Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting Copycat Recipe

Published July 6, 2012. Updated January 23, 2024

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This Valentine’s Day you NEED this Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting copycat recipe! Red velvet is such a signature Valentine’s flavor, and a moist, delicious cupcake topped with the creamiest frosting is completely irresistible. 

If you’ve ever tried a Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcake then I have the feeling you are going to love this recipe. My family is obsessed with Sprinkles Cupcakes. Their Red Velvet Cupcake is simply perfect. Since we don’t have one close to us, it’s something we fantasize about all year—and we take advantage of it whenever we’re close enough to get to a Sprinkles location! But sometimes you just need to satisfy that craving without driving hundreds of miles, you know?

It is one cupcake that is truly hard to compete with, but I was definitely up for the challenge.

Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

On my recent vacation to Southern California, I was sure to stop by Sprinkles in Newport Beach so I could refresh my memory on just exactly what that rich, sweet, and even velvety cupcake tasted like so I could come home and create my own Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcake Copycat recipe.

I LOVE making copycat recipes at home. It gives me such a fun challenge in the kitchen. Everyone who tried these cupcakes said they tasted just like Sprinkles! If you don’t believe them, try for yourself. It’s a great way to get that Sprinkles fix when you’re not close enough to get it yourself.

Valentine’s Day Cupcakes

These are without a doubt melt in your mouth amazing! It is not low fat by any means but worth it, I loaded the butter in these babies (just like I assume Sprinkles does). I love making these for Valentine’s Day but they’re amazing year round. Enjoy and share (if you’re feeling nice)!

Sprinkles Copycat Red Velvet Cupcakes

Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

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5 from 10 votes

Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting Copycat Recipe

The best red velvet cupcake recipe! They're perfectly rich, gorgeously red, and of course fit for any celebration!
Servings: 15
Prep30 minutes
Cook20 minutes
Ready in: 50 minutes


Cream Cheese Frosting

  • 1/2 cup salted butter , firm but not cold (if using unsalted add 1/8 tsp salt)
  • 6 oz cream cheese , cold (I recommend using Philadelphia brand in this recipe)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • Red and blue food coloring , for decor (optional)


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a mixing bowl, whisk together flour, cocoa powder and baking soda, set aside. In a separate large mixing bowl, with an electric hand mixer on medium speed, whip together butter and sugar until pale and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add in eggs one at a time stirring after each addition. (Now stand back and change out of any nice shirt you have on and) Add red food coloring and vanilla extract and mix until combine. In a small mixing bowl (or in the measuring cup you used to measure milk), combine milk and 1 tsp vinegar. Add milk mixture and flour mixture to cupcake mixture, alternating in two separate batches, mixing until combine after each addition. Divide batter evenly among 15 paper lined muffin cups, filling each cup about 2/3 full. Bake in preheated oven 18-21 minutes until toothpick inserted into center of cupcake comes out clean. Remove from oven and allow to cool about 2 minutes in muffin tin, then transfer to wire rack to cool for 10 minutes, then transfer to an airtight container to cool completely (this just helps them retain more moisture). Once cooled completely, spread generously with Cream Cheese Frosting (just as sprinkles does, lots of frosting!).
  • *I warmed the butter in the microwave for about 9-10 seconds on HIGH power in a small microwave safe bowl, basically you don't want it softened but not cold either. Just in between the two. Also, alternately you could use unsalted butter and add 1/4 tsp salt to the recipe. I just always keep salted butter on hand so I wanted the recipe to use salted. So if you use salted you don't need to add any salt to the recipe.

Cream Cheese Frosting

  • In a large mixing bowl, using and electric mixer, whip together butter and cream cheese until pale and fluffy (about 1 minute on high speed, then 3-4 minutes on medium high speed). Mix in vanilla extract. Add powdered sugar and beat until smooth. If doing optional infamous Sprinkles Cupcakes dot on top then scoop out a few tablespoons frosting into two separate bowls and tint with food coloring (lots of red in the one and barely any blue in the other). Spread a small circle of red on top followed by a small light blue, use a toothpick to spread if needed (it helped me get a more circular shape around the edges with its finer point).
  • Recipe Source: Cooking Classy

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  • Molly

    This is definitely not even close to tasting like a Sprinkles cupcake. I followed recipe to a T and am an experienced baker. Was looking for a really good chocolate cupcake for my Grandsons birthday. Thank God I sampled it beforehand. I will absolutely not be using this recipe or making it again. Boxed mixes taste better!

  • Christi

    The frosting was wonderful, but the cupcake itself was over baked. I usually bake cupcakes for 12 minutes but i followed the recipe which said to bake for 18 minutes.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Yes I recommend refrigerating in an airtight container. Then bring to room temp before serving.

  • Maria Muniz

    Hello! I love your recipe I just have 2 questions: What can I do to make the cupcake taste more like chocolate and how can I make the frosting thicker I noticed that it was a little bit runny. Thank you!!!

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      If you want more chocolate flavor you could try replacing 2 Tbsp of the flour with 2 Tbsp more cocoa (just keep in mind it does tend to dry cupcakes out a little). For a thicker frosting I like to freeze it in the freezer in 3 minute intervals and stir between each until it’s the thickness you like.

  • Ann

    This is very close to the actual cupcake , loved it and the instructions were spot on, thank you

  • Lauren

    I am always here for a red velvet recipe and I LOVE Sprinkles red velvet. There’s nothing like it. Just made this recipe and full disclosure I didn’t even wait until there were fully cool to shovel one into my mouth. This is a GREAT recipe! And although nothing can fully compete with getting a cupcake from Sprinkles this recipe is definitely a close replication!! The taste is pretty spot on and texture & crumb are great. Thanks for an awesome recipe :)

  • Allison James

    Sprinkles cream cheese frosting doesn’t have actual cream cheese in it though. The frosting comes in premade and sits on a shelf with no refrigeration, each tub is good for a month at room temperature. Once scooped into a bowl it’s then microwaved a bit to soften it up for frosting the cupcakes.

    • Jaclyn

      Jaclyn Bell

      Hmm not sure what that’s about but they list cream cheese as an ingredient right on their website.
      Maybe you were thinking of the vegan option?