Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

makes 2 1/2 dozen

For the Cupcakes

2 1/2 cups cake flour

2 Tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 cup (8 ounces) unsalted butter at room temperature

2 cups granulated sugar

2 extra large eggs

1 cup buttermilk

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1 Tablespoon white distilled vinegar

2 Tablespoons liquid red food coloring

For the Frosting

8 ounces brick cream cheese

1/2 cup (4 ounces) unsalted butter at room temperature

1 pound confectioners' sugar

1 cup marshmallow fluff

For the Cupcakes

Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Line (12-cup) muffin pans with liners; set aside. In a medium bowl, whisk together the cake flour, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda; set aside

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Add the eggs and mix until combined.  Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the sides of the bowl.  Add the vanilla, vinegar, and food coloring; mix until combined.  Alternately, add the flour mixture and the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour, mixing just until combined.  Scoop the batter evenly into the prepared pans.  (I use a generous 1-ounce ice cream scoop).  Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  Allow the cupcakes to cool in the pan for 5 minutes.  Remove the cupcakes from the pans and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely before frosting.

For the Frosting

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, blend the cream cheese and butter.  With the mixer on low, gradually add the confectioners' sugar.  Add the marshmallow fluff and beat until smooth.

Using a piping bag or an off set spatula, frost the cooled cupcakes.  Enjoy!

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