Celebrate Halloween with these moist black velvet cupcakes with cream cheese frosting and raspberry jam. They a deliciously spooky twist on a Southern classic.
Why you'll love it
These black velvet cupcakes are a delicious Halloween-inspired twist on the Southern classic red velvet cupcake. They are light, fluffy, moist, and incredibly flavorful.
The recipe uses a mix of butter and oil to create a cupcake that is incredibly rich and flavorful, yet moist with a tender crumb.
To finish the cupcakes, we use my favorite velvety cream cheese frosting. In keeping with the spooky theme, we then drizzle it with a bit of a simple raspberry syrup.
If you've made a red velvet cake or cupcake, the ingredients for this black velvet cupcake is very similar. There are only a few notable ingredients in this particular recipe.
- Cornstarch - The addition of cornstarch keeps these cupcakes very light and tender. If you don't have cornstarch, however, it is alright to omit it.
- Cocoa powder - Any cocoa powder works for this recipe, but Dutch-processed works the best. If you want to emphasize the color of the cupcakes, you can try using black cocoa powder.
- Food coloring - To give the cupcakes it's spooky color and keep close to the traditional recipe, we use black food coloring. I recommend the brand Americolor.
How to make
- Preheat the oven and line a cupcake pan with liners.
- Mix together the dry ingredients together and set aside.
- Beat the butter and oil together with the sugar and then add in the egg, food coloring, and vanilla.
- Alternate between adding the flour mixture and the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the flour.
- Mix together the vinegar and baking soda in a small bowl, then whisk into the cupcake batter.
- Divide the batter into the liners and bake.
- Make the frosting and the drizzle, then pipe the frosting onto the cooled cupcaked and drizzle with the sauce.
Expert baking tips
Take care to measure your flour correctly. The most common mistake made in baking is accidentally adding too much flour. You should fluff your flour and then spoon it into your measuring cup then sweep off the excess. For the most consistent results, you can use a kitchen scale and use the recipe card below to convert the recipe into metric measurements.
Make sure all your ingredients are at room temperature. This helps the ingredients emulsify and come together in a smooth, velvety batter that bakes up beautifully. You can quickly warm up eggs by leaving them in a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes. Soften butter quickly using the tips outlined in this guide. If you don't have buttermilk, you can use any number of substitutions.
Keep the cupcakes in an airtight container at room temperature for up to three days. You can extend the shelf-life by storing them in the refrigerator. You can freeze unfrosted cupcakes in an airtight container for up to a month. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight and frost when ready to serve.
The best thing to use is an ice cream scoop. This makes the process cleaner and ensures that you are adding the same amount of the batter into each liner.
Black Velvet Cupcakes
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3 tablespoons Dutch-processed cocoa powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup unsalted butter room temperature
- ⅓ cup vegetable or canola oil
- ¾ cups granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon black food color (may need more depending on the brand.
- ½ cup buttermilk room temperature
- 1 ½ teaspoons distilled white vinegar
- ¾ teaspoons baking soda
- ½ cup raspberry jam
- 1 drop red food coloring
- 2 tablespoons water
Cream Cheese Frosting
- ½ cup 1 stick unsalted butter, room temperature
- 8 oz cream cheese room temperature
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 350 F. Line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners. Set aside.
- In a small bowl, mix together the flour, cornstarch, cocoa powder, and salt together. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer, beat together the butter, oil, and sugar together until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs one at a time, beating well after adding each egg.
- Beat in the vanilla and the black food color. Add more black food color as needed. The mixture should look mostly very dark grey. The color will deepen and intensify during baking.
- Add ⅓ of the flour mixture, then half of the buttermilk. Add another ⅓ of the flour, then the remaining buttermilk followed by the last ⅓ of the flour. Mix until just combined.
- Quickly, but carefully, mix together the vinegar and baking soda. The mixture will bubble up a lot.
- Pour the baking soda mixture into your batter and stir in well for 10 seconds.
- Evenly divide the batter among the cupcake liners.
- Bake the cupcakes for 15 - 18 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with a few crumbs sticking to it when inserted in the middle.
- Let the cupcakes rest in the tin for five minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
- Cut out a hole in the middle of the cupcakes using a sharp knife. Fill in the cupcakes with raspberry jam, you should still have plenty leftover.
- Beat the butter and cream cheese for the frosting and add in the powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Beat until smooth and creamy. You can add a tablespoon of heavy cream if your frosting seems too thick.
- Pipe the frosting over the cupcakes.
- Mix the remaining raspberry jam with a drop of red food coloring and a tablespoon of water. Drizzle over the cupcakes.