Make Your Box-Mix Better!

Okay, I know I am really early for Valentine’s Day, but I loved these liners and sprinkles and was really craving cupcakes last night. Plus, I have so many liners that I can make different cupcakes (I’m thinking red velvet) closer to the holiday.

My parents gave me the great book Hello, Cupcake for Christmas (buy it on Amazon here), and since I had a box of yellow cake mix sitting around I decided to their recipe for “Perfect Cake-Mix Cupcakes.” I always speak badly of boxed mixes, but this recipe really made them better.

Box-Mix Cupcakes
1 box (18.25 oz) cake mix (vanilla, devil’s food, or yellow)
1 cup buttermilk (in place of water called for on the box)
Vegetable oil (the amount on the box)
4 eggs (in place of the number called for on the box)

Preheat oven to 350F. Line muffin cups with paper liners.

Follow the box instructions, putting all the ingredients in a large bowl and using the buttermilk in place of the water specified on the box, using the amount of vegetable oil that is called for, and adding the eggs. Beet with an electric mixer until moistened, about 30 seconds. Increase the speed to high and beat until thick, 2 minutes longer

Fill paper liners two-thirds full. Bake 12 to 20 minutes or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean. Cool completely before icing.

I used a canned Pillsbury icing. I couldn’t resist the pink colors and the sprinkles that came with it!

I made mini-cucpakes as well!

With only a few changes you can fool everyone into thinking you did all the work yourself!


  • Cute, Cute, Cute!! Love them!

    January 25, 2009
  • Those really look good. You really can put that icing on PERFECT!! Thanks for sharing.

    January 26, 2009
  • Those are so cute, and I am totally with you on the buttermilk!

    January 26, 2009
  • Those came out cute! I’ve made their recipe for Christmas cupcakes for my babygirl’s class party. You reminded me I meant to make some for home. I didn’t get to try them so I don’t know how they came out.

    January 26, 2009
  • Manuel

    These would be perfect for V day with red velvet cake mix.

    February 5, 2009
  • Dana

    I just finished frosting my last cupcake and all I can say is WOW!! Those are the best! I will forever use buttermilk in my cupcake recipe! Thanks for the great tip, although mine are not as cute as yours, I am sure my son’s 3rd grade class will think that they are amazing! Happy Valentine’s Day!!!

    February 13, 2009
  • Just made a batch for my 1 yr old’s birthday – they are sooo delicious – I used the whipped frosting to go on top. Honestly, they taste as good as any bakery around. Thank you so much!

    May 27, 2010
  • […] I wanted to try this recipe for Perfect Cake Mix Cupcakes. I found the recipe on a blog called In the Wabe and she got the recipe from a book called Hello, Cupcake. These cupcakes definitely turned out […]

    August 11, 2010
  • emilee

    Absolutely lovely. I used an old Pillsbury Christmas mix that I was going to toss, but decided to instead try out substituting buttermilk and adding an egg, and it actually tasted great/totally redeemed it (I normally can’t stand standard cake/cupcake box mixes, especially when pudding is included in the mix).

    July 20, 2011
  • Makes excellent cup cakes!

    February 8, 2014
  • going to try hoping still gets the round top and taste moist and tasty!!

    December 10, 2014

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