Perfect Cupcakes Start With a Cake Mix & then Add Magic

  • Reading time:8 mins read
  • Post category:Cupcakes

You can make perfect cupcakes from a cake mix because there’s a science behind the ingredients. They will turn out every time. But . . . if you add other ingredients, you get best ever cupcakes and you can now claim to have “made them yourself”. Take all the kudos family and friends offer!

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Can you make cupcakes from a cake mix?

Absolutely. Cupcakes are mini cakes, after all. But using a cake mix as the base for your cupcakes is convenient, guaranteed to turn out every time, and encourages you to actually bake because it feels easier & faster than baking from scratch.

Here is the secret to moist cupcakes using a cake mix.

DO NOT add the ingredients as instructed on the box. Use the cake mix as a base and then add the ingredients in the cupcake recipe below. Cake mixes on their own can be dry, but these substitutions and additions create moist cupcakes with a thicker batter that keeps mix-ins (like chocolate chips or nuts) from sinking to the bottom.

Can I make cupcakes without an electric mixer?

Technically, yes. But if you want a lighter, fluffier batter, an electric mixer is best. Mixing means introducing air into the batter and it’s very difficult to whisk your batter fast enough by hand to create the perfect cupcakes you want to serve to family and friends. But – you don’t have to have an expensive stand mixer. Use a hand mixer for the same results.

Make the best ever cupcakes from a mix with mix-ins & they’ll never know.

Mix-ins are optional, of course. But best ever cupcakes require a special touch. With mix-ins you can create signature cupcakes and no one will ever suspect you started with a cake mix.

Here are a few ideas for mix-ins. Add 1/2 cup of one depending on whether your cupcakes are white or chocolate. (Except for the zest. Use less.)

  • chocolate chips
  • small candy pieces (put them in a zippered plastic bag & use rolling pin)
  • shredded coconut
  • nut pieces
  • real bacon bits
  • dried or fresh fruit
  • lemon or lime zest

Recipe: Perfect Chocolate Cupcakes Starting with a Cake Mix

Begin with the scientifically balanced chocolate cake mix, add your own touches and you have an amazing chocolate cupcake that turns out every time that you can call your own.

  • mixer
  • 1 box chocolate cake mix
  • 1 pkg chocolate pudding mix
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ c water
  • ½ c vegetable oil
  • ½ c sour cream or mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
  • 1/2 c mix-ins such as chocolate chips or nuts (optional)
  • standard paper baking cups
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place baking cups in muffin pan.

  2. Combine cake mix and pudding mix, Stir in eggs, water, oil, and sour cream (or mayo) in a stand mixer. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed.

  3. Stir in mix-ins, if using. Scoop batter into cupcake liners until ⅔ full.

  4. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean; cool completely.

  5. Decorate as you wish.

Dessert
cupcake

Recipe: Perfect White Cupcakes Starting with a Cake Mix

Begin with the scientifically balanced white cake mix, add better ingredients – and maybe even mix-ins, and you have moist cupcakes that turn out perfectly every time.

  • electric mixer
  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 pkg vanilla pudding mix
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ c water
  • ½ c vegetable oil
  • ½ c sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla or almond extract
  • standard paper baking cups
  • ½ c mix-ins such as white chocolate chips (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place baking cups in muffin pan.

  2. Combine cake mix and pudding mix. Stir in eggs, water, oil, and sour cream (or mayo) in a mixing bowl or stand mixer. Beat for 2 minutes on medium speed.

  3. Stir in mix-ins, if using. Scoop batter into cupcake liners until ⅔ full.

  4. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean; cool completely.

  5. Decorate.

Dessert
cupcake

Want more? See all of our cupcake recipes.

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