The Best Red Velvet Cake Recipe

Red velvet cake is traditionally a red, red-brown, crimson or scarlet colored chocolate layer cake, layered with ermine icing.Traditional recipes do not use food coloring, with the red color due to non-Dutched, anthocyanin-rich cocoa.
Common ingredients include buttermilk, butter, cocoa, vinegar, and flour. Beetroot or red food coloring may be used for the color.

Red Velvet Cake Variation

In addition to the many variations of red velvet cake, there are various red velvet-flavored products, including protein powder, tea, lattes, Pop-Tarts, waffles, and alcoholic beverages. The scent is used for candles and air fresheners as well. For dietary restrictions, such as those due to allergies and ingredient sensitivity, vegan, gluten free, and dairy free variations are available.


  • Dry Ingredients
  • 2 2/3 plain cake flour
  • 2 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • Wet Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 caster / superfine white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon vanilla extract (or essence)
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 1/2 tablespoon red food colouring liquid
  • Frosting
  • 400g Philadelphia Cream Cheese, block (not spreadable tub)
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 4 cups soft icing sugar / powdered sugar sifted
Red Velvet Cake Recipe


Step 1

Preheat oven to 350F . Butter 2 x 21cm round cake pans (sides and base) and dust with cocoa powder.

Step 2

Sift the Dry Ingredients and whisk to combine in a bowl.

Step 3

Place butter and sugar in a bowl and beat with electric beater or in stand mixer until smooth and well combined (use paddle attachment if using stand mixer).

Step 4

Add eggs, one at a time, beating in between to combine. At first it will look curdle – keep beating until it’s smooth.

Step 5

Add vegetable oil, vinegar, vanilla, buttermilk and red food colouring. Beat until combined and smooth

Step 6

Add Dry Ingredients. Beat until just combined – some small lumps is OK, that’s better than over mixing.

Step 7

Divide batter between cake pans. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes on the same shelf, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Step 8

Rest for 10 minutes in the pan then turn out onto a cooling rack and allow to cool.


  • Beat together cream cheese, butter and vanilla for 3 minutes (this makes it really smooth and changes from yellow to almost white). Add icing sugar and beat for 2 minutes or until frosting is light and fluffy to your taste. If your frosting seems too runny (depends on quality of cream cheese/ if the cream cheese was too soft), just add more icing sugar.

Frost Cake

  • Cut the top off the cake using a serrated knife (to make the layers neat).
  • Spread one cake with 1 1/2 cups of frosting. Top with the other cake. Spread top and sides with remaining frosting.


Crumble offcuts and use to decorate the top rim and base of the cake. (Optional)

reference: yummynotes