Red Velvet cupcakes (make easy with a cake mix) with cream cheese buttercream and topped with white chocolate snowflakes are a fun and festive way to celebrate the season!Jump to Recipe
How To Make Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Buttercream
- Make red velvet cupcakes according to the package instructions for cupcakes. (I use a Betty Crocker mix and get about 24 cupcakes).
- While the cupcakes are cooling, make cream cheese buttercream (recipe below)
- Fit piping bag with Wilton 1M tip and fill with cream cheese buttercream.
- Pipe a swirl of cream cheese buttercream onto each cupcake.
- Gently place a white chocolate snowflake in the cupcake.
- Refrigerate until needed.
The case for cake mix:
Why use a cake mix? Because quite frankly, my friends and family tend to prefer it. Many bakeries use cake mix and it’s simply what we’re used to. The end result is lighter and fluffier. It’s a whole lot less work and considerably less expensive than making it from scratch. That being said, if you’re a hard core, from scratch baker-try Sally’s recipe-it looks great!
There are a few cakes that I make from scratch and they are delicious. But for most celebrations, I make the cake with a mix and make my frosting from scratch.
Are red velvet cupcakes just chocolate?
No, actually. There is cocoa powder in red velvet cake, but only a couple of tablespoons, not enough to make it a real “chocolate cake.”
What make red velvet cupcakes red?
In traditional red velvet recipes, non-Dutched cocoa powder reacts with buttermilk and creates a red brown color to the cake. In science words, it’s the anthocyanin in the cocoa powder that reacts with the acid from the buttermilk to make a red brown color.
In current recipes it’s red food coloring! And a lot of it. To get a vibrant red color, you need almost an entire bottle of red food coloring! Another reason to use a cake mix-that red color is already in there-no fighting with a bottle of red food dye!
Do I need to refrigerate cream cheese buttercream?
Yes! Cream cheese is one of those ingredients that should be refrigerated. Refrigerate your cupcakes after you’re finished frosting them until you need them. Then give them an hour or so at room temperature (so the buttercream isn’t hard when people eat the cake). Refrigerate or freeze leftover frosting.
How to make white chocolate snowflakes:
- Cover your work surface with a piece of wax or parchment paper
- Melt 3 ounces chocolate. (For these cupcakes, I used red candy melts)
- Fit piping bag with #2 Wilton tip and fill piping bag with melted chocolate.
- Pipe snowflake designs onto wax paper. Embellish with sprinkles if desired. I free hand piped these snowflakes, but you can easily print off some free clip art and trace your snowflakes. Pipe about twice as many as you think you’ll need, chocolate snowflakes break easily.
- Allow to dry for 15-30 minutes. Place on top of frosted cupcakes.
Cream Cheese Buttercream
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened
- 1 cup salted butter softened
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 8 cups powdered sugar
- If using a stand mixer, fit with paddle attachment, cream together cream cheese and butter until smooth and well blended. By well blended, I mean that there are no lumpy butter bits.
- Add in the vanilla extract and beat until well blended.
- SLOWLY (I cannot stress this enough-it will be like a snowstorm in your kitchen if you pour that powdered sugar in too fast) add in the powdered sugar, beating to combine.
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