Red Velvet Swirl Cupcakes

December 25, 2008 at 8:10 AM | Posted in cupcakes | 14 Comments
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Merry Christmas to all my readers!!

Judging from my loot I was either a good girl this year or Santa got my bribes. HAHA

Of course the best part of Christmas for me is spending time with both extended families, eating lots of really high caloric foods and Christmas cards. I heart Christmas cards.

Hope Santa brought you everything you wanted and more…

** Don’t forget to enter my UnBlogiversary Giveaway #4 by December 29th @ 12mid EST. Pick a number from 1-100! 1000? 10,000? Enter as many times as you want. What have you got to lose??

(Recipe adapted from Cupcakes by Shelly Kaldunski | photos from me)

Makes 12 cupcakes


For cupcakes
1-1/2 cups cake flour
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp vinegar
4 drops red food coloring (I used Ateco red color gel)
3/4 cup sugar
4 tbsp butter (I used 5 tbsp butter)
1 egg, room temperature

For cream cheese frosting
8oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, room temperature
1 tsp vanilla extract*
1 lb (~4 cups) powdered sugar, sifted

*You could substitute with 1 tsp peppermint extract if you want a “minty” flavor.


To make cupcakes—
Preheat oven 350F. Prepare cupcake pan with liners.

Sift together cake flour, cocoa powder, baking powder and salt into a bowl. In a large Pyrex measuring cup, whisk together the buttermilk, vanilla, vinegar and red food coloring; set aside. In a stand mixer with flat beater, beat the sugar and butter on medium speed until light and fluffy, 2-3 minutes. Add the egg. Mix to combine. Add the flour mixture in 3 additions alternating with buttermilk mixture, ending with the flour mixture.

Fill each liner about 2/3-3/4 full. Bake about 22-25 minutes until toothpick comes out clean. Let cupcakes cool before frosting.

To make frosting—
Combine the butter and cream cheese together in a mixer fitted with a flat beater attachment until creamed. Add vanilla extract. Gradually add powdered sugar. Scrape down the bowl as needed.

To make “peppermint” swirl—
Prepare piping bag with Magic Tip 7ST star tip. Before adding the frosting squeeze red food coloring down opposing sides of the bag (start around the middle of the bag). Add frosting and pipe. (Thanks Jen for the inspiration!)


Husband rating: A+
I was originally gonna sprinkle crushed peppermint candies on top but T is a red velvet purist and nixed that idea. He’s not a huge “mint” fan so this faux peppermint cupcake was perfect for him!

Wifey rating: A+
I’ve tried about 5+ red velvet recipes looking for THE recipe and judging from T’s reaction/raves this is the current winner right now. I am gonna have to agree with the hubs. The “cake” was moist and fluffy just like a cupcake should be. Of course you can never go wrong with cream cheese frosting either.

Other rating: A+
Nothing but raves from T’s big family xmas eve dinner last night. Even though there were multiple pies, cakes, cookies to choose from everyone wanted a cupcake and I had no leftovers by the end of the night. (I made 48 cupcakes too!)



  1. Your swirls look great! Merry Christmas Clara!

  2. Yummmmm. Wishing you and your loved ones a very Merry Christmas!

  3. Merry Christma!!!

  4. These look delicious! Hope you had a wonderful, blessed Christmas!

  5. Perfect peppermint swirled cupcakes! Happy New Year. :)

  6. The swirl looks so pretty! Happy holidays Clara!!

  7. Good lookin’ cakes! Hope you had a great holiday Clara!

  8. Wow, those look absolutely delicious. Very, very tempting. I hope you had a great Christmas and enjoy your New Year.

  9. […] of my best friends is turning 21 in February.  I plan on making her red velvet cupcakes with [THE recipe], and these beautiful cupcakes as my decorating [inspiration]. Possibly related posts: […]

  10. Wow really beautyful cupcakes ;) I just wonder, can I use just ordinary wheat flour instead of cake flour? Were I live we dont have cake flour. Or whats the difference between the flours (?) :)

    (Sorry for bad english)


  11. Thank you! I have never used wheat flour for baking cupcakes but I have substituted all-purpose flour for cake flour before. 1 cup cake flour=3/4 cup AP flour + 2 tbsp cornstarch. Here is some information on the different flours –> click. Hope that helps!

  12. […] Ingredients for Cream Cheese Frosting (Recipe adapted from […]

  13. These are sooo cute! But I’m a little confused. When you put the food die down the opposing sides of the piping bag, do you put 4 streaks of dye or just 2?

  14. Oh my! I honestly can’t remember exactly what I did back then but if I had to guess I’d say 4 streaks.

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