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Homemade Yellow Cake Mix

I think that every person encounters an occasion that requires cake at least once a month – perhaps even once a week.

We use cake to celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, weddings, and engagements…and then, of course, there are the cakes that help us survive breakups, loss, and a really difficult Tuesday afternoon. I know I’m not the only one that sees cake as a totally viable way to handle a cruddy Tuesday.

I also would venture to bet that few moms out there haven’t encountered this beauty of a phrase: “Mom, I told my teacher you would make cupcakes for the class… tomorrow.”

If you find yourself in one of these situations – perhaps discovering that your coworker’s birthday is tomorrow, or just simply needing some cake and needing it now– there is no denying the convenience of a boxed cake mix. They’re quick, easy, and a real lifesaver in just about any dessert emergency.

This homemade yellow cake mix takes just a few minutes to pull together and uses ingredients that you probably already have in your pantry. In a matter of minutes, you will have the equivalent of two boxed cake mixes in your freezer, ready to go at a moment’s notice the next time your child tells you that he needs 2-dozen cupcakes tomorrow.

And because you made the mix yourself, you can feel good knowing that, while your family may be indulging a little with their cake, at least they aren’t having their preservatives and eating them, too.

Yellow Cake Mix

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Prep Time 5 minutes
Total Time 5 minutes


  • 2 cups Granulated Sugar
  • 2 3/4 cups All-Purpose Flour plus 1 tablespoon
  • 3 tablespoons Cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup Nonfat Dry Milk
  • 1 tablespoon Baking Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1 cup Unsalted Butter cold and cut into pieces
  • 1 tablespoon Pure Vanilla Extract


  • Add all ingredients except for butter and vanilla to the bowl of a large food processor. Pulse for about 15 seconds, just to combine. Add the butter and vanilla and process until the mixture resembles a coarse meal – you want it to look much like a boxed mix would.
  • Divide the mix equally into two zip-top bags and store in the freezer for up to two months. 

To Make the Cake:

  • Preheat oven to 350°F. Grease and flour the pan of your choice.
  • Use an electric mixer to beat together one bag of the prepared mix, 1 1/4 cups warm water and 2 large eggs until smooth, about 2 minutes.

Pour into the prepared pans and bake:

  • about 25 minutes for 9-inch layer cakes
  • 30-35 minutes for a 13×9-inch cake
  • 45 minutes for a bundt cake
  • 18-20 minutes for cupcakes.
  • A toothpick inserted into the center of the cake should come out clean when the cakes are done.


To use the mix in a recipe calling for 1 box of cake mix, use about half, or about 3 1/2 cups, of the prepared mix.
Makes the equivalent of approximately two boxed cake mixes.


Calories: 199kcal | Carbohydrates: 30g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 226mg | Potassium: 67mg | Fiber: 0.4g | Sugar: 18g | Vitamin A: 294IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 68mg | Iron: 1mg
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!


  1. Love, love, love! My mom was just saying how she thinks she liked summer more than us kids because she didn’t have to worry about who needed treats made for school or who left a notebook back in their locker, etc. If only she had this recipe when we were younger!

  2. I’ve never actually eaten anything made with yellow cake mix. We have ‘buttercake’ mix here in Australia, sounds like it might be similar. Looks delicious though. Great as a base to make lots of other delicious things! Thanks hon xx

    1. I would guess that would be similar – the “yellow” part is basically the butter and vanilla. Honestly, some of the boxed mixes are pretty mediocre, but this homemade one is yet to disappoint me!

    1. Hi Ami – I have never tried this, so I really am not sure how much to add. You will need to use less flour, though, to compensate. Check out some chocolate cake recipes to get an idea of how much cocoa powder they call for.

    1. Hi Jenifer – You really do need the dry milk in there for flavor and to help keep the cake moist. I have heard that you can get soy milk powder if dairy is the issue for you.

  3. Does the mix have to thaw before mixing with the warm water? Sorry if that’s a dumb question but I’ve never started with a frozen mix before.

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