A classic cake flavor that never gets old is the red velvet cake. What makes it even better is the tangy cream cheese icing. There are a lot of great recipes out there for red velvet, but if baking cakes is not your strong point or you are in a hurry. Using a box mix as I did in the recipe below is a quick fix. Dollop on some homemade cream cheese frosting and no one is the wiser. The main difference in red velvet besides the absurd amount of red food coloring, is the buttermilk which gives the cake a little tang and a moist texture. The frosting recipe below makes enough frosting to cover two batches of cupcakes (40-48 cupcakes), but the recipe can easily be cut in half if desired.
Red Velvet Cake
1 box of Devils Food cake mix, plus ingredients to make the cake
Buttermilk (this will replace all but ¼ cup of the water called for on the cake mix package)
25-30 drops of red food coloring
2 12 cup muffin tins
20-24 cupcake liners
Pre-heat oven according to the cake mix directions (generally 350-375).
Blend together cake mix and all ingredients requested on the back of the cake mix package, but you will substitute all of the water except for ¼ cup for buttermilk. Once all ingredients are combined, mix in red food coloring. The batter should be a dark reddish-brown. Drop batter into lined muffin tin cups and bake as directed. I like my cupcakes a little bigger so I usually add in a little extra batter to each cup; this usually makes about 20 cupcakes.
Cream Cheese Frosting
Note: This recipe is enough to cover either 40-48 cupcakes or two sheet cakes. If you are only making a one sheet cake or a single batch of cupcakes (2 dozen) this recipe can easily be cut in half.
1 cup butter - 2 sticks- softened
2 cups cream cheese - 2 eight ounce packages
2 tsp vanilla
4-5 cups powdered sugar
2 tbs milk
Whip the butter, cream cheese, milk and vanilla together adding in the powder sugar until well blended and reaches a medium consistency (the icing should stand up in soft peaks). If the icing is too thin add more sugar ¼ cup at a time until it reaches the right consistency. If it is too thick, add more milk 1 tbs at a time. Dollop on a large spoonful of icing to each cupcake.