Here’s a cake to put you in the Christmas Spirit! This Red Velvet Deluxe Cake is striped with red and white holiday cheer. Moist red velvet cake alternates with airy angel food cake layers and glued together with dense and decadent cream cheese frosting. Finally chocolate dipped pretzels add eve more the Christmas flair.
When you think of December holiday flavors, the taste of peppermint springs to mind. Yet for me, peppermint is not an option. Call me weird, but there are just some flavors I will never bake—peppermint just gross me out. To me, minty flavors in dessert just tastes like mouth wash.
So how could I do a red and white themed cake? Red velvet and angel food cake to the rescue!
Inspiration came from one of the many seasonal magazines I oogle at during the season. I love the holiday season simply for the excuse to bake in excess without questions or raised eyebrows. Four dozen cookies in one go, it’s for *moistly cough-cough* other people. As I was scrolling through holiday magazines, this layered masterpiece called out to me.
Amendments to the original recipe are minimal. Because the cake was already sweet, I omitted the white chocolate from the frosting. Instead, I added 8 more ounces of cream cheese. Getting a dense and rich frosting requires minimal aeration. Achieving a smooth frosting without any lumps means that scraping down the bowl is crucial.
This frosting is that dense, rich cream cheese frosting that is smothered on those bean-bag sized cinnamon rolls. It’s the frosting you want to eat by the spoonful. This is the frosting you seek. You look through several options of the same baked good to find the portion with more of said-frosting. I’ve made many cream cheese frostings, but this is, by far, the best ratio of cream cheese to butter to powdered sugar.
Yes the colorful cake layers make this Red Velvet Deluxe Cake Christmas-y, but this cream cheese frosting makes the cake a deluxe holiday cake. And you know what I mean by holiday flavors. Better flavors means and equals adding more butter or fat. Unlike other cakes on any other calendar day of the year, holiday cakes need no explanation for indulgence. Decadence is expected, heck this level of gluttony is required!
Since it is the holiday season, how could I make this Red Velvet Deluxe Cake even more festive and decadent? Wrapping the cake with chocolate dipped pretzels of course!
So get your Christmas-ing in gear with this Red Velvet Deluxe Cake!
- For the Angel Food Cake:
- 6 large egg whites, room temperature
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1/8 teaspoon fine salt
- ¾ cup powdered sugar, divided
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2/3 cup cake flour
- For the Red Velvet Cake:
- 3 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- ¾ teaspoon fine salt
- 1 ¾ cups buttermilk, room temperature
- 1 ¼ cups vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 1-ounce bottle red food coloring
- For the Rich Cream Cheese Frosting:
- 1 ¼ cups (2 ½ sticks, 20 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
- 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
- ¾ teaspoon fine salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 2 pounds powdered sugar
- 4 to 5 tablespoons heavy cream
- For assembling the Red Velvet Deluxe Cake:
- 30 chocolate dipped pretzels
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 2 8-inch cake pans with baking spray, set aside.
- In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, combine the egg whites, cream of tartar, and salt. Using a whisk attachment, whip on a high speed until foamy. Reduce the speed to low and gradually add ½ cup of the powdered sugar, one tablespoon at a time. Raise to a higher speed until stiff peaks form. Mix in vanilla.
- Sift cake flour with remaining ¼ cup powdered sugar. Fold dry ingredients into egg white mixture.
- Divide between cake pans, baking until lightly golden brown, about 10 to 12 minutes. Invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray 3 8-inch cake pans with baking spray, set aside.
- Combine the flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, and salt, set aside.
- In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, oil, eggs, vinegar, and vanilla. Carefully whisk in red food coloring.
- Whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients.
- Divide the batter between the pans and bake until a toothpick in the center comes out with moist crumbs, about 27 to 30 minutes.
- Invert onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- With a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and cream cheese on a medium speed until smooth and lump free. Continually scrape down the bottom and sides of the bowl to ensure everything is well mixed. Mix in the salt and vanilla.
- On the lowest speed, gradually add the powdered sugar. If it gets too dry, add heavy cream a tablespoon at a time.
- If the cakes have domes, use a serrate knife to level off the tops. Apply a bit of frosting to the cake board, secure first red velvet layer on, followed by a layer of frosting. Secure the first ange food cake layer and add frosting. Repeat this with the following layers. Frost the cake. Don’t worry too much about a crumb coat and freezing, it’ll be covered in pretzels. Secure pretzels in a random fashion around the perimeter of the cake.