Red Velvet Cake

Red Velvet Cake

Red Velvet Cake

Though cream cheese frosting is typically used nowadays on red velvet cake, classic whipped cream frosting makes for a more balanced sweetness.Todd Coleman

Though cream cheese frosting is typically used nowadays on red velvet cake, classic whipped cream frosting makes for a more balanced sweetness. This recipe first appeared in our March 2012 issue, with Ben Mims' story Sweet Southern Dreams.

Red Velvet Cake
Though cream cheese frosting is typically used nowadays on red velvet cake, classic whipped cream frosting makes for a more balanced sweetness.
Yield: serves 10-12

For the Cake

  • 16 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened, plus more for pans
  • 2 12 cups cake flour, plus more for pans, sifted
  • 2 tbsp. Dutch-processed cocoa powder, sifted
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 tbsp. red food coloring
  • 1 tbsp. distilled white vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 12 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs

For the Frosting

  • 1 12 cups sugar
  • 13 cup flour
  • 1 12 cups milk
  • 1 12 cups unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions

  1. Make the cake: Heat oven to 350°. Butter and flour two 8″ cake pans, and set aside. Whisk together flour, cocoa, baking powder, and salt in a bowl; set aside. Whisk together buttermilk, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla in a bowl; set aside. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, cream butter and sugar on medium-high speed until pale and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. On low speed, alternately add dry ingredients in 3 batches and wet ingredients in 2 batches. Increase speed to high and beat until batter is smooth, about 5 seconds. Divide batter between prepared pans, and smooth top with a rubber spatula; drop pans lightly on a counter to expel any large air bubbles. Bake cakes until a toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean, about 30 minutes. Let cakes cool for 20 minutes in pans; invert onto wire racks, and let cool.
  2. Make the frosting and assemble cake: Whisk together sugar and flour in a 4-qt. saucepan; add milk and whisk until smooth. Stirring often, bring to a boil over medium-high heat; cook, stirring constantly, until very thick, about 5 minutes. Remove pudding from heat; cool. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle, beat butter and 14 of the pudding on medium-high speed until fluffy and smooth, about 1 minute. Add half the remaining pudding, beating until smooth, and then add remaining pudding and vanilla. Increase speed to high and beat frosting until white and fluffy, about 3 minutes. To assemble, place one cake on a cake stand, and spread with 1 12 cups frosting. Place second cake over frosting; cover top and sides with remaining frosting; chill to firm frosting. Serve at room temperature.