Fall is in the air. Leaves are changing colors. Days are getting cooler (and darker). Halloween is almost around the corner, and stores are filled with black and orange. Black and orange. Such iconic colors for Halloween. Orange desserts are pretty easy to make. Just add red and yellow food coloring. But what about black? Growing up, black was never food coloring you used. Now McCormick offers black food coloring, which works very well. My hands and nails can attest to it haha I was surfing online when I got the idea for black velvet cupcakes. Just like red velvet but subbing the coloring.

When I took them to work, we discovered they also stain your lips and teeth. Don’t worry! It goes away after drinking some water. For the frosting I just used leftover whipped cream w orange coloring added.

Black Velvet Cupcakes

Black Velvet Cupcakes

Yield: 1 dozen

Black Velvet Cupcakes for Halloween


  • 4 Tbsp butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 2 1/2 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 ounce black food coloring
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup plus 2 Tbsp flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp vinegar
  • Frosting (Will need to sit overnight!):
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream, divided
  • 1/2 cup candy corn
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar


  1. For the frosting, put the candy corn in a bowl with the cream. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 350F. Beat butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 3 minutes. Add egg and beat until incorporated.
  3. In a separate bowl mix together cocoa, vanilla and black food coloring to make a thick paste. Add to the batter, mixing until completely combined.
  4. Slowly add half of the buttermilk to the batter. Add half of the flour and salt and mix until combined. Repeat with the remaining milk and flour. Beat until smooth.
  5. Add baking soda and white vinegar. Beat a few more minutes.
  6. Spoon batter into cupcake liners and bake for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
  7. Let rest in the pan for 10 minutes, then place them on cooling rack to cool completely before frosting.
  8. When ready for the frosting, strain the candy corn-infused cream into a mixing bowl. Beat the cream until soft peaks form. Slowly add in powdered sugar until stiff peaks form. Pipe onto cooled cupcake.

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Source: Cupcakes from Java Cupcake; Frosting from Candy Corn Cupcakes