Southern Red Velvet Cake With “Secret” 7 Minute Icing

One of my favorite things growing up was my grandma’s red velvet cake with 7 minute icing. I just loved how the icing got crunchy on the outside and soft in the middle like marshmallow cream, and really what southern girl doesn’t love red velvet cake (or any person at that)? So, I have decided to share with you red velvet cupcakes with my grandma’s 7 minute icing. My boyfriend Tyler was especially excited about this one, too!

For the cupcake part I used this recipe of Martha Stewart’s that I found on Pinterest. I know some people don’t like Martha because she got all money hungry, but I still love her. She even has a nifty video on different ways to ice your cupcake at the bottom of the page. And for the icing I used my Maw Maw’s hand-written index card. I was really excited that I was able to find it when I went home last weekend. (I also did not realize this was  a secret family recipe until my brother was shocked I posted it on the internet. So in that case, welcome to the family!)


He is my Maw Maw with all of her grandchildren. She just turned 82 last month.

Here is my Maw Maw with some of her grandchildren. She just turned 82 last month.

Here are the ingredients that you will need:

For the cake:


2 1/2 cups cake flour (not self- rising), sifted
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 bottle red food color
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (I used Mexican vanilla my cousin Blake brought back from Mexico)
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons distilled white vinegar
Yields about 24 cupcakes( I only got 18)

For the icing:

2 egg whites 1 3/4 (which I didn't realize I didn't add util just now... oops) 6 tbsp COLD water 2 tbsp corn syrup 1 tsp vanilla

2 egg whites
1 3/4 sugar (which I didn’t realize I didn’t add until just now… oops)
6 tbsp COLD water
2 tbsp corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

The first step for the cake is to mix together salt, flour, and cocoa powder.

Next, in a separate bowl, beat together the oil and sugar adding one egg at a time. Once you have incorporated the eggs, add vanilla and entire bottle of red food coloring.

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Next, incorporate flour mixture and buttermilk a little at a time, alternating between the two.

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Lastly, in a separate bowl, mix together baking soda and vinegar. This is the fun part, it’s like a science project!(It also gives that signature red velvet flavor.) Add this to the batter and blend a few more seconds. Spray the cupcake pan with cooking spray or line with paper liners and fill 3/4 of the way full with batter. (I like to dip my batter with a measuring cup for cleaner pouring.) Bake for twenty minutes until a fork inserted in center of cupcake comes out clean. Place on cooling rack to cool while you make the icing.

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For the icing you need a double boiler. I didn’t have one so I made a make-shift one out of a pot and glass bowl. You can do something similar as long as the water doesn’t touch the bowl and it is heat resistant.210

Bring the water to a roaring boil and add all of your ingredients to the bowl, including sugar :). Beat on high for 7 minutes or until you form white fluffy peaks. *disclaimer: It almost always takes more than 7 minutes just keep beating, and if you aren’t getting the fluffy peaks you need, add some more corn syrup or a little cream of tarter. I had to do both for this batch.

When your icing is finished cooking it should look about like this and taste like delicious marshmallow cream. 215 216

Now, all that’s left is to ice your cupcake and eat up! Careful when icing not to break down the fluffy egg whites, just gently spread it, and be sure to refrigerate your left over cupcakes!

I hope you enjoy these as much as I do and happy cooking!

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– Mariel

2 thoughts on “Southern Red Velvet Cake With “Secret” 7 Minute Icing

  1. I enjoyed this post!!! I like all the original pictures! I really feel like a part of the family now by knowing this recipe! Good Job. I enjoyed it a lot! (& i definitely will be using this recipe)

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