# DIY: Homemade Yellow Cake Batter Mix

It has probably been five years since I’ve used box cake mixes with any sort of regularity. Back in the day, I would bake one up in a 9×13-inch pan and then proceed to slather a can of chocolate frosting over the top. I think I’ve made some serious kitchen strides since those days, but leave it to all of those popular “cake batter” recipes to keep me tethered to cake mixes. Between cake batter ice cream, fudge, pancakes, and the zillion other recipe variations, not to mention all of the dump cake recipes that I keep seeing, I can’t seem to escape cake mixes. I haven’t made many of those recipes, mostly because I have really made a conscious effort over the last couple of years to eliminate a large majority of overly processed products from my kitchen. Anything that I can make homemade, I do. That includes cake, of course, but what about all of those recipes that call for cake *mix*, straight from the box? I was left in a quandary, until I happened upon this recipe. Leave it to the people at America’s Test Kitchens to come up with the answer. This quick, homemade mix is the perfect solution!

This mix takes literally minutes to throw together, and you can keep it in a zip-top bag in your freezer for up to 2 months. I am totally thrilled at the idea of never having to skip past a recipe because it calls for cake mix.

My plan is to use this mixture anytime a recipe calls for dry cake mix. If you’re interested in using the mix to bake a cake, be sure to check out the link in the note below for instructions.

Look out cake batter recipes, here I come!

**One year ago: **Garden Zucchini Pizza Casserole

**Three years ago:** Polenta Pizza

## DIY: Homemade Yellow Cake Batter Mix

Yield:5 cups cake mix

Prep Time:10 minutes

Total Time:10 minutes## Ingredients:

2 cups granulated sugar

1½ cups all-purpose flour

1½ cups cake flour

½ cup nonfat dry milk powder

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup unsalted butter, cut in ½-inch cubes and cold

1 tablespoon vanilla extract## Directions:

1. In the bowl of a food processor, combine the sugar, both flours, milk powder, baking powder and salt. Process for 15 seconds. Add the pieces of butter and lightly toss with a fork so they are coated with the flour mixture. Sprinkle the vanilla over the top. Pulse until the mixture is fine and crumbly, about 10 one-second pulses. Use immediately or store in an airtight bag or container in the freezer for up to 2 months.

Note: For instructions on how to make an actual cake with this mix, please visit Mel's Kitchen Cafe.

(Recipe adapted from Cook's Country; originally seen on Pennies on a Platter)

Sommer@ASpicyPerspectiveonAugust 28, 2012at12:11 amWhat an amazing idea! So many fantastic creations come from yellow cake mix.

Reply

Averie @ Averie CooksonAugust 28, 2012at12:22 amAwesome recreation! I love yellow cake mix. Ironically I just posted a from-scratch cake because I’m trying to use less cake mix – so loving this scratch version of cake mix. Dry milk powder and cake flour – nice!

Reply

Ashley @ Wishes and DishesonAugust 28, 2012at12:51 amSO awesome! I was always wondering about trying to make my own for all those cake batter recipes I see floating around out there.

Reply

Maria VivianonAugust 28, 2012at3:37 amWhat can I substitute for the milk powder? I am lactose-intolerant.

Thanks.

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 27th, 2012at1:09 pmHi Maria, I have heard of soy milk powder and rice milk powder. If you can find them, both would be a good substitute.

Reply

Maria VivianonSeptember 27th, 2012at1:46 pmThanks. I’ll try looking for those. Hope it comes out the same.

Reply

Seima BakesonAugust 28, 2012at4:08 amThis is great! In my place its hard to get a good cake mix,despite the fact that I don’t like to use cake mix,making one myself would be a fun change! This would definitely help to make baking a lot quicker in my home. Thanks!

Reply

Carole @ The Sweet ChickonAugust 28, 2012at6:35 amThis is perfect. Thanks.

Reply

Katrina @ Warm Vanilla SugaronAugust 28, 2012at6:36 amSuch a great idea!

Reply

Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and PeppersonAugust 28, 2012at6:38 amWhat what a fantastic idea! I love this!! Great idea, especially when you need an emergency cake and you don’t have time to go to the store to get the boxed stuff!!!

Reply

shelly (cookies and cups)onAugust 28, 2012at6:52 amThis is so awesome! I am totally going to try this!

Reply

Blog is the New BlackonAugust 28, 2012at7:28 amGREAT post!

Reply

DeaunaonAugust 28, 2012at8:14 amThanks for this post! I don’t like using boxed cake mixes either so I usually pass up all recipes calling for it. Now I don’t have to do that anymore.

Reply

Jessica @ Portuguese Girl CooksonAugust 28, 2012at8:29 amLove this idea!

Reply

JillonAugust 28, 2012at9:24 amOoooh, I love this! What a great idea!

Reply

CateonAugust 28, 2012at9:49 amI’m so happy you posted this! I haven’t bought a mix in years because of all the additives. This is great to keep on hand!

Reply

Annie @ Annie's City KitchenonAugust 28, 2012at10:08 amThis is the best thing ever! I love the idea of having this on-hand and ready to use. I’ll be making this tonight!

Reply

GailonAugust 28, 2012at10:12 amCall me dense; maybe I skimmed the blog too quickly; but why not just make a cake from scratch, unless this is something you want to make ahead of time? It’s a pretty cool idea, but I can’t get the advantage of it . . . if I’m going to use it right away, why not just pull out the favorite “cake from scratch” recipe? I’m not being sassy or nasty, just dense . . .

I also don’t own a food processor–would a good stand mixer work if I did try it?

Reply

VirginiaonAugust 29th, 2012at7:35 pmThe purpose of the recipe is not to make straight yellow cakes with the mix. Instead, this is for recipes that use “yellow box cake mix” as an ingredient–like cake mix cookies, cake batter flavored ice cream, dessert bars, etc. Many recipes call for “cake mix” with no clarification of a home-made substitute. So now you can truly use homemade, natural, less processed ingredients for each item in your recipes.

I hope this helps your confusion! =)

Reply

GailonAugust 29th, 2012at9:36 pmThanks, Virginia! I was out of town for a couple of days, so just catching up. This does make sense to me now. In thinking about it, I was thinking about the “purity” of the cake mix over processed foods.

I appreciate your sharing your thoughts with me!

Reply

heidid26onSeptember 25th, 2012at2:56 pmThe purpose of this is that a lot of fun recipes floating around right now call for dry yellow cake mix from the box. You don’t use the whole cake mix in this recipes and you don’t make up the actual cake. It’s used to add the “birthday cake” flavor to other recipes.

You’re right, if you’re going to make it right away, why not pull out a from scratch recipe unless you want to have this ready on hand for emergencies.

This recipe is more for the purpose of adding the cake flavor to other recipes that aren’t for a cake.

Reply

IdaKayonSeptember 13th, 2013at10:11 pmSome recipes call for adding a dry cake mix batter – so to get the correct item for the recipe you need to have equal ingredients. I regular cake recipe won’t work because you use liquid igredients. I hope I am saying this correctly

Reply

VanessaonMay 7th, 2014at2:07 pmI know this old but wanted to comment as well. I wanted to make a cobbler (family favorite) that is basically a “dump cake”–one that uses canned pie filling topped with one box of yellow cake mix to which extra butter has been added. I enjoy baking from scratch, so I used Michelle’s homemade pie filling and then was trying to re-create a similar topping from scratch. I wish I had found this sooner as it would have been perfect! Instead, I used a topping from another pie recipe, but it didn’t come out quite like boxed cake topping. I plan to make another cobbler soon just so I can try it with this!

Reply

Nikki @Pennies on a PlatteronAugust 28, 2012at10:30 amYay! Another freezer graced with this lovely cake mix! I seriously have been obsessed with this for the last month and wanting to throw it into everything, so watch out!

Reply

Laura DembowskionAugust 28, 2012at11:31 amI love all your homemade versions of packaged ingredients. I once only made cakes with boxed mix, but now I cannot imagine a day that I would even buy it. Like you, this has left me out of the plethora of cake batter recipes. It’s nice to know there’s a homemade alternative that I can use

Reply

StephanieonAugust 28, 2012at11:45 amWhat a great idea! I’ll definitely be stocking myself up with this! Thanks!

Reply

RuthonAugust 28, 2012at12:06 pmI really like this recipe and I plan to use it real soon with the holidays soon to be coming up. But I have a question which is do you add the other ingredients to it like it says on the cake box. I will admit that I am new at doing my some of my cooking from scratch. I like cooking that way, it makes me feel that it comes from the heart and not the box.

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 27th, 2012at1:04 pmHi Ruth, I posted this as an alternative to box cake mix when “cake batter” flavored recipes call for a mix. However, if you’d like to use it to make an actual cake, see the instructions here: http://www.melskitchencafe.com/2010/06/homemade-yellow-cake-mix.html (I included this link at the end of the post, but you may have missed it.)

Reply

Annie @ Annie's NomsonAugust 28, 2012at12:32 pmThank you so much!! I’ve seen so many amazing recipes, but then when I read the ingredient list it says “box of cake mix” and I’m immediately put off, this will come in so handy

Reply

Mercedes (Satisfy My Sweet Tooth)onAugust 28, 2012at12:51 pmI love this! What a great thing to have in your freezer! It has been years since I have purchased a cake mix also, but you’re right that there are so many recipes that call for funfetti mix or yellow cake mix and this will be so handy!

Reply

BRIDGETTonAugust 28, 2012at1:21 pm… hmmmm … so, where are the wet ingredients?

Reply

S.LynnonSeptember 6th, 2012at12:55 pmSee the link to Mels kitchen cafe.

Reply

AnnamariaonAugust 28, 2012at2:04 pmGreat post. Now there’s no need to run out and buy a cake mix if your recipe calls for one – you can just use the ingredients in your pantry.

Reply

Dana SmithonAugust 28, 2012at2:55 pmYet another reason you are my hero. I HATE using box mixes and have been looking for a recipe for yellow cake mix. I can use this for cake batter ice cream AND for my gooey butter cake cookies. I can’t wait to try it out! Thank you!!

Reply

Anna @ Crunchy Creamy SweetonAugust 28, 2012at3:23 pmI feel the same way about cake mixes. Haven’t bought one for a while now. But there is a lot of recipes that I want to make and they all use cake mix. THIS is amazing! Nothing better than a homemade! Thanks, Michelle!

Reply

JoyonAugust 28, 2012at5:12 pmI’ve been on the hunt for a great homemade box mix so that I can make all those recipes I’ve shied away from in the past… I like to do all my baking from scratch. But I have a question: Is the recipe as written equivalent to 1 “box cake mix?” Most of the recipes I’ve seen don’t specify a number of cups of mix needed, rather they just say 1 box. If you could let me know whenever you get a chance. I’d REALLY appreciate it. Thanks so much!

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 27th, 2012at1:03 pmHi Joy, Yes, this is the equivalent of 1 box of cake mix.

Reply

RileyonAugust 28, 2012at6:15 pmBrilliant! This is such a cool idea!

Reply

MeganonAugust 28, 2012at6:52 pmYay! I love yellow cake out of the box but hate the idea of eating cake from a box. You have just solved my dilemma!

Reply

Lisa {Sweet 2 Eat Baking}onAugust 28, 2012at8:23 pmLove, love, LOVE that you’ve posted a recipe for a yellow cake batter ‘box’ mix without all the over processed crap. Here in the UK, box mixes are a little over priced for what they are and I always have the mentality that it’s just as simple to make your own from scratch. Love that you’ve provided a recipe for this. It’s going to make my life so much easier.

Reply

MaryonAugust 29, 2012at5:13 amQuick question – this recipe makes 5 cups of cake mix, but how many cups usually come in one box? In other words, does this one recipe make more than one box mix?

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 27th, 2012at4:28 pmHi Mary, No, this is equivalent to one box of mix. Most mixes yield 4.5 to 5 cups.

Reply

mechellebelleonJanuary 26th, 2013at7:37 pmThanks for answering this one. I had the same question as the recipe I want to try calls for one box of mix. I too dislike box mixes. They never taste anywhere near as good as a homemade scratch cake! I am to the point that if I know a cake is made from a mix and a plastic tub of frosting, I will decline it, saying “sorry, I am full!” haha

Reply

TraceyonAugust 29, 2012at12:54 pmI’ve had this recipe on my to-do list for a while but never seem to get around to it. I’m so excited about it! No more half empty boxes of cake mix in the pantry from all the cake batter recipes I want to try

Reply

shawnonAugust 30, 2012at2:45 pmif you are good at math (i ask my hubby) a regular box of cake mix before sizes changed was 18.25 ounces. a cup is 8 ounces. usually that’s fluid but it does roughly translate to flour and stuff. somebody should measure out a cake mix from the box and do a comparison and then let the rest of us mathematically challenged know the results! i would estimate that you’d need two and a half cups of this to equal one box of mix but don’t quote me.

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 27th, 2012at4:38 pmHi Shawn, A cup of all-purpose flour weighs in around 4.5 ounces, and depending on the protein content could be as little as 4.25 ounces or as much as 5 ounces, it all depends. Different ingredients have much different volumes, which can affect weighing and measuring. The 8 ounces = 1 cup measure is only accurate for fluid liquids.

Reply

Amanda AonAugust 31, 2012at12:03 amyay! I would rather have homemade than box mix! Thanks for sharing.

Reply

Ardex Cd Fine Concrete DressingonSeptember 10, 2012at6:57 pmI love it… it’s probably better for you too… no secret mystery ingredients!

Reply

heidid26onSeptember 25, 2012at3:00 pmHave you tried making it with all-purpose flour only and not using the cake flour? I’m curious if it changes anything, especially if you’re not using it to actually make a cake.

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 27th, 2012at10:04 amI have not tried changing flours in the recipe, although the cake flour will make it a little lighter and not as weighed-down as the all-purpose.

Reply

Angie @ Big Bear's WifeonSeptember 25, 2012at7:33 pmooo I am so glad I found this! I don’t have a problem with cake mix but when I cake make something from scratch, I always like that better. I’m wondering If I can find a homemade white cake mix…. hummmm….

Reply

Baker ProgramonSeptember 28, 2012at7:03 amDiscussions like this about a yellow cake are a good a way to promote and expand the topic. Great information. Nice work Michelle.

Reply

Turtlegirl73onNovember 12, 2012at4:20 pmThanks for the recipe! I did change it up bit and used Splenda sugar blend to make a dump cake for my diabetic dad. It worked perfectly.

Reply

JocelynonDecember 31, 2012at10:52 pmI used this to make Cake Batter Milkshakes for my kids. Fabulous!

Reply

SusanonFebruary 9, 2013at12:39 pmHave you used this so far in any of your own recipes? I want to use it in a recipe for pumpkin bars that calls for yellow cake mix to make the crust and the topping. I am wondering if you used it, and what for. Thanks!

Reply

AnikonFebruary 13, 2013at4:18 pmThank you so much for this recipe. I’m understanding your frustration when you say you’ve looked for a “from scratch” recipe and all you get are recipes that call for a cake mix!! grrrrr!! Why don’t people want to bake from scratch anymore??

Reply

KathyonFebruary 24, 2013at12:31 pmUnfortunately, I have made these substitutions twice now and both times the cake came out of the oven looking fabulous and immediately fell and caved in. Any ideas on what went wrong? Made all the substitutions as suggested. First time was using a yellow cake box cake and second time a french vanila box cake.

Reply

MichelleonFebruary 26th, 2013at5:21 pmHi Kathy, I’m confused. Did you use this mix to make a cake, or did you do something with a box cake mix?

Reply

HollyonFebruary 25, 2013at11:39 amI found this recipe on pinterest. I made it exactly as you listed, but it looked like so much more than the equivellant of one box of cake mix, so I weighed it. As it is written, I was able to make two 19 oz mixes, with a scant two ounces remaining. I can see me having a bit more or less flour in each cup, but having twice as much weight as a single box is leaving me puzzled a to how you think this one recipe equals one box of mix. Thoughts?

Reply

Ellie RobinsononApril 28th, 2013at9:26 amThis mix was perfect. Thank you, Michelle for sharing. Thank you Holly for the tip on making two mixes!! 1/2 the recipe is enough for dump cake and 1/2 for crust for a cheese cake I found on pinch it. I like the results of the mix bcz you can add more or less to the recipes out there that call for cake mix

Reply

SueonOctober 14th, 2014at7:28 pmI have the same question as Elle. I just made the mix and ended up with enough for two 18oz cake mixes with some left over. I made this for a recipe that calls for an 18oz box of yellow cake mix. Am I right in assuming that I just weigh out 18 ounces of the mix for my recipe? Or am I completely missing something?

Reply

MichelleonOctober 15th, 2014at11:05 amHi Sue, Yes, you would just weigh out the dry ingredients and proceed with the recipe.

Reply

HeatheronMarch 8, 2013at9:18 amThanks Michelle for posting this recipe! I re-posted it on to my site, bostongirlbakes.blogspot.com, and made some yummy cake batter blondies with it. It’s so nice to know I don’t have to go out and buy those preservative-laden mixes anymore!

Heather

Reply

AbbeyonMarch 17, 2013at5:18 pmI am curious about making a chocolate cake mix. Can you add cocoa to the mix, and if so how much would you recommend?

Reply

MichelleonMarch 24th, 2013at9:54 amHi Abbey, I haven’t tried doing this yet, so unfortunately I don’t have a recommendation as to the amount of cocoa powder to try to make a chocolate mix.

Reply

BakerGirlonMarch 27, 2013at9:21 amOk, have any of you actually USED this recipe to bake anything? Also, I’m a little confused. Does this substitute boxed cake mix or is this just for giving recipes that “birthday cake” taste? I have a recipe for a “Sunshine Cake” Ingredients as follows:

1 Lemon

1 Orange

1 Carrot, Grated

3 Eggs

I 160z Sour Cream

1 Package Yellow Cake Mix

***Can I use your recipe instead of the yellow cake mix and how much of it would I use?*** Thank you!!

Reply

MichelleonMarch 28th, 2013at3:13 pmYes, you could use this recipe. There are approximately 3 cups of dry mix in a box of cake mix, so that’s how much of this you would use.

Reply

joonMarch 26th, 2014at1:07 pmI’m confused. In an earlier comment you said this recipe is equivalent to one box of cake mix, about 5 cups. I looked at Mel’s page and she gives contrary advice, too. She says Cook’s Country used this recipe for 1 cake, but she recommends half the recipe for a plain cake, and about 3 1/2 cups if a non-mixed application like a cobbler…I have no idea what to do. Just keep reading comments I guess and see if anybody’s figured it out!

Reply

MichelleonMarch 29th, 2014at1:05 pmHi Jo, The yield of batter that comes from a box cake mix is 5 cups; that’s prepared batter with the eggs, oil, water, etc. added in and mixed. The amount of dry mix is around 3 cups.

Reply

Mary Lou CraigonJuly 20, 2013at6:47 pmI stay away from cake mixes because it has an ingredient that I causes my hands to break out and I itch all over.

Reply

AyshaonSeptember 3, 2013at1:27 amWill this work with dump cake? I want to use this as a substitute for the dry cake mix that goes on the second layer of dump cake, but is this recipe truly a dry cake mix? I guess the adding of the butter and liquid vanilla extract throws me off.

Reply

MichelleonSeptember 5th, 2013at4:04 pmHi Aysha, I’ve never made “dump cake”, but you can substitute this mix for any recipe that calls for a yellow box cake mix.

Reply

roseonOctober 1, 2013at7:25 pmhi: how can i convert this recipe to fit 8×8 square pan? there’s only 2 people in our household and i don’t want to freeze leftover if i can. thanks.

Reply

MichelleonOctober 3rd, 2013at2:50 pmHi Rose, You should be able to cut the recipe in half if you are making a cake.

Reply