Nigella Red Velvet Cake Recipe

Nigella Red Velvet Cake
Yields: 1 Serving Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 15 Mins Cook Time: 35 Mins Total Time: 50 Mins

Today, I’m going to share with you a delicious recipe for red nigella velvet cake, a stunning dessert that will wow your guests with its rich flavor and vibrant color.

What is Nigella Red Velvet Cake?

Nigella Red Velvet Cake is a delicious and beautiful cake that is inspired by the recipe of Nigella Lawson, a famous British food writer and TV personality.

Nigella Lawson has a popular recipe for red velvet cupcakes that uses a generous amount of red food coloring paste and a hint of cinnamon. She also adds cider vinegar to the batter and the frosting, which enhances the flavor and texture of the cake. Nigella Red Velvet Cake is a larger cake version of her recipe, with two layers of moist and tender cake and a creamy and tangy cream cheese frosting. The cake has a stunning red color that stands out from the crowd, and a subtle chocolate flavor that complements the cinnamon.

Why You Love this Recipe

You’ll love this recipe for many reasons, such as:

  • It’s easy to make. You don’t need any fancy equipment or skills to make this cake. Just a few bowls, a whisk, and a couple of cake pans. The batter comes together quickly and the frosting is simple to whip up.
  • It’s moist and tender. The cake has a soft and fluffy texture, thanks to the buttermilk and the vinegar, which react with the baking soda and create bubbles in the batter. The cake is also moist and rich, thanks to the butter and the eggs.
  • It’s flavorful and decadent. The cake has a subtle chocolate flavor, enhanced by the cocoa powder and the cinnamon. The cream cheese frosting is smooth and tangy and complements the cake perfectly. The cake is not too sweet, but just enough to satisfy your sweet tooth.
  • It’s stunning and impressive. The cake has a gorgeous red color that stands out from the crowd. The contrast between the dark cake and the white frosting is eye-catching and elegant. The cake looks like a masterpiece, but it’s actually very easy to make.

Ingredients Needed to Make Nigella Red Velvet Cake

To make this red nigella velvet cake recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients:

For the cake:

  • 250 grams of plain flour
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder (sifted)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 100 grams of soft unsalted butter
  • 200 grams caster sugar
  • 1 heaped tablespoon red paste food coloring
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 175 millilitres buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon cider vinegar

For the buttery cream cheese frosting:

  • 500 grams of icing sugar
  • 125 grams of cream cheese
  • 125 grams of soft unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon cider vinegar (or lemon juice)
  • chocolate sprinkles for decoration (optional)
  • red sugar for decoration (optional)

For the frosting:

  • Icing sugar: This sweetens and thickens the frosting. Make sure to sift it before adding it to the cream cheese and the butter, to avoid lumps.
  • Cream cheese: This adds creaminess and tanginess to the frosting, and contrasts nicely with the cake. Use full-fat cream cheese, at room temperature, for a smoother and richer frosting.
  • Butter: This adds richness and stability to the frosting, and helps it spread easily. Use soft butter, at room temperature, for easier mixing.
  • Cider vinegar: This adds tanginess and moisture to the frosting, and balances the sweetness. You can use lemon juice instead if you prefer.
  • Chocolate sprinkles and red sugar: These are optional, but they add some fun and festive decoration to the cake. You can use any sprinkles or sugar you like, or leave them out altogether.

How to make red nigella velvet cake

To make this red nigella velvet cake recipe, follow these steps:

  • Preheat your oven to 170°C/150°C Fan/gas mark 3/325°F, and grease and flour two 9-inch round cake pans. You can also line them with parchment paper, for easier removal.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
  • In another large bowl, cream the butter and sugar with an electric mixer, until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract, and beat until well combined.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, red food coloring paste, and cider vinegar. The mixture will look curdled, but that’s normal.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients in three parts, alternating with the buttermilk mixture. Mix until just combined, scraping the sides and the bottom of the bowl as needed. Do not overmix, or the cake will be tough.
  • Divide the batter evenly between the prepared cake pans, and smooth the tops with a spatula. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 10 minutes, then transfer them to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • To make the frosting, beat the icing sugar, cream cheese, butter, and cider vinegar with an electric mixer, until smooth and fluffy. If the frosting is too thick, you can add a little more vinegar or milk to thin it out. If it’s too thin, you can add more icing sugar to thicken it up.
  • To assemble the cake, place one cake layer on a cake stand or a serving plate, and spread about a third of the frosting over the top. Place the other cake layer on top, and spread the remaining frosting over the top and the sides of the cake. Decorate with chocolate sprinkles and red sugar, if desired. Refrigerate the cake until ready to serve, or enjoy it at room temperature.

What Do I Serve With Nigella Red Velvet Cake?

Nigella Red Velvet Cake is a great dessert for any occasion, whether it’s a birthday, a holiday, or a special treat.

You can serve it with a variety of accompaniments, such as:

  • Fresh fruits: You can add some fresh fruits to the cake, such as strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, or cherries, to add some color and freshness. You can also make a fruit sauce or a coulis, by blending some fruits with sugar and lemon juice and drizzling it over the cake.
  • Whipped cream: You can whip some heavy cream with some sugar and vanilla extract, and serve it on the side or on top of the cake, to add some lightness and creaminess. You can also flavor the whipped cream with some cocoa powder, cinnamon, or nutmeg, to match the cake.
  • Ice cream: You can serve some vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt with the cake, to add some cold and smooth contrast. You can also try some other flavors, such as chocolate, caramel, or coffee, to enhance the cake.
  • Nuts: You can sprinkle some chopped nuts, such as walnuts, pecans, or almonds, over the cake, to add some crunch and nuttiness. You can also toast the nuts, or coat them with some sugar and cinnamon, to make them more flavorful.

Nigella Red Velvet Cake

Pro Tips to Make Perfect Nigella Red Velvet Cake

Here are some pro tips to make the perfect Nigella Red Velvet Cake every time:

  • Make sure to use room-temperature ingredients, such as butter, eggs, and cream cheese, for easier mixing and better results.
  • Use a good quality red food coloring paste, and adjust the amount according to your preference. You can also use natural food coloring, such as beetroot juice, but the color may vary depending on the brand and the amount.
  • Do not overmix the batter, or the cake will be tough and dense. Mix until just combined, and use a gentle folding motion to incorporate the dry and wet ingredients.
  • Do not overbake the cake, or it will be dry and crumbly. Check the cake for doneness after 30 minutes, and insert a toothpick in the center. If it comes out clean, or with a few moist crumbs, the cake is done. If it comes out wet, bake it for a few more minutes, and check again.
  • Let the cake cool completely before frosting, or the frosting will melt and slide off. You can also refrigerate the cake layers for an hour or two, to make them easier to handle and frost.
  • You can make the cake ahead of time, and store it in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw the cake in the refrigerator overnight, before serving.

Variations of Nigella Red Velvet Cake

You can also try some variations of Nigella Red Velvet Cake, to suit your taste and preferences, such as:

  • Chocolate Red Velvet Cake: You can increase the amount of cocoa powder in the cake, to make it more chocolatey and darker. You can also add some chocolate chips or chunks to the batter, to make it more decadent. You can also use a chocolate frosting, instead of a cream cheese frosting, to make it more indulgent.
  • Vegan Red Velvet Cake: You can make a vegan version of the cake, by substituting the butter with vegan butter or oil, the eggs with flax eggs or applesauce, the buttermilk with plant-based milk and vinegar, and the cream cheese with vegan cream cheese. You can also use vegan food coloring, or natural food coloring, to make the cake red.
  • Gluten-Free Red Velvet Cake: You can make a gluten-free version of the cake, by substituting the flour with a gluten-free flour blend, or a nut flour, such as almond flour or coconut flour. You can also add some xanthan gum, to help the cake hold together and rise.
  • Keto Red Velvet Cake: You can make a keto version of the cake, by substituting the sugar with a low-carb sweetener, such as erythritol or stevia, the flour with a low-carb flour, such as almond flour or coconut flour, and the cream cheese with a low-carb cream cheese, such as mascarpone or ricotta. You can also use a low-carb food coloring, or natural food coloring, to make the cake red.

How do I store Nigella Red Velvet Cake Leftovers?

If you have any leftovers of Nigella Red Velvet Cake, you can store them in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. To prevent the cake from drying out, you can wrap it with plastic wrap or foil, before putting it in the container.

How do I reheat Nigella Red Velvet Cake Leftovers?

If you want to reheat Nigella Red Velvet Cake leftovers, you can do so in the microwave or the oven. To reheat in the microwave, place a slice of cake on a microwave-safe plate, and microwave for 10 to 15 seconds, or until warm. To reheat in the oven, preheat your oven to 160°C/140°C Fan/gas mark 3/325°F, and place the cake in a baking dish. Cover the dish with foil, and bake for 10 to 15 minutes, or until warm. Enjoy!


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