Waldorf-Astoria Red Velvet Cake (1920s Recipe)

"Found on CakeCentral.com while researching the original recipe. I am personally not sure about this icing. I may try the other roux one. Originally posted by descakes. "This is the original Waldorf-Astoria Red Velvet Cake recipe and a huge favorite with family and clients alike! The Cream Cheese/Mascarpone Frosting is to die for:) I know it’s going to sound odd but give it a try and you’ll be delightfully surprised!" NOTE: I (cookfromscratch) tried this recipe yesterday and was sorely disappointed. It was a good recipe, but not lacking the flavor for Red Velvet.It was a lot of trouble for a good chocolate cake. The red color was also lacking, however, I did use natural food color due to allergies. I am going to keep looking. for a natural Red Velvet recipe."
photo by a food.com user photo by a food.com user
Ready In:
1 layer cake




  • Pre-heat oven to 350°F.
  • Butter three 9" round cake pans and line them with parchment paper or waxed paper.
  • Melt Chocolate in a metal bowl set over a saucepan of boiling water or in the top of a double boiler (or melt in microwave for 20 – 25 seconds).
  • Meanwhile. place the sugar, eggs, oil and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed for two minutes.
  • In a mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt.
  • Add the dry ingredients to the egg mixture and continue to mix on low speed, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula so everything is well incorporated.
  • Add the melted chocolate to this mixture and continue to mix on low speed. Add the pureed beets and food coloring.
  • Continue to mix on low speed until everything is thoroughly combined.
  • Evenly divide the batter between the three prepared pans and tap down to remove air bubbles.
  • Bake in the middle of the oven for 20 – 25 minutes or until center of cake springs back when touched, or when an inserted toothpick comes out clean.
  • Remove the pans from the oven and transfer to a cooling rack. Let cool for ten minutes in the pans, then turn the layers out onto the rack and let cool completely.
  • Icing: Pour cream into a small bowl and whip to soft peaks. Set aside in the refrigerator.
  • Place the cream cheese in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment and mix on low speed until it is soft and smooth.
  • Add the mascarpone and continue to mix on low speed until the cheeses are well combined.
  • Add the vanilla and powdered sugar and mix until everything is just combined.
  • Turn off the mixer and fold in the whipped cream by hand with a spatula.
  • Keep refrigerated until ready to assemble.
  • Chef’s note: Sliced canned beets are easier to work with in this recipe than whole beets.
  • Original Poster’s note – This cake works well as a wedding cake but use a cream cheese/buttercream as the icing noted here will not harden.

Questions & Replies

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  1. Anna M.
    I have made this cake about 6 times now and it is a new favorite. Moist, light chocolate flavor and icing that is ridiculous! We make it with the first beets of spring, and now is requested at most special occasions.
  2. sheilamoffitt
    This recipe is a huge hit!!!! For the high school kids I make it into cupcakes....There was so much frosting I had to make another batch for today. One student wants this to be his wedding cake:)<br/>I have made it several times now and is a definite "go to" recipe!!! The frosting is just glorious!
  3. quoteBerryquote Nut
    I am sorry, but this did not work for me.:( I followed all the instructions to try to bake this cake from scratch, the old fashioned way, but nothing good came out. The dough did not rise at all and instead made the cake flat and rubbery. I did not taste any red velvet flavor either.....


My passions are photography and cooking (a good combination to have a 'zaar!) I try to photograph every recipe I review. My family sometimes wishes we could just sit down to eat at night without first having to take pictures of what we are eating! I've been cooking for a long time and recently started baking from scratch. I have been a member at 'zaar for quite a few years and my tried-and-tried recipes come mainly from my favorite chefs here. I am dabbling in OAMC and pantry cooking and do a lot of baking due to my boys' food allergies. We follow the Feingold Program, an alternative to ADHD medications. Feingold eliminates food additives such as artificial flavors and colorings, synthetic sweeteners such as Equal and the petroleum-based preservatives such as BHT, BHA and TBHQ (ewww!!) You can find more information on the Feingold program by visiting the website at http://www.feingold.org. I have become a much better cook since starting the program two years ago and have become somewhat of a food snob because of it. I am a mom first and for-most. I also work with families who lose a child at or before birth. *I was formally mississippimorning.*
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