Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting


There’s nothing quite like a decadent piece of red velvet cake covered in cream cheese frosting is there? I love that it’s a unique flavor all it’s own. You get hints of chocolate paired with vanilla and it has that hint of tang from both the buttermilk in the cake and cream cheese frosting. It’s one of my favorite flavors and I love making it around the holidays because it’s color is so vibrant and festive.

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy

This red velvet cake is soft and moist and it’s one you’ll want to make time and time again. I loved it and I know I’ll be looking for more excuses to make it!

Happy baking and Happy Holidays! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving everyone!


Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking ClassyRed Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking ClassyRed Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy


Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

4.29 from 7 votes


  • 2 3/4 cups (365g) all-purpose flour (whisk flour before measuring)
  • 1/4 cup (25g) unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 cups (403g) granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup (6 oz) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/3 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1 oz liquid red food coloring
  • 1 1/3 cups buttermilk
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 tsp vinegar


  • 12 oz cream cheese , softened
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter , softened
  • 6 Tbsp salted butter , softened
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 1/2 cups (560g) powdered sugar


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 3 9-inch round baking pans then line bottom of each with a round of parchment paper and butter parchment, set aside.
  2. To a mixing bowl add flour, baking soda and salt. Sift in cocoa powder then whisk mixture 20 seconds, set aside.
  3. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (if using an attachment that doesn't constantly scrape bowl, then stop mixture occasionally throughout entire mixing process and scrape down sides and bottom of bowl), whip together sugar and butter until pale and fluffy. Mix in vegetable oil. Blend in eggs one at a time, mixing just until combined after each addition. Mix in egg yolks then red food coloring.
  4. In a liquid measuring cup, measure out buttermilk then whisk in vanilla extract and vinegar. Working in three seperate, beginning and ending with flour mixture, add 1/3 of the flour mixture alternating with 1/2 of the buttermilk mixture and mixing just until combined after each addition. Scrape down sides and bottom of bowl with a rubber spatula to ensure everything is incorporated. Divide mixture evenly among three prepared baking pans. Spread into an even layer and bake in preheated oven 26 - 30 minutes until toothpick inserted into center of cake comes out clean. Cool in cake pan 10 minutes then run knife around edges of cake to loosen and invert onto wire racks to cool completely. Once cool, frost with Cream Cheese Frosting. Store cake in an airtight container in refrigerator.
  5. For the Cream Cheese Frosting:
  6. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip together cream cheese and butter until smooth and fluffy. Mix in vanilla and powdered sugar and whip until light and fluffy (at this point I recommend freezing or chilling frosting in refrigerator for a bit, returning to mixer and mixing occasionally, for a more stable consistency).
  7. Recipe source: Cooking Classy

Red Velvet Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting | Cooking Classy


  • Sam @ PancakeWarriors: My boyfriends favorite all time is red velvet. I’m always looking for a new recipe can’t wait to see how this one goes. Thanks!! November 25, 2014 at 6:28pm Reply

  • Coral: Wow it looks delicious definetly giving it a try!
    By the way your photos are stunning what camera and lens do you use?

    Regards from Mexico! November 25, 2014 at 6:49pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks for the compliment Coral! I use a Canon 5D MarkIII and I have two lenses I use the Canon 100mm 2.8 Macro and a 24-70mm 2.8 lens. My favorite is the macro though. November 26, 2014 at 9:56am Reply

  • Averie @ Averie Cooks: Omg WOW!! This is the most beautiful red velvet cake I’ve ever seen! It’s so perfectly red, and the frosting, and there’s not one red crumb on the white frosting as you slice through the layers…you AMAZE ME! :) November 25, 2014 at 7:23pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much Averie!! November 26, 2014 at 1:52am Reply

  • Matt Robinson: This is one seriously beautiful cake, Jaclyn. Love it! November 25, 2014 at 8:45pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Matt :)! November 26, 2014 at 1:52am Reply

  • Laura: Gorgeous as always, Jaclyn! What a beautiful cake. Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!! November 26, 2014 at 11:14am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much Laura! I hope you have an amazing Thanksgiving day too, I’m sure you will and your lucky family with all the incredible food you make :)! November 27, 2014 at 12:20am Reply

  • Tasbih @ Cleobuttera: This is one gorgeous cake as per your usual Jaclyn:) I’m still on the hunt for the perfect red velvet cake, so this is definitely one that I’m going to try. I love that you used both butter and oil for the fat, as opposed to the usual oil found in most RV recipes, which makes them completely flavorless. Pinned! November 26, 2014 at 1:26pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much for Tasbih! November 27, 2014 at 12:21am Reply

  • Shari Kelley: Your cakes always look incredible – frosted so evenly and beautiful! Your red velvet cupcakes are the only ones I like so I will have to try this. I’m always a little leary to do cakes as I’m afraid I would be disappointed when it didn’t look like yours! November 26, 2014 at 3:05pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks so much for the compliment Shari! November 27, 2014 at 12:15am Reply

  • char riippi: I agree with everyone else…what a beautiful cake!
    Red Velvet is at the top of my list of favorite cakes! That would
    look great on my table for Christmas!! November 26, 2014 at 3:24pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Char!! November 27, 2014 at 12:14am Reply

  • ATasteOfMadness: Wowza. This cake looks amazing! I need to start making red velvet baked goods!! November 26, 2014 at 9:32pm Reply

  • Meriem @ Culinary Couture: This is gorgeous Jaclyn! November 26, 2014 at 11:34pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Meriem! November 27, 2014 at 12:09am Reply

  • hamshah: wow!!
    its look amazing..
    Luv it.. January 9, 2015 at 10:38pm Reply

  • Melissa @ProShapeFitness: You photos are absolutely stunning Jaclyn! January 29, 2015 at 11:32am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Melissa! January 29, 2015 at 8:53pm Reply

    • Ali WaWa: Hi, I made yeaterday and it’s very very Delicious ,very moiste & I am sure will make it again and again, but one comment for the frosting that is very sugary but i decreased the sugar to two cups and half & increase the cream cheese to 400 gram, its amazing frosting and coverd with raffaello like crown and also covered with sweetend coconut like your recipe for the coconut cake imagin that !!!!! Thanks so much Jaclyn , and I am wondring about all your cheese cream frosting why you add too much suger !!! i realy love your link too much & and i should try every your recipes for the cakes , & next time i will try the pasta with lemon and reccotta ,, thanks again & again for this link.. April 9, 2015 at 12:38pm Reply

  • ross: Hi. Question…
    what’s the difference between this recipe & the sprinkles red velvet cupcakes?
    I mean… I’ve tried the sprinkles recipe you already posted & it’s amazing

    So… the difference’s in the texture or…? February 20, 2015 at 6:03pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: It does have a slightly different texture. Not quite as dense. March 16, 2015 at 10:04am Reply

  • Virginia v: Going to try this for easter hope it comes out okfirst time making it. April 4, 2015 at 4:16pm Reply

  • Virginia: This is a good cake made it today April 4, 2015 at 10:18pm Reply

  • Ali Wawa: Hi, I cooked it before three days and its very moist & delicious, I am sure will make it again and again. Also covered with sweetened coconut like your recipe , thanks so much Jaclyn, when I decide to cook cake I choose your link. April 12, 2015 at 5:41am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so happy to hear you liked it Ali! Thanks for your feedback! April 12, 2015 at 4:47pm Reply

    • Faridha: Most people love RedVelet cakes, cupcakes & I‘d not had one..I asked my Sister once for her B-day what flavour Cake she‘d love to have abd she went… ih Redvelvet! And I thought oh dear where do i start. Found a recipe online bake it & in the very first bite I had to split it out. It felt like a full spoon of Bicarbonate soda in my mouth.
      So I‘m really looking forward to try your recipe.. because this is my new place I come too when looking for a recipe. Everything I‘ve made turned out excellent. January 29, 2018 at 6:07am Reply

  • Susan Cosby: These are amazing! I knew as soon as I tasted the batter they would be and the finished product did not disappoint! Thank you for sharing! April 14, 2015 at 6:19pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Glad you liked it!! April 14, 2015 at 11:11pm Reply

  • melanie: I made this and followed the recipe and my cake is dense and dry. Any tips? April 27, 2015 at 9:23am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Sorry that happened! If it were dense the batter may have been over-mixed and you want to make sure you whip the butter/sugar mixture for a fair amount of time as this is what gives the cake lift. And if it were dry it may have just been baked a little too long so I’d try cutting back on the baking time, you could even try swapping out a few more tablespoons of the butter for oil. April 27, 2015 at 9:45am Reply

    • homie: Very very disappointed with this cake recipe, I have baked for over 20 years and even with the 5 eggs, buttermilk ect it was dry and not even sweet. Word to the wise
      save your money for another recipe. November 16, 2015 at 7:24pm Reply

  • Agnes: I made this cake and it turned out great! It was made for a birthday and everyone loved it! Great texture and taste and the oil+ butter works wonders!!! Many thanks for sharing the recipe!! May you continue to whip up awesome cakes!! July 5, 2015 at 11:22am Reply

    • Jaclyn: So glad to hear Agnes! July 7, 2015 at 11:00am Reply

  • Lourdes: What kind the vinager do you use ? Thank you in advance. July 8, 2015 at 5:58pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: White distilled vinegar. I hope you love them! July 8, 2015 at 11:44pm Reply

  • Lourdes: Thank so much . July 9, 2015 at 9:23pm Reply

  • Sierra: What kind/brand of food coloring did you use I always have problems getting a good kind, some have a weird after taste or aren’t really that vibrant red July 10, 2015 at 8:57am Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’ve always just used McCormick red liquid coloring. July 10, 2015 at 9:59pm Reply

  • Renata: Hi Jaclyn. So happy I’ve come across your website. Your cakes and cupcakes are absolutely beautiful and I was hoping to make this Red Velvet cake as a birthday cake for my little girl and your gorgeous strawberry buttercream cupcakes. I haven’t made them before but I can tell they’ll be bursting with flavour once I do. My only problem is that I have to make them ahead of time (busy mum of two, I can do cake on one day, cupcakes on the next or vice versa, party the following day? ) and would like/need to refrigerate them I guess. How long ahead would I be able to do that and how should I store them? Wouldn’t the strawberries in cupcakes go soggy? Thanks in advance. July 10, 2015 at 11:20pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: For best results with just about any cake I like to serve them the day they are made, but you can definitely make the cake/cupcakes a day in advance then add the frosting the next day. July 11, 2015 at 1:52pm Reply

  • Jean: can we substitute canola oil for olive oil? would that make a difference? August 13, 2015 at 6:33am Reply

    • Jaclyn: If you use extra light olive oil that should be fine. September 9, 2015 at 4:23pm Reply

  • Karin: I’d really like to bake this cake, it looks awesome! But can I put the whole batter into one pan and bake instead of using three separate? October 27, 2015 at 4:29pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I wouldn’t recommend it for this recipe. I don’t know that it would fit in a 13 by 9? November 12, 2015 at 5:31pm Reply

  • Amanda: I was just curious to know if you have ever tried baking strips or the center needle to bake a flat cake with your red velvet. I feel like red velvet can be a little fickle sometimes and I didn’t want to use either technique and then change the texture the cake. November 5, 2015 at 3:39pm Reply

  • Lela: do I just butter the pans and parchment paper or grease and flour? November 8, 2015 at 7:02pm Reply

  • Ashley: I have been hunting for a red velvet cake mix for some time, this looks fantastic.

    Would you happen to know how long I would need to cook it for a sheet cake? November 12, 2015 at 2:49pm Reply

  • Cherry drake: Thank you for your recipe! I will try to bake this today for my son 1month old….I hope my family would like it! November 16, 2015 at 11:28am Reply

  • Natalie: Gorgeous, and looks yummy :) Can you tell me how you achieved the red crumbs on the cream cheese frosting to decorate the cake please? Many thanks! November 16, 2015 at 4:25pm Reply

  • Robin: Love this cake. I’ve been making this for years…usually once a year in November. It was my sister’s very favorite birthday cake and she asked me to make it for her every year. I make it in celebration of her memory now and my family and friends get the benefit of enjoying a super delish cake! Win win. Great recipe :) November 29, 2015 at 4:13pm Reply

  • Tency: Amazing!!! I made this cake for my fiancé on his birthday two days ago and it came out beautifully! I was really scared I might do something wrong but thanks to your detailed instructions I did everything step by step and couldn’t be happier how it turned out! Thank you so much! 😊 December 13, 2015 at 11:27am Reply

  • ng: This is the best Red Velvet recipe ever. I have made this cake uncountable times in the past year. Bakers from top bakeries commended the it and said it’s the best Red Velvet they have ever eaten.

    Pls share your vanilla cake recipe.

    Look to see you on top of your career. January 3, 2016 at 9:43am Reply

  • Maleeha: Ok this is the best recipe! My sister made it for my birthday and I’ve been dying for more! Planning on making cupcakes but would you know how many cupcakes this would yield? What if I just wanted 12? And are there any other changes that would need to be done? Thank you for a delicious recipe! :) February 10, 2016 at 4:24pm Reply

  • Stephen Craig: Hey Jaclyn, very nice cake indeed. It makes great cupcakes as well. Thanks for sharing. February 10, 2016 at 4:32pm Reply

  • Lily Seale: amazing cake but the frosting has too much sugar maybe try just 2 cups of powdered sugar if you want a more cream cheese flavor April 18, 2016 at 12:08pm Reply

  • Laura: Hi,how many cups of frosting those this make? Can I color the frosting for a design ?
    Thank you!
    Laura May 9, 2016 at 8:14pm Reply

  • Mari: I made a 3 tier baby shower cake using this recipe and it turned out amazing! I used different sized pans and it still came out incredibly by just adjusting the cooking time. June 5, 2016 at 11:12am Reply

  • Jenny: Do I have to use buttermilk? Or can I substitute for milk and vinegar? It’s very hard for me to get some.. June 20, 2016 at 10:53pm Reply

  • Tugce: Thanks for the recipe. It looks amazing. I have a question though. What happens if I dont divide the cake batter into three and bake at a time ? June 21, 2016 at 9:17am Reply

  • Mia: This cake is even and it looks heavenly! June 28, 2016 at 8:40pm Reply

  • Jill: How many does this feed? July 17, 2016 at 2:12pm Reply

  • Filipa: Hi, I used your recipe to make a pink cake! It’s so good!! Thank you. You can check it here:

    Hope you like it. August 18, 2016 at 10:27am Reply

  • Marji: I live in Denver. Do I have to make any adjustments for the high altitude? October 13, 2016 at 6:08pm Reply

  • Jennifer Irizarry: Hello,
    Could I bake this in a bundt pan? December 21, 2016 at 8:03am Reply

  • Crystal: Can I use this recipe for a bundt cake? December 30, 2016 at 6:40pm Reply

  • Christine Khor: Hi, would like to make this using beetroot puree instead of red colouring. Would you be able to advise what I should do on the adjustment to the ingredient? April 9, 2017 at 3:30am Reply

  • Brittany: Can you make this into cupcakes or No? If so how would you able it? July 5, 2017 at 6:41pm Reply

  • Joanne Thompson: Finally found the right red velvet that tastes wonderful. My friends Can’t stop talking about it
    I lost my original recipe and have been searching for another one for so long. This cake is moist and comes out so pretty. I am so glad my search is over. It will be the highlight of your party December 26, 2017 at 10:46am Reply

    • Jaclyn: Thanks Joanne! Glad you found it. ;) January 2, 2018 at 4:29pm Reply

  • GENA. F: Gonna Give This A Try ~ It’s 5 Star Rated Recipe… I’m so excited..WHY You might Say ~ b/c.. I am using Purvi’e Pure Stevia For Baking.. I’ve tried Baking with Purvia.. and it was AWESOME.. However the Back of What I thought was Sugar Free ~ included Fruit Sugar .. Tasted Great, But I told my Family You could eat all you want ~ THERE’S NO SUGUR ” I heard a Quire of Song, Throughout my family’s mouth.. Then after eating all of my delicious desert’s on Christmas.. I started hearing the Theme Song To Jaws… My Sister was walking down the Hall and.. I watched her as the look on her face began to coil Up.. Scrunching here nose at me .. and she Kindly pointed out that Purvia for Baking did have sugar in the way of Fructose.. BOO HOO HOO.. Now I found this recipe, and of course made substitutions.. and it came out moist.. Thank You Google for Finding this Recipe for me.. COOKIN CLASSY IS AWESOME January 24, 2018 at 5:33pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Lol hopefully she likes these better! January 26, 2018 at 9:34am Reply

  • Wafa: Can we use cake flour instead of all purpose flour ? February 10, 2018 at 6:12pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’d recommend going with a blend of half of each. February 19, 2018 at 11:21am Reply

  • Gloria Lindsey: i made your Red Velvet Cake recipe and put it in 3 square 8″ pans. They cooked in 25 mins, but they are only about 1/2″ tall. I didn’t have have buttermilk, so i used milk with vinegar, as i always do. I also added the extra vinegar which the recipe called for. Other than that, I followed the directions to a tee. Any idea why they didn’t rise? February 11, 2018 at 6:07pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Are you at high altitude? Did you really let the butter and sugar mixture fluff up? And is your baking soda old? Was the batter over-mixed? Sorry it could be a number of things. February 19, 2018 at 11:53am Reply

  • Tyanna Green: What is the purpose for using 3 Large eggs and then whisking 2 Egg Yolks as well? February 13, 2018 at 10:18pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: Softer texture. Egg yolks have natural emulsifiers in them. February 19, 2018 at 11:44am Reply

  • Nikki: Thank you for sharing this recipe. I made this beautiful cake and everything about it was perfect. I mean both taste and texture. For the red color although, I used dried beet powder and it was fine. Excellent cake! February 16, 2018 at 6:24pm Reply

    • Jaclyn: I’m so glad you liked this recipe Nikki! I appreciate your review! Also next time I’d love to try the beet powder for a healthier alternative to all the artificial red. Glad it worked well for you! February 17, 2018 at 12:23am Reply

  • Andi: If i dont have buttermilk…can i replace with 1cup of milk and 1tbsp vinegar
    In addition to added vinegar to replace buttermilk am i suppose to add 11/2tsp vinegar as stated in recipe March 12, 2018 at 6:26am Reply

  • Aurora Salazar: I am going to make a 3-tiered cake for a wedding rehearsal. The cake pan sizes would be 8in, 6in, and 4in. How should I alter the recipe? April 7, 2018 at 9:33pm Reply

  • Susan: I have made at least 12 different recipes of red velvet cake. Of all the recipes, I have baked this one 3 times and like it the best. The texture is quite different than cakes using all oil and no butter; I always try to bake recipes using butter instead of oil for taste. Although I will retain this recipe as one of my favorites, there are three others I need to bake for comparison. April 26, 2018 at 4:05am Reply

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