These Pink Velvet Cupcakes are not quite chocolate and not quite vanilla, but they are absolutely delicious! Soft, tender and topped with a rich, melted chocolate frosting; these are the perfect, simple dessert to make for your Valentine!
Phew. I FINALLY managed to get back into my site late last night. (If you didn’t see my social media – it wouldn’t let me log in for 2-3 days!!)
We still don’t really know what the problem was exactly, but it’s fixed so as long as I can get into my site to share this week’s recipes with you, I’m happy! 🙂
Have you ever had that though? I had just logged in, was in the middle of something and then my partner tried to log in, it locked him out and immediately chucked me off in the middle of doing something!
Then any attempt after to log in, it just kept refreshing the page as if you hadn’t logged in… it erased all the password etc. and the Captcha code. Strange.
After what feels like 100 attempts, I finally perfected the Pink Velvet Cupcake.
I got my gel paste food colour, the batter was bright pink, when they came out of the oven they were bright pink… Then I left them in an airtight container for 2 days before photographing them and the colour intensified… and went a bit red..
Give a girl a break.
However, I’m still calling them Pink Velvet because they are lighter than a red velvet cupcake, with less cocoa powder, for one.
I should just name this whole thing Pink Velvet-gate.
See what I mean? ^^
So, ignoring the fact these are a little redder than I anticipated, let me talk to you about how insanely amazing these cupcakes are.
Like, the most perfect-melt-in-your-mouth-tender-soft-cupcake-ever.
I can’t even. Swooooooooon!
I know you’re supposed to be able to substitute buttermilk for your own, made with milk and lemon juice, but I advise you don’t with these. It really makes a difference. And, yes I would know, 100 cupcakes passed through this house in the last week, and I had no buttermilk for one batch, so substituted my own. Just not the same.
The buttermilk makes these cupcakes soft and even though I know you hate the word, moist.
I’ve seen pink velvet cupcakes before, but they seemed to just be vanilla cupcakes dyed pink with none of that hint of chocolate which we all love about red velvet.
So, in these, I added 1tbsp of cocoa powder along with 2tsp vanilla extract to give you that perfect red velvet flavour.
I based this recipe on my ever popular Perfect Vanilla Cupcake recipe (still the number 1 most popular recipe on my website after all this time!!) Again, showing you how super versatile my recipe is. I truly believe once you have the perfect base recipe, you can then make endless variations that will turn out great.
Yes, I know I had colour problems with this recipe, but that was not because the recipe didn’t work – every time I was left with 12 delicious, soft cupcakes that were just the wrong colour haha!!! 😀
Pink Velvet Reject Club… 😉
Now, about that frosting. This caused me some problems last week too. The whole room temp butter with warm melted chocolate in a really cold metal bowl just did not work. #foodbloggerproblems.
So, for these, I experimented with something I haven’t done before. I melted the chocolate and butter together and then added in the icing sugar and vanilla before whipping it up in the stand mixer (in a bowl warm out of the dishwasher!)
It honestly created the most delicious, rich, velvety-smooth frosting I’ve EVER had! I am SOOOOO in love with this frosting! I used dark chocolate, with 2 and 1/2 cups icing sugar and 2tsp vanilla extract, so you get the richness of the chocolate, but you also get a sweet hit – just amazing.
My OH certainly loved that I made him these, and I am 100% sure your Valentine will fall head over heels for them. Or, just make them for yourself. There’s no judgement on my blog 😉
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Pink Velvet Cupcakes with Chocolate Frosting
- For the cupcakes:
- 1 stick (113g) margarine/butter, at room temperature
- 1 cup (200g) caster sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1 1/2 cups (210g) plain flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- Pinch of salt, ONLY if you're using unsalted butter, not if you're using margarine.
- 1/2 cup (120g) buttermilk, shaken
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tsp white wine vinegar
- Pink food colouring - amount you need will depend on what type you use*
- For the frosting:
- 1 cup (175g) dark chocolate chips
- 1 1/2 sticks (170g) unsalted butter
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups (300g) icing sugar, sifted
- 1-2 tbsp milk
- Marshmallows and sprinkles to decorate, optional
- Preheat oven to 180C/350F and line a 12 hole cupcake tin (You may have enough batter to make 14, I just put 2 extra liners on the tray and didn't worry that they weren't perfect cupcake shapes!!)
- Place the margarine/butter and sugar into a large bowl, or the bowl of your stand mixer and beat until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes on medium-high speed.
- Add in the eggs and vanilla extract and mix until well incorporated, about 1 minute on med-high speed.
- Place the cocoa powder, plain flour, baking powder and salt, if using, into a medium sized bowl and stir until combined and there are no lumps of cocoa powder.
- Tip the flour mix into your egg mixture and add in the buttermilk. Mix until well incorporated and smooth, 45 seconds-1 minute on med-high speed.
- Place the bicarbonate of soda into a small glass and add in the vinegar, stir until it stops fizzing.
- Tip into your cake mixture and mix until well combined.
- Add in your pink food colouring, a little at a time, mixing in-between additions until you have the desired shade of pink. Be aware that when they bake the colour could become kind of brown, my cake batter was BRIGHT pink!
- Divide the batter between your cupcake liners, fill each one 3/4 full.
- Place in the oven for 18-22 minutes until risen, springy to the touch and an inserted skewer into the centre comes out clean.
- Transfer cupcakes to a wire rack almost immediately, yes they're hot, but this stops the liners peeling away from the cupcakes.
- Leave to cool completely, before making the frosting: Place the chocolate chips and butter into a heatproof bowl and place in the microwave, in 20 second increments, stirring in between, until melted and smooth. Leave to cool for 25 minutes.
- Once cooled, pour into a large bowl/the bowl of your stand mixer and add in the vanilla. Mix briefly. Add in your sifted icing sugar and mix on low until it starts to combine (to avoid a huge icing dust cloud!) and then turn the speed up to medium and mix until smooth and fluffy.
- If frosting is too thick, add milk 1/2tbsp at a time until you have a soft, creamy consistency.
- Spoon frosting onto each cupcake and smooth with the back of a spoon/small spatula. TOP TIP: Dip the spoon/spatula into warm water before smoothing over the cupcake, this ensures a smooth finish and makes it easier to work with.
- Once all cupcakes are frosted, decorate with marshmallows (I used heart shaped) and add any sprinkles you want!
- Cupcakes will keep in an airtight container, at room temperature for 4 days.
*I would HIGHLY recommend gel paste food colouring, I tried with liquid gel and they did not turn out pink enough. Recipe by Annie of Annie's Noms