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Sunday, February 6, 2011

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting

Never mind that these cupcakes are clearly sitting in Christmas-themed liners and topped with red and green sprinkles. I'm fully aware that Christmas was well over a month ago and no, I'm not wishing for its return (bring on the Spring and the warm weather already!). I actually made these cupcakes in December but got so caught up posting other recipes that these kept slipping off my radar. At one point, I contemplated just saving the post until next December, but ultimately decided February was actually the perfect time to post these. Red Velvet Cupcakes = Perfect for Valentine's Day! So here I am, with less than ten days to spare, offering a delightful sweet treat for you to enjoy. Just swap out the Christmas tree liners for some pink or red hearts and you'll be good to go!

I actually never got to try a finished cupcake. After making these I brought them to lunch for our Holiday luncheon, where they seemed to go over well. The frosting is a different story. I was eating that by the fingerful before and after piping the frosting on. To reduce stomachaches, I recommend putting the frosting on something other than your finger! I'll try to remember that next time too...

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting
cupcake recipe from allrecipes.com, frosting from Pinch my Salt
*makes 20

for the cupcakes-
-1/2 cup butter
-1 1/2 cups sugar
-2 eggs
-1 cup buttermilk
-1 fluid ounce red food coloring
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-1 1/2 tsp baking soda
-1 tbsp distilled white vinegar
-2 cups all-purpose flour
-1/3 unsweetened cocoa powder
-1 tsp salt

for the frosting-
-16 oz. cream cheese, softened
-1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
-1 tsp vanilla extract
-2 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted (*use additional if you prefer a stiffer frosting!)
-pinch of salt

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line twenty muffin cups with paper baking cups.
2. Beat butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Mix in eggs, buttermilk, food coloring, and vanilla. Stir in the baking soda and vinegar.
3. In a separate bowl, combine flour, cocoa powder, and salt. Stir into the batter, just until blended. Divide batter evenly among prepared cups.
4. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until cupcake tops spring back lightly when pressed. Cool in the pan set over a wire rack. Cool completely before frosting.
5. To make frosting, blend cream cheese and butter with an electric mixer until smooth. With mixer on low, add powdered sugar, salt, and vanilla. Increase mixing speed to high, beating until light and fluffy. Pipe or spread frosting onto cooled cupcakes. Serve cupcakes immediately or refrigerate until serving.