With a little research, I found some great tips to take your boxed cake mix to the next level. These simple tips & tricks will work for pretty much any flavor cake mix, any brand (though some brands are better than others), and should work fine for a gluten-free mix as well. You can also make these into cupcakes. (Cupcakes are just cake in a cuter, mini form!)
- Replace the oil with melted butter (salted or unsalted, just not margarine).
- Use apple sauce, fat-free yogurt, or fat-free sour cream instead of oil to make your cake low fat!
- Add an extra egg. Use the amount of eggs in the box recipe, but then add in one more.
- Replace the water in the recipe for milk or buttermilk.
*To make your own buttermilk (makes 1 cup): mix 1 cup milk and 1 Tablespoon vinegar or lemon juice. Let stand for 5 minutes.
Perfect Chocolate Cake (from cake mix)
*Every box cake recipe is similar, but check your mix for specific measurements!
1 Devil's Food cake mix (Betty Crocker, Duncan Hines, and Pillsbury are my favorites)
4 eggs (use the amount of eggs in the box recipe, but then add in one more)
1/2 cup melted butter (substitute oil in the box recipe)
1 1/3 cup milk (substitute water in the box recipe)
Mix and bake according to box directions. Baking time and temperatures should be listed for cakes, cupcakes & bundt cakes.
Here's a few tips to help your cake come out beautifully (I'm not a cake professional, but these tricks work for me):
- Don't overmix. This will get too much air in the batter and can cause the cake to collapse.
- Test your cake for doneness by inserting a tooth pick in the center. If it does not come out clean, then bake the cake for a little longer.
- Get an oven thermometer (they are under $10) to check the accuracy of your oven temperature. If the temperature of the oven is too high, your cake could rise too rapidly, then sink in the middle. Too low and you'll have an undercooked cake. Yuck.
- I know it's fun to watch a cake bake, but resist opening the door. Checking on the cake before the batter is set can cause the cake to sink.