Purple Velvet Cupcakes
I have to make purple cupcakes for a friend’s wedding shower to match her wedding colors and she requested purple velvet cupcakes, spin on the classic red velvet cupcakes. The thing about velvet cupcakes is that most have cocoa powder in them which makes it hard to color the cupcakes. Despite the fact that what makes a cake ‘velvet’ is the reaction of buttermilk and baking soda (and vinegar) to get that tender cake texture, most people want a hint of cocoa in their velvet cakes. My friend did. So I’ve been trying to find a velvet recipe with cocoa and purple food coloring that will show up purple.
It turns out deep purple is very difficult to create in a velvet cake, calling for some elementary school primary color mixing. I used purple gel coloring which gave a deeper color.
Regardless of the color debacle, these purple velvet cupcakes are AMAZING! Soft, moist and delicious. Topped with classic cream cheese frosting and some festive sprinkles, these cupcakes will be great for every purple themed parties.
These purple velvet cupcakes are delicious and the best part of this experiment!
I have the cake side down, so now I just need to work on getting that purple shade I want. If anyone has ideas/advice on how to achieve this, please let me know in the comments below.
Purple Velvet Cupcakes
For the Cupcakes:
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ½ cup buttermilk
- 2 teaspoons cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons liquid purple food coloring (or use 1 teaspoon gel coloring)
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 8 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 3 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
- 2-3 tablespoons milk
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a regular muffin tin with cupcake liners.
- In a medium bowl, sift flour and salt together, set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment (or using a hand mixer), cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3-5 minutes. Add the egg and mix well. Mix in the vanilla extract. Alternate the flour mixture with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture.
- In a small bowl, mix the purple food coloring and cocoa powder until a paste forms. Add this to the batter and mix well. In another small bowl, mix together the baking soda and cider vinegar. It will foam. Add to the batter immediately and mix until well combined in batter.
- Divide the batter evenly into the prepared liners, filling about ⅔ full. Bake for 12-14 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Remove cupcakes from pan and let cool completely on wire racks.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese, butter and vanilla until smooth. Add the powdered sugar and milk. Mix on low speed for a minute and then increase to medium-high speed to beat until well combined. Frost cupcakes with frosting and decorate with sprinkles.
What kind of cider vinegar is being used? Is it white or apple cider vinegar? Thanks
Any can be used. apple cider or white vinegar or red wine vinegar. the acidic component is all that matters.
Hi, can I use this recipe for a cake?
I’ve been looking around for a nice and simple purple velvet cake and most of the recipes use yams which aren’t available where I live. So this is the best recipe I’ve come across but it’s for cupcakes. Please let me know if I can use this for a cake or not. Thanks!
Hi, yes you can use it for a cake recipe. You may have to scale up depending on how big a cake you need. And also adjust the baking time.
Purple is my favorite color so I’ll have to try purple velvet cupcakes, although I’ll have to frost them with the original butter roux frosting…wouldn’t be an authentic “velvet” cake without it 👍🏻
What melted chocolate? All of a sudden the frosting recipe says to add in melted chocolate but it’s not in the ingredients list. Here I am making the frosting and panicking because I have no idea what to do!
Hi Alice, that was a typo and it’s now fixed in the recipe.
hola , quisiera conseguir tus recetas ,pero en español, me podrias decir y yo pagarte el costo por ellas, te agradeceré.
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Oh, I loved the story about your mom and dad but felt really old when you said how little u were. My husband is about as romantic as a slug!! So glad you have such a great memory of my favorite movie!! Ok off to make the pink velvet! !!
Hahha Liz, pretty woman is a favorite of any generation!! So many values in there lol 🙂 I hope the pink velvet turns out great for you!!
I doubled this recipe to make a unicorn cake for my daughter’s birthday and it turned out amazing! I used gel colouring and I find it went a vivid purple, but don’t try to mix the cocoa into a paste with the gel, it was quite the mess… lol
So glad to hear this Laura!! I love using gel colors because you get more vivid colors. But then it is hard to mix into the cocoa haha.
well i’m now trying to start my own cupcake business thanks for sharing the recipes i’ll give it a try this week
Purple velvet! Oh heck yes it’s my favorite color.
I love purple too but it is difficult to achieve in a velvet cake apparently!! But I’m powering through and will get it!
You are amazing! endlessly creative and these look yummy enough to eat right off the screen.
Thanks Linda! And it’s only because I had the right mentors earlier in life 🙂