Cake Recipes Using Store-Bought Cake Mix

Cherry Chocolate Cake

From Ordinary to Extraordinary!

Everyone’s walked down that grocery aisle lined with Pillsbury, Duncan Hines, and Betty Crocker cake mixes and frostings. These mixes are cheap, quick, easy, delicious, and don’t require many ingredients.

The best thing about these cake mixes is that with a little ingenuity, you can make one of these basic cakes into a gourmet masterpiece! So I’ve put together some awesome cake recipes that all start with just a basic store-bought cake mix!

Cherry Chocolate Cake

This rich cherry chocolate cake is perfect for any cherry lovers!


  • 1 (18 oz.) box chocolate cake mix
  • 1 (21 oz.) can cherry pie filling
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 7 tablespoons butter
  • 1/3 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 12 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a 13×9″ pan.  In a mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, cherry pie filling, vanilla extract, and eggs.  Beat on low until well mixed.  Pour into prepared pan.  Bake for 30 minutes.

While the cake is baking, we’ll make the topping.  Combining granulated sugar, brown sugar, milk, and butter in a saucepan.  Bring to a boil for one minute, stirring constantly until the sugar is dissolved.  Remove from heat and add the chocolate chips and remaining vanilla.  Use a whisk to stir the mixture until the chips are melted and topping is smooth.

Remove cake from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool.  Pour chocolate topping over the warm cake.

Banana Rum Cake

With one bite of this cake, you’ll be ready to relax in the Caribbean!


  • 1 (18 oz.) box yellow cake mix
  • 1 (3 oz.) box banana instant pudding mix
  • 1/2 cup dark rum
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 Tbsp. water
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup light rum


Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Grease a 10″ bundt pan with butter.  Sprinkle the chopped walnuts into the pan and set aside.

Combine cake mix, pudding mix, rum, eggs, milk, and oil in a bowl.  Beat until combined.  Pour batter into pan and bake for 1 hour.

During the last 15 minutes of baking, make the rum syrup. Combine butter, light rum, sugar, and water in a saucepan. Bring to a slow boil for 2 minutes.  Warning: The alcohol in the rum can cause the mixture to ignite so avoid spilling any of the syrup.

Remove the cake from the oven. Use a wooden skewer to poke several holes in top of the cake.  Evenly spoon 3/4 of the syrup over the cake.  Let the cake stand on the wire rack for 30 minutes to absorb the syrup.

Loosen the edges with a butter knife and turn cake upside down onto a serving plate.  Cool completely before serving.

Strawberry Shake Cupcakes

These fun strawberry cupcakes are the perfect summer treat!


  • 1 box white cake mix
  • 1 1/4 cup water
  • 3 egg whites
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 box of strawberry flavor dry gelatin
  • 1 cup hot water
  • 1 (8 oz) package strawberry flavored whipped topping
  • 24 pink cupcake cups
  • 12 strawberries, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Combine cake mix, 1 1/4 cup water, egg whites, and oil in a bowl.  Beat until combined.

Line two muffin pans with cups.  Evenly distribute the batter amongst the 24 cups.  Bake as directed on the box.  When done, remove them from the oven and cool wire rack for 10 minutes, do not remove the cupcakes from the pan.

In another bowl, combine the gelatin with hot water.  Spoon liquid over the cupcakes and refrigerate for a half an hour and remove from cupcake pans. Spread whipped topping over the cupcakes and add strawberries or any other decorations as desired.

Chocolate Fudge Cake

You’ll love this chocolate cake recipe! It’s the perfect cure for any chocolate cravings you may have!


  • 1 box of Devil’s food cake mix
  • 1-1/3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 16 oz. semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1-1/3 cups heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter


Prepare the cake batter according to the box direction.  Grease and flour two 8″ round pans, equally fill with batter, and bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.  Cool for 10 minutes before removing the cakes from the pans.

Melt chocolate chips in a saucepan over low heat.  In a separate saucepan, heat cream and butter together.  Pour this mixture over the chocolate chips and beat with a whisk until smooth.  Cool in  refrigerator for 15 minutes.

Line a 9″ spring-form pan with waxed paper.  Cut cake into cubes and place in a mixing bowl.  Pour 1-1/3 cups of the cooled chocolate sauce over the cubes and mix on low speed until the texture looks like fudge.  Spread evenly into the pan and place the cake in the freezer for 1 hour.

Remove the cake from the pan and place on serving plate.  Top the cake with remaining chocolate ganache. Store in refrigerator.

Coconut Cream Cake

I love coconut, so much in fact that my wedding cake had a coconut layer!


  • 1 package white cake mix
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 8 oz. cream of coconut
  • 8 oz. sour cream
  • 1 can of vanilla cream cheese frosting
  • 1 – 1/2 cups of flaked coconut
  • 2 cups coconut for garnish (toasted or untoasted, your preference)


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  In a mixing bowl, combine cake mix, oil, eggs, cream of coconut, and sour cream.  Beat on low speed until smooth.  Fold in flaked coconut.

Grease two 8″ round cake pans.  Divide batter into each pan.  Bake for 45 minutes.  Remove cakes from oven and cool for 30 minutes before moving them from the pans.

Cut the top portion off of only one of the cakes, creating a flat top.  Spread a layer of frosting over the top and place the other cake on top of the first.  Spread frosting over the rest of the cake.  Sprinkle with flaked coconut.

Create Your Own Cake

Have fun making these recipes, but don’t be afraid to make them your own. Maybe you don’t like walnuts, or you’re allergic to strawberries, no problem! The great thing about store-bought cake mixes is that they’re so cheap, you can afford to play around with them!

Image: bulldogza /