Radical Red Velvet Cupcakes

There is a myth that cupcakes are baked by prim, prissy women in starched white aprons, sort of like a June Cleaver cult. 

'Who is June Cleaver?' you ask.  Oh goodness, you are young!  You'll just have to Google that one.  It will save us both a lot of time.  But trust me on this one, cupcake baking isn't for softies!

Look at the state of my kitchen.  Does that look prim and proper to you?  I think it looks more like Sweeney Todd's barbershop!

I'm not sure my electric mixer is ever going to be the same!  It's all because today I am going to show you how to make Radical Red Velvet Cupcakes. What makes them radical?  We are going to take a Red Velvet Cupcake recipe by Ina Garten, and deviate from it!  I know, shocking behaviour!

First I am going to cut the amounts in half to make six cupcakes.  Then I am going to be so bold as to substitute plain yogurt for buttermilk*.  Yes, you can deviate from the recipe!  Ina is a lovely lady, she won't mind.  So here are the ingredients I used:

1 1/4 cups regular flour
2 Tablespoons cocoa
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup plain yogurt*
1/4 cup milk*
2 teaspoons red liquid food colouring
1/2 teaspoon white vinegar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup butter - room temperature
1 large egg

Click on the link below and follow Ina's instructions for mixing your cupcakes.  One note of caution.  My cupcakes only took about 15 minutes to bake so watch them carefully.  You don't want to over bake them


Come back here for the really radical NO RECIPE cream cheese frosting.

OK... now here comes the best part.  You can make really delicious cream cheese frosting WITHOUT a recipe.  You have to be brave and just go with it. I was taught this by a Home Economics teacher ages ago and it works every time.  

Whack a couple dollops of cream cheese into a bowl, pour in some icing sugar and beat with an electric mixer.  Add more icing sugar  and beat like mad until you have a spreadable consistency.  If the frosting is too thick, stir in a drop or two of milk. Add a few drops of vanilla for extra flavour and you are ready to decorate!  You can spread on this frosting with a knife or use a piping bag ...I did a bit of both to show you that it works!

That's how you make really Radical Red Velvet Cupcakes... you deviate! Now, who's going to help me clean up this mess?  I've got a lovely starched apron you can wear! 

*Of course you can also add a tablespoon of vinegar or  lemon juice to regular milk to make a buttermilk substitute.  You could even use the real thing!


  1. I love Red Velvet cupcakes, these look lush! And I can vouch that people who make cupcakes aren't all Doris Day wannabe's (is June Cleaver something to do with 'leave it tonbeaver'?). I make mines without cocoa however - a Martha recipe I'll be using next month. Is that unusual??

  2. You win the prize! You are right, June Cleaver was Beaver Cleaver's mom! If Martha says you don't need cocoa..you don't need cocoa. Anything Martha says is good with me! ; ) My grandma's Red Velvet Cake recipe only had a teaspoon or two of cocoa so I don't think the original recipe called for much if any. I can't wait to see your cake!

  3. Love your 'blood' splattered kitchen! Mine always looks like a bomb site when i'm baking.

    1. The kitchen wasn't as splattered as I was! : )

  4. Lovely red velvet cakes...and buttermilk tastes great in cakes!! Radical indeed...you are very brave at deviating from the recipe...I need to learn to get better at that! :-)

    1. Thanks Laura. I used to be a bit afraid of substituting ingredients but I am getting braver. So far I have been lucky and things have turned out well...so far! : )


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