Take your box cake mix to the next level by using my 10 Tricks To Make A Box Cake Mix Taste Homemade. If you’re ever wondering how to make your box cake mix taste better, this post is for you!

There’s just nothing like a big piece of homemade chocolate cake with creamy, chocolate frosting, and a tall glass of milk.

I don’t know about you, but I don’t always have time to make a recipe from scratch. And If I do have time, will it turn out awesome every time? So, I have a little trick up my sleeve on How To Make a Box Cake Mix Taste Homemade!

I turn to a doctored up cake mix to get the best cake and cupcakes around!

10 Tricks to Make A Box Cake Mix Taste Like Homemade

How To Make a Box Cake Mix Taste Better

Did you know that most professional cake makers use boxed cake mixes? They do!

I had no idea until I saw one of our town’s biggest wedding cake bakers checking out at the store with powdered sugar, butter, eggs, and several boxes of Duncan Hines White Cake Mix!

I could have sworn her cakes were homemade! Nope. They are all about how to make boxed cake mix better when they’re creating a wedding cake.

If you’re ready to learn how to make a box cake taste like a wedding cake – you’ve come to the right place!

Come to find out from a trusted friend that is known for her amazing cakes, that they even teach bakers in classes that you really can’t beat a Duncan Hines and Betty Crocker Cake mix these days! It really is the best box cake mix.

Apparently, the box mixes include the perfect mix of ingredients for a perfectly finished cake – every time! So, you HAVE TO TRY IT! It’s the best way on how to make a box cake mix better!

box cake mix, eggs and oil

I decided it was time to put this little hack to the test and I pulled out a box cake mix, added in some ingredients that made it taste a little more “homemade”, baked it, and added my homemade buttercream frosting. (See me make buttercream frosting below! )

Yep! It tasted just like it was made from scratch! I was sold.

There is definitely a time for a homemade, from scratch cake – but there is also a time for doctoring up a boxed mix to make it taste just like homemade. If you want to figure out just how to make a box cake moist and fluffy, these tricks are just what you need.

So today I’m sharing the best cake mix hacks on how to make box cake taste better that you’ll definitely want to try!

 Here are THE BEST Tricks On How To Make Box Cake Better!

Make A Box Cake Mix Taste Like Homemade

Try adding a few of these tips to your box cake mix taste better!

  1. Use milk instead of water.
    Use whole milk instead of water. It gives it a denser texture like homemade with an improved taste. You can also use buttermilk in place of whole milk.
  2. Add extra eggs.
    To get an extra rich and moist cake, stir in two extra egg yolks along with the eggs the recipe calls for.
  3. Add sugar and flour to the dry mix.
    Add 1/4- 1 cup sugar and flour to your cake mix.
  4. Use coffee instead of water for chocolate cakes.
    For chocolate cakes, use strong brewed coffee instead of water to deepen the flavor.
  5. Sour Cream is perfect for adding moisture and rich flavor.
    Add in 1/2 cup sour cream to add a more dense, rich flavor. Or use mayonnaise and make Copycat Portillo’s Chocolate Cake!
  6. Pudding adds moisture and flavor. 
    Add a small instant pudding box to the mix to add moisture and flavor.
  7. Vanilla & Salt give the cake a more homemade taste.
    Add in a teaspoon of vanilla and 1/4 teaspoon of salt the mix.
  8. Butter instead of oil.
    Use melted butter in the place of vegetable oil for a richer taste. For an extra decadent cake, add two tablespoons of mayonnaise.
  9. Mix-Ins to personalize and level up the flavor. 
    Add a handful of chocolate chips, fruit, or nuts to personalize your cake.
  10. Homemade Frosting is a game changer!
    Make homemade buttercream frosting! This is a MUST for cakes. Either vanilla buttercream or chocolate buttercream will make all the difference in the world!

That’s it! Try a few of these tricks the next time you’re wondering how to improve boxed cake mix. I have a feeling you will be reaching for a box mix more often!

If you want to see some of these tricks in action, check out this video where I make this cake LIVE on Good Day Marketplace HERE

Winning Box Cake Mix Recipes

chocolate cupcakes topped with cream cheese frosting

Chocolate Cupcakes (From a Doctored Cake Mix)

For super moist chocolate cupcakes, try this Chocolate Cupcakes (from a doctored cake mix) recipe. It really does make the absolute best chocolate cupcakes! Top with my homemade buttercream frosting and chocolate shavings.
4.14 from 219 votes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 24
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 18 minutes
Total Time: 28 minutes


  • 1 15 oz. ounce box box devil’s food cake mix
  • 1 box instant chocolate pudding (dry)
  • 4 eggs
  • ¾ cup canola oil
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla


  • Preheat the oven to 325℉. Place cupcake liners in cupcake pans.
  • Whisk together the dry ingredients in a large bowl.
  • Add the remaining ingredients and beat with a hand mixer for 2 minutes.
  • Use an ice cream scoop to fill cupcake liners about ¾ full.
  • Bake about 18 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
  • Cool completely before frosting.
  • Pipe on frosting with a large star tip for a swirl or just by hand!

Butter Cream Frosting



    Calories: 96kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 33mg | Sodium: 21mg | Potassium: 34mg | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 112IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 23mg | Iron: 1mg
    Did you make this recipe?Mention @kasey_allthingsmamma or tag #allthingsmamma!

    CLICK BELOW for my FREE printable cheat sheet for

    Printable Cake Mix Hacks———-> 10 Tricks For Making A Box Cake Taste Homemade – Printable

    make a delicious cake


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    About Kasey Schwartz

    For over 15 years, Kasey Schwartz, the mastermind behind All Things Mamma, has been the ultimate go-to for mouthwatering family recipes. Her work has been featured on Today.com, Buzz Feed, Better Homes and Gardens, and more, making her your go-to mom next door for all things delicious and family-friendly.


    1. For the devils food cake, would I use coffee instead of milk or both. 1/4-1c of sugar and flour ??? That’s a big span. Would you add equal parts of the two. Would the cook time or temp need to be adjusted after adding all these tricks?

      1. 5 stars
        Rae, I recently used the Betty Crocker Super Moist Devil’s Food cake mix and incorporated some hacks. Replaced the oil with melted butter, added two extra egg yolks, used I cup of strong brewed coffee, and topped off the remainder of the liquid measurement with whole milk. Didn’t want a coffee taste, so I capped it at 1 cup. Added another dash (maybe 1/2 teaspoon?) vanilla extract. I wanted to make chocolate cherry cupcakes, so I diced some frozen cherries (you could use marischinos, but I used frozen). Tossed them in flour so they would suspend better in the batter, and baked as cupcakes. I frosted them with another hack, Cool Whip frosting, topped with half a cherry. They were a real hit and looked great. Nice moist cake texture.

    2. What options do you think are the best. If I add more sugar and flour, do I need to add more liquids?

      1. I do have a question is this going to be the same amount of ingredients for the yellow cake mix and the chocolate cake mix. Or is the chocolate different. Or is it going to be the same amount of ingredient.
        I’m making 2 11×15 yellow Duncan Hines cakes. and and 1 8inch round dark chocolate cake.
        2 for April 3rd and one for April 4th

    3. Jere Cassidy says:

      5 stars
      Great tips for cake mixes. I always add butter to my mixes and now I can’t wait to try the other tips.

    4. Krista Romano says:

      5 stars
      These are such great ideas for dressing up a cake mix!

    5. 5 stars
      Thank you so much for the helpful tips! Sometime you just want to use boxed mix and I’m excited to use this recipe to help make it taste more like from scratch!

      1. Susan Trager says:

        5 stars
        I used butter in place of oil. I used everything else you suggested and the cake was ever so moist and delicious. Tastes like it was made from scratch.

    6. 5 stars
      Terrific ways to dress up a box cake, Kasey!

    7. Hi just to clarify I can add to the box cake mis 1/4 cup of sugar and 1/4 of flour? Also can I used can milk?

    8. Andrea Davis says:

      Everyone is so impressed with my cakes when I follow your tips! My go-to is yellow cake box mix with:

      Butter instead of oil
      Milk instead of water
      2 extra yolks
      1/2 C sour cream
      Vanilla and salt
      1/2 C each AP flour and sugar
      2 T Mayo

      As long as you don’t over-bake, it’s so dense and perfectly moist! Cream cheese frosting is my favorite way to top it

      Thanks for sharing!

      1. YAY~ That’s what I love to hear!!

    9. PeeDee Kurfess says:

      Excited to try one of these tricks, but can I use butter, sour cream and pudding all at the same time or are the tricks separated by color because they should only be tried one at a time?

      1. I try not to use them all at once because the fat in the cake will make it sink. I would try 1-2. Maybe the sour cream and butter.

        1. You are absolutely correct! It happened to me twice! One or two ingredient changes per cake, ladies!

    10. nandigifts says:

      Awesome tips!! Thank you for sharing..

      1. So glad you found it helpful!

    11. AMY MASCOTT says:

      5 stars
      AMAZING TIPS!! thank you, thank you!

    12. Denay DeGuzman says:

      5 stars
      This is the ideal recipe for busy bakers! I love all the tips and tricks for making a cake box mix taste like it’s homemade. Thank you so much for sharing.

    13. I love cake mix! I use it all the times for poke cakes and birthday cakes!
      Love the free printable!!

    14. Claudia J Glennan says:

      I used Duncan Hines cake mixes (3 batches 2 yellow, 1 devils food) to each I added an extra egg (4 total), 1 C whole milk, 2/3 C melted butter. All seemed to bake fine however upon cooling all 72 cupcakes carved into the center (looking like collapsed calderas). I am filling with icing but they do not look great & I am wondering “what did I do wrong”?

      1. I don’t know. My first thought is maybe they didn’t cook all the way? It sounds like they should have been ok. I’m not sure!! SORRY!!

    15. If I add milk to a box cake mix, do I still need to add oil? I don’t want to try substituting butter instead of oil just yet. Thanks

      1. JustineLee says:

        Yes! The milk is to substitute the water, and the butter is to substitute the oil. So if you would rather still use the oil, you still need to add it even with the milk. Thank you!!

        -From the All Things Mamma Team

    16. Thanks for sharing this information it’s very useful for me. You have clearly explained thank you.

      1. JustineLee says:

        We are so glad this post was helpful!

        -From the All Things Mamma Team

    17. Thanks for sharing this information it’s very useful for me. You have clearly explained thank you.

    18. Hi! The box cake I am using is Duncan Hines Classic White deliciously moist cake mix. It call for 3 large egg whites. Should I still add the extra egg including the yolk or just use more egg whites?

      Thanks for the post! It is very helpful 😊

      1. Would 1% milk work? Can you add gumdrops in the cake mix?

        1. Yes, you can use 1% milk but I’m not sure about gumdrops in the cake. I haven’t tried it but let me know if you do!

    19. It says add flour,
      Plain or self-arising to the box mix?

    20. Jackie Lindsay says:

      5 stars
      When I make a chocolate cake (Devils Food, Fudge, German Chocolate, Swiss, etc.), I always add 2 to 3 Tablespoons of cocoa to the mix. It really amps up the taste, flavor, and richness of all varieties of chocolate cakes.

    4.14 from 219 votes (195 ratings without comment)

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