Red velvet is definitely up there on my list of favorite flavors. It’s such an interesting concept, and as a flavor it’s very hard to describe. I’d say it tastes like a mixture between chocolate and vanilla, but at the same time has its own unique taste. How about this: a light vanilla-ey chocolate taste with extra richness from buttermilk. Does that make sense? Didn’t think so, but I tried!
You’ll just have to taste it for yourself in these cookies. Red velvet is typically a cake flavor, but nowadays the flavor has become so popular that you can find SO many different snacks and desserts labeled “red velvet flavor.”
Unfortunately, many of these supposedly “red velvet flavored” foods end up tasting downright strange. So in making these cookies I aimed to stay away from that strange taste, and really have the classic subtle red velvet flavor come through in each bite. To do this, I used many of the same ingredients as in a red velvet cake, including buttermilk and vinegar. However, since I was making a cookie, I didn’t want too much liquid to make the cookie too soft, so I reduced the ratio of buttermilk and vinegar to the dry ingredients.
The first time I made these, they came out too large and flat, and very chewy. To fix this and make them slightly thicker and softer, I increased the amount of flour in the recipe and replaced 1/4 cup of granulated sugar with brown sugar.
I think one of the biggest reasons I love red velvet so much is the cream cheese frosting. I love carrot cake for the same reason. Seriously, I just can’t get enough of the stuff. In my opinion, any other type of frosting paired with red velvet just ruins the entire experience. I once bought a huge slice of red velvet cake in Grand Central Station. I had been looking forward to it all day and was so excited to dig in, but the second I placed a piece in my mouth, my taste buds said OH NO. It was just regular vanilla frosting, not cream cheese frosting! Never again. It’s just not the same.
You can use as much or as little red food coloring as you like in these cookies, depending on the shade of red you want your cookies to be. I used 1 tablespoon. The less you use, the more brown the cookies will be. You can increase the food coloring and the color will get more and more red up to a point, after which the red will darken. It’s all up to you!
I promise you these cookies won’t last long on your cookie platter!