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Red Velvet & Peppermint Santa Hats

Super special utterly delicious red velvet cupcakes with a peppermint cream cheese Santa hat - perfect for Christmas.

What better way to celebrate the jolly Christmas man in a red suit than bake some delicious red velvet Santa hat cupcakes?!

Christmas is the time of year for splurging on decedent treats and delicious food, and these don't disappoint!

If you're looking for a last-minute treat to serve then these are a fantastic option. They're surprisingly easy to create, and the striking red Santa hat is a doddle to put together.

Drip cakes are all the rage at the moment, I even made my own this past summer which you can take a look at here. So, why not incorporate this trend into my very special Santa hats! It's so easy to pour the white chocolate ganache over the piped cream cheese and when it sets it becomes a striking shiny red.

Red velvet is one of those completely unique and special flavours that made the cut for these cupcakes. Many people misconstrue red velvet as simply a red chocolate cake, but they have a complex combination of flavours to create a unique taste.

Dark cocoa powder, buttermilk, and white wine vinegar are integral to creating that delicious unique red velvet cupcake. The combination of these flavours creates a completely delicious sponge that will leave you wanting to gobble up the whole batch.

Do you know who else would love these? Father Christmas himself of course! Why don't you leave one out for him on Christmas Eve - I'm sure he would love it!

Let's get Caking It!



180C (170C fan)

Yield: 12 cupcakes

Prep: 10 mins

Bake: 18 mins

Assembly: 10 minutes



150g unsalted butter

150g caster sugar

3 medium eggs

1 tsp vanilla

1 tsp white wine vinegar

1/2 tube red food gel

150g gluten free self-raising flour

10g cocoa powder

1/2 tsp gluten free baking powder

1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda

1/4 tsp xanthan gum

100ml buttermilk


80g unsalted butter

120g cream cheese

400g icing sugar

1/2 tsp peppermint extract


90ml double cream

100g white chocolate

Red food gel colouring


Method: Sponge

Don't forget to wait until all the ingredients are room temperature before starting.

  1. Preheat oven to 180C. Fill 12 muffin holes with cases.

  2. Cream the butter until pale, then add the sugar and cream together until fully incorporated.

  3. Add the eggs, one at a time, and the vanilla, vinegar, and food colouring mixing with an electric whisk between each addition.

  4. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, bicarb, and xanthan gum with a fork, and then add this to the mixture, mixing until fully incorporated.

  5. Spoon in the buttermilk and mix until combined.

  6. Spoon 2 tbsp of the mixture into each muffin case and let sit for 18 minutes before placing in an oven for 18 minutes. A skewer or toothpick inserted into the cupcakes should come out clean.

Method: Cream cheese frosting

This cream cheese frosting is slightly thicker than the frosting for my carrot cupcakes so it holds it shape for the Santa hat.

  1. While they are cooling, move onto the cream cheese frosting. Cream the butter and cream cheese together, and gradually add in the icing sugar until it is all incorporated. You can do this either with a standing mixer, an electric hand whisk, or a fork.

  2. Add peppermint extract to taste.

Method: Ganache

This ganache adds an extra layer of pure indulgence to these cupcakes. Making ganache is an easy process if you get your ratios right so don't be afraid of having a go!

  1. While the cupcakes are cooling, make the white chocolate ganache.

  2. Chop the white chocolate into chunks and place in a glass bowl.

  3. Heat the cream in 30 second bursts in the microwave until it is lightly steaming. Pour over the chocolate and let it sit for 2 minutes before stirring.

  4. Stir the white chocolate and cream together until its silky smooth, add the red food colouring and mix until completely combined.


  1. Making sure the sponges are completely cool, pipe rings of frosting on each cupcake.

  2. Rest the cooling rack on top of a large baking sheet to collect the drips and now you can drip the ganache over the cupcakes. If it starts to set then simply place in the microwave for another 30 seconds until runny again.

  3. Place your covered cupcakes in the fridge until set and then pipe more frosting at the base of the hat and as a bobble on top.

  4. Enjoy!

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