Week 31: Red velvet cheesecake cake (second take)

Despite the scary calorie content, I just couldn’t help myself from making another one of this yummy red velvet cheesecake cake.

This time however, I cut the recipe in half and baked them in 6-inch cake tins. And for the frosting, I made a variation of cream cheese frosting using a batch of Swiss Meringue Buttercream. I thought this version is even lighter than the original frosting and suits this rather “heavy” cake very well.

Makes a 6-inch cake


For the cheesecake

227g cream cheese, at room temperature

66g granulated white sugar

pinch of salt

1 large egg

40g sour cream

39g heavy whipping cream

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

For the red velvet cake

156g all purpose flour

150g granulated white sugar

11g unsweetened cocoa powder

¾ teaspoons baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

1 large egg, at room temperature

¾ cup vegetable or canola oil

½ cup buttermilk

Red food coloring

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 teaspoon white vinegar


1) Prepare the cheesecake layer: Preheat oven to 160C. Place a large roasting pan on the lower third rack of the oven. Place a kettle of water on the stove to boil. Spray a 6-inch round cake tin with nonstick spray and line the bottom and side with a round of parchment paper.

2) In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to mix the cream cheese- blend until it is nice and smooth and creamy. Mix in sugar and salt and blend for 2 minutes, scraping down sides of the bowl as needed. Add egg and blend well. Finally, mix in sour cream, whipping cream and vanilla. Mix until smooth. Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

3) Set the pan into the roasting pan in the pre-heated oven. Carefully pour the hot water from your kettle into the roasting pan (it will fill the pan surrounding the cheesecake). Pour enough water so that there is about an inch of water coming up the foil along the sides of the cheesecake pan. Bake the cheesecake for 45 minutes. It should be set to the touch and not jiggly.

4) Remove the cheesecake from the roasting pan and let it cool on a wire rack for at least an hour. When it has cooled, place the pan into the freezer and let the cheesecake freeze completely. This can be done in several hours- or overnight.

5) Once the cake is frozen, you can easily slide the cake out from the cake tin without breaking it.

6) For the red velvet cake layers: Preheat oven to 175C. Grease and flour two 6-inch round metal baking pans (or spray with nonstick baking spray with flour).

7) In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda and salt. Add egg, oil, buttermilk, food coloring, vanilla and vinegar to the flour mixture. Using an electric mixer on medium-low speed, beat for 1 minute, until blended. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl with a rubber spatula. Beat on high speed for 2 minutes.

8) Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pans, dividing equally. Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few moist crumbs attached. Let cool in pans on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pans, then invert cakes onto a rack to cool completely.

9) To assemble the cake: Place one cake layer into the center of a cake plate or platter. Apply a thin layer of frosting on top of the cake layer. Remove the cheesecake from the freezer and peel off the parchment. Measure your cheesecake layer against the cake layers. If the cheesecake layer turns out to be a slightly larger round than your cake, move it to a cutting board and gently shave off some of the exterior of the cheesecake to get it to the same size as your cake layers. Place the cheesecake layer on top of the first cake layer. Add another thin layer of frosting on top of the cheesecake layer. Place the 2nd cake layer on top of the cheesecake.

10) To frost the cake: Apply a crumb coat layer to the cake- use a long, thin spatula to cover the cake completely with a thin and even layer of frosting. Be sure to wipe off your spatula each time you are about to dip it back into the bowl to get more frosting (this way you won’t be transferring any red crumbs into the bowl of frosting). Don’t worry at this point about the crumbs being visible in the frosting on the cake. When your cake has a thin layer of frosting all over it, place it into the refrigerator for 30 minutes to “set” the frosting. Once the first layer of frosting is set, apply the 2nd layer. Start by adding a large scoop of frosting onto the top of the cake. Use a long, thin spatula to spread the frosting evenly across the top and then spread it down the sides of the cake too. Because you applied a crumb-coat layer, you shouldn’t have any red crumbs floating around in the final frosting layer. Decorate, as desired. Keep this cake refrigerated.

I did not include the frosting recipe above as I did not remember how much cream cheese I added to my batch of Swiss Meringue buttercream! Yes, I am ashamed. However, this is my goto reference for Swiss Meringue Buttercream and there is a version with cream cheese too. Just make a bit more than you think you will need. You can always use it for decoration, or, just a reward for the hard work.


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