The BEST Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

adapted from: Magnolia Bakery


3 1/3 c. cake flour (not self-rising)

3/4 c. (12 Tbl.) unsalted butter, room temperature

2 1/4 c. sugar

3 large eggs, room temperature

2 Tbl. liquid red food coloring

3 Tbl. unsweetened cocoa powder

1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1 1/2 c. buttermilk

1 1/2 tsp. white vinegar

1 1/2 tsp. baking soda

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a muffin tin with paper liners and spray with cooking spray; set aside.  In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine butter and sugar and mix on medium speed until very light and fluffy, about 5 minutes.  Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  In a small bowl, whisk the food coloring, cocoa powder and vanilla together; add to the butter/sugar mixture and mix well.  Stir the salt into the buttermilk and add to the batter in three parts, alternating with the cake flour, starting and ending with flour.  In a small bowl, stir together the vinegar and baking soda; add to the batter and mix well.

Fill cupcake liners 2/3 full with batter and bake in preheated oven for 17-18 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Do not over bake.  Repeat with remaining cupcakes.  Cool completely and top with Cream Cheese Frosting.  Makes about 3 1/2 dozen cupcakes. 

Cream Cheese Frosting:

From: Jenn@eatcakefordinner

1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 (8 oz.) pkg. cream cheese, room temperature

1/4 tsp. salt

2 tsp. vanilla extract

4 1/2 c. powdered sugar

1 Tbl. milk, plus more if needed

In a large bowl, mix together butter, cream cheese, salt and vanilla until smooth.  Add powdered sugar, one cup at a time, beating well after each addition.  If frosting is too thick, add a little milk.  If you are planning to pipe the frosting onto the cupcakes, you want it thick enough to hold its shape.  This makes enough frosting to pipe a big swirl on the top of each cupcake.  I used a Wilton 1M piping tip. 

*If you do not want to pipe a large swirl onto each cupcake and prefer to spread a small layer on top instead, the amount of frosting could be cut in half.