As I mentioned in my prior red velvet cupcake post, I hoped to come up with an oil-based recipe that I could recommend. With this recipe below — mission accomplished!

From my experience, oil-based cakes, as compared to butter cakes, have a better texture and more moistness, at least for cupcakes. Butter cakes are a little denser (and drier?) and seem to work better for layered cakes.

This red velvet cake is topped with ginger-white pepper cream cheese, candied ginger and chocolate shavings. My mom had recently been to some fancy restaurant and was raving to me about a red velvet doughnut dessert she had eaten, with a ginger-pepper-chocolate cream cheese filling that had a kick to it. I took that as a challenge to come up with a cupcake version 🙂

Red Velvet Cake

Makes 22-24 cupcakes

  • 2 ½ cups flour
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 ½ cups vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons red food coloring


  1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Whisk flour, sugar, baking soda and salt in medium bowl. 
  3. Mix cocoa with food coloring in small bowl until smooth paste forms. 
  4. Mix buttermilk, oil, vinegar, vanilla and eggs in stand mixer.
  5. Add half of flour mixture and beat on medium-low speed until just incorporated, about 30 seconds. Add remainder of flour mixture, scraping down side of bowl.
  6. Add cocoa mixture and beat on medium speed until completely incorporated about 30 seconds. Use a rubber spatula to scrape sides and bottom of bowl to make sure red color is evenly distributed.
  7. Scoop into lined cupcake pans and bake until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 18-20 minutes.

Ginger Pepper Cream Cheese Frosting

Makes about 3 cups

  • ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 8 oz. (1 package) cream cheese, softened 
  • 2 teaspoon ground ginger (+/- to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper (+/- to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups powdered sugar (+/- to taste)


  1. Beat butter and cream cheese until smooth.
  2. Add sugar one cup at a time and beat on low speed until incorporated.
  3. Add vanilla, ginger and pepper and increase speed until frosting is fluffy. Note: the amount of spices noted above results in a mild kick. Add more for stronger flavor, or mix in a ginger syrup or chopped crystallized/candied ginger.
0 comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comment *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.