For these cupcakes, I modified the cake recipe from my good friend Betty Crocker. They're not red because I don't keep food coloring on hand, but they tasted fantastic anyway.
The key to achieving a moist, delicious cupcake is to not overmix the batter once the flour is added. Once you've added the flour, the gluten will start to develop. To prevent this, mix the flour until just blended and then quickly transfer the batter to the muffin tins.
To finish the cupcakes, I blended 3 cups of powdered sugar, 8 ounces of cream cheese, 8 tablespoons of butter, and 1 teaspoon of vanilla to produce a sweet, but still thick and creamy, cream cheese frosting.
1.5 cups sugar
1/2 cup of butter, softened
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1/3 cup baking cocoa
1 cup buttermilk
1 tsp baking soda
1 tbs vinegar
1 tsp salt
2 cups of flour
1. Cream the butter and sugar together.
2. Add the eggs one at a time, followed by the vanilla.
3. Stir in the baking cocoa.
4. Add the buttermilk, baking soda, and vinegar.
5. Blend the salt and flour in a separate bowl. Then, carefully fold in the flour until it is just incorporated.
6. Bake the cupcakes at 350 in a greased or lined muffin pan for 18 to 20 minutes.
7. Once the cupcakes have cooled, frost the cupcakes with either cream cheese or vanilla frosting.