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Red vel­vet, while syn­ony­mous with Valen­tines Day and now pop­u­lar for wed­dings, is just plain gor­geous to look at.  To be totally hon­est, red is my absolute favourite colour and any chance I get to wear it, look at it or eat it I do.  Not that many red foods around when you think about it… and I don’t really eat very much red meat.

Sooo let’s get busy and make some deli­cious red vel­vet cook­ies to be enjoyed and shared all year around.  But wait, just think how cute they would be for Christ­mas or Valentine’s Day as well!

This recipe calls for Dutch Processed Choco­late.   So what’s the dif­fer­ence between that and reg­u­lar unsweet­ened cocoa pow­der you ask?   First off, Both types of cocoa pow­der are unsweet­ened and there­fore bit­ter when tasted alone.

Dutch-Process Cocoa or Alka­lized Unsweet­ened Cocoa Pow­der:

Has been treated with an alkali to neu­tral­ize its nat­ural acid­ity. Because it’s neu­tral and doesn’t react with bak­ing soda, it must be used in recipes call­ing for bak­ing pow­der, unless there are other acidic ingre­di­ents in suf­fi­cient quan­ti­ties used. It has a reddish-brown color, mild fla­vor, and is easy to dis­solve in liquids.

Hershey Dutch Processed Cocoa
Hershey’s Dutch Processed Cocoa


Ghirardelli Sweetened Cocoa
Ghi­rardelli Cocoa
Unsweet­ened Cocoa:

Has a com­plex choco­late fla­vor while the Dutch-process is darker and more mel­low. Its intense fla­vor makes it well suited for use in brown­ies, cook­ies and some choco­late cakes. When nat­ural cocoa (an acid) is used in recipes call­ing for bak­ing soda (an alkali), it cre­ates a leav­en­ing action that causes the bat­ter to rise when placed in the oven.

Ok, on to our recipe:


3 1/4 cups (355 grams) all pur­pose flour
1/4 cup (75 grams) unsweet­ened Dutch processed cocoa pow­der
1/2 tea­spoon salt
1 tea­spoon (4 grams) bak­ing pow­der
1 cup (227 grams) unsalted but­ter, room tem­per­a­ture
1 3/4 cups (350 grams) gran­u­lated white sugar
2 large eggs
2 tea­spoons pure vanilla extract
3 Table­spoons of Red Food Col­or­ing.. I used the gel type

For Red Vel­vet Cookies:

1. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cocoa pow­der, salt, and bak­ing powder.

2. In the bowl of your elec­tric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the but­ter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 3 to 4 min­utes). Add the eggs, one at a time, beat­ing well after each addi­tion. Add the vanilla extract and the food col­or­ing then beat until combined.

Red Velvet Cookie Dough by Cake Artisan
Red Vel­vet Cookie Dough

Add the flour mix­ture and beat until you have a smooth dough.

3. Divide the dough in half and wrap each half in plas­tic wrap. Refrig­er­ate for about one hour or until firm enough toroll.

4. Pre­heat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in the cen­ter of the oven. Line two bak­ing sheets with parch­ment paper.

5.    Remove one half of the chilled dough from the refrig­er­a­tor and, on a lightly floured sur­face, roll out the dough to a thick­ness of 1/4 inch (1 cm). (Keep turn­ing the dough as you roll, mak­ing sure the dough does not stick to the counter.) Cut out desired

Red Velvet Cookies by Cake Artisan
Red Vel­vet Cookies

shapes using a lightly floured cookie cut­ter and trans­fer cook­iesto the pre­pared bak­ing sheet. Place the bak­ing sheets with the unbaked cook­ies in the refrig­er­a­tor for 10 to 15 min­utes to chill the dough which pre­vents the cook­ies from spread­ing and los­ing their shape while baking.

Note: If you are not going to frost the baked cook­ies, you may want to sprin­kle the unbaked cook­ies with crys­tal or sparkling sugar.

Bake cook­ies for about 10 — 12 min­utes (depend­ing on size) or until they are firm around the edges. Remove from oven and let cook­ies cool on bak­ing sheet for a few min­utes before trans­fer­ring to a wire rack to fin­ish cool­ing. Frost with royal icing, if desired. Be sure that the frost­ing on the cook­ies dries com­pletely before stor­ing. (This may take sev­eral hours.) Frosted cook­ies will keep sev­eral days in an airtight

Red Velvet Cookies Iced by Cake Artisan
Red Vel­vet Cookies

con­tainer. Store between lay­ers of parch­ment paper or wax paper.

Makes about 36 — 4 inch (10 cm) cookies.

BEST frosted with a cream cheese frost­ing.  I use the recipe on my site here and thin it with some milk to make it more like a glaze if I don’t want heavy frost­ing.  Also, I have rolled out fon­dant into the same shape as the cookie and placed it on top of a thin layer of the frost­ing which gives a nice finish!

For a final fin­ish on my fon­dant cov­ered cook­ies I used an impres­sion mat to make pretty pat­terns.. and then dusted with pearl dust.. there is no limit to what you can do with these or any other cook­ies!  Happy Baking!

(18) Comments   


what katie's baking on 9 April, 2011 at 8:54 pm #

i love red vel­vet and the fact that these are cook­ies makes them even bet­ter.… so yummy.

Deedeeq on 21 April, 2011 at 7:00 am #

OMG these are PERFECT! A loved one of mine will be hav­ing a bone mar­row trans­plant in two months and I wanted to make him red vel­vet cook­ies (his favorite) before he goes in for pro­ce­dures. And then I got the idea to make them bone-shaped, so that the cake part kinda looks like mar­row. I know that sounds a lit­tle gross, but he’ll get a kick out of it.


Colleen on 21 April, 2011 at 7:21 am #

I had to laugh a bit at your bone shaped cook­ies and the red cookie part being the mar­row… no laugh­ing mat­ter I’m sure but I come from a fam­ily who deals in a sim­i­lar way. Wish­ing your loved one a com­plete recov­ery. Happy bak­ing, Colleen

Amberly on 20 July, 2011 at 2:10 am #

It’s woen­dr­ful to have you on our side, haha!

[…] Red Vel­vet Cook­ies — Oh Yeah, You Heard ME! […]

Elke Royal on 13 December, 2011 at 6:03 pm #

Are this cook­ies firm enough to make cook­ies on a stick?

Colleen on 14 December, 2011 at 5:39 pm #

Hi Elke, I would think you could bake them a lit­tle longer if you wanted to put them on a stick. Its a fairly dense recipe over­all. Good luck, always inter­ested to see how they turn out!

Happy bak­ing and happy holidays,


Tina C on 26 December, 2011 at 2:44 am #


Will this work as a drop cookie? Instead of hav­ing to chill and then roll out. Also, what is the tex­ture of this cookie? Soft and chewy? Or crispy?

Thank you.

Trinette on 2 January, 2012 at 12:32 am #

Does your cream cheese icing harden like royal icing?

Colleen on 2 January, 2012 at 12:49 am #

Hi Trinette, no it isn’t as stiff as royal. It’s stays soft under­neath with a drier crust on the out­side. The dry crust is very thin so is quite easy to eat, but hav­ing said that it dies hold up well for decorating.

Happy New Year!

Mariea on 24 January, 2012 at 12:15 pm #

Thank You SO Much!!! I love the taste of it!!

Kiriel on 2 February, 2012 at 11:09 pm #

Can you dec­o­rate with the cream cheese icing the way you would royal icing? I have an order for red vel­vet cook­ies and would love to be able to dec­o­rate them all fancy for Valen­tines. Have you tried using RI on the red vel­vet cookies?

Colleen on 3 February, 2012 at 8:56 am #

Hello Kiriel, I have not used the cream cheese icing with a very fine tip but you sure could try it. Mine is usu­ally fairly firm but you could add a tad of water or milk to make it a lit­tle thin­ner. I’d be inter­ested to hear back from you or to see pics of your suc­cess. I do believe royal would work fine on these cookies!

Trinette on 5 February, 2012 at 10:32 am #

At what point do you add the coloring?

Camarah on 12 February, 2012 at 4:24 pm #

I want make these for my boyfriend for Valentine’s Day since they’re his favorite. But I don’t want to make such a big batch. How much of the ingre­di­ents would I add to make like 20–24 cookies?

Colleen on 12 February, 2012 at 4:44 pm #

Hi Cama­rah, basi­cally you need about 3/4 of the recipe but with bak­ing you don’t always get a suc­cess­ful prod­uct when you half or sim­i­lar the ingre­di­ents. When I cut down or increase a recipe I use the bak­ers per­cent­age method whereby I work out what per­cent­age of the recipe I need and then cal­cu­late each ingre­di­ent by that per­cent­age to give me the cor­rect weights. The eas­i­est idea for you right now might be to make the entire amount of dough and either share it with some­one else or cut out the num­ber you want then dou­ble wrap the remain­der in plas­tic wrap and freeze the dough for up to three months. I hope that helps. Happy Valentine’s Day to you and yours!

Colleen on 12 February, 2012 at 4:49 pm #

LOL.. whoops… so glad you asked… I put it in at the end when I add the vanilla essence. Sorry about that but as I said, glad you noticed. Thanks!

Colleen on 12 February, 2012 at 4:59 pm #

Tina, you could def­i­nitely take a spoon­ful of this dough and roll it into a ball then flat­ten with your hand or a fork… The rolling and cut­ting is mainly to be able to get the shapes we want. The wrap­ping and refrig­er­at­ing though is to allow the mois­ture in the dough to fully soak into any dry areas which may have been missed dur­ing mix­ing. It gives a more con­sis­tent dough.

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