Rating: 4.06 stars
16 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 11
  • 4 star values: 1
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 3

This red velvet cake is constantly requested by friends and family...it has the best flavor, and features real cooked frosting for a delicious, yet light finish.

Recipe Summary

prep:
20 mins
cook:
30 mins
additional:
1 hr
total:
1 hr 50 mins
Servings:
16
Yield:
1 9-inch layer cake
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Ingredients

16
Original recipe yields 16 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour 2 9-inch cake pans. In a bowl, sift cake flour with baking soda.

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  • Mash the vegetable shortening with 1 1/2 cup of sugar in a large bowl until thoroughly combined, and stir in the eggs, one at a time. Pour the red food coloring into a small bowl, and fill the empty food coloring container with water; add the water to the food coloring. Stir in cocoa powder to make a paste, and mix the paste into the shortening mixture.

  • Stir the buttermilk, salt, vanilla extract, and apple cider vinegar in a bowl, and mix into the colored shortening mixture, alternating with the flour mixture, until well combined. Scrape the batter into the prepared cake pans.

  • Bake in the preheated oven until a toothpick inserted into the center of a cake comes out clean, 30 to 35 minutes. Allow the cakes to cool completely.

  • To make frosting, whisk together the milk and all-purpose flour in a saucepan until the mixture is free of lumps, and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat. Cook, whisking constantly, until the mixture is thick, about 1 minute. Pour the thickened sauce into a mixing bowl, and chill until completely cooled, at least 30 minutes. When cold, place the butter into the mixture, and beat with an electric mixer to combine; add the vanilla extract and 2 cups of sugar to the bowl, and beat with the mixer set on Medium speed until the frosting is light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

Cook's Notes

As a substitute for buttermilk, you can also make sour milk by adding about 2 tablespoons of vinegar into liquid measuring cup, then add milk to make 1 cup.

Nutrition Facts

544 calories; protein 4.5g; carbohydrates 63.6g; fat 31.1g; cholesterol 87.3mg; sodium 425.5mg. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (15)

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 4 stars
06/27/2011
I've only eaten Red Velvet Cake once in my life and it was well...bad. I thought I would try one anyway and see if I liked it or not. I really liked the cake part of this recipe. It was moist and had a nice flavor to it. The frosting was really sweet and kind of grainy the grainy could be my fault I've never made a cooked frosting so I'm not sure if its supposed to be that way or not. I was also kind of confused about how much sugar was supposed to go into the frosting. The ingredient lists 2 cups but the directions say 1. So I used one then tasted but I thought it wasn't sweet enough so I added the other cup of sugar. It ended up being to sweet once I put it on the cake. But I don't know if it was supposed to be 1 or 2. I'll probably make the cake part again but use Ricks Special Buttercream Frosting for the frosting part. The frosting wasn't bad it was just not for me. Read More
(33)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 1 stars
12/07/2011
This is a disaster! I spent so much time with the many steps of making this the directions are not clear as far as if it should be mixed with a beater or how many strokes if it is meant to be stirred only. Anyways the frosting is horrible. My cake looks awful and the frosting is nothing more than butter with grainy sugar. Find another recipe if you value your time. Read More
(18)
16 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 11
  • 4 star values: 1
  • 3 star values: 1
  • 2 star values: 0
  • 1 star values: 3
Rating: 4 stars
06/27/2011
I've only eaten Red Velvet Cake once in my life and it was well...bad. I thought I would try one anyway and see if I liked it or not. I really liked the cake part of this recipe. It was moist and had a nice flavor to it. The frosting was really sweet and kind of grainy the grainy could be my fault I've never made a cooked frosting so I'm not sure if its supposed to be that way or not. I was also kind of confused about how much sugar was supposed to go into the frosting. The ingredient lists 2 cups but the directions say 1. So I used one then tasted but I thought it wasn't sweet enough so I added the other cup of sugar. It ended up being to sweet once I put it on the cake. But I don't know if it was supposed to be 1 or 2. I'll probably make the cake part again but use Ricks Special Buttercream Frosting for the frosting part. The frosting wasn't bad it was just not for me. Read More
(33)
Rating: 5 stars
12/04/2011
This is the original recipe for Red Velvet Cake I rec'd my recipe in 1963. I have made it numerous times...the icing is luscious. You really have to let the butter and sugar mix until there isn't any grainy bits left in the icing and then beat in the flour/milk mixture. I like making this as a xmas dessert and decorating the top of the cake with marzipan pointsettia leaves and flowers -not the real ones as they are a bit poisonous. Just mix some food colour into your marzipane - yes you might have to make some using almond paste. and then make a template of pointsettia leaves and flowers and have some fun. You can make a large decorative cake and use a large flower for it and then make a 9 x 13 cake and make a smaller flower for each slice. Read More
(27)
Rating: 1 stars
12/07/2011
This is a disaster! I spent so much time with the many steps of making this the directions are not clear as far as if it should be mixed with a beater or how many strokes if it is meant to be stirred only. Anyways the frosting is horrible. My cake looks awful and the frosting is nothing more than butter with grainy sugar. Find another recipe if you value your time. Read More
(18)
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Rating: 1 stars
12/09/2011
I did not care for this recipe... very dry and the frosting separated. Read More
(8)
Rating: 5 stars
11/30/2011
Love it! I discovered red velvet cake while living in Atlanta. Can't find the real deal now that i'm living in Mass. THIS IS THE REAL DEAL! Made it for the family... every-one loved it. Read More
(8)
Rating: 3 stars
01/18/2012
Cake was tedious to make and it came out very dry. Read More
(7)
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Rating: 5 stars
01/28/2014
This recipe is all you need. I know people are always trying to change their recipes to "make it better" but don't! All you need to know is with the step with the red food coloring and adding cocoa to make a paste. Add cocoa until there is a paste. The recipe called for 2T I definitely had to double the cocoa (heaping tablespoons) to get a paste. Just a tip use it or not;P Great recipe got RAVE reviews! Read More
(5)
Rating: 5 stars
01/01/2014
Important in the original recipe it calls for the cake to have split layers it should 6 layers from 3 cakes. I see some say it is dry. It is anything but dry with the 6 layers. It is better to let the cake set for a day. I fix this cake with double icing that way I can ice it between layers and on the sides Read More
(3)
Rating: 5 stars
12/10/2012
For frosting it doesn't say 10x sugar pretty sure that is right but want to check. Read More
(2)