Red Velvet Crème Brulee Cupcakes

by Erin

Love red velvet? What about creme brulee? Now imagine a red velvet cupcake topped with creme brulee!

Desserts that combine two things into one are always a good choice. Makes the decision process of which one to eat a no-brainer, especially if you are trying to be good. But until now I never thought I would see a cupcake combines with crème brulee. And the flavor combination possibilities are endless! What type of cupcake would you like to top with crème brulee? Or maybe you have a flavored crème brulee you’d like to throw into the mix as well?

For these, I tried out a different red velvet recipe than I usually use. This one is Paula Deen’s, but I think I like Bobby Flay’s better. Who would’ve guessed I would pick the master-griller’s recipe over the butter-queen’s? Although this one was a much brighter red, the other recipe seems less greasy and produces a much richer flavored red velvet, which is what I think a cake called “velvet” should be.

As for the topping unfortunately, I was not able to brulee it as much as I would’ve liked – who knew that a paper cupcake liner would light on fire when put under flames? Whoops. As a result only the middles were toasted. Next time I think I would core out a little of the cupcake in order to fill them up with some of the crème brulee, since you can’t pile it up as much as regular frosting. But overall, still very awesome!


Makes 24 cupcakes


2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1-1/2 cups sugar, plus more for the crème brulee topping

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

1 tsp cocoa powder

1-1/2 cups vegetable oil

1 cup buttermilk, room temperature

2 large eggs, room temperature

2 Tbsp red food coloring

1 tsp white distilled vinegar

1 tsp vanilla extract

4 ramekins prepared un-torched Crème Brulees


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line 2 (12-cup) muffin pans with cupcake papers.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, sugar, baking soda, salt, and cocoa powder. In a large bowl gently beat together the oil, buttermilk, eggs, food coloring, vinegar, and vanilla with a handheld electric mixer. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the wet and mix until smooth and thoroughly combined.
  3. Divide the batter evenly among the cupcake tins about 2/3 filled. Bake in oven for about 20 to 22 minutes, turning the pans once, half way through. Test the cupcakes with a toothpick for doneness. Remove from oven and cool completely before frosting.
  4. Spread the chilled crème brulee over the cooled cupcakes.
  5. Sprinkle with regular or maple sugar and brulee with a culinary torch just before serving.

Source: Cupcakes from Paula Deen on Food Network and overall concept from Cupcake Project.

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Eating Deliciously December 1, 2011 - 8:45 am

Fantastic idea! I will be making these for a holiday party this weekend. Thanks for sharing!

Janet@FCTC November 30, 2011 - 4:01 pm

those look great! And I almost spit tea everywhere laughing about the flaming cupcake liners

spiffycookie November 30, 2011 - 4:28 pm

Haha that would’ve made a bit of a mess

Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love. November 30, 2011 - 8:24 am

Oh my! You just combined two of my most favorite things! These look so good!

Kathryn November 30, 2011 - 3:03 am

Bruleing things scares me a lot but I love the idea of that crunchy sugary topping!

Little Shortcake November 29, 2011 - 10:01 pm

SHUT UP! Gimme one nowww! :)

Baking Serendipity November 29, 2011 - 9:26 pm

So cool! I love the two desserts in one :) I definitely wouldn’t have thought of the potential for the liners to burn though…eeks! Delicious nonetheless!

spiffycookie November 29, 2011 - 11:13 pm

Glad I’m not alone

Tracey November 29, 2011 - 7:14 pm

Are you kidding me with these – holy awesomeness!! You always post the most unique recipes, I just love stopping by to see what you’re up to :)

spiffycookie November 29, 2011 - 7:20 pm

Yay! You brightened my day :-)

Jennifer @ Mother Thyme November 29, 2011 - 5:43 pm

What a fantastic idea! I love the incorporation of the two. I bet these are AMAZING!

Steph@stephsbitebybite November 29, 2011 - 3:58 pm

Um…yeah, this is genius!

Vicki @WITK November 29, 2011 - 3:39 pm

Paper liners light on fire? :) these look super tasty, even if they aren’t completely brûléed. I’ll have to try this out with my favorite cupcake recipe!

spiffycookie November 29, 2011 - 3:48 pm

Haha I know such a discovery! I would love to see what cupcakes you put it on !

Tara @ Chip Chip Hooray November 29, 2011 - 12:56 pm

So cool! I have always wanted to try to brulee something, but I’m a little scared I’ll burn my apartment building down. I’d love to try a spice cake with creme brulee actually–I think it might be a cool flavor combo. :)

spiffycookie November 29, 2011 - 1:02 pm

I think so too! Great idea.

Liz @ Southern Charm November 29, 2011 - 10:17 am

Loving this! I am always looking for the perfect icing for red velvet! Must give this a try!

Amber @ Amber's Confections November 29, 2011 - 9:41 am

Great minds must think alike! I did a Red Velvet post today too! I’ve also tried Paula Deens’ Red Velvet recipe and I agree, it’s a little greasy. Not my favorite. I’ll have to try Bobby’s! I never would have thought of a creme brulee topping!

spiffycookie November 29, 2011 - 9:47 am

Definitely try Bobby Flay’s! But I use the Cakeman Raven’s cream cheese frosting (when I’m not using creme brulee haha)


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