The Best Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Until last year, I had always thought that there was this big secret to red velvet cake.

I didn’t think it was chocolate, I thought the flavor was just “red,” so when I found out that it is just chocolate and red food coloring, it made red velvet cake a little less magical.  That’s when I looked it up to see why anyone would ever just add red food coloring to cake.
Apparently, “the reddish-brown color of the cake originally was from a reaction of the cocoa powder with an acidic ingredient such as buttermilk.”  Did you guys know that?  I had no idea.  Now, though, people just add food coloring to make the red tint.  Before food coloring, bakers boiled beets as homemade food coloring.  Cool, huh?

Well, there’s my lesson for the day!  Let me just tell you how good this cake is.  SO good!  I love how thick it is and the pieces of chocolate chip are delicious.  The cake isn’t super sweet, but the frosting is, so it goes perfectly with it.  The frosting is amaaazzinnng.  I was so proud of myself because I always seem to mess up cream cheese frosting, but this is the first fail-proof cream cheese frosting recipe that I’ve found.  So creamy, thick, and just plain yummy! I made this for my friend’s birthday and she loved it!!!

Red Velvet Cake


  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 c. brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. olive oil
  • 1 package instant chocolate pudding
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3/4 tsp. baking powder (double if baking at low altitude)
  • 2/3 c. cocoa powder
  • 1 1/2 c. flour
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • ½ c. water
  • 1 c. mini chocolate chips
  • 2 tsp. red gel food coloring

1.  In a large bowl, beat together eggs, brown sugar, and olive oil, and instant pudding mix, creaming until very well mixed. 

2.  Add salt, baking powder, cocoa powder, and flour. Beat just until incorporated. 
3.  Add sour cream and water, and beat again just until incorporated. 
4.  Fold in mini chocolate chips, then scoop batter into a bundt pan which has been generously greased and floured (use cocoa powder, instead of flour, for a nice chocolatey finish to the outside of your cake). 
5.  Bake in an oven preheated to 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes, or just until the center part of the cake ring springs back to the touch. Watch your cake closely! You don’t want to overcook it! Once cooked, wait for the cake to cool to the touch before turning it out onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool, then cover tightly in plastic wrap and store in the fridge overnight before frosting.

The Best Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 8 oz. cream cheese
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-2 Tbsp. milk 

1.  In a large bowl, beat together butter and cream cheese until very light and fluffy.

2.  Slowly add powdered sugar until well mixed. Add vanilla extract.
3. Tip in a Tablespoon or two of milk, if needed to make frosting piping consistency (soft but not drippy). 4.Spoon into a large plastic zip-top bag. Snip a 1-inch hole in the corner of the bag and pipe giant frosting petals onto cooled cake. Enjoy!


11 thoughts on “The Best Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

  1. This looks really good! I just started getting into cooking more about a year ago and now I'm ready to try some baking. This is definitely something I want to try once I become more experienced. I will be saving this to my favorites for sure:) I just started following your blog I am following through the blog hop. You are welcome to come and follow mine as well. Thanks:)


  2. Whoa! I totally didn't know the history behind why red velvet cake was red. I don't know why I've never questioned the whole putting-red-dye-in-chocolate-cake thing before… I just do it, haha! Anyway, thanks for the education and the fabulous looking recipe! 🙂


  3. The process of making baking cocoa has changed since the days when Red Velvet first came on the scene. The red color was just a smidge more prominent when the old style of cocoa reacted with the buttermilk or vinegar- but I don't mind the muted red- food coloring turns me off 


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s