Red Velvet Cupcakes with Finger Millet (Ragi) Flour and Beetroot {Eggless, No Butter}

Buttery and spongy Red Velvet Cupcakes with that tangy Cream Cheese Frosting is everybody’s favorite. There are many recipes out there on the web to recreate the same at home. But these little goodies which I baked yesterday are healthy and affordable which are made of beetroot puree for the natural color. And, I substituted some of the flour with finger millet (ragi) flour to increase its nutritional value. Finger millet is rich in calcium, iron, protein, and fiber which keeps the tummy full for longer time. I never cooked with ragi before and the only thing I remember about it is ragi malt (porridge) which I was given during childhood for its health benefits. When I saw this flour at supermarket, I instantly picked it up to experiment with it and with a little research on internet, I came to know that it can be used in baking too.

Egg-less baking is another interest which I am involved in these days. People think egg-less baking makes the product tough and unappetizing but by using certain ingredients we can keep them a little less tough and flavorful. General rule for egg-less and butter free baking is that, we can substitute 1/4 cup of vegetable or fruit puree for each egg and similarly we can substitute 3/4 cup of oil for 1 cup of butter. Here, we are using beetroot puree and oil. Finger millet flour make any baked goods chewy, so I used all purpose flour as the main ingredient to soften it up. The raising agent is vinegar and baking powder/soda used.

As I ran out  of cream cheese, I used white chocolate mousse as frosting. These cupcakes came out moist with subtle flavor of earthy beetroot and cocoa and vanilla extract giving its magical taste. Try these cupcakes and let me know how they turned out for you.

Red Velvet Cupcakes with Ragi Flour and Beetroot

Red Velvet Cupcakes

Servings:12

Ingredients:

Dry Ingredients:

All Purpose Flour: 1 cup

Ragi Flour: 1/2 cup

Cocoa Powder: 4 tsp, heaped

Baking Powder: 1 1/4 tsp

Baking Soda: 1/2 tsp

Salt: 1 pinch

Brown Sugar: 1 1/4 cup

Wet Ingredients:

Beetroot Puree: 3/4 cup

Oil: 1/2 cup

Milk: 1 cup

Vinegar: 1 tbsp

Vanilla Essence: 1 tsp

Hot Water: 2 tbsp

Procedure:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a muffin tray with cupcake liners
  2. Heat a pan and dry roast the Ragi flour on medium heat for 5 minutes until the raw smell goes off
  3. Mix milk and vinegar separately in a small bowl and set aside for 5 minutes. This step is to make the milk sour to make soft and fluffy cupcakes. (Alternatively, you can use 1 cup of yogurt)
  4. Meanwhile, sift together All Purpose Flour, Ragi, Cocoa, Baking Powder, Baking Soda and Salt in one bowl
  5. In another bowl, bring together milk mixture, oil and sugar. Mix well until sugar dissolves. (You can do this easily in a blender)
  6. Add beetroot puree and vanilla extract to this wet mixture and mix well
  7. Add the dry ingredients to wet ingredients in three batches. Fold it gently to incorporate. (Do not over work the mixture)
  8. Pour the batter into cupcake liners until two-thirds filled and pat them gently to settle properly
  9. Bake for 20-25 minutes until the toothpick inserted in center comes out clean
  10. Let them cool completely before serving or frosting

White Chocolate Mousse Frosting

Ingredients:

White Chocolate Chips: 1/4 cup

Milk: 1 tbsp

Heavy Whipping Cream: 1/2 cup

Vanilla Extract: 1/4 tsp

Procedure:

  1. In a microwave safe bowl, mix together chocolate chips and milk and microwave on high for 30 secs with two to three intervals until chocolate is melted. (Mix it with spoon to check if melted)
  2. In another bowl, take cream and vanilla. Beat it with hand blender or whisk until stiff peaks form
  3. Gently mix whipped cream into the melted chocolate in few batches using cut and fold method
  4. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and pipe it into piping bag or Ziploc bag
  5. Pipe it on the cupcakes only after they cool down completely

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Notes:

  1. You can keep the cupcakes covered in fridge for 1 week
  2. You can steam the cupcakes or microwave for 5-6 secs before serving if they get tough by any chance
  3. Frost the cupcakes just before serving

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