Boxed cake mixes are superbly convenient. Just dump, mix, and bake.
However, they're also superbly unhealthy. Many are filled with artificial flavors, hydrogenated oils, preservatives, and other undesirable additives. Sodium stearoyl-2-lactylate, anyone?
Thus, when I was invited to write my book, The DIY Pantry, a book that replaces common everyday store-bought pantry staples with simple, wholesome, homemade varieties, I knew cake mix had to be included. In fact, I included two: this yellow cake variety and a chocolate cake mix that truly takes the cake. (Pun totally intended. 🙂 )
And the beauty of a homemade mix is simply that: measure, mix, and bake. Super, super simple.
So, may your birthdays, baby showers, Sunday teas, and other cake making occasions be truly delightful – and nourished. 🙂
By the way, if you'd like to avoid the Yellow 5 and Red 40 that lurk in many cake mixes, check out our post on how to make homemade food coloring. Not that you'll need it in the mix itself, but you might want it for your frosting. 🙂
- 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour (preferably unbleached & unbromated)
- 1 1/4 cups unrefined cane sugar
- 3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 cup palm shortening or cold butter, cubed
- 1 1/4 cups milk
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 3 large eggs
- Sift together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt.
- Add the palm shortening or cold butter cubes and rub them into the flour mixture until the entire mixture looks like fine crumbs.
- Store the dry cake mixture in an airtight container for up to 6 months if you used palm shortening, or for up to two weeks if you used butter (mix made with butter may also be stored in the freezer to extend its shelf life to six months).
- Mix the milk, coconut oil, vanilla, and eggs into the dry cake mix (if you've made a large volume of mix, measure out a scant 4 1/2 cups cake mix). Mix well and beat for 2 minutes.
- Scrape the batter into greased pans and bake at 350F for the estimated time listed below until a toothpick comes out clean or until the cake springs back when touched lightly near the center.
- 9" x 13" pan: 32-36 minutes
- 9" round pan: 27-31 minutes
- Cupcakes: 17-20 minutes
- Mini-cupcakes: 11-14 minutes
- Let cool in the pan for about 15 minutes; then invert onto a rack to cool completely. Store cake or cupcakes in an airtight resealable plastic bag or other airtight container for up to 5 days.