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Slice of the best red velvet cake
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4.84 from 18 votes

Classic Southern Red Velvet Cake

Classic Southern Red Velvet Cake is my favorite recipe for red velvet cake and is sure to be your go-to recipe as well. It’s moist yet dense with just a hint of cocoa and topped with a fluffy cream cheese buttercream.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 22 servings
Calories 410kcal


For the cake

  • 2 ½ cups cake flour
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened 2 sticks total
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 large eggs room temperature
  • 1 cup buttermilk room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ounces red food coloring
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

For the frosting

  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened 2 sticks
  • 8 ounces cream cheese softened
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


For the cake

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line 3 (9-inch round) cake pans with parchment paper and spray with non-stick cooking spray. Set aside
  • In a medium bowl, place cake flour, cocoa powder and salt. Whisk together. Set aside
  • In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. With mixer on low, gradually add eggs. Turn up to medium and beat until combined.
  • With mixer on low, alternate adding buttermilk (with vanilla added) and flour mixture. Once it's combined, beat on medium for 30 seconds. With mixer on low, carefully add food coloring (you don't want it to splatter and stain your shirt).
  • In a separate small bowl, stir together vinegar and baking soda. Add to batter and mix until just combined. Pour into prepared cake pans. Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Let cool.

For the frosting

  • In a large bowl, beat the butter and cream cheese until smooth. With the mixer on low, gradually add the powdered sugar, then the vanilla. Turn mixer up to medium and beat for 2 minutes.
  • Frost cooled cakes and serve. Store covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.


Calories: 410kcal | Carbohydrates: 52g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 13g | Cholesterol: 86mg | Sodium: 359mg | Potassium: 66mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 40g | Vitamin A: 714IU | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg