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EASY RED VELVET CAKE

Decadent and rich, this red velvet cake is tender & fluffy without the added stress of whipping egg whites!

Course: Dessert
Servings: 12, 1 8-inch cake
Prep time: 30 mins
Cooking Time: 30 mins
Cuisine: American

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE CAKE

  • 3 cups (360g) cake flour (spooned & leveled)

  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

  • 2 Tablespoons (10g) unsweetened natural cocoa powder

  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 cup (8 Tbsp; 113g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

  • 2 cups (400g) granulated sugar

  • 1 cup (240ml) canola or vegetable oil

  • 4 large eggs, room temperature

  • 1 Tablespoon pure vanilla extract

  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar

  • liquid or gel red food coloring

  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk, at room temperature

FOR THE FROSTING

  • 16 ounces (452g) full-fat brick cream cheese, softened to room temperature

  • 3/4 cup (12 Tbsp; 170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature

  • 5 cups (600g) confectioners’ sugar

  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

  • pinch of salt, to taste

TO MAKE

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Grease two 8-inch cake pans, line with parchment paper rounds, then grease the parchment paper.

  2. Make the cake: Whisk the flour, baking soda, cocoa powder, and salt together in a large bowl. Set aside.

  3. Using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on medium-high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the oil, eggs, vanilla extract, and vinegar and beat on high for 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed.

  4. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients in 2-3 additions alternating with the buttermilk. Beat in your desired amount of food coloring just until combined. I use 1-2 teaspoons gel food coloring.

  5. Divide batter between cake pans. Bake for 30-32 minutes or until the tops of the cakes spring back when gently touched and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. If the cakes need a little longer as determined by wet crumbs on the toothpick, bake for longer. However, careful not to overbake as the cakes may dry out. Remove cakes from the oven and cool completely in the pans set on a wire rack. The cakes must be completely cool before frosting and assembling.

  6. Make the frosting: In a large bowl using a handheld or stand mixer fitted with a whisk or paddle attachment, beat the cream cheese and butter together on medium-high speed until smooth, about 2 minutes. Add the confectioners’ sugar, vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt. Beat on low speed for 30 seconds, then increase to high speed and beat for 3 minutes until completely combined and creamy. Add more confectioners’ sugar if frosting is too thin or an extra pinch of salt if frosting is too sweet. Frosting should be soft, but not runny.

  7. Assemble and frost: Using a large serrated knife, slice a thin layer off the tops of the cakes to create a flat surface. Crumble to use as decor on the sides and/or top of finished cake.

  8. Place 1 cake layer on your cake stand or serving plate. Evenly cover the top with frosting. Top with 2nd layer and spread remaining frosting all over the top and sides. For decor, use a star tip to pipe on top of cake, sprinkling cake crumbs on top and on sides of cake.

  9. Refrigerate cake for at least 30-60 minutes before slicing. This helps the cake hold its shape when cutting.


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