Red Velvet Poke Cake

This red velvet poke cake is delectable and irresistible. It’s filled with sweetened condensed milk and topped with a buttery cream cheese frosting that’s out of this world. You only need 12 ingredients to make this easy poke cake + the frosting. It’s seriously the best poke cake and will win over any crowd, and you’ll be left with nothing but a few crumbs.

If you get tired of ordinary cakes, then you should make this extraordinary red velvet cake for something different.

A red velvet poke cake is a soft, moist cake that is notably red in color. It’s got cocoa in it, so it has a flavor that is sort of chocolaty. What sets red velvet cake apart from the traditional cake recipes is the vinegar and buttermilk that it’s made with.

My poke cake recipe has the perfect amount of sweetened condensed milk in it that’s amazingly sweet and delicious. The homemade frosting is so creamy and fluffy, you’ll want to eat it with a spoon.


For the Cake:

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1½ cups granulated sugar

2 large eggs, at room temperature

5 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder

6 tablespoons red food coloring

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup buttermilk

2¼ cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

For the Drizzle:

1 (12-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk

For the Frosting:

8 ounces butter, at room temperature

8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature

4¼ cups powdered sugar

2 tablespoons vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350F. Butter the bottom and sides of a 9×13 inch metal baking pan. Put a long piece of parchment paper in the bottom of the pan, letting the parchment extend up two sides of the pan and overhang slightly on both ends. (This will make it easy to remove the cake from the pan) Butter the parchment.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl then add the eggs and beat on high until well combined.

In a small bowl, mix together the cocoa powder, vanilla extract and red food coloring to make a smooth thick paste. Add to the batter and mix on medium speed until completely combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and beat again making sure that all the batter gets color.

With the mixer on low, add half of the buttermilk and half of the flour; mix until combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and repeat the process with the remaining milk and flour. Beat on high until smooth, about 1 minute.

Reduce the mixer to low and add the salt, baking soda and vinegar. Turn to high and beat for another 2 minutes until completely combined and smooth.

Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan, smoothing the top with an offset spatula. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean, about 25 to 30 minutes.

Remove the cake from the oven and immediately poke holes all over the top of the cake. You can use the end of a wooden spoon, a skewer, the tines of a fork, etc. Slowly pour the can of condensed milk all over the top of the cake, making sure to drizzle it evenly all over the top. Allow the cake to cool completely before frosting.

To make the Frosting: Place butter and cream cheese in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add powdered sugar and vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy, scraping the bowl as necessary.

Spread the frosting evenly over the top of the cake and decorate as desired. Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

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