Red velvet cake is a decadent little treat perfect to share for Valentine’s Day with someone you love. I was excited to make my first red velvet cake this weekend. We threw a party for a few of my husband’s co-workers and it gave me the perfect excuse to whip up something to share that we wouldn’t normally get the pleasure of eating.
This red velvet cake is made using a simple white cake mix, cocoa powder, and the signature bottle of red food coloring that makes this cake this vibrant hue. It is rich, but moist and full of cocoa flavor. The tang of the cream cheese frosting helps to cut the heaviness of this cake and adds the perfect balance.
After watching a million Cupcake Wars with my kids, it seems every great baker has a signature red velvet cake. I have to say, that my signature comes with a little baking shortcut, but yields just as tasty of results without a lot of the work.
Red Velvet Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting
1 package (18.25 ounces) white cake mix
1 cup buttermilk
8 tablespoons (1 stick) margarine, melted
3 tablespooons unsweetened cocoa powder
3 large eggs
1 bottle (standard bottle of red food coloring gel) red food coloring
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Fresh raspberries (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously grease two 9-inch round cake pans with shortening, then dust with flour. Shake out the excess flour and set the pans aside.
Place the cake mix, buttermilk, melted margarine, cocoa powder, eggs, red food coloring, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute. Stop the machine and scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more, scraping down the sides again if needed. The batter should look well combined. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans, smoothing it out with your rubber spatula. Place the pans in the oven side by side.
Bake the cakes until they spring back when lightly pressed with your finger, 28-30 minutes (mine took 25 minutes). Remove the pans from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool for ten minutes. Run a dinner knife around the edge of the each layer and invert each into a rack then invert again on another rack so that the cakes are right side up. Allow to cool completely, 30 minutes or more.
Meanwhile, prepare the Cream Cheese Frosting (recipe below). Ice your cake and then decorate with fresh raspberries on top.
Cream Cheese Frosting
1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, at room temperature (I used the reduced fat cream cheese)
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, at room temperature
3 3/4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted, plus additional if needed
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
Place the cream cheese and butter in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until combined, 30 seconds. Add the confectioners’ sugar, a little at a time, blending with the mixer on low speed until the sugar is well incorporated, 1 minute. Add more sugar as needed to make the frosting spreadable. Add the vanilla, then increase the mixer speed to medium and blend until the frosting is fluffy, 1 minute more.
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Serving Size: 16
Source: Adapted from Chocolate from the Cake Mix Doctor
Of course, if Red Velvet Cake isn’t your cup of tea, may I recommend this Orange Chiffon Cake or our favorite Darn Good Chocolate Cake for celebrating the holiday with? Those are just a couple of cake options our family loves and also are prepared using simple cake mixes, likely already in your pantry.
As we touch on celebrations, our family happens to be celebrating a big moment this month. MomAdvice.com celebrated her 8th birthday this month! I wanted to personally thank you for your wonderful support over the years. I am so thankful to get to do this every day and could not do it without you.
Thank you, friends! I hope you can enjoy a slice of this decadent cake for a fun treat with your family!