to turn it into a wedding cake. Did you just double or triple the recipe or did you make it separately 3 times to get the needed layers? I have never attempted turning a regular layer cake into a larger wedding or tiered cake but have heard it can be tricky. I have some large gatherings I’m cooking/baking for coming up so I’d love to know how you did it!

  • Annie

    I honestly don’t even remember what I did now, I didn’t write it down. Tiering a cake is really not that difficult, I’ve done it many times.

  • I didn’t even know they made clear vanilla extract!

  • I could eat countless number of these. One of my favourite dessert :)

  • Amanda

    I have these in the oven right now. I’m making them to take to a restaurant tonight for a friend’s 30th birthday. Should I hold off on frosting them or will the hold up until this evening? They will be in a covered cupcake holder.

  • Annie

    They will be fine.

  • I love red velvet cake. I have a bottle of clear vanilla in my cupboard that’s been staring at me for a while. I’ve never thought to use it in this cake – what a great idea!

  • So cute!!! I love red velvet, it was the first southern cake I tried when I moved to MS.

  • Fabulous pictures! The icing is perfect!

  • So cute! I love the hearts on the tip-tops of the frosting :)

  • Those look like the perfect red velvet cupcakes. Love the little heart on top!

  • katiec

    Hi Annie,

    Do you find that frosting recipe holds its shape well when frosted?

    Cupcake stores always seem to have creamcheese frosting that it quite solid and set. And sometimes tasteless! My creamcheese frosting is usually very soft and creamy.

  • katiec

    That should say “shape when piped?”

  • YUM!

    I have never found a red velvet recipe that is my IT recipe, you know? I need to try this one to see if this is going to be THE recipe. For some reason red velvet recipes seem to vary greatly.

  • Annie

    Yes, it holds up very well as I think you can see in the picture. Also, as I mentioned in the post, I think using the clear/imitation vanilla instead of pure vanilla extract makes a big difference in the consistency. When I use that, it is much softer and doesn’t hold its shape as well.

  • Just wanted to let you know I did make these and loved them though I made a bit of an error with the frosting making a conversion. I made a loaf and 12 cupcakes and some how the loaf was nicer.

    Thanks for sharing!

  • Jennifer Vadocz

    I have wanted to make red velvet cake/cupcakes for ages but haven’t had a gathering big enough to do it yet! (I really don’t want the leftovers at my house! :) I did make the cream cheese icing from your recipe, though, and found it was soft when I piped it. I also used the clear vanilla extract. Would you increase the icing sugar to firm it up a bit? On a side note – how do you transport your finished cupcakes? (Whatever kind they may be).

  • Annie

    I opt for refrigerating it to firm it rather than adding more sugar whenever possible so you don’t affect the flavor too much. Sometimes I use bakery boxes but in the interest of being more eco-friendly, I usually use my cupcake carrier or just put them on a baking sheet and cover loosely with plastic wrap.

  • Sooo cute!

  • Kara

    Hi Annie,
    Love your blog. I can’t get enough of your recipes. How do you prefer to store your cupcakes? I have a cupcake carrier, but am not sure if I should leave it on the counter or put in the refrigerator. What’s your advice?

    Thanks again for sharing!

  • Annie

    If they have a dairy frosting, like cream cheese, I refrigerate them.

  • Mary

    My family loves these cupcakes! These may be one of my favorites! I also always refrigerate dairy frostings.

  • Tiffany

    I have made various cupcakes and muffins from your site in the recent weeks and they all turn out amazing. I am just having problems with the frosting. I am frosting using the pastry bag and the frosting isn’t holding it’s shape as well as I would like. I think me holding the bag for so long is heating up the frosting. It takes me a long time because I have shakey hands. Is there any way to help with that?

  • These look absolutely gorgeous. I have to try them out one day!

  • Annie

    Refrigerate the frosting if it starts to melt down.

  • Annie,

    My sister just made this cupcakes as a birthday gift for a cousin and they were DELISH! After several trial and error red velvet recipes these are for sure the ones. The red color is beautiful and the texture and flavor is just perfect :)

  • Judith

    Hi Annie,

    I’m planning to make a red velvet cake for my birthday and just wanted to know if I could use this recipe for a cake instead of cupcakes?

    The cupcakes you’ve made look delicious!

    Thanks very much and keep up the awesome work on your blog.


  • Annie

    Yes, cupcake and cake batters can be used interchangeably.

  • Shannon abdollmohammadi

    First of all…great picture and the recipe looks great…can’t wait till valentines day.

  • Heather

    Hi Annie!

    Your recipe calls for 2tbsp. liquid Red Food Coloring. You are just referring to the regular food coloring you can get at the store and not the Wilton ones correct? They are really gel-like and I found that when I made my Red Velvet Cupcakes, I ended up having to use the whole container just to get them red! I guess the liquid coloring would be more practical for cupcakes rather than those tiny gel colorings.

  • Annie

    Yes, liquid coloring is not the same as the Wilton gels. Those are actually meant to be icing color, not food coloring.

  • Mylene Pearce

    Hello Annie,

    Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful, yummy cupcake recipes! I’ve tried some of them already and they’re best sellers!

    I just have one question about the red velvet as I’m a little confused. I’ve seen several red velvet recipes, some includes baking powder, and some don’t, just like yours. What difference would it make?

  • Annie

    As you say, some have it, some don’t. That’s why they are all different recipes. This one doesn’t.

  • Jen

    I made these cupcakes this past weekend. I had never baked from scratch before making these, so I was a little nervous. However… your instructions were very easy to follow, and the cupcakes were a HUGE hit. I gave them to some “seasoned bakers” at the school where I work and they gave me their seal of approval. Thanks for posting yummy and easy-to-follow recipes, Annie!

  • Lyanna

    this is gorgeous! how do you make the swirl on the cupcake btw? :)

  • Annie

    I actually addressed this within the post.

  • Lyanna

    oh i know, i use the wilton 1m open star. i usually do rosettes with the nozzle. but this looks way cuter and would definitely attract more people :)
    does this kind of swirl have a tutorial on youtube or something?

  • Annie

    It’s no special technique – I just pipe it on and that’s it.

  • hi annie,
    i tried these wonderful looking cupcakes today-my first red velvet and they turned out awesome, together with cream cheese frosting they are heaven, moist, delicate crumb yet firm. thanks alot. A little thing though, they didnt rise to the full height of my cupcake liners although my muffin pan is of same standard side, could it be baking soda or oven temperature? will be posting on my blog soon, please visit.

  • Annie

    The baking soda is the likely culprit, but it’s impossible to know for sure. Normally these rise a lot with beautiful domes so something was definitely off.

  • Rhonda

    I made these cupcakes last night. Loved the frosting, but for some reason, the cupcake had an odd taste. I can’t figure out what is causing the cupcake to taste so weird. I thought it was the red food coloring, but I’ve used coloring in other things before and never had that odd flavor. I followed the directions to the T and can’t figure out what might be causing that strange flavor :(

  • Sue

    Hi Annie! I notice foodie bride has 1 cup sour cream but no butter in her cupcake recipe, and saveur has 1 stick butter but no sour cream. I don’t see anything in your recipe as a sub for either of those. Any reason why not? I hope it’s not a typing omission- I just made them and they look lovely!! and hopefully taste the same…

  • Annie

    The citation shows that the frosting, not the cake is from Foodie Bride.

  • Erin

    How long can cupcakes with dairy frosting be left out before they should be refrigerated again? I am taking these to work and don’t know if I should leave them out for awhile and then put them back in the fridge after a certain amount of time.

  • Sue

    they were delicious!!!
    I got that your recipe for cupcake was from elsewhere, just curious why you liked this recipe without butter/sour cream better than others on the web out there– ie consistency, moisture, what have you.

  • Annie

    If you notice, the blog where I did get the recipe did a very careful comparison of several red velvet recipes. This was the winner.

  • Annie

    I’m no food scientist so you’ll have to decide that for yourself.

  • Kanika


    Thanks so much for posting a red velvet cupcake recipe (My new secret obsession) amongst many many many other fantastic recipes on your website! I always look forward to reading your blog to see what incredible things you are cooking/baking. Also the detail and photos you add in your blog posts are awesome!

    Thanks Annie! :D

  • Cate

    I’m baking these today for a fundraiser tomorrow night. I’m copying your idea and putting red hearts on them since the theme of the night is For the Love of Red! I can’t wait to bake them!

  • Anum

    I made these yesterday and they turned out wonderfully! Annie, your recipe is PERFECT and everyone loved them. Definitely my favourite flavour from now on, thank you! :)

  • Suman

    I made these cupcakes this afternoon and just finished frosting them. I have never had red velvet before so was a little hesitant at first and man am I glad I took the chance to make them.

    These cupcakes are delicious!!! Even my husband, who does not have a sweet tooth, loved them. I think he may be going for his fourth cupcake now.

    Thank you for the recipe and also for your other delicious recipes that you post.

  • Angel

    Finally made these last night. They’ve been on my to-bake list for a long time, but I was always reluctant because everyone seems to have a different idea of how red velvet should taste. They were absolutely delicious! My family gobbled them up at movie night. Can’t wait to make them again!

  • Beth

    How long does the frosting last at room temp.? I want to make these for tomorrow, today.

  • Annie

    That is your call. Personally, I refrigerate anything with cream cheese in it.

  • Beth

    Will it change the integrity of the cake? I’ve never made red velvet before, but I know when I make butter cakes, they suck after they have been in the fridge. Thanks!

  • Annie

    I refrigerate cakes all the time. You just need to let them come back to room temp before serving. Chilled cake has no flavor but refrigeration should not effect the quality of the cake.

  • Hey Annie,
    Love your blog!
    I made these today and followed the recipe to a T except for one thing: I couldn’t find cake flour so I used the all purpose + cornstarch substitute. Have you ever done that?
    The cupcakes look beautiful but taste weird. Almost acidic and lacking chocolate flavor.
    Wondering if that may have been the problem…

  • Annie

    I’ve never tried the substitute. It certainly could have played a role but I can’t say for sure. Have you had red velvet before? I only ask because some people seem to just not like the flavor, if it is their first time trying it.

  • Annie

    Oh, but also, red velvet is not meant to taste like chocolate. It’s a tangy buttermilk cake with only a slight hint of chocolate flavor. Most recipes only call for a tablespoon or two of cocoa.

  • Yes- I have had them many many times and love them.
    My instinct is that either the cornstarch didn’t mix as well as the cake flour would have or that somehow the vinegar didn’t react to the cocoa as was intended…there was this strange sour after taste.
    Anyway- they looked amazing and as this was my first attempt I will try again. And this time find some cake flour! :)

  • Annie

    Well, darn. Yeah, I guess just buying cake flour is the way to go next time.

  • Steph

    I get really bad migraines from caffeine, therefore cannot eat chocolate or cocoa powder. Can you believe I’ve never had red velvet cake?

    Can the cocoa powder be ommitted? Can it be replaced? Does the small quantity actuallt give it a chcolat-ey taste or is it just for color?

  • Annie

    Without the cocoa powder, it won’t really be red velvet. Please read my FAQ page for my stance on substitutions.

  • Melissa

    Just took these out of the oven and they are SO red! I can’t wait for them to cool! I did add a couple tbsp of heavy cream to my icing and whipped it into a frenzy- I just like the airiness it adds. My Book Club is going to go crazy for them later!

  • Lynn

    I used this recipe the other day, they came out sooo moist but they also had the flour taste. Have you had that problem or no a way to resolve this problem?

  • Jenna

    I tried this recipe, and found the 1 fl oz red food color made the cupcakes look bright red, not the classic dark red I’m used to and was hoping for. I will try 2 fl oz next time.

  • Annie

    I have never had that problem.

  • Annie

    I would suggest trying a different brand of food coloring rather than using more liquid, which could affect the consistency of the batter.

  • Chanela Williams-Geerman

    Hey Annie,

    My name is Chanela and living in the Netherlands. I am a big fan of American cakes and ofcourse your website! You makes always delicious dessert…yummiie!
    I have a question about the red velvet cake…I had tried your recipe twice…it was in one word delicious. The only problem was the color of the cake…instead of red, it came light brown. The first time I used red liquid food coloring and the second time red red wilton coloring. All the both time I get the same cake colour. Did you know what went wrong??


    Chanela Williams-Geerman

  • Annie

    It probably has to do with the type of cocoa powder you are using. Some are lighter, some are darker, and that can affect the color.

  • Katherine

    When my mother was in town last month, I learned she had never had red velvet cake. I made your Hello Kitty cupcakes in December for a friend’s birthday and they were DELICIOUS, so I came here to look for a recipe and made these. They are a huge hit. I just got an email from her that they “are the best cupcakes I have EVER had!” – her friend said the same, my father loved them, my co-workers loved them. I followed the recipe (except you specifically call for paper liners? and I used the foil kind, and sprayed them with the fancy Pam for Baking) and had perfect results. Thank you!

  • Annie

    The type of liner doesn’t matter at all, I just prefer paper myself. Glad you enjoyed them!

  • Annie Hare

    Your recipe rocks. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Kelly

    I loved this recipe so much! I have never got what I was looking for making any type of cake or cupcake recipe from scratch. I made these for a friends housewarming party last weekend and they were amazing. The cupcakes were so moist and yummy I made sure to tell everyone they had to try them! I’m trying the filled snickers ones next :)

  • Rebecca

    Awesome, tried this recipe..just doubled the cocoa powder. And baked it for 325F for 28-30 minutes instead.
    Other than that, it turned out pretty moist & yummy. Very comparable to the ones you buy at the bakeries I’d say.
    Thanks again!

  • Audra, I have made the exact recipe with the all purpose and cornstarch substitute and my cakes were great. you used 3/4 Cup all purpose + 2 Tbsp Cornstarch for 1 cup cake flour right?

  • I just made these cupcakes following your exact recipe and myyyyyy god… they are amazingly moist and delicious!!! Thank you for sharing!!! I still don’t understand how the heck vinegar plays a part in a cake, but I went with it and the cupcakes are so amazing. They melt in your mouth.

    My cupcakes didn’t turn out as red as yours though… maybe I should’ve just used more food coloring? Also… if I wanted to make “blue velvet cupcakes” I can just substitute the red dye for the blue right?

    Again, thanks for sharing this DELICIOUS recipe!!! <3 Much love to you~

  • Annie

    Vinegar + baking soda = science fair volcano, or super fluffy cake :) Glad you enjoyed them! If you used the correct amount of food coloring, it’s probably just a variation in the different brands of food colorings. For blue velvet you can add blue, but the yellow color of the egg yolks in the batter mixes with the blue to give them a greenish tinge. Some people add a few drops of purple gel color to correct this, but I’ve made them a few times and still haven’t quite got the color right. Good luck!

  • ellie

    These look yummy!!!!! i think im gonna make them!

  • ellie

    :) ;)

  • Heather W.

    I made these a few weeks ago as a test run for my son’s birthday party this weekend. I didn’t think I liked red velvet, but I was wrong! These were awesome! I had a question about the frosting. How far in advance can I make the frosting? I was planning on doing it the same way as buttercream frosting by refrigerating it after mixing and then bringing it to room temp and fluffing it up when I was ready to frost. Do you know if this would change the texture?

  • Annie

    I’ve never made it in advance so I really can’t say how that might effect the texture. I think it would probably have some effect, but I’m just not sure. Good luck!

  • Hi Annie,

    Can I substitue buttermilk with yogurt or sour cream? Please let me know, thank you.

  • Annie

    Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions.

  • Miluz

    Hello there!

    The cupcake tasted so good, BUT the middle of the cupcake sank. Can you please give me an advice to perfect this because I really like this recipe. I live in CO, high altitude…do you think it has something to do with it? Please help!

    Thank you!!!!

  • Annie

    Normally cupcakes that sink in the middle are due to underbaking, but being at altitude could certainly have something to do with it as well. Unfortunately I have no experience with high altitude baking so I don’t know what sort of adjustments should be made. You might want to check out the blog Use Real Butter, as she lives near Boulder, CO and I believe has some tips on her blog about baking at altitude.

  • Micayla

    First off i LOVE the whole blog thing ive been pulling off so many recipes because i always make stuff for friends birthdays as an excuse to bake and they always turn out really good, but i had a question about these- would it affect the cupcakes much if i didn’t use liners and instead just greased the pan?

  • Annie

    No, that is fine.

  • These cupcakes are INCREDIBLE and I have shared the link to this recipe with so many friends already. We’re starting a red velvet revolution! lol. Thanks for the recipe, and the mouthwatering photos.

  • brittany

    do you suggest a certain kind of cake flour? because i use swans down and everytime i do my cake comes out a cornbread-ish texture so i always use all-purpose. any suggestions?

  • Annie

    No, I just buy whatever I grab first (sometimes Swan’s Down). I’ve never had any problems with it.

  • Claire

    I am so excited to make – and try – these cupcakes. I also bake cupcakes frequently but never could provide an answer when someone would ask, “What is your favorite cupcake?” After trying a Sprinkles red velvet cupcake, I instantly knew that this was my favorite flavor. I look forward to also trying your red velvet cheesecake recipe. Red velvet pancakes are truly a lazy Saturday breakfast. :)

  • Kimberly

    I love your site! I was wondering if I used a jumbo cupcake pan to make 12 cupcakes, how long do you think I have to bake them?
    P.S. Congrats on your little blessing! She is precious:)

  • Annie

    No idea, just use the toothpick test for doneness.

  • Anissa

    I made this cake using 2 6 inch round pans and baked it for 32 minutes. Before this cake I would have never claimed to be a red velvet fan. That has all changed. This cake really was fantastic. I’ve been searching for winner cake recipes to put in my go-to bag, and this one is definitely in the bag. So moist, so flavorful, so dang good.

    I wish I could say the same about the frosting. I followed the recipe exactly. I refrigerated it for a few hours afterwards because it was so soft. Even after refrigeration it was a soft gooey mess. It barely clung to the sides of the layer cake. It tasted delicious, but wasn’t pipable at all. Is that a word? Anyway, I’ve read through all the comments on this post and know that I’m not the only one who has had similar results with the frosting. Have you ever had it not set like this? Like I said, I followed it to a T.

  • Annie

    No, mine always sets fine. I find that using imitation vanilla helps a lot with the texture and it is stiffer, but I guess I personally don’t expect cream cheese frosting to be all that stiff in the first place. You can just add more powdered sugar.

  • Athena

    Amazing. I doubted these at first, but I will never do so again.

  • Kimberly

    Thanks. They came out fine. Seemed like alot of oil though.

  • Anissa

    Yeah, I made it again today, using the clear imitation vanilla and had the same results. I’m in the Seattle area, so maybe the humidity is causing it to not set up. It’s not even slightly pipable (is that a word?). :) I have had the same results with other cream cheese frosting recipes too. Thanks for the tips though!

  • Annie

    Darn! I’m really not sure what else to add. I suppose the humidity might be an issue, though our summers here in IN are very humid too and I can still make this frosting in the summer. Sorry!

  • Heidi

    Just made these for my birthday :) My husband felt terrible that I had to make my own cake since he’s on call yesterday and today, but I don’t see it as a problem for a lot of reasons… mainly, I love baking and I get to eat the leftover icing :) Thanks for the great recipe! Red velvet has always been my favorite but I didn’t have a cake recipe I was a huge fan of. This one is perfect! (I know this because I already ate one:)… another perk.

  • Emily

    Hi Annie! I really loved these cupcakes, but the second and third time I made these I could really taste the vinegar but I did the measurements right. Did this ever happen to you? What should I do?

  • Annie

    I’m not sure, I’ve never had that problem. You need the vinegar to make the cupcakes fluffy. Maybe try decreasing it just a touch? Sorry, I’m just not sure what to tell you!

  • I am planning on making these really soon. I am so glad I found your site. Just makes me want to cook and bake all day long, lol!

  • Made these on 5/25 to take to my coworkers the next day, and they were fans! Yay!

  • Olivia

    Hi Annie,

    I made these cupcakes a few weeks ago and they came out perfect the first try! That’s quite a feat for me because usually i have to go through a few trial and error batches. I was thinking to make this recipe into a cake for a gathering this weekend. Is there anything different that I need to take into consideration (baking time, temperature, measurements, etc.)?

  • Annie

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Olivia

    Thanks! I got my question answered there. One more thing is, what round tip do you use to frost cupcakes? I have a star tip by Wilton, but I couldn’t find a round tip by Wilton at the store.

  • Annie

    I think mine is Ateco but I don’t know offhand. If you find one of my posts where I used it, I typically list the brand and number when available.

  • Olivia

    Okay, thanks!

  • Sarah

    I really want to try these cupcakes out (red velvet has always been something I’ve wanted to make) but I am allergic to chocolate/cocoa powder, do you think I could omit this ingredient without throwing off the flavor entirely? What would you substitute? Thanks! (I’ll be making them regardless, but wether I can eat them is the question)

  • Annie

    Please see my FAQ page regarding substitutions. Since cocoa powder is part of red velvet, omitting it will make the flavor not exactly red velvet. Good luck with whatever you decide!

  • Sarah

    I think I’ll use it, and enjoy watching other people eat them. Thanks!

  • Your cupcakes are beautiful, Annie! Ever since I first saw this post I have been looking for an occasion worthy of Red Velvet Cupcakes. I read your comment indicating the tiny red hearts are actually sprinkles. When I found tiny red maple leaf-shaped sprinkles I knew I had found my occasion. Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting will add just the right touch of “red and white” to my Canada Day dinner table. (I tried a practice-run last weekend and they turned out great!)

  • fo

    i just made a batch, really delicious and moist. I’ve never made red velvet before and i didn’t have cake flour only all-purpose, so when i saw that the batter was pretty thick i folded in about 3 tbsp of sour cream to add moisture. they turned out fantastic and it took exactly 18 mins to bake. thank you for this recipe :)

  • I just made these for the second time this week! Delicious and a family favorite :)

  • Aimée

    Great recipe(as always) I am making this as a birthday cake and I was wondering how would you frost it? Should I just spread the frosting on? Sorry to ask such a stupid question,

    From one of your biggest fans :)

  • Annie

    Hi Aimee,
    I guess I don’t really understand your question. Is there more than one way to frost a cake (beyond basic frosting, I mean)?

  • H

    By “cake flour”, do you just mean all-purpose flour?

  • Annie

    No, I mean cake flour. It’s not the same thing.

  • Tatum

    Hi Annie what brand of food coloring did you use?

  • Annie

    I don’t think brand matters. I make these all the time and just buy whatever is available.

  • Judith

    Hi Annie!

    I commented on this recipe just under a year ago. I made this as a cake for my birthday and it was fabulous! Unfortunately I then lost the recipe and the address for your blog.

    I’ve been searching for it ever since as this is one of the best cakes I’ve ever had.

    I’m planning to make it again for my boyfriends birthday party and I’m going to try and ice it to look like the Batman logo.

    Thanks again for a great recipe.

    Judith x

  • Julia

    I made not 1, but 2 batches of these last week. They were PERFECT!! I’m so pleased with the recipe,thank you Annie!

  • Nancy

    I’m having a party on saturday and want to bake the cupcakes on friday night. Will the cupcakes stay moist? How should I store them? Thanks for your help!

  • Annie

    Please see the FAQ page.

  • Linh

    I made the cupcakes for the first time last week and it looked and tasted so amazingly good. Thank you so much. I just read all the posts and saw people had problem with frosting that doesn’t hold the shape. I had the same problem twice. Wondering what kind of cream cheese and butter that you use. Thank you

  • Annie

    I just buy whatever is available and am not brand loyal. Keep the cream cheese cold and use imitation vanilla. For whatever reason, the vanilla seems to make a big difference in the consistency.

  • Nicole

    Hi Annie!
    I love your website. I’m addicted to making everything on here.
    I tried to google this and was unsuccessful. Maybe you can help. What is distilled white vinegar and where can you find it? Thank so much :)

  • Annie

    It’s just plain old vinegar and you can find it at the grocery store :)

  • Dena

    Thanks for the yummy recipe. I have tried many of your cupcakes and love every single one (so does everyone who eats them)! Quick question — I would like to make 48 red velvet cupcakes for our Christmas party. Should I make two seperate batches, or can I just double the ingredients into one batch? Thanks again.

  • Annie

    You can double it as long as you have a bowl big enough to do so.

  • Maddie

    Just made these – was the first time I’d ever had red velvet before and it was delicious! They turned out perfect. Thanks for the recipe :)

  • Andrea Winn

    Thanks for the great recipe, Annie! I’m a big fan of yours!

    My cupcakes are in the oven right now. I think they are going to taste delicious. I made the mistake of using Hershey’s “Special Dark” cocoa powder, resulting in purplish cupcakes… :-/ I’m sure they’ll still taste great, but I hope everyone doesn’t mind that they are purple! Oops!

  • Andrea

    Thanks for the great recipe, Annie! I’m a big fan of yours!

    My cupcakes are in the oven right now. I think they are going to taste delicious. I made the mistake of using Hershey’s “Special Dark” cocoa powder, resulting in purplish cupcakes… :-/ I’m sure they’ll still taste great, but I hope everyone doesn’t mind that they are purple! Oops!

  • Jenny

    is the coco powder in this sweetened or unsweetened?

  • Anonymous


  • Thanks for this fab recipe, I tried it this week and it was PERFECT! Both the cake and icing are gorgeous. My only question: how do you get the frosting so perfect?

  • Anonymous

    I’m not sure I understand your question. What about the frosting is it that confuses you? I just use a pastry bag, if that’s what you mean.

  • Annie

    Hi Annie! My name is also Annie! I am 12 years old and love to make cupcakes! This was the first cupcake recipe I have used from this website. I made these cupcakes for Christmas! I made the cream cheese half of a light green icing and half it’s original color. Then I made it in sort of a swirl! It looked very cute! The icing was fantastic! And the cupcakes were nice and moist (very fluffy!) Thank you so much for posting! :)

  • Anonymous

    I am new to this site and thought I would make these cupcakes for a birthday for one of my neices husbands. I was thinking of putting some kind of filling in. Do you have a suggestion? Or should I just use the frosting, or would a filling be too overpowering?

    Thanks in advance,
    Lana Otten

  • Anonymous

    I really don’t think a filling is necessary for red velvet cake. They are so wonderful as they are, with cream cheese frosting.

  • Cari

    Hi annie how long can the cream cheese frosting stay un-refridgerated? thanks!:)

  • Ang

    Im baking these cupcakes for a babyshower on a Saturday and was wondering how far in advance can I bake them where they will still be moist? And also, would I keep them out or in the fridge? I saw your faq, but only noticed when you said you frost a day in advance.

  • Anonymous

    Food storage is also covered on the FAQ page.

  • Anonymous

    Please see the FAQ page.

  • christy

    These were great!

  • Tomnheidi

    Hi Annie… I LOVE your website! Just wondering what kind of food coloring you use for this. I have liquid red and also a gel red from Wilton. What kind makes for a better cupcake? Sometimes, if I use a tad too much gel, it makes the cakes and frosting taste kind of funky…

  • I just made these and they are so yummy! The frosting is my favorite.

  • Anonymous

    Liquid is what I always use for red velvet cake. I only use the gel colors for icing, not actual coloring of cake. If you do buy the Wilton red gel, make sure you get the no-taste kind. Hope that helps!

  • Montourlj

    What makes these taste different then just plain chocolate? I don’t imagine the red food coloring does much for the flavor…

  • Anonymous

    With only a tablespoon of cocoa powder, this is not meant to be chocolate cake at all. Red velvet has a much different flavor, and is very hard to describe. The best way to know the different is to try it out.

  • Melody1967

    Can’t wait to try these!! My 6 year old daughter is “hostessing” a tea party for 6 of her friends on Saturday. Since it’s a pre-Valentine’s Day tea party, I thought these cupcakes would be perfect! We went to Goodwill tonight to pick out a different tea cup and saucer for each little girl. I’m going to make these cupcakes, ice them and put them in their tea cup. Then I’ll wrap it in cellophane and tie it with a bow. The tea cups with cupcakes will be a little party favor for each girl to take home!

  • Jen

    Sarah, you can use carob powder. I have found it in health food stores in many places. It tastes just like cocoa powder but isn’t cocoa. I, like you, cannot have chocolate. Good luck!

  • Purpleglo

    Thanks for the wonderful red velvet cupcake recipe. This is my favorite cake. Most people aren’t aware that it is a chocolate cake. Yummy!!!

  • Sonia

    Dear Annie, love your website and recipes! I am about to use your red velvet recipe for my son’s preschool class for valentine’s. Annie, when you say divide the batter evenly, what do you mean? Is it two tablespoon, three? I do not want my cupcakes to look like muffins! Thank you.

  • Anonymous

    That just means the wells should each have an equal amount of batter in them. I don’t measure the amount, just try to fill them about 2/3 full. Enjoy!

  • These were so tasty! I made them for a Valentine treat! Runny cupcake batter that drips on the tray as your filling them is one of my pet peeves, but filling the cups with a squeeze bottle worked well with this recipe. Will for sure make again!

  • Christina


    I plan on making red velvet cakes for my co-workers for Valentine’s Day on Tuesday. I’m just not sure which recipe to make. I got one off of the page for cupcake wars called Southern Red Velvet and its similar just the measurements are slightly different and the flour isn’t as specific. However with all the good reviews on your page I think that I might use your recipe instead. Thanks for all the great recipes! I hope I can find the ingredients I need!


  • Monica Umansky

    These look amazing! I’m sorry if this has already been asked or is somewhere on the site that I couldn’t find – I was just curious what type of food coloring you use. Does “regular” liquid food coloring work to get them really that nice, deep red? I have a jar of Wilton No-Taste red gel coloring, but figure that if you called for liquid in the recipe, that is the best, consistency-wise. Thanks in advance!!

  • Anonymous

    I always use the “regular” liquid kind for red velvet. I don’t know the right quantity of gel coloring and in the past when I tried those, I felt the color faded after baking so I stick with the liquid kind. Hope that helps!

  • lyann

    made these yesterday, annie. everyone loved the cupcake and the frosting! i found these cupcakes to be super moist and delicious. the frosting was very easy to make and complimented the cupcakes perfectly. i’ll be using your red velvet recipe from now on!

  • Mandy

    Just made a batch of these and they turned out great! They are treats for my co-workers as tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. I made the icing but have had to put it in the fridge as it was very thin and I could not pipe it. After scrolling through a few of the posts I noticed you mention keeping the cream cheese cold – I let mine come to room temperature so I think this might be part of the issue. Hopefully overnight in the fridge will stiffen it and I will be able to ice in the morning before work. :)

  • Anonymous

    I actually just did a post in my cupcake basics series about cream cheese frosting, so you might want to check that as well. Enjoy!

  • Mandy

    Thanks Annie, I will definitely check out the post! As an update to my frosting, it was perfect this morning – I took it out of the fridge and whipped it up again slightly (just with a spoon, by hand), then piped it onto the cupcakes, which I had also stored in the fridge overnight. Love how they look – and even better, everyone at work is enjoying them and raving! Thanks again!!! Can’t wait to try so many more of your recipes. :)

  • Angela

    I also made these for Valentines Day for my boyfriend and figured neither of us needed 2 dozen cupcakes laying around so I brought them to my coworkers as well :) they loved it and my frosting held up just fine hehehe. Annie, after I made these I had to read your bio- I would never have guessed that you are self taught. This is my new favorite website!

  • cassylee

    I’ve been hunting for a good red velvet recipe as I’m in charge of baking them for my sister’s baby shower this weekend. I asked my friend who follows all kinds of interesting food blogs and she immediately recommended your site and this recipe. SO I just finished a trial run and, being the first red velvet cupcake I’ve ever eaten myself, I was pretty darn impressed. I made mine smaller than I thought so baking them for the recommended 18 minutes was just a minute or two too long or perhaps I should have moved them directly from the pan to the cooling rack. Either way, I decorated them with the cream cheese icing and some small, soft pink edible pearls (she’s having a girl if you hadn’t already guessed).
    Thank you for sharing your recipe. It’s so nice to have success in the kitchen!

  • Micaela Stein

    This is probably a dumb question but could i use the recipes you use for cupcakes to make a cake? will it turn out ok?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page.

  • Lydia

    I’ve seen other recipes that say the eggs should be room temperature. In this recipe, does it matter?

  • annieseats

    Ideally eggs are supposed to be at room temperature for most cake recipes. That said, I almost never bother to let mine come up to temp and it’s always fine.

  • Patty

    Hi Annie,
    I’m from Brazil, and i want to try these recipe but here we don’t have buttermilk, what can I do to come to something close to buttermilk?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions. Thanks!

  • Sammy

    Thanks for this recepie. Made it and its so delish! My batter was very runny. Should it be this way or did I beat/mix it too long?

  • annieseats

    It’s fine.

  • nikki

    Annie I am a young baker and I enjoy your recipies so much! Your site has opened up so many possibilities for my creativity. I am going to attempt these cupcakes tonight and I hope it comes out as good as your pictures. My mom probley has the only complaint for you cause I spend all her money trying new recipies!:) thank you for your great insight and inspiration.

  • Marci

    I may have missed it, but what are the little hearts on the top? Where do you get them?

  • annieseats


  • Amanda Curran

    Finally found a FLAWLESS red-velvet recipe. Moist, flavorful, fluffy, & beautiful to look at. From someone who is in the process of becoming a self-taught baker, I find you inspirational. Thank you for sharing!

  • Diane617

    I made these wonderful cupcakes for my family and grandchildren. They were beautiful and tasted so very good. My first time making these. I will definitely will make these again and again. Thank you so much. Yes, I am finding my confidence level go up.

  • Sara


    If I do not have a electric mixer is it okay if I do it by hand?

    Thank you!

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Cole C

    Hi Annie

    I made these cupcakes last week and noticed that to bottoms of the cupcake liners were really oily. It was as if the oil was leaking out the liners. Do you have any idea as to why this might have happened? The only difference I made was to use all purpose flour instead of cake flour. Please let me know if you have any insight regarding this problem. Thanks!

  • annieseats

    I think it is part oil and sometimes part of a waxy coating on the cupcake liners. It typically goes away or is no longer an issue once they are cooled. The type of flour would not cause that. Hope that helps!

  • Metal-Vxn

    I just made these cupcakes, and followed the recipe to the -tee-! However, I may have put too much batter in the cups, and are extremely moist, too soft. What could’ve been the problem? I used white cake flour, would it make a difference/improvement if I used all purpose?

  • annieseats

    Most people prefer cake that is moist and soft to cake that is dense and hard so I’m not sure I see the problem. It’s possible they were under baked. But, this recipe is meant to be made with cake flour rather than all-purpose.

  • annie o’s mama

    Yummy!!!!! Tasty!!!!! Moist!!!!! (The cupcake bottoms are very oily…not the cake itself. I placed the cupcakes on paper towels and covered them in an air tight container overnight. The paper towel soaked up the oily bottom, and they were perfect for frosting and serving the next day.) Thank you, Annie!

  • JustJillin’

    I make a red velvet cake for one of my besties every year for her birthday, and they are never quite right (typically super dense). This year, I saw your recipe on Pinterest, so I went for it. I took the first batch out, and the top came off of one as I was taking it out of the pan, so I just had to eat the top of of one (okay, so I ate the entire thing), and they are AMAZING! And that’s without icing! I had to make my own cake flour (two tablespoons of cornstarch in a one-cup measuring cup & fill the rest with flour = one cup cake flour) and it worked perfectly…rounded tops that didn’t fall! YAY! Thanks so much for sharing this recipe! Can’t wait to take them to her tomorrow for her birthday! P.S. Do you have a recipe for a red velvet cake?

  • AuntieL

    I have to let you know…I make these cupcakes all the time & they’re always a hit! Very moist & DELICIOUS! I’m making them again this weekend for my 11 year old nieces birthday. A girl no matter what age loves red velvet! :)

  • annieseats

    This is it. Just bake in cake pans! Hope that helps :)

  • annie o’s mama

    don’t you just love that the rounded tops of the cupcake do not sink in!! :-)

  • dear Annie, why can i not pin any of your images from within the recipe?? i’ve tried signing in to pinterest with your link on the side, but not the same as pinning straight from the page :(

  • annieseats

    Pinterest recently changed their terms of use and made most posts that had previously been pinnable unable to be pinned. I have to change each one manually. Many of them have been fixed (at least the past two and a half years of posts) but if you are having trouble with specific posts, please let me know.

  • Guest

    I’m so excited to make this recipe, but I have one question. In the recipe it calls for cocoa powder, should I use unsweetened cocoa powder or dutch processed cocoa powder?

  • annieseats

    If it doesn’t specify, you can assume unsweetened. Enjoy!

  • Trekkie79lauren

    I do that to my dad all the time, he says that one of these day that am going to kill him with all the sweet food meaning dessert that I bake.

  • anna

    These are absolutely delicious – yes, they come out a tad greasy on the bottom, but let them sit on a napkin while they cool, and they turn out perfect. Brought 2 dozen to work and people raved with several asking for the recipe. Thanks so much, Annie!

  • Chelsea

    Hi, I really love red velvet, but I am unsure of whether to buy the no taste red food coloring or regular food coloring. Also what brand do you recommend?

  • annieseats

    I use regular liquid food coloring (not gel) and am not brand loyal. Enjoy!

  • Hannah

    I uped the Cocoa to 1.5 tbsp bc I really like a strong chocolate flavor. They turned out wonderful! Thanks so much for the excellent recipe… btw your S’mores Cupcake recipe is amazing too! I can’t wait to try more of your recipes!!

  • Guest

    Hi Annie! I love this recipe as cupcakes, but I wanted to try and bake a cake for my friend’s birthday and I was wondering if I use this recipe, for how long and at what temp should I bake it in the oven?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Chrystal

    These are amazing! I made them for my sisters wedding, various birthdays and other events. They are ALWAYS a huge hit. I have never had a batch come out badly. This is my go to cupcake. And the icing is perfect too!

  • Tam

    So it’s 1:10 am in Atlanta Ga, and I just finished making a batch of these red velvet cupcakes. I must say that this is only my second attempt at making them and my first with your recipe. They are moist and tender and fluffy. Exactly everything my first ones weren’t. Thank you so musch for this easy and delicious recipe. Rate: *****

  • Sassy Pants

    what ya talking about i love my cake hard as rocks!

  • annieseats


  • newbakeronthescene

    Hey Annie, I had a request for a rich tasting, moist red velvet cupcakes and I was hoping to use your recipe but I can only use all purpose flour. You mentioned that this recipe is meant to be made with cake flour can you please elaborate on this and let me know what will happen if I use all purpose flour?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Anne Wondrasek

    I made these on Monday for my husband and I’s 1 year anniversary. We got married in Key West and live overseas so we couldn’t bring the rest of our cake back to save for the anniversary, so I wanted to somewhat stick with tradition and make us red velvet cake or cupcakes. I should have read the info about the cream cheese frosting first. I made the mistake of room temp cream cheese… oops! Oh well, I just have the frosting in the fridge and we frost as we go. All in all, DELICIOUS! The cupcakes are perfectly fluffy and moist and my husband loves that the frosting isn’t super sweet. I will be trying your chocolate chip cookie dough cupcakes for his birthday. Oh and by the way, your spinach artichoke dip is to die for! I make it all the time :)

  • lehar

    Do you remember where you bought the heart sprinkles from. They look very cute. Perfect for V-day. :-)

  • annieseats

    No, sorry. Heart sprinkles can’t be hard to come by, though.

  • Karen Lemperle

    Love this recipe. I have made these cupcakes about 5 times now! I have a question for you…how do you get your cupcakes so very RED! I just cna’t get mine that red :-(

  • annieseats

    Hi Karen,
    I make my cupcakes exactly as detailed here in the recipe, so I don’t have a special trick for the coloring. It’s possible that if you are using a darker cocoa blend, it may affect the color of the cake. That’s my best guess. Glad you enjoy them!

  • Sara

    This is the BEST red velvet cupcake recipe EVER. I am 13 and I made it for my 4th of july party and it was a BIG hit! I am gonna make it for thanksgiving 2. IT WAS SOO YUMMY! thank you so much.!!!!!

  • Tracey

    I just looked at the FAQ page and it doesn’t state how to store them when baked the night before.

  • annieseats

    From the FAQ page: “Food Storage/Should this be refrigerated?
    I am no food science expert, so methods for optimal food storage is something that you need to decide for yourself using common sense. My general guideline is that any frosting, etc. including dairy other than butter should be refrigerated, but you can do what you are comfortable with.”

  • Hi I have tried looking through the comments and FAQ but can’t find the answer to my question, which is – can these be frozen (unfrosted)?

  • annieseats

    Sure. Enjoy!

  • Rachael Daniel

    Hey, Annie. Is it OK if I use 1/2 cup butter, unsalted, rather than the 1.5 cups of vegetable oil? Is it only the density of the cupcake being affected or the taste?

  • annieseats

    Both the texture and the flavor will be affected. I highly recommend the oil for this recipe. Enjoy!

  • I have to say I was a bit nervous when I read the amount of oil that went into the cupcakes (previous recipes I tried with that much oil came out, well lets say less than perfect) but they came out perfect! I used my vanilla buttercream recipe and drizzled the cupcakes with ganache instead of the cream cheese and they were delicious.

  • Charlotte

    Can I make this as a cake and not cupcakes? If so do I need to change cooking times or temperature?

  • Guest

    Can the vegetable oil be substituted with canola oil?

  • annieseats

    Yes. Enjoy!

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Maddycakes
  • annieseats

    I didn’t get it from her (my source is linked at the bottom of the post). The person I got it from cites Saveur. As you are probably aware, all red velvet recipes will have very similar ingredients and only the proportions will differ so they are bound to be similar.

  • disqus_o1BkUq9adC

    my red velvets always have nice color when you bite in to them… but the cake touching the paper is always brown after cooking. I don’t get that nice red showing through while they are still in the paper. any idea why?

  • annieseats

    Are you using this recipe?

  • Diana

    This is the best red velvet cupcake recipe I have made so far! The cake is so fluffy and moist. My batter looked hot pink before I baked it (could have been the lighting?) but they turned out a beautiful red colour after being baked. :) I also made them in mini form so they were so cute.

    I also used your cream cheese frosting recipe, and followed everything including using chilled cream cheese yet they frosting was still pretty soft. Still delicious.
    I really love the base of the cupcake though and would love to pair it with a buttercream instead (I’m not too crazy about cream cheese frosting!)
    Thanks Annie!

  • Guest

    Hi Annie, I’ve experienced the same issue. My cupcakes turned out great but the outside is brown and when you bite into them, it’s red/pink. Could it be due to the brand of liquid food coloring I’m using? I bought Club House red food coloring. Please let me know if that is the correct brand to use. Thanks!

  • annieseats

    I suppose that’s possible, but I’ve made them with numerous brands of food coloring and have never had that issue. I don’t recall offhand which brands I have used though, because I pay so little attention to that. Pretty sure one is McCormick.


    thanks this really help for a last minute valentine gift

  • Happy valentines day Annie. Im a little late on trying these, but man, they are delish! I also made your chocolate overdose cake for dessert tonight. I havent tried it, but seeing as it is Annie approved, I will love it. Hope you and yours have a love filled day.

  • Gina

    I just made these for the first time for today. The only thing I added in was an Oreo cookie baked into the middle of them. They came out AWESOME! I will definitely keep using your recipe! Your cream cheese frosting is to die for. My boyfriend and co-workers tummy’s are extra happy today!

  • Leah

    Made this as a 2 layer heart-shaped cake for my daughter’s #2 birthday party. My 8 year old nephew who usually takes one bite of cake then leaves the table kept whispering to his mom about how much he liked the cake. He then shocked her by asking for a second piece! Score! Just wondered if you have ever made this with gels/how much of a difference it makes. It took 5 stores before I FINALLY located liquid food coloring. At least I know where to get it now. Thanks for another great recipe!

  • Endang Indriani

    Hi Annie, I’ve tried your red velvet cupcakes recipe and its delicious! Love it very much and thanks for the great recipe. I also posted my trial using your recipe in my blog:
    Thanks a lot! ^_^

  • omimite

    I have seen in a lot of the posts that this is described as a very “moist, fluffy” recipe. I am looking for a red velvet cake recipe (I realize this is easily converted from cupcake to cake) but I was wondering in your opinion would this work to be covered in fondant? My cakes are always very dense so I never worry about covering with fondant and stacking them. (I am wanting to use this recipe for one of the tiers in a 3 tier wedding cake).

  • annieseats

    I’ve made it as a 3 tiered wedding cake and covered it with fondant. It worked fine. I always stabilize my tiers with dowel rods and cardboard circles, though, so pretty much any cake would work with proper construction. Here is my post about it:

  • Steven

    I made these cup cakes last evening for my grandson while his mom and dad were out of town. He liked them very well and That was my first try at Red Velvet anything your recipe was spot on I did double the coco powder just to darken the batter looked a bit to red for my taste. His Mom = my daughter is a Pastry chief so to get it was very good from him well worth the effort.. Thanks Annie..

  • This is the only red velvet recipe I will ever use for cupcakes. Thanks so much for sharing, you’ve saved the taste-buds of cake lovers everywhere!

  • Seema

    I used the cake flour which said it already has baking powder and salt. But I still added the baking powder and salt that your recipe suggested. I found the cupcakes too salty. Also they overflowed and its not the first time I’m making cupcakes. Would love your input. Thanks for your wonderful blog and inspiration.

  • annieseats

    Yes, if you use ingredients other than what the recipe calls for, results will vary, and if you use flour that already contains salt and add more salt, I would expect a salty result. You need regular cake flour, not self-rising.

  • Seema

    Thanks! I’ll try it with cake flour. Do you get yours from Target or King Arthur? Read your FAQ but couldn’t find it. Looking forward to trying most of your recipes. Great photography! Thanks!

  • annieseats

    Just whatever store I happen to be at. Doesn’t really matter. Enjoy!

  • I made these for a baby shower today and they got rave reviews. Many people actually asked my if I am a pastry chef. yes. yes I am ;)

  • annieseats

    Ha! Awesome :)

  • Hi Annie…I absolutely ADORE your site!! I have struggled with velvet cupcakes SO much…whethere it be green velvet or blue velvet etc. Cupcakes uncooked in the middle while browning on the edges…or too moist where the wrapper starts to come off. I am anxious to give this recipe a try! If I use gel colors instead of liquid(blue liquid is ridiculous to find) will it alter the cupcake at all?? I am desperate for a good velvet recipe! Thanks so much!!

  • annieseats

    The main issue with other colors is that the yellow of the egg yolks and the brown from the cocoa powder off put the color. So, almost any attempt at blue velvet will have a green tinge (because of the yellow yolks), etc. Supposedly adding some purple gel offsets the green, but in my own experience, that isn’t true. Gels should work in general for dying the batter, but the same issues will be true with gels as well. Good luck!

  • Xoxoviolet

    Hi annie,

    I made this recipe as cupcakes and cake. The cupcakes were fantastic, they were really fluffy and light, and i really loved the texture of it. The cake, however was very dense. Does this have to do with the time and temperature of the cake? You mentioned you have baked a red velvet cake using this recipe before. Was it dense or was it fluffy and light like the cupcakes?

    Thanks in advance!

  • annieseats

    Sorry for the delayed response. The shape of the pan should not have an effect on the texture of the cake. Dense cakes are more often due to heavy-handed measuring of flour, overmixing, or sometimes overbaking. It’s tough to know what might have gone wrong for you.

  • Veronica Iniguez

    Hey annie is it okay if you dont use cocoa because i really do not know were to buy any?

  • annieseats

    You can buy cocoa powder at basically any grocery store. Hope that helps!

  • Susan

    U can try here for blue velvet cupcakes!

    Annie, loved ur red velvet…. absolutely the best I have ever tried :) Thanks so much!

  • annieseats

    I’ve tried that recipe and didn’t have much success, but maybe it will work for you.

  • CETaylor

    Silly, sill question I’m sure, but I don’t bake with buttermilk often. It is one cup buttermilk prepared, right (so liquid form). In the past, I’ve only found powdered, and usually recipes I’ve used that call for it state liquid. Just want to make sure. I can’t imagine it would be in pure powder form for a recipe, but you never know! Better safe than sorry ;). Thanks so much! I can’t wait to try them! I’m making them for a 4th of July trip to see family on the beach!

  • annieseats

    Yep, liquid is correct. Enjoy!

  • Lori Schueren

    Diana – I was considering making these in “mini form” also. Did you adjust the baking time or anything at all?

  • Winny the Elephant

    Hi Annie,

    I tried this recipe and loved it but I can’t stand cream cheese icing (I know, I’m a freak). Can you recommend another icing to go with them? Should I go with a vanilla icing or a chocolate icing?

  • annieseats

    I personally can’t imagine red velvet without cream cheese frosting because I love the combo so much. I would just use whatever you prefer. Enjoy!

  • Traci

    Hello! I have made this recipe before and LOVED it! I do have a question. I have been asked to make a wedding cake and one of the tiers they requested to be red velvet. How big of cake does this actually make? Do you double it?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page for cupcake to cake conversion. Thanks!

  • Amy Francom

    I’ve been asked to make mini cupcakes, for a friend’s wedding, using this recipe. Do you have any idea how much this recipe is to make? I need to get her a price. Thanks!

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page. Thanks!

  • Natalie Spotts

    I made these and sent them to work with my husband today. By 10:00 am the cupcakes were all gone (there are only 7 people in his detachment) and I had someone ask if they could order a batch for a baby shower! This recipe is a keeper :)

  • Julia Casta

    Hi Annie!
    I am considering making these for my daughters first birthday. Do you think I could prepare and freeze them without the frosting and then thaw and frost them on the day of the party?
    Also: cake flour is not available where I live, would all purpose flour work as well? Alternatively bread/pizza flour is available.

  • annieseats

    Sure, you could do that. Please see the FAQ page for more info on freezing, as well as substitutions. (I would just use AP flour.)

  • Julia Casta

    Thank you! :D