Lower-calorie red velvet cupcakes recipe

(53 ratings)

Lower calorie red velvet cupcakes
(Image credit: TI Media Limited)
  • healthy
Preparation Time20 mins
Cooking Time20 mins
Total Time40 mins
Cost RangeCheap
Nutrition Per PortionRDA
Calories255 Kcal13%
Fat12.5 g18%
Saturated Fat4.5 g23%

These deliciously soft and moist lower-calorie red velvet cupcakes are just 255 calories per cupcake. 

This recipe for lower-calorie red velvet cupcakes swaps regular red velvet ingredients for lower fat and lower calorie options including low-fat spread and low-calorie sweetener granules. Each cupcake is topped with a delicate cream cheese frosting. These cupcakes have to be one of our favourite lower-fat cake recipes.


For the cupcakes:

  • 60g low-fat spread
  • 15g low-calorie sweetener granules (we used Canderel Yellow Granules)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1tbsp dark cocoa powder
  • 2tsp red food colouring
  • 120ml buttermilk
  • 150g self-raising flour, sifted
  • 1tsp baking powder
  • 2tsp white wine vinegar
  • Pinch of salt

For the topping:

  • 50g/2oz low-fat spread
  • About 2tbsp low-calorie sweetener granules (we used Canderel Yellow Granules)
  • 125g/4oz low-fat cream cheese, chilled

You will also need:

  • 6 large cupcake cases 
  • Deep 6-hole muffin tin




  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 and sit the paper cases into a deep 6-hole muffin tin.
  2. Add the low-fat spread to the bowl of a food mixer then add the eggs and low-calorie sweetener and beat for a few mins until the mixture becomes light and creamy.
  3. In another bowl mix together the cocoa powder and red food colouring then add to the creamed mixture and beat again until well combined.
  4. Now turn the mixer speed to low and add the buttermilk, flour and baking powder and beat until it is all combined - it should be a fabulous red colour.
  5. Pour in the white wine vinegar and salt and beat on slow for a couple more mins. The mixture will be fairly runny.
  6. Carefully spoon the mixture into the cases, making sure no mixture spills. Put in the oven and bake in the oven for about 20 mins or until the cakes are springy when touched. Remove from the oven and let them cool for 10 mins. Then carefully remove the cupcakes from the tin (which will still be hot) and sit them on a wire rack to cool completely before topping.
  7. For the topping: While the cupcakes are cooling, beat the low-fat spread and  low-calorie sweetener together until well combined then beat in the cream cheese until it is light and fluffy. Spread or pipe over the cupcakes and top with a cherry.

Top tips for making low calorie red velvet cupcakes

If making these cupcakes by hand, use a large metal spoon to beat well in between adding the ingredients in order. After adding the flour use a folding technique to combine the ingredients.

The rich, deep red colour in these cupcakes is achieved by dark chocolate cocoa powder and red food colouring. We’d recommend using red food colouring gel for the richest colour.

Store these cupcakes in an airtight container or cake tin on the kitchen side for up to 2 days.

You might also like…

Classic red velvet cupcakes

Red velvet cake recipe

Cupcake recipe

Jessica Dady
Food Editor

Jessica Dady is Food Editor at GoodtoKnow and has over 11 years of experience as a digital editor, specialising in all things food, recipes, and SEO. From the must-buy seasonal food hampers and advent calendars for Christmas to the family-friendly air fryers that’ll make dinner time a breeze, Jessica loves trying and testing various food products to find the best of the best for the busy parents among us. Over the years of working with GoodtoKnow, Jessica has had the privilege of working alongside Future’s Test Kitchen to create exclusive videos - as well as writing, testing, and shooting her own recipes. When she’s not embracing the great outdoors with her family at the weekends, Jessica enjoys baking up a storm in the kitchen with her favourite bakes being chocolate chip cookies, cupcakes, and a tray of gooey chocolate brownies