This red velvet mug cake is the perfect moist and fluffy single-serve dessert! This mug cake requires less than 5 minutes prep time and only takes 90 seconds in the microwave.
I like cake. A lot! But sometimes I can’t justify baking an entire cake only to eat one slice. This mug cake recipe has been a game changer when cravings hit. It’s one of my favourites (alongside my chocolate lava cake in a mug!) for quick and easy sweet treat.
Ingredients in a Red Velvet Mug Cake
- Plain / all-purpose flour: correctly measure your flour: spoon the flour into the measuring cup so it is heaped. Use the back of a flat-bladed butter knife to sweep off the excess flour and level the surface.
- Unsweetened cocoa powder: NOT hot cocoa powder! I use Hershey’s brand (US) or Coles/Woolworths/Nestle brand (AUS). I avoid Dutch-processed cocoa powders as they tend to be more bitter.
- Baking powder: NOT baking soda / bicarb soda. Make sure it is in date!
- Can I make this mug cake without baking powder? You can omit the baking powder IF you substitute the plain flour with and equal amount of self-raising flour.
- Caster sugar / superfine sugar: finer sugar granules will make the cake more fluffy and moist. You can use regular granulated white sugar if necessary.
- Canola oil: you can use any flavourless vegetable or cooking oil. Do NOT use olive oil, coconut oil, or any other strongly flavoured oil.
- Vanilla essence OR vanilla extract: omit if you don’t have them.
- Red food colouring: I recommend using a high quality GEL food colour. Otherwise make sure the liquid colouring is high quality and potent- you may have to use more colouring than you think to get a vivid red colour!
You’ll notice that this recipe is eggless. I find egg-based mug cakes are denser, chewier and gummier. Nearly all the mug cakes on my website are egg free! Check out:
- Microwave Gingerbread Mug Cake (No Eggs)
- 1 Minute Chocolate Chip Mug Cookie (No Egg!)
- The Easiest Chocolate Lava Cake Ever (No Eggs!)
Top Tips + FAQ
- Why is my mug cake dense and gummy? Make sure you are measuring your dry ingredients correctly with a set of measuring cups and spoons (US or metric will both work as long as they are consistent!). It is tempting to eyeball the measuring of ingredients using dessert spoons or teaspoons – but it is worth the effort to measure them properly!
- Why is my mug cake dry and hard? This is likely because you have overcooked the cake! 90 seconds in an 1100 watt (or similar) microwave should be plenty. Poke a skewer in the centre of the cake to check if it is cooked through, rather than relying on how it looks on the surface.
- Why did my mug cake overflow / explode? Make sure you are using a big mug (350 mL / 12.5 oz or larger). If you know your microwave is particularly strong (1300 watts or stronger), reduce the power or the duration of cooking time.
Mug Cake Storage
It is definitely recommended to eat mug cakes straight away after cooking. They do not keep well!
For the Red Velvet Mug Cake
- 1/3 cup plain flour / all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3 tbsp caster sugar / superfine sugar
- 1/4 cup milk
- 2 tbsp canola oil (or any other flavourless vegetable oil)
- 1/4 tsp vanilla essence OR 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2-3 drops red food colouring
For the Cream Cheese Frosting
- 2 tsp cream cheese, softened
- 2-3 tbsp icing sugar / confectioners sugar
- In a large microwave-safe mug (350 mL / 12.5 oz capacity or larger), stir together flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, and sugar until well combined. Add milk, canola oil, vanilla, and enough red food colouring (usually 2-3 drops) to change the cake to a deep red colour. Stir until well combined.
- Microwave for 90 seconds on full power or until well risen and there is no visible raw batter.
- In a small bowl, combine cream cheese and 2 tbsp of icing sugar. Stir until well combined. Add another 1 tbsp of icing sugar to thicken the frosting, if needed. Spread over the cooked cake. Enjoy!
- I recommend eating the mug cake while it is fresh. It isn't designed to keep well.
Substitutions & Tips
- Find the original recipe video on here on TikTok (you don't need to have a TikTok account to view the video).
- Food colouring: I use Wilton gel food colouring. If you are using liquid food colouring, you may have to use slightly more to achieve the same strength of colour.
- Why did my cake overflow? If your cake overflowed then you are using a mug which is too small. Use a mug which is at least 350 mL (12.5 oz) or use a small microwave-safe bowl. If your cake starts to overflow, stop the microwave and let the cake sink down then resume cooking.
- Why is my cake hard and rubbery? It is likely that you have overcooked the cake. 90 seconds will be plenty of cooking time for this cake in the majority of microwaves. If you know that your microwave is more powerful than normal microwaves, reduce the power to 80%. When in doubt, a slightly undercooked cake is far better than an overcooked cake!
Nutrition Information:Serving Size: 1 Mug Cake with Frosting
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 708Total Fat: 32.9gSaturated Fat: 4.7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 1.2gCholesterol: 9.7mgSodium: 275.3mgCarbohydrates: 98.8gFiber: 1.5gSugar: 65.1gProtein: 7.2g