Red Velvet Cake Recipe

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We have five birthdays in our family in September, and they all request this cake! The recipe comes from my husband's Aunt Edith and makes a cake that's pretty and delicious.
Recommended: 19 Red Velvet Recipes
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 35 min.
MAKES:12 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 35 min.
MAKES: 12 servings


  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup (2 ounces) red food coloring
  • 3 tablespoons baking cocoa
  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 4 tablespoons shortening
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Nutritional Facts

1 slice: 542 calories, 25g fat (11g saturated fat), 70mg cholesterol, 362mg sodium, 73g carbohydrate (51g sugars, 1g fiber), 6g protein.


  1. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Combine food coloring and cocoa; add to creamed mixture. Combine the flour, baking soda and salt; add to creamed mixture alternately with buttermilk. Stir in vanilla and vinegar.
  2. Pour into two waxed paper-lined 9-in. round baking pans. Bake at 350° for 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted near center comes out clean.
  3. For frosting, whisk together milk and flour in a saucepan. Cook, stirring constantly, until thick (like paste), about 5 minutes. Cool. Place in a bowl with remaining ingredients. Beat at high speed until consistency of whipped cream. Frost one cake layer; top with second layer and frost entire cake. Yield: 12 servings.
Originally published as Red Velvet Cake in Grandma's Great Desserts Cookbook 1992, p19

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debpenns User ID: 5553562 238241
Reviewed Nov. 27, 2015

"made this for Thanksgiving family loved it!!"

Babeycake User ID: 5984367 21077
Reviewed Jan. 23, 2013

"to answer 808jen's question, YES you can use unsweetened cocoa powder in place of baking cocoa powder."

GaitherMom User ID: 6038554 21075
Reviewed Oct. 14, 2011

"Not bad, but my family thought it had a flour taste to it. Also, the cakes need to be cooled completely before frosting. The cake is completely gone, so it wasn't that bad, but I think I am going to try another recipe for Red velvet cake."

808jen User ID: 452688 48320
Reviewed May. 26, 2008

"When a recipe calls for baking cocoa powder, can I use unsweetened cocoa powder? Is it interchangeable in recipes? Thanks."

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