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5 from 5 votes

Red Velvet Cake Recipe

The most incredible Classic Red Velvet Cake is topped with the silkiest cream cheese icing! The cake is moist with that hint of chocolate and the most perfect velvet texture you will ever take a bite of.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American
Keyword: cake recipes, red velvet cake, southern red velvet cake
Servings: 12 slices
Calories: 548kcal


Red Velvet Cake

    Dry Ingredients

    • 2 ½ cups all purpose flour
    • ¼ cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar

    Wet Ingredients

    • 1 cup buttermilk room temperature
    • 2 cups vegetable oil
    • 2 large eggs room temperature
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 2 ounces red food coloring
    • 1 teaspoon white distilled vinegar

    Cream Cheese Icing (See NOTE section)

    • 12 ounces block cream cheese softened
    • ¾ cups butter softened
    • 5 to 6 cups powdered sugar sifted
    • 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract


    Red Velvet Cake

    • Preheat oven to 350°F and spray with baking spray or oil and flour - 2 (8 or 9-inch) round cake pans. You can also line with parchment rounds in the bottom and spray if desired.
    • In a large bowl sift together flour, cocoa powder, salt, and baking soda.
    • In the bowl of a stand mixer (or large bowl), mix together oil, buttermilk, vanilla, and eggs until combined.
    • Add in sugar and mix until combined. Then slowly add in flour mixture and mix until combined.
    • Slowly add in food coloring and then vinegar, then mix until combined.
    • Divide evenly into 2 prepared 8 or 9-inch round cake pans.
    • Bake for 25 to 32 minutes (this will depend on cake pan size and oven) or until a wooden pick comes out clean or lightly crumbed. The cake should slightly pull away from the edges of the pan.
    • Once the cake is done remove it from the oven and let it cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes. Then turn out onto a cooling rack and allow to completely cool.

    Cream Cheese Icing * (see note below)

    • Beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy (about 3 minutes it will change from a yellowish color to an almost white color).
    • Slowly add in powdered sugar until combined. Add in vanilla and mix until combined and icing is creamy and spreadable.

    To Ice or Frost the Cake

    • Optional: If desired cut the top (dome) of each cake to level or make layers flat.
    • Spread the top of one of the cakes with 1 to 1½ cups of icing. Top with other cake. Spread top and sides of cake with remaining icing.
    • Optional: Use crumbles cut off of cake or toasted pecan pieces to decorate the top rim and sides or base of the cake as desired.
    • Refrigerate the cake for at least 30-60 minutes before slicing. This helps the cake hold its shape when cutting.


    Cake Sizes: 

    3 Layer Cake: Divide the batter between 3 - (8 or 9-inch) cake pans. Bake for about 20-25 minutes. Use a toothpick to test for doneness
    Bundt Cake: This cake batter fits into a 10-cup or larger bundt pan. I’m unsure of the exact bake time (likely around an hour), but use a toothpick to test for doneness. 
    Sheet Cake: This batter fits nicely into a 9×13 inch cake pan or 12×17 inch or jelly roll pan. Same oven temperature. Bake for about 35-40 minutes for 9 x 13 or 20-25 minutes for jelly roll pan. Keep your eye on the cake and use a toothpick to test for doneness.
    *Original Icing Recipe: I adapted to 1 ½ of the recipe as my family likes a little more icing. Feel free to cut back if desired.
    • 8-ounce block cream cheese, softened
    • 1 stick (½ cup) butter, softened
    • 4 cups powdered sugar
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


    Serving: 1slice | Calories: 548kcal | Carbohydrates: 82g | Protein: 9g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 67mg | Sodium: 620mg | Potassium: 179mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 77g | Vitamin A: 448IU | Calcium: 138mg | Iron: 2mg