Friday, February 10, 2012

Red Velvet Valentine's Day Cupcakes

With Valentine's Day just around the corner, I thought I would share some of my fun, festive desserts. This year I've been feeling an extra desire to go all out- probably because bf isn't around and that makes me :(. Either way, I decided to make some heart day desserts early and just spread out the red, pink and lovey-dovey goodness. Feel free to be nauseated. I understand. When I was planning my desserts for my weekend in the mountains, I thought it would be fun to do these cupcakes to get everyone in the February mood.

Here was my inspiration photo, courtesy of Pinterest, of course. Oh and by the way, can I just say that they should really pay me. I've gotten so many people hooked on pinterest I could be working for them. Anywho, I thought they were just precious and my nieces would love them. I was right. This red velvet cupcake recipe is by far the best one I've tried. It is so light and fluffy with a nice subtle chocolatey flavor. They also stay together really well and don't fall apart into crumbles in your hand.

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Vanilla Cream Cheese Frosting

recipe from here
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
¾ cup granulated sugar
1 egg
2½ tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

3 tablespoons red food coloring
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup buttermilk
1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda

1½ teaspoons distilled white vinegar

Cream Cheese Frosting:
1/2 stick of butter, at room temperature
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese, at room temperature

2½ cups powdered sugar

1/2 a vanilla bean scraped out or 1 tsp vanilla bean paste, or 1 tsp. vanilla extract
Note: Recipe makes 12 cupcakes but frosting for 16 or so. Either pile up that frosting or plan accordingly.

 I started by whisking together the food coloring, vanilla and cocoa powder in a small bowl. Set aside.
 Then, I creamed the butter and the sugar.
 Next, I added the eggs and beat again.
Then I added the paste and mixed. Try your best to incorporate all the paste and make sure it doesn't get stuck on the bottom or the spatula.
Then I added about half of the buttermilk and mixed. Then half of the flour and mixed. Repeat until all the flour and buttermilk is incorporated.
 Finally, add the baking soda, salt and vinegar and beat, but not too much! It will make the batter really light and fluffy and you don't want to take all of the fluff out by over mixing.
 Scoop  the batter into the cupcake liners.
 Bake the cupcakes for about 20 minutes at 350 degrees. Mine turned out a little flat, so I think perhaps my oven was hot, but it worked out just fine in the end.
Once the cupcakes are complete cool, beat together the cream cheese and the butter. Add the vanilla and the powdered sugar and mix until smooth. I forgot to take a picture but I figure you guys have seen me do that enough! Place your cupcake on a flat surface and using a sharp serrated knife, gently cut off the top of the cupcake.
 Using a small heart cookie cutter, cut out the center of the top of the cupcake. My heart was a little rounder than I would have liked (as you can see the hearts aren't perfect, but it worked). I found it helpful to place the tops on a small cutting board while cutting out the shapes.
Put a generous glob of frosting on top of the top-less cupcake and smooth it out. A few crumbs tend to make their way into the frosting, but it's fine as long as no crumbs are in the center part. Then carefully lay your top on top of the frosting.
How cute is that? Some of my cupcakes were too flat to cut the tops off of, so I just piled some frosting on top the old-fashioned way and plopped the cut up hearts on top. Also super adorable and easy. Enjoy!


  1. That is extremely cool! I think it's awesome to create cupcakes that are artistic and still extremely delicious. No sacrifices here to be sure. Too bad I didn't get to have one for V-day! Next year, perhaps.

  2. Oh my gosh!! You put red velvet on the blog?! How did I not see this before now?? SO excited to try!!

  3. You definitely should give these a shot! I've tried several red velvet cupcakes and this recipe is by far the best!


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