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Best Red Velvet Cake And Frosting Recipe

Be sure to scroll down to save the best red velvet cake recipe to try at your next celebration! I promise you are going to love it!

Best Red Velvet Cake Recipe

Red Velvet Cake is a Spena family favorite. It has been Jim’s favorite forever and always- for every single birthday (although let’s try to forget the year that I wrecked the car on the way to go pick up the ingredients….) and for every holiday, it is his number one request.

(here is an old post of the kid’s and I making one for his birthday a few years ago!)

With ONE VERY IMPORTANT CAVEAT-

NO cream cheese frosting.

The man hates the stuff.

So, we make our red velvet cake recipe with a simple gravy icing (or frosting, whatever you prefer to call it!) and I thought I would finally share the recipe with you all right here in case you want to make it for the holidays this year!

Abigail’s birthday is November 5th and she requested that I make a red velvet cake for her- just like her daddy- so that’s what we did. I took the opportunity to grab some pictures so you can know what to expect!

red velvet cake

What Is Red Velvet Cake?

Popular in the southern U.S., (Jim’s mom is from Georgia, so this explains why it was often served in their home and quickly became his favorite cake!) red velvet cake is a vanilla cake with a few tablespoons of cocoa powder and red food coloring mixed in. Vinegar and buttermilk bring some acid to the batter, adding a bit of tanginess. The crumb of the cake is very fine, soft and smooth.

What Flavor Is Red Velvet Cake?

Red velvet cake tastes like very mild cocoa with a slightly tart edge. The standard cream cheese frosting is the most forward flavor, which is why we aren’t big fans over here and opt for a subtle, vanilla flavored frosting instead. Make sure to check out the family recipe for that below!

Perhaps even more important than the taste is the texture: smooth, soft, whipped, tender and light with creamy icing.

Best Red Velvet Cake Recipe Ingredients:

  • 1 Cup Shortening
  • 1 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 oz Red Food Coloring
  • 2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 2 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 1 Cup Buttermilk
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla
  • 1 Tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 Tbsp Vinegar

Instructions for how to bake the best Red Velvet Cake:

Cream shortening, sugar, & eggs.

Make a paste with the food coloring and cocoa powder.

Add to sugar mixture.

Add salt & flour alternately with the buttermilk & vanilla.

Mix baking soda & vinegar together and fold into batter.

Bake in 2 9″ greased & floured baking pans for 30 minutes on 350*

red velvet cake

Gravy Icing Recipe

  • 6 Tbsp Flour
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1 Cup Butter
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla

Instructions for Gravy Icing (or frosting! whatever you like to call it!)

Cook flour and milk on low heat until thickened (basically a gravy!). Cool thoroughly.

Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla together until fluffy.

Add flour/milk mixture.

Beat until like whipped cream.

Spread on cooled cakes!

red velvet cake recipe

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Red Velvet Cake

Red Velvet Cake

This is our family favorite red velvet cake recipe!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Shortening
  • 1 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 2 Eggs
  • 2 oz Red Food Coloring
  • 2 Tbsp Cocoa Powder
  • 1 Tsp Salt
  • 2 1/4 Cup Flour
  • 1 Cup Buttermilk
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla
  • 1 Tsp Baking Soda
  • 1 Tbsp Vinegar

Instructions

    1. Cream shortening, sugar, & eggs.

    2. Make a paste with the food coloring and cocoa powder.

    3. Add to sugar mixture.

    4. Add salt & flour alternately with the buttermilk & vanilla.

    5. Mix baking soda & vinegar together and fold into batter.

    6. Bake in 2 9″ greased & floured baking pans for 30 minutes on 350*

Gravy Icing For Red Velvet Cake

Gravy Icing For Red Velvet Cake

If you don't like cream cheese frosting (or just want to change things up!), this gravy icing is a total game changer!

Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes

Ingredients

  • 6 Tbsp Flour
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1 Cup Butter
  • 1 Cup Sugar
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla

Instructions

    1. Cook flour and milk on low heat until thickened (basically a gravy!).

    2. Cool thoroughly.

    3. Cream butter, sugar, and vanilla together until fluffy.

    4. Add flour/milk mixture.

    5. Beat until like whipped cream.

    6. Spread on cooled cakes!

Looking for more recipes to try? Check these posts out!

Bacon Wrapped Smokies With Brown Sugar

Stove Top Kettle Corn

Seven Layer Dip

If you make this Red Velvet Cake recipe this year, let me know how it turns out for you and what you think of it!

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