Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting

Dark and decadent Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with creamy Red Velvet Frosting! What?!? These chocolate cupcakes are like a shot of love potion right to the heart. Plus we’ve got a super cute Valentine printable today.

Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

You’ve had chocolate cupcakes.

And you’ve had red velvet cake.

But have you ever tried a dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting?!

If not, it’s time.

Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe - Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

This ultra moist chocolate cupcake recipe starts with a rich blend of dark cocoa powder, butter, buttermilk, and Gold Medal Flour.

Gold Medal All Purpose Flour is so consistently light and fresh, it’s always my first choice for baking cupcakes. It provides that fluffy, yet moist crumb that really makes a cupcake shine.

Making Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

Now let’s talk about the red velvet frosting…

The three things that make a red velvet cake “red velvet” are buttermilk, a little bit of cocoa powder, and a heck of a lot of red food coloring.

So we added these things to our frosting base, with a little cream cheese, to make the buttermilk twang really stand out.

The results are a rich and tangy vibrantly red frosting that looks marvelous piled high on the dark chocolate cupcakes.

Dark Chocolate Cupcakes with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

To set this Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting apart for Valentines Day, we’ve added lovey-dovey chocolate words on top!

This is a very simple garnish.

Melt chocolate and pour into a squirt bottle or piping bag with a small tip. Then lay wax paper out on your counter top and write connected words like: Love, Hugs, Kisses, Smooch, Hubba Hubba, You+Me, Swoon, Cutie, and so on.

Chocolate Garnishes for Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

Make sure to write more words than needed, because some will break when you pick them up.

Once the chocolate hardens, peel the wax paper off the back and place them on top of the Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting.

Brilliant Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

A friend showed me this easy way to package cupcakes, so you can deliver pristine Valentine cupcakes all day long.

Place each cupcake in a short clear plastic tumbler and place the tumbler in a cellophane bag. Then tie with twine or ribbon and add a cute tag. The cup protects the frosting and garnish from getting smashed.

Brilliant, right? I have some pretty smart friends.

Edible Gifts - Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

To complete your packaging, we’ve got fun cupcake tags for you today, as a little extra thanks-for-visiting-us-each-week gift.

Hopefully these make your Valentine treat project a little easier!

Free Valentine Cupcake Printable Tag on #valentinesday #valentine #freeprintable #printable

To use our Valentine Tag Printable…

Link Here: Free Valentine Cupcake Printable Tag on

We recommend printing on white card stock paper.

Perfect Dark Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting #valentinesday #valentine #cupcakes #chocolate #freeprintables

This easy Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting, along with the sweet tags and wrappings, will be a hit at your office or in your child’s classroom this year.

Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting

Yield: 24 cupcakes

Prep Time:30 minutes (active time)

Cook Time:20 minutes

5 / 5 (5 Reviews)
Did you make this recipe?   Leave a review »


For the Chocolate Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups All Purpose Gold Medal Flour
  • 2/3 cup dark unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 2 teaspoons instant coffee granules
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the Red Velvet Frosting:

  • 1 pound unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6-8 cups powdered sugar
  • Red food coloring

For the Chocolate Garnishes:

  • 1 cup chopped chocolate or chocolate candy melts


  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F and line muffin tins with 24 paper liners. Sift all dry ingredient together. Cream the butter and sugar in an electric mixer, until light and fluffy. Set the mixer to the lowest setting and add the buttermilk, eggs, and vanilla. Slowly combine the dry ingredients with the wet, until the batter is smooth.
  2. Fill the liners half full and bake for 15-20 minutes—until the cake springs back when touched. Remove the cupcakes from the tins and allow them to cool completely before frosting.
  3. While the cupcakes are cooling, place the chocolate in a microwave safe bowl and microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until melted. Then pour the chocolate in a squirt bottle (or piping bag with a small tip) and pipe cursive or connected words onto wax paper. Keep them small so they fit on top of the cupcakes, and write more words than needed, in case a few break. Allow the chocolate words to dry completely before peeling off the wax paper.
  4. For the frosting, beat the butter and cream cheese together until light and fluffy. Scrape the bowl, and beat in the buttermilk, salt, cocoa, and vanilla. Slowly add the powdered sugar until your desire thickness is reached. Then beat in red food coloring until the frosting is as dark as you want it. I used almost 2 teaspoons.
  5. Place the frosting in a piping bag with a large tip and pipe the frosting high onto the cupcakes. Then gently place a chocolate word on top of each cupcake.

*Can’t stand the idea of red food coloring? Bring the buttermilk (in the frosting recipe) to a boil then mix with sliced beets. Allow the buttermilk to cool completely. Remove the beets and continue with the recipe for a nice naturally pink velvet frosting!

All images and text ©

Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Gold Medal Flour. All opinions are my own.


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62 comments on “Chocolate Cupcake Recipe with Red Velvet Frosting

  1. Pingback: 50 Festive Valentine's Day Cupcakes - Prudent Penny Pincher

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  3. Sadieposted May 22, 2018 at 11:03 pm Reply

    Have you ever tried using the cupcake recipe to make an actual cake? I made these cupcakes on valentines day this year, and they were a big hit! I was considering making a whole cake version of this for my husband’s birthday next month. If you have tried it, how long/what temps did you bake it at? Thanks!

    Rating: 5
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  16. Jennifer Fraunfelderposted March 14, 2014 at 2:54 am Reply

    Oh and I forgot to mention, Sommer, I will attempt to try my hand at the chocolate writings as well. Perhaps in her name or some sort of minecraft saying or something. wouldn’t that be cute? You can’t find minecraft cupcake toppers anywhere unless you make them or on etsy. So these will be perfect, and edible too. I can not wait to bake these next weekend.

    • Sommerposted March 14, 2014 at 8:08 pm Reply

      Thanks Jennifer! Definitely let me know how they turn out. :)

  17. Jennifer Fraunfelderposted March 14, 2014 at 2:50 am Reply

    My daughter’s 9th birthday is coming up and she absolutely loves red velvet cake. It is her favorite cake of all time. She requested red velvet cupcakes and chocolate cupcakes. But with green frosting on all of the cupcakes.
    I then came across your recipe and This will take care of both the Red Velvet and the Chocolate so that I can do a Vanilla Cupcake as well (for those non-chocolate/non-red velvet lovers out there…imagine if there are any in the world, LOL). Her Theme is a Minecraft party …. hence the reason for Green frosting on the cupcakes. I can not wait to use this recipe, replacing the red in the frosting with green. Thank you for sharing your recipe. I will have to come back and let you know how it turned out. I am sure it will be a super huge hit with my daughter and the party goers.

    Rating: 5
  18. sarahposted March 4, 2014 at 6:54 pm Reply

    Hey! I want to make these for my engagement party. Can I bake and ice the day before and store in the fridge? Would they hold their shape and taste alright?

    • Sommerposted March 5, 2014 at 6:38 am Reply

      Hi Sarah, Yes!

  19. Shainaposted February 20, 2014 at 2:51 pm Reply

    Love, love, love the chocolate decorations on these. Adorable.

  20. Mamawithasweetoothposted February 13, 2014 at 10:47 pm Reply

    Hi what kind of chocolate do you recommend if ‘melts’ aren’t on hand? Thanks!!

    • Sommerposted February 14, 2014 at 7:57 am Reply

      Go with dark chocolate. :)

  21. Yvonneposted February 13, 2014 at 11:38 am Reply

    A pound of butter……that seems like ALOT! Did anyone halve the recipe and still have enough?

    • Sommerposted February 13, 2014 at 4:49 pm Reply

      Hi Yvonne, it is a lot of frosting, but not too much it you like to pile it on like I do. ;)

  22. katieposted February 12, 2014 at 1:29 pm Reply

    How cute are these cupcakes?!?!? And red velvet frosting? swoon!

  23. Marlyposted February 12, 2014 at 9:31 am Reply

    So sweet! Hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s Day!

  24. Jeanette | Jeanette's Healthy Livingposted February 12, 2014 at 8:10 am Reply

    Gorgeous cupcakes Sommer – love those chocolate words, such a nice touch!

  25. Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.alposted February 12, 2014 at 7:30 am Reply

    so super cute! Pinned

  26. Kiran @ KiranTarun.composted February 11, 2014 at 10:47 pm Reply

    Cutest cupcakes ever!! Totally swoon worthy :D

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  28. Jennie @themessybakerblogposted February 10, 2014 at 10:16 am Reply

    These are too cute for words. That frosting looks whipped to perfection, and the cake looks decadent and rich. Those tags…love ’em!

  29. Kevin @ Closet Cookingposted February 9, 2014 at 4:07 pm Reply

    These cupcakes look fantastic!

  30. Lana @ Never Enough Thymeposted February 8, 2014 at 8:37 pm Reply

    These are just so cute! love them!

    Rating: 5
  31. Annetteposted February 8, 2014 at 6:27 pm Reply

    After you put the cupcake in the plastic glass and deliver it looking all nice and pristine, how does the recipient take it out of the glass without destroying it, or having to turn the cupcake upside down and getting frosting everywhere?

    • Sommerposted February 8, 2014 at 8:47 pm Reply

      Good question Annette. I slid one out on its side until I could grab the paper and it was perfect. ;)

  32. Paula – bell’alimentoposted February 8, 2014 at 4:46 pm Reply

    These cupcake are divine!

    Rating: 5
  33. Moniqueposted February 8, 2014 at 10:23 am Reply

    What a talented girl you are!

  34. Miss @ Miss in the Kitchenposted February 8, 2014 at 8:29 am Reply

    These are just too cute! I love how you made the chocolate in to Valentine sayings.

  35. Tieghan Gerardposted February 7, 2014 at 10:10 pm Reply

    Adorable!! The chocolate words are so fun and your red is SO red! Love it!

  36. Tamaraposted February 7, 2014 at 6:56 pm Reply

    Red velvet frosting? Genius! And I really love the chocolate words you used to top the cupcakes. Such a cute idea!

  37. Gabyposted February 7, 2014 at 6:48 pm Reply

    So adorable! I just love the chocolate words!

  38. Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.posted February 7, 2014 at 7:01 pm Reply

    These are so perfect! I love the chocolate words!!

    Rating: 5
  39. Chrisposted February 7, 2014 at 5:49 pm Reply

    How did you guess that some of us can’t stand the idea or the use of food coloring?! Thank you for being so thoughtful. Great recipe and lovely decoration idea.

  40. Leslieposted February 7, 2014 at 4:57 pm Reply

    These are just the cutest cupcakes in all the land!

  41. Alison @ Ingredients, Inc.alposted February 7, 2014 at 4:53 pm Reply

    loving these

  42. Julie @ Table for Twoposted February 7, 2014 at 3:21 pm Reply

    These are ADORABLE and I love the attention to detail you put into these cupcakes!! I would love to be on the recipient end on Valentine’s Day at your house ;)

  43. janeposted February 7, 2014 at 10:55 am Reply

    love love love!

  44. Heather Christoposted February 7, 2014 at 10:04 am Reply

    these are just so, so sweet! I absolutely love the little chocolate phrases on the top!!

  45. Kelli @ The Corner Kitchenposted February 7, 2014 at 9:26 am Reply

    These cupcakes are so adorable, Sommer!!

  46. Lori @ RecipeGirlposted February 7, 2014 at 9:22 am Reply

    Sommer- total home-run with these… they are so stinkin’ cute!!!!

  47. Samanthaposted February 7, 2014 at 9:08 am Reply

    I can’t take how cute these are!!! adorable. That packaging is equally as cute!

  48. Mariaposted February 7, 2014 at 8:25 am Reply

    Super cute!

  49. [email protected]posted February 7, 2014 at 8:15 am Reply

    Can’t wait to have red lips from this frosting!!

  50. Ali @ Inspiralizedposted February 7, 2014 at 7:52 am Reply

    These are adorable!!

  51. Jenny Flakeposted February 7, 2014 at 7:49 am Reply

    Too cute Sommer!! Perfect little Valentine’s Cupcakes! Happy Friday!

  52. Erikaposted February 7, 2014 at 7:34 am Reply

    I’m so in love with those cupcakes.. Those chocolate garnishes are so cute… Definitely making these..

  53. marlaposted February 7, 2014 at 7:34 am Reply

    Everything about these cupcakes & the tags are precious!!

  54. TidyMomposted February 7, 2014 at 7:31 am Reply

    these are adorable Sommer! I love the chocolate words on top!!

    I’ve sent cupcakes to my daughter’s work packaged that way – it’s such a fun way to package!

  55. Betty Lynneposted February 7, 2014 at 7:14 am Reply

    You had me at dark chocolate…then made me swoon with red velvet frosting. Then the completely perfect packaging sent me over the edge! Wow!

  56. The Bearfoot Bakerposted February 7, 2014 at 6:02 am Reply

    You are right, I have had chocolate, and I have had red velvet cupcakes but never chocolate cupcakes with red velvet frosting! I can’t wait to make these. TFS

  57. Julie @ Running in a Skirtposted February 7, 2014 at 6:43 am Reply

    Those look so tasty and cute. I really love the creative but easy packaging!