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Doctored Cake Mix Cake with Buttercream Frosting

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Ladies, do you ever have one of those days where your husband takes your four-year-old to the grocery store to get pineapple and comes home with . . . boxed cake mix? Dun, dun, dun (insert dramatic music here).

No? Well, then clearly this recipe is not for you. But, if you should find yourself in such a situation, then read on. This recipe will make any boxed cake mix taste better. It comes from a cookbook that I received as a wedding gift many moons ago: The Cake Mix Doctor. And surprisingly, just following these simple steps can make a world of difference in how a boxed cake mix tastes.

Doctored Cake Mix Cake
1 package cake mix
1 cup milk
1 stick butter, melted
3 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
Buttercream frosting (recipe follows)

  1. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 9 inch round cake pans. Set aside.
  2. Place the cake mix, milk, melted butter, eggs, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute until ingredients are incorporated. Increase the mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more. The batter should look well blended.
  3. Divide the batter between the prepared pans, smoothing it out with a rubber spatula.
  4. Place the pans in the oven side by side. Bake the cakes until they are golden brown and spring back when lightly pressed with your finger, 27 to 29 minutes.
  5. Remove pans from the oven and place them on wire racks to cool for 10 minutes. Run a dinner knife around the edges of the pans and invert onto the racks. Allow them to cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile prepare the frosting (recipe follows).
  7. Frost cakes after they have cooled completely.
Buttercream Frosting
1 stick butter, at room temperature
3 3/4 cups confectioners sugar
3 to 4 Tbsp milk
2 tsp vanilla extract

  1. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Blend with an electric mixer on low speed until fluffy, about 30 seconds.
  2. Add the confectioners sugar, 3 Tbsp milk, and vanilla. Blend with the mixer on low speed until the sugar is incorporated, 1 minute. Increase the speed to medium and beat until light and fluffy, 1 minute more. Blend in up to 1 additional Tbsp milk if frosting seems too stiff.
  3. Use to frost the top and sides of the cake of your choice.

This recipe makes batter that is more the consistency of a mousse, which may seem unusual, but your cake will still turn out perfectly.

This version of a "doctored cake" is for white, yellow, and (as pictured above) confetti cakes. There are other versions floating around for how best to fancy up chocolate cake mix, carrot cake mix, etc.
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