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Close up slice of chocolate red velvet cake on a plate with fork and cake and flowers in the background.

Chocolate Red Velvet Cake

Author: Sarah Brooks
This chocolate red velvet cake is light and velvety. With a fabulous fine crumb and tangy cream cheese frosting, it's pretty as a picture and looks as good as it tastes!
5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 1 hr
Course afternoon tea, Dessert, morning tea, Snack
Cuisine American
Servings 10 slices cake
Calories 634 kcal


  • 2 x 8 inch cake tins
  • Electric hand beaters or stand mixer


For the cake

  • 1 stick (½ cup/115gms) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (250gms) white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 tablespoons natural cocoa powder
  • 1 and ½ tablespoons red food colour
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups (300gms) plain flour
  • ¼ cup (40gms) corn flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup (250mls) milk
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

Cream cheese frosting

  • 2  x 8 ounce tubs (450gms) full fat cream cheese, at room temperature
  • ½ stick (¼ cup/60gms) unsalted butter
  • 3 cups (480gms) powdered sugar (icing sugar)
  • 3 tablespoons (45mls) fresh lemon juice


To make the cakes

  • Pre-heat your oven to 365°F (185°C/165°C fan forced). Grease and line 2 x 8 inch cake tins with butter and flour.
  • Add the lemon juice to the milk and allow to sit for five minutes to make the butter milk.
  • Put the butter in a large bowl with the sugar and beat till creamed and fluffy. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing between each addition.
  • Sift in the cocoa powder. Add the red food colouring and vanilla and mix well. Add the oil and mix in.
  • Add the flour, corn flour, salt and baking powder to a sifter and sift in about half to the cake mix. Add about half the milk and mix. Sift in the rest of the flour mix and milk and mix in.
  • Divide the mix evently between the two prepared cake tins and bake for 30 mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
  • Allow to cool completely before assemling and icing the cake.

To make the cream cheese frosting and assemble the cake.

  • Add the room temperature cream cheese and butter for the frosting, lemon juice and vanilla to a bowl and mix until creamy. Sift in the powdered sugar and beat well untill soft and fluffy.
  • Trim the domed tops from the cakes a little. Keep the discards and blitz into crumbs with your hands or in a food processor. For a flat toped cake you can flip the top layer over.
  • Cover the top of your first cake with cream cheese frosting. Add the second layer of cake and repeat again. Spread the sides of the cake with frosting. Sprinkle a circle of pretty red crumbs around the top of the edge of your cake and you're done!


Recipe time above is hand-on time and cooking time, it does not include cooling time for the cake, which needs to be completely cool before you frost it, or your frosting will melt!
This recipe makes a very generously frosted cake.  If you like less frosting you can reduce it to three-quarters of the recipe or even half.  


Calories: 634kcalCarbohydrates: 134gProtein: 8gFat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gPolyunsaturated Fat: 4gMonounsaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0.05gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 254mgPotassium: 150mgFiber: 2gSugar: 91gVitamin A: 98IUVitamin C: 3mgCalcium: 54mgIron: 3mg

Nutritional Disclaimer

Nutritional information is an estimate based on an online database. The nutritional content of ingredients may vary by brand. If you require accurate nutritional information, you should calculate this based on the specific brands and products you are using.

Keywords: cream cheese frosting, traditional
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