This recipe for Red Velvet Bundt Cake with Cream Cheese Icing makes a stunning change to the traditional layer cake. The best part is that it’s quick and easy too!
Red Velvet Cake is one of those cakes you almost always see in coffee shops and bakeries. With it’s stunning red, velvety texture, it’s always a winner.
Why this recipe works:
- Baking the cake in a Bundt pan makes it not only easier to make, but it allows you to show off that deep red color of the cake.
- Cakes made with oil tend to be moister and softer than cakes made with using the creaming method.
- The addition of melted butter adds flavor that you don’t get with oil alone.
- Using icing that can be poured on, makes the recipe even simpler.
This was my very first blog post back in 2014. Since then, I’ve made this cake a lot (it’s my son’s very favorite).
Over the years I’ve perfected this recipe. I used to use a creaming method for the butter and sugar, but a friend’s grandmother (who’s a big baker) told me that the best red velvet cakes are made with oil and not butter.
Who am I to argue with a seasoned baker? I tried it her way and she was right – the cake was much lighter and it was super moist. I missed the butter flavor though, so in the end, I did half melted butter and half oil – perfection!
On food coloring:
The key to Red Velvet Cake is good quality food coloring. Using the little liquid bottles you can buy from the grocery store just won’t work. You’ll just end up with a cake that looks chocolate more than anything else.
I’ve tried a lot of food coloring and I find that Pro Gel works best, You can get it here on Amazon (#paidlink).
On Bundt Pans:
Bundt cakes are notoriously hard to remove from the pan.
Non-stick pans are the perfect solution but beware of older non-stick pans. A scratched or worn non-stick surface may no longer be slick enough to release your cake well.
So, it’s important to take good care of your pans and make sure you hand wash them to avoid damaging the non-stick surface.
Grease the pan thoroughly. Use a pan coating product like Wilton’s Cake Release (#paidlink) or melted shortening — not butter. The milk solids in butter can act like glue, encouraging cake batter to stick to the pan.
To make the cake:
Start with sifting together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, butter, oil, vinegar, vanilla, and red food coloring until well blended.
Tip: If you don’t have buttermilk to hand, make your own using 1 cup of milk (half and half and skim milk work too) and 1 tablespoon of lemon juice or white vinegar.
Add the flour mixture and mix until combined.
Add the batter to the prepared pan.
Bake for approximately 50-55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Remove to a cooling rack until cool. Then invert onto a serving tray or plate.
Remove a small bit from the bottom of the cake and crumble it onto a small plate and set aside to use as decoration later. Make the icing. Apply to the cooled cake and sprinkle with the cake crumbs.
Serve and enjoy!
- Always bake with ingredients that are at room temperature. When you use buttermilk or eggs straight out of the fridge, they won’t mix as well with the dry ingredients at room temperature. Poorly combined ingredients can cause a cake to be dense rather than light and fluffy.
- Be careful not to over mix the batter. Over mixing will result in a tough, dense cake. Once the flour is added to the batter, try mixing with a wooden spoon instead of with a mixer.
- Don’t have buttermilk on hand? You can replace it with a cup of whole milk mixed with a teaspoon of vinegar or lemon juice.
How do you store cake with cream cheese icing? Cake iced with cream cheese frosting can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days in the refrigerator.
How do you serve a cake that’s been refrigerated? Take the cake out of the fridge 30-45 minutes before serving to remove the chill.
How do you store a cake that hasn’t been frosted? Cake without frosting can be stored well wrapped or in an airtight container for up to three days at room temperature.
Can the cake be frozen? Yes. I recommend freezing without frosting. To freeze, wrap well or place in an airtight container for up to three months.
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Let's Make Red Velvet Bundt Cake with Cream Cheese Icing
For the cake:
- 1½ cup granulated sugar
- 2½ cups all-purpose/plain flour
- 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup buttermilk at room temperature
- ½ cup butter melted
- ½ cup vegetable oil
- 1 teaspoon vinegar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon red food coloring paste
For the Frosting:
- 1 cups powdered sugar
- ½ cup butter softened
- ½ cup cream cheese softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2-4 tablespoons hot water
For the cake:
- Preheat oven to 350 f/180 c and generously grease bundt pan.
- Sift together the sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt into a large bowl. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together buttermilk, eggs, butter, oil, vinegar vanilla, and red food coloring until well blended.
- Add the flour mixture and mix until combined.
- Add the batter to the prepared pan. Bake for approximately 50-55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean.
- Remove to a cooling rack till cool. Then invert onto a serving tray or plate.
- Remove a small bit from the bottom of the cake and crumble it onto a small plate and set aside to use as decoration later (see photo).
For the Icing
- Make sure cream cheese and butter are at room temperature or icing will be lumpy. Blend the cream cheese and butter in a medium mixing bowl until smooth.
- Add the powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time, blending after each addition.
- Add the vanilla and hot water 1 tablespoon at a time until the icing is the desired consistency and can be poured (I like mine quite thick).
- Pour the icing over the cooled cake and use the cake crumbs to decorate by sprinkling them over the icing.
Tips + Notes
FAQsHow do you store cake with cream cheese icing? Cake iced with cream cheese frosting can be stored in an airtight container for up to three days in the refrigerator. How do you serve a cake that's been refrigerated? Take the cake out of the fridge 30-45 minutes before serving to remove the chill. How do you store cake that hasn't been frosted? Cake without frosting can be stored well wrapped or in an airtight container for up to three days at room temperature. Can the cake be frozen? Yes. I recommend freezing without the frosting. To freeze, wrap well or place in an airtight container for up to three months.
Erren's Kitchen is written and produced for informational intentions only. We are not certified nutritionists, and the nutritional information found on this site has not been assessed or authorized by a nutritionist or the FDA. The nutritional information found in our recipes is offered as an estimate and should not be considered a guarantee or fact. The estimated data is provided as a courtesy and calculated through a third-party online nutritional calculator, spoonacular API. Although we do our best to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered rough estimates. Many factors, such as brands or products purchased and the nutritional fluctuations that naturally occur in fresh produce, can alter the effectiveness of the nutritional information in any recipe. Furthermore, various online calculators provide different results depending on their particular algorithms and nutrition fact sources. To obtain the most precise nutritional information in a provided recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the exact ingredients you are using when preparing the recipe using your preferred nutrition calculator.
Update Notes: This recipe was originally posted in 2014, but was updated in 2017 with slight changes to the recipe as well as including step by step photos as well as nutritional information.