This is a super moist red velvet cake recipe made with the traditional frosting for the red velvet cake. It’s super light, not too sweet and works perfectly with a red velvet cake. Preheat your oven to 180C/350F, then grease four mini cake moulds. You can also use two 8-inch cake tins. Sift together your dry ingredients, starting with two and a quarter cups of plain all-purpose flour, three tablespoons of cornstarch, three tablespoons of unsweetened cocoa powder, half a teaspoon of baking soda, one teaspoon of baking powder and half a teaspoon of salt.

Lightly whisk them and set them aside. Next, in a large bowl, combine six tablespoons of room-temperature unsalted butter, three-quarters of unflavoured vegetable oil and one and three-quarters cups of white granulated sugar. Using a hand or stand mixer at medium to high speed, cream that together for 3 minutes until light and fluffy.

Add three large room-temperature eggs one at a time, mixing well between each addition, about 15 seconds between each. Once well incorporated, add one tablespoon of vanilla essence/ extract, one and a half teaspoon of white vinegar, and three and a half tablespoons of red liquid food colouring. Mix that in until it’s well combined. To finish the batter, add half of your premixed dry ingredients from earlier to your wet mixture and gently fold that with a spatula until it’s combined. Then, add three-quarters cup of room-temperature buttermilk.

Fold it again until just combined, add the remaining dry ingredients, and fold until you have a smooth batter with no lumps. You don’t want to overmix the batter, so only mix until you can’t see any more streaks of flour and the batter is uniform. Evenly distribute the batter into the prepared cake moulds/ tins, give them a light bang on the counter to remove air bubbles, then bake in the preheated oven for 35 minutes or until a skewer/toothpick inserted in the centre comes clean.

Once baked, let them cool in the tins for about 20 minutes, then release them from the tins and let them completely cool on a wire rack. For the frosting, start by placing a saucepan over medium heat and adding 300 grams of white granulated sugar and half a cup of plain all-purpose flour. Using a small whisk or spatula, mix it continuously for about 2 minutes to gently toast the flour. It’s important to mix it because you don’t want to burn it.

Add one and a half cups of milk and give it a good mix; you want them to combine well until they are nice and smooth. Once the mixture bubbles, remove it from the heat and pour it onto a plate, then cover it with a cling wrap. Ensure the wrap touches the top of the milk flour, and then pop it in the fridge for 30 minutes. Add one and a half cups of room temperature unsalted butter into a large bowl and, using a hand or stand mixer at medium-high speed, cream that together for about 5 minutes until it’s light and fluffy.

Bring the milk-flour mixture from the fridge; it should be at room temperature before using it. Add it gradually to the butter, about a tablespoon at a time, while whisking it. To finish off, add one and a half teaspoons of vanilla extract, then mix that until well combined. Dollop the frosting on top of each cake and serve. If you’ve never had red velvet cake with ermine frosting, you have to try it.


Red Velvet Cake

  • 2¼ cups (275 g/ 9.7oz) flour – regular, all-purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch
  • 3 tbsp natural cocoa powder – unsweetened; best not to use Dutch processed
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt – omit if using salted butter
  • 6 tbsp (86 g/ 3oz) unsalted butter – room temperature
  • ¾ cup (141 ml) unflavoured vegetable oil
  • 1¾ cups (344 g/ 11.7Oz) white granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs – room temperature
  • 1 tbsp vanilla essence/extract
  • 1½ tsp white vinegar
  • 3½ tbsp red liquid food colouring
  • ¾ cup (158ml) buttermilk – room temperature

Ermine Frosting;

  • 1½ cups (300 g/ 10.6Oz) white granulated sugar
  • ½ cup (68 g/ 2.4Oz) flour – regular, all-purpose flour
  • 1½ cups (360 ml) milk – full fat
  • 1½ cups (340 g/ 12Oz) unsalted butter – room temperature
  • 1½ tsps vanilla extract/essence