One of my favorite cupcake flavors is red velvet. While, I know, you might be thinking, aren't red velvet cupcakes just chocolate cupcakes dyed red? The truth is, they're not. In fact, velvet cakes are their own type of cake, entirely! Velvet Cakes are soft cakes with a finer texture traditionally made with almond flour, cornstarch, or cocoa.
Preheat your oven to 350° F and line muffin tins with 16 cupcake liners.
– Cake Flour: Cake flour has a lower protein content than all-purpose. Because it's lower in gluten, it helps your cupcakes have a lighter crumb and a less chewy texture. – Baking powder: This leavening ingredient helps the cupcakes rise! – Salt: Salt adds flavor and helps strengthen the proteins and provide structure. – Red Cocoa Powder: I always use this Guittard rouge cocoa powder. I love the flavor and that it adds a hint of red color to the batter. If you're not using this, use a natural cocoa powder (not one that's been Dutch processed).
– Butter and Sugar: Creamed the butter and sugar together at medium speed in a stand mixer until the mixture is light in color. – Egg: I use a large egg at room temperature. – Vanilla Extract: Pure vanilla extract is expensive, but it does make a difference when it comes to flavor. – Red food coloring: If you want red cupcakes, use a few drops of Americolor's Super Red.
– Buttermilk: Buttermilk is essential when making red velvet cupcakes. It adds moisture, it helps make it tender, it brings out natural red color hidden within your cocoa powder, and buttermilk's acidity reacts with the baking powder to help the cupcakes rise. – Baking soda and vinegar: The baking soda and vinegar are the final two leavening ingredients you'll need to produce a cupcake with that light, airy texture. The vinegar also enhances their red color.
Turn the mixer speed to low and add half of your dry mixture. Then, add half the buttermilk. Repeat. Finish by combining the baking soda and vinegar together in a small bowl, and adding this to the mixer. Turn the speed to high for 15 seconds, then portion into a lined muffin pan and bake.