October 29, 2013

Red Velvet Cake in a Jar! Perfect for Care Packages!

 My husband Ashton is gone on his first deployment and I am always trying to think of fun and creative things to send in his care packages. After searching on Pinterest for care package ideas I came across numerous cake in jar recipes. I loved the clever idea of baking a cake in a jar and then sealing it so it stays moist and fresh for a month plus. So I decided for this month's care package for Ashton I would make his favorite cake, Red Velvet, and bake and send it in a jar!
Don't be intimidated. This recipe is super simple. However, you can also use any box mix and bake in a jar too! Or think "out of the box" and bake brownies, pie, or bread in a jar!

View my how to video here! 

Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 4 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • 1-2 tbsp red food coloring
  • 1 tsp white vinegar
  • 1 tsp baking soda

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 
  2. Wash and dry mason jars, set lids aside. Pint size jars work great. Spray with non stick spray.
  3.  For the cake: Sift together flour, unsweetened cocoa powder, and salt; whisk to combine. Set aside.
  4. In a large mixing bowl beat butter and sugar until creamed and combined.
  5. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
  6. In a small bowl or measuring cup mix buttermilk and red food coloring.
  7. With the mixer running on low alternately add 1/4 of the flour and 1/3 of the buttermilk mix until fully combined (start with flour).
  8. Finally mix baking soda and white vinegar in a small bowl or cup.
  9. Pour into batter and mix well (if making batter ahead of time wait to do this step until right before you bake).
  10. Pour batter into jars, filling halfway. I use a measuring cup for less mess. 
  11. Place jars on a baking sheet, 6 to 8 per baking sheet.
  12. Bake for 20-30 minutes, depending on what size jars you use. Stick a toothpick or butter knife in the center and if they come out clean the cake is done! 
  13. Meanwhile, while cakes are baking, place lids (not rings) in a small saucepan filled with water.  bring to a boil and then turn off heat and let sit in hot water while cakes bake. 
  14. As soon as cakes come out of the oven remove lids one out of a time with tongs and dry off with a hand towel.
  15. Place lids on top of hot jars (wear oven mitts!) and screw the rings on each jar tightly. 
  16. Set aside to cool. The lids will pop when they seal from the heat, approx 30 min. 
  17. You can decorate with ribbon and a gift tag and don't forget to send a jar of frosting!

My grocery store was out of large bottles of red food coloring so I bought the assorted pack with a smaller bottle. One of these small bottles is only 1 tbsp so if you want a bright red cake you will need 2 bottles.

Combine softened butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and mix on medium until creamed.

Add eggs and vanilla.
In a separate bowl mix flour, cocoa powder, and salt.
Sift together and combine back in a bowl.
In a small cup mix buttermilk and red food coloring
 (1-2 tbsp depending on how bright of red you want).
Finally, in a small bowl mix white vinegar and baking soda. It will fizz up. 
Add it immediately to the batter. 

 

Don't skip the vinegar and baking soda mix. This makes the batter fluffy and moist! Also don't add it to the batter until you are ready to bake. So if you prepare the batter in advance, add this mixture later right before you are about to bake the cake! 





Mix the batter together and now you are ready to bake!
I pour my batter into a measuring cup so it is easier to pour into the jars.

Spray jars with non stick spray 
Fill each jar halfway with batter.
Place jars on a baking sheet, about 6 on each sheet. 
Bake at 400 degrees for 20-30 min (I baked mine for closer to 30 min).
While the cakes bake, place lids (tops only) in a small saucepan
 filled with water and bring to a boil. After the water boils, turn off heat, and let the lids sit in the hot water the entire time the cakes bake.
I used the leftover batter to make mini cupcakes!
Cakes in jars fresh out of the oven! Don't worry about them baking higher than the rim of the jars. When you seal the lids on, the cakes will go down.
As soon as the jars come out of the oven, remove the hot lids out of the hot water with tongs and dry off with a towel. Place on top of jar and screw on ring tightly.
Let jars cool, and in about 30 minutes, they will seal and the lids will pop. 
Your cakes will stay fresh and moist!
Ava helped me wrap up the jars in bubble wrap and
 pack the care package up for her Daddy.
I decorated the jars with ribbon, patriotic gift tags and included a jar of cream cheese frosting
You can also bake this into any size cake. This year I made it into a Bundt Cake drizzled with cheesecake and chocolate sauces. 
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1 comment:

  1. Are these pint jars or half pint? You said pint but they look smaller.

    ReplyDelete

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