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red velvet cupcakes lined up on parchment paper overhead image

Red Velvet Cupcakes Recipe

A retro flavor that only gets better with time! Red velvet cupcakes are the most moist, tender, and soft cupcakes! Perfect for birthdays, holidays, or just an indulgent treat.
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Prep Time: 10 minutes
Bake Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 25 minutes
Servings: 12 to 14 cupcakes


  • 1 & ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil, or any neutral flavored oil
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • ¼ cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon red gel food coloring or 2 teaspoons liquid food coloring
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup buttermilk * see notes
  • cream cheese frosting, or your choice of frosting


  • Preheat your oven to 350°F. Line a 12 count cupcake tin with paper liners, and set aside.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together your flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a separate large bowl, combine butter, oil, and sugar. Beat together using a wooden spoon or an electric mixer until relatively smooth and combined. It may be slightly grainy, but that's normal!
  • Add your eggs to the sugar mixture, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add in the sour cream, vinegar, food coloring, and vanilla, and whisk to combine.
  • Alternate adding your dry ingredients and buttermilk to the sugar mixture. Make sure to start and end with the dry ingredients (so 3 additions of dry ingredients, and 2 additions of buttercream), and whisk between each addition until just combined. Take care not to over mix!
  • Divide the batter evenly into your cupcake tin. You may need to do 2 batches, so just make sure that each cup is filled no more than ⅔ of the way full.
  • Bake the cupcakes in the center of your preheated 350°F oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a tooth pick inserted into the center of a cupcake comes out clean. Cool completely before frosting!


* If you don't have buttermilk, you can make your own at home! Here's how.
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