This is the original Waldorf-Astoria Red Velvet Cake recipe and a huge favorite with family and clients alike! The Cream Cheese/Mascarpone Frosting is to die for:) I know it’s going to sound odd but give it a try and you’ll be delightfully surprised!

Ingredients

  • Red Velvet Cake
  • 3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped
  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 pounds canned beets, drained and pureed
  • 1 teaspoon red food coloringCream Cheese/Mascarpone Frosting
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 12 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 12 ounces mascarpone cheese
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar, sifted 

  •  

DIRECTIONS

Red Velvet cake
Pre-heat oven to 350 F
Butter three 9″ round cake pans and line them with parchment paper or waxed paper. (I’ve used square pans and Pam for Baking as well and they worked fine.)
To prepare cake:
Melt Chocolate in a metal bowl set over a saucepan of boiling water or in the top of a double boiler (or melt in microwave for 20 – 25 seconds). Meanwhile. place the sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed for two minutes. In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and continue to mix on low speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula so everything is well incorporated. Add the melted chocolate to this mixture and continue to mix on low speed. Add the pureed beets and food coloring. Continue to mix on low speed until everything is thoroughly combined.Evenly divide the batter between the three perpared pans and bake in the middle of the oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until center of cake springs back when touched, or when an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove the pans from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool for ten minutes in the pans, then turn the layers out onto the rack and let cool completely.

To prepare Cream Cheese/Mascarpone Icing:
Pour cream into a small bowl and whip to soft peaks. Set aside in the refrigerator. Place the cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until it is soft and smooth. Add the mascarpone and continue to mix on low speed until the cheeses are well combined. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until everything is just combined. Turn off the mixer and fold in the whipped cream by hand with a spatula. Keep refrigerated until ready to assemble.

To assemble:
Using a serrated knife, trim the top of each layer of each layer of cake so that it is flat. Place the first layer on a cake plate or serving platter and top with some of the icing. Repeat until all of the layers are covered with icing, then ice the top and sides of the cake. Store cake in refrigerator until ready to serve.

Chef’s note:
Sliced canned beets are easier to work with in this recipe than whole beets.

Poster’s note – This cake works well as a wedding cake but use a cream cheese/buttercream as the icing noted here will not harden.


Comments

Liscia Says... 22 Feb 2010 , 7:51pm

Where are the instructions?

2SchnauzerLady Says... 23 Feb 2010 , 6:07am

Yes, please post the instructions - I like the idea of using much less coloring - I bet the beets give a beautiful color.

descakes Says... 26 Feb 2010 , 11:39am

Sorry everyone! I must have hit submit before all the data was saved:( Here are instructions for cake and icing:

Red Velvet cake Pre-heat oven to 350 F Butter three 9" round cake pans and line them with parchment paper or waxed paper. (I've used square pans and Pam for Baking as well and they worked fine.) To prepare cake: Melt Chocolate in a metal bowl set over a saucepan of boiling water or in the top of a double boiler (or melt in microwave for 20 - 25 seconds). Meanwhile. place the sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed for two minutes. In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and continue to mix on low speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula so everything is well incorporated. Add the melted chocolate to this mixture and continue to mix on low speed. Add the pureed beets and food coloring. Continue to mix on low speed until everything is thoroughly combined.Evenly divide the batter between the three perpared pans and bake in the middle of the oven for 20 - 25 minutes or until center of cake springs back when touched, or when an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove the pans from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool for ten minutes in the pans, then turn the layers out onto the rack and let cool completely.

To prepare Cream Cheese/Mascarpone Icing: Pour cream into a small bowl and whip to soft peaks. Set aside in the refrigerator. Place the cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until it is soft and smooth. Add the mascarpone and continue to mix on low speed until the cheeses are well combined. Add the vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until everything is just combined. Turn off the mixer and fold in the whipped cream by hand with a spatula. Keep refrigerated until ready to assemble.

To assemble: Using a serrated knife, trim the top of each layer of each layer of cake so that it is flat. Place the first layer on a cake plate or serving platter and top with some of the icing. Repeat until all of the layers are covered with icing, then ice the top and sides of the cake. Store cake in refrigerator until ready to serve.

Chef's note: Sliced canned beets are easier to work with in this recipe than whole beets.

Poster's note - This cake works well as a wedding cake but use a cream cheese/buttercream as the icing noted here will not harden.

ReesieT Says... 2 Mar 2010 , 10:29am

Has anyone tried making this yet?

bonnster Says... 4 Mar 2010 , 10:28am

this sounds delicious! I'm going to test this out soon, it might replace my current red velvet!

tavyheather Says... 11 Mar 2010 , 3:15pm

yayyyyyyyyyyyy!! I've been searching for a non-food coloring recipe..I've heared of using beets but was assuming all those recipes would be too obviously not-traditional..I can't believe the Waldorf used this!!! I will try it asap and report back my review! I can't wait!! TY so much!!!

beaters Says... 16 Mar 2010 , 9:19pm

What about the icing? Has anyone tried it? I'm searching for a cream cheese icing that's not too sweet.

bonnster Says... 17 Mar 2010 , 9:58am

Have you thought about trying red velvet with BC instead? I always use BC on my red velvet and everyone loves it! Traditionally they don't use cream cheese icing.

descakes Says... 21 Mar 2010 , 10:42am

The Waldorf-Astoria use the Mascarpone/Cream Cheese icing, but I have used crusting cream cheese as well as Creme Bouquet BC and they're all delicious. Just depends on what the client wants:)

claudmaritza Says... 14 Apr 2010 , 9:25am

Hi! I was wondering if you could use fresh beet, since where I live canned beets aren't available. Thanks!

descakes Says... 19 Apr 2010 , 12:23pm

Hi daudmaritza - I've used the beets from our garden that we've canned and they worked fine. I think the original recipe calls for canned just because it's easier - no cleaning and cooking the beets. So if you don't mind the additional labor they should work fine!

Gillicious Says... 4 May 2010 , 12:33pm

I'm just curious but what do the beets add to the taste? i'm assuming everyone enjoys the cake...but i've never had beets before and they do sound strange but how does it affect the taste of the cake. I like the tasted of my red velvet recipe but i have difficulties keeping a uniform red colour which drives me nuts. Anyone else have this prob?

Nytepyre Says... 6 May 2010 , 6:25pm

Its in the oven right now! I'm hoping it turns out wonderfully, I haven't found a good red velvet recipe yet! :) Thanks for sharing!

lilrhodybaker Says... 13 May 2010 , 8:16am

Ooohhh I'm super excited to try this recipe!!! My mom called me the other day to tell me about a RV recipe that she found, but it had like 3 TBS of food coloring, that to me seemed like A LOT!! I do not like the taste of beets, they taste like dirt to me, but I'm curious about the flavor they will impart upon the cake, I guess I'll put them on the shopping list and try this recipe out over the weekend :)

cakelace Says... 20 May 2010 , 4:30am

I made this cake recipe and it tastes great...but it's not red. So I'm wondering if I did something wrong. I took two cans of beets and drained them and pureed them and used the 1 tsp of red food coloring. They smell like beets cooking a little bit, but I taste no beet taste at all. It's super moist and has a nice dense texture. Did I not use enough beets? The color was nice deep red in the mixing bowl. Any ideas? Thanks

dhalvors Says... 28 May 2010 , 3:50pm

I made this cake for one of our Director's birthdays and it received rave reviews. The frosting isn't too heavy and not too sweet were a couple of the comments I received. So, I highly recommend it.

descakes Says... 8 Jun 2010 , 12:58pm

cakelace - I doubt you did anything wrong, this cake doesn't have the brighter red coloring of the ones with only cocoa. It's more of a brown/red tone. But the taste is fantastic:)

Reneesg Says... 18 Jul 2010 , 7:55am

This cake is delish!! I did a trial for an upsoming wedding and used 2 10" rounds. The cakes were thin, great for torting, so making this recipe again I will use 8" pans for height. The marscapone/cream cheese/whip cream frosting is to die for!!! It's very light tasting and spreads easily. I don't think it would work well for decorating tho. It does not come out true red like you see on the cakes mix boxes, it is a more brownish red, but still looks good. This is a definite keeper! Thanks descakes! :)

CakeDiva101 Says... 4 Aug 2010 , 9:51am

Well, I seen this recipe here a few weeks ago and after reading the comments I decided to give it a try. I'm from Brazil and while there. I got to sample all kinds of really good cakes and such. With that said, this red velvet cake is one of the best cakes I have ever tasted. I baked it today and I'm sitting here wrighting this and eating it! Simply AMAZING! Thank you for posting it here. :)

blondedobe6 Says... 24 Aug 2010 , 5:23pm

This is the best red velvet cake I've ever tasted. I thought it was strange to put beets in a cake but it does not have a beet flavor at all. I'm going to add more red coloring to the cake next time since mine turned out looking like a chocolate cake. I'm using it for a wedding cake this weekend and I know they will LOVE it!

descakes Says... 6 Sep 2010 , 8:14am

Hi everyone, I did some experimenting with the color and while it's not red. red, I found that using the gel color gave it more color than the lquid color. Hope that helps! This is the cake my clients request most often.

LuvLyrics Says... 8 Sep 2010 , 6:36am

Which Gel color did you used? the same we use to color icing or fondant? Thanks Anna

LuvLyrics Says... 9 Sep 2010 , 11:08am

I made this cake last night, and loved the flavor and texture !!! It is also great for cupcakes. I made another batch with the non taste red from wilton and I think it helped improve the color !!! Thanks for sharing !

pastrydiva Says... 10 Sep 2010 , 4:06pm

I am sooo excited about this recipe. My Mom made this for me years ago when I was a small child. I always ask for it on my birthday. The whole idea with the beets is great. I love beets. The frosting is unique to me. I can't wait to make this. Thanks so much for bringing me back to my chilhood memories with my Mom.

chefjennalee Says... 20 Sep 2010 , 7:15am

1 and a half pounds of beets? Can some one break this down into how many cans of beets you would need to buy?

Photomommie Says... 21 Sep 2010 , 6:24am

I'm wondering if this cake would need to be kept refrigerated, since the icing has cream cheese & heavy cream! Also how many cups of battter does this recipie make?

chefjennalee Says... 22 Sep 2010 , 8:34pm

OK, So I was really excited to try this cake but I made it and its HORRIBLE! The after taste is all beets. It was a great texture and I think I might try this again but just put more food dye in, instead of beets.

ReesieT Says... 26 Oct 2010 , 10:01pm

Can anyone tell me if the frosting is a crusting frosting? Can I cover it with fondant?

zapmom Says... 12 May 2011 , 12:16pm

I need a red velvet recipe to use the wilton dress pan. Is this recipe dense enough to withstand the weight of fondant? I usually make a pound cake in either chocolate or vanilla but my client wants red velvet. Thanks!

cakelace Says... 12 May 2011 , 12:54pm

I made this recipe when trying out recipes to make for a wedding cake- it was tasty, very moist and dense, with a tender crumb that is associated to red velvet- but it was oily to touch. I found it hard to frost beautifully. It was so moist that it was hard to move without splitting. If you're looking for a crusting cream cheese frosting- the decorators cream cheese buttercream found in the recipes here is my favorite goto- delish!!!

Rachie204 Says... 3 Aug 2011 , 3:09pm

i'm sorry this just has a really bad beet/dirt flavor

sarahmac7381 Says... 9 Oct 2011 , 12:53am

has anyone tried to make this recipe as cupcakes instead and how did it turn out. thanks

heybaby70 Says... 10 Dec 2011 , 4:54pm

The Waldorf Astoria did not use beets in their red velvet cake and they did not use cream cheese mascarpone frosting! I make it all the time as i work in a bakery. here is an accurate recipe look at the frosting recipe...no cream cheese or mascarpone. My chef instructor immediately noted the recipe when I told him the recipe we made at the bakery.

heybaby70 Says... 10 Dec 2011 , 4:55pm

DSmo Says... 17 Jun 2012 , 10:32am

Trying to find a good red velvet recipe and this sounded interesting. The texture is nice, but other than that it was a disappointment. It's more like a beet-flavored devil's food cake. It's not even close to red in color, tastes too much of chocolate, and you can really taste the beets... a lot.

miebelle Says... 10 Aug 2012 , 2:48am

There's an issue with the recipe, it's not 1 1/2lbs of beets this makes the cake heavy too much liquid. As per the Waldorf Astoria Chef John Doherty its 3 cans of beets (12 oz). I did try the recipe above and it tastes good, but it doen't look airy or flaky like cake should. This weekend I'm using the Waldorf Astoria cookbook with the correct recipe.

miebelle Says... 10 Aug 2012 , 2:49am

DSmo try changing the beet content.

therid Says... 25 Aug 2012 , 7:49pm

I'm sorry but putting cream cheese frosting on Red Velvet cake is like putting toilet paper on for a formal event. I would say something worse, because I think it is a crime.

Since I have a copy of the ORIGINAL recipe from the Waldorf Astoria that my grandmother got in the 1920's when she and my grandfather went up there on vacation, I feel I can dispute you.

Here is the original recipe, on the Waldorf Astoria Red Velvet Cake: 1/2 cup shortening 1 1/2 cups sugar 2 eggs 2 ounces red food coloring 2 tablespoons cocoa ( heaping) 1 cup buttermilk 2 1/4 cups cake flour 1 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon vinegar Cream shortening, sugar and eggs. Make a paste of food coloring and cocoa. Add to creamed mixture. Add buttermilk alternating with flour and salt. Add vanilla. Add soda to vinegar, and blend into the batter. Pour into 3 or 4 greased and floured 8" cake pans. Bake at 350°F for 24-30 minutes.

FROSTING 3 tablespoons flour 1 cup milk 1 cup sugar (granulated) 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 cup butter ( must be butter) Directions:

Add flour to milk and cook until thickened. Cool completely. Beat butter till it is broken up and soft Add sugar (granulated sugar) Beat and beat until it is very light and fluffy and you can barely feel teh sugar grain when rubbed between your fingers. Add cooled flour and mlk mixture.

Beat until well incorporated. It will resemble whipped cream.

Once you eat this frosting, you will never want another one on a Red velvet cake.


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