Pink velvet cupcakes

I had my very first Hummingbird Bakery Red Velvet Cupcake in London last week and although the frosting was extremely sweet, I enjoyed the cupcake tremendously probably because it’s red colouring was so alluring.

So, with my new Hummingbird Bakery cupcake recipe book as my trusty alliance, I decided to make a batch of these red velvet cupcakes together with E yesterday.  Her kids got off school early and after making a batch of chocolate cupcakes to satisfy these ‘little choco-monsters’ cravings, we baked up these red cupcakes to satisfy our girlie cravings.

Well, a little incident happened in the kitchen for we ran out of red food colouring and these cupcakes ended up turning a shade of pink instead.

I find working with cupcakes a tad bit difficult especially when it comes to the frosting, they never seem to turn out right and melts really quickly.  Does anyone out there have any suggestions on how to get the frosting right?

Pink Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting (Recipe adapted from the Hummingbird Bakery)

Makes 12 cupcakes

Prep Time: 15 minutes | Bake Time: 20 minutes

For the Cupcakes:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring (we used about 1 tablespoon of red food colouring)
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 tablespoons of buttermilk (we used whole milk instead)
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar

For the Cream Cheese Frosting: (we like it a little less sweet, so we adjusted the quantity slightly)

  • 4 ounces butter, at room temperature (100g of unsalted butter)
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature (100g of Philly cream cheese)
  • 2½ cups powdered sugar (1 cup of powdered sugar)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (1/2 teaspoon)


1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees. Line a standard muffin/cupcake pan with liners.

2. On medium-high speed, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Turn the mixer to high and add the egg. Scrape down the bowl and beat until well incorporated.

3. In a separate small bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, vanilla extract and red food coloring to make a thick paste. Add to the batter and mix on medium speed until completely combined. You may need to stop the mixer to scrape the bottom of the bowl, making sure that all the batter gets color.

4. Reduce the mixer speed to low and slowly add half of the buttermilk. Add half of the flour and mix until combined. Scrape the bowl and repeat the process with the remaining milk and flour. Beat on high until smooth.

5. Again, reduce the mixer speed to low and add the salt, baking soda and vinegar. Turn to high and beat for another couple of minutes until completely combined and smooth.

6. Divide the batter evenly between the cupcake liners and bake for about 20 minutes, or until a thin knife or skewer inserted into the center of the largest cupcake comes out clean.

7. Cool for 10 minutes and then remove cupcakes from the pan and place them on a cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.

8. To make the frosting: Using the whisk attachment, whip the butter and cream cheese on high speed for about 5 minutes, scraping the bowl down as necessary. Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the powdered sugar until all is incorporated. Add the vanilla and mix to combine. Increase the speed to medium high and whip for a few minutes until the frosting is light and fluffy, scraping the bowl as necessary.

So bake up a batch of these and hope you enjoy these sugary Pink Velvet cupcakes just like I did! 😉

17 thoughts on “Pink velvet cupcakes

  1. The Pleasure Monger says:

    You’re quite the domestic goddess now, aren’t you?! =)

    Anyway it’s a general rule that if less sugar is added to frosting, it becomes more melt-y and fluid. Sugar is required to hold everything up and to make the frosting stiffer. I generally lower my sugar levels too, but don’t seem to have a problem with it slipping, perhaps your kitchen is a little too hot?

    • Lady J says:

      Haha… Domestic goddes I’m definitely not, just trying very hard to hone my cooking skills and playing around with the food photography… Still finding it hard in the baking department.

      Yeah, I remembered what you told me about the sugar in the frosting. I can’t seem to get the frosting to work out right… Hmm… will have to give it another good.

  2. M says:

    I was about to say the same things R did. Not sure if this applies but wait til the cupcakes are completely cooled as well 🙂

    • Lady J says:

      Haha…gotcha Sinlady… the taste of the cupcakes were light and fluffy.. but the cream.. too sweet! Need to adjust that further…

  3. Brittany Atkinson says:

    A no fail frosting recipe for cream cheese is:
    8 oz cream cheese, softened
    1 stick of butter (1/2 cup), room temperature
    2 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar
    pinch of salt
    1 tsp. vanilla

    It comes out perfect (and not too sweet) every time!

  4. lisa says:

    When you think you have added enough powdered sugar, you need to add another cup. It truly holds things together, especially with the addition of cream cheese…that tends to soften things. Mine is firm enough to pipe into stand up swirls. 🙂

    • Lady J says:

      Thanks Lisa for popping by… I’ll try it the next time.. Will the frosting be too sweet then with so much sugar? 😉

      • Lisa says:

        I have found if your frosting is too sickly sweet, a ‘Little’ and I do mean a ‘Little’ pinch of salt OR a 1/4 T spoon of lemon juice (taste it as you go till you get it to taste right starting small and adding as needed) will cut the sickly sweetness.

  5. Gigi Cuccaro says:

    Just a quick note Brittany’s recipe is the same one that I use. I like to add a touch of almond extract to my frosting! Love the idea of pink velvet cupcakes! Have a great weekend! Lol

    • Lady J says:

      Thanks Gigi for popping by and for adding more ideas to better the frosting… Will have to give it a go again… Bon weekend to you too!

  6. Holly says:

    Rose Levy has a great cream cheese frosting, basically cream cheese, butter and melted (cooled) white chocolate….so yummy! and stable 🙂

    Don’t over beat cream cheese otherwise it turns out runny.

    • Lady J says:

      Yeah I have to remember not to overbeat the cream cheese… I may have done that. Thanks for the tip.. I’ll check out that cream cheese frosting recipe with white chocolate.. sounds yummy!

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