Homemade Cake Mix

Boxed cake mix is easy to buy, but also super easy to make at home. Use it in a pinch when a recipes calls for cake mix, when you need to bake emergency cupcakes (totally a thing) or give as a homemade DIY cake mix gift.

mason jar of cake mix with a label


How to Make Homemade Cake Mix

It is simple! Combine these pantry staples and you’ll have cake mix. This recipe makes the basic mix that you would find in a 15.25 ounce box. If you pour out a box mix, it will likely look closer to 3 cups, but since it is measured using the metric system, the powdery mixture is fluffed up, pack it down and it will be closer to 2 cups, same as this recipe.

ingredients for homemade cake mix
  • Flour
  • Sugar
  • Baking Powder
  • Baking Soda
  • Fine Sea Salt

You can simply whisk it together or if you want the super fine texture you’d get from store bought mix, throw it into a food processor or sift it two times.

dry cake ingredients in a mixing bowl

If you use a food processor, word to the wise, allow it to sit for a few minutes before opening the lid. Otherwise you’ll have a cake mix bomb and you’ll be covered in homemade mix.

How to Make a Cake

Then if you want to make a cake, or cupcakes, you only need another handful of kitchen items.

  • Milk or buttermilk– whole milk works best, butter adds extra moisture.
  • Vegetable oil– any neutral oil works.
  • Eggs – for yellow cake, use 2 whole eggs, for white cake, use 4 egg whites.
  • Flavored Extract– vanilla is always the most popular, but almond, lemon peppermint, butter, coffee or any other flavoring works too! For a white cake, use any clear extract.

Combine all wet and dry ingredients, then decide if you want to make a cake or cupcakes. This recipe makes the equivalent of one 15 ounce box cake mix.

overhead of cake mix in a mason jar and measuring cup

For a cake, use a 9×13 cake pan or two 8 or 9 inch circular pans. Bake at 350°F for 20-25 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test.

For cupcakes, you can make 18 larger cupcakes or 24 smaller. Use cupcake liners and then bake at 350 degrees for 18-20 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test.

slice of chocolate cake on a white plate

White Cake vs Yellow Cake

The ingredients in the mix are the same. The difference is whether you use egg yolks or pure vanilla extract versus clear vanilla flavoring.

White cake mix is best for colored cakes that need food coloring because the yellow in yolks can throw off colors.

blue jar of DIY cake mix

However, yolks add moisture and richness, so if you are just baking a cake, yellow is often preferred.

  • White– Egg whites only and clear flavoring/extract.
  • Yellow– Whole eggs and any extract/flavoring you want.


As with any boxed cake mix, there are many ways to put your stamp on it.

  • Chocolate– Make it chocolate by adding 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder.
  • Chips– add 1/2 cup chocolate, butterscotch or peanut butter chips to the batter.
  • Use Flavors– Vanilla is so… vanilla. Shop the extract section and find some flavors!
  • Coffee – add 1 teaspoon instant espresso powder.
  • Poke It- Make lots of holes and smother it with simple syrup or warm pudding.
  • Frosting– Buttercream, cream cheese or even a whipped cream frosting.

Check out all of our boxed cake mix hacks. Remember, cake mix can be used for so much more than just cake. Check out Chocolate Dunkaroo Dip, Funfetti Cake Batter Dip or even Cake Mix Cookies.

DIY cake mix for pinterest

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close up of homemade dry cake mix
glass jar of dry homemade cake mix

Homemade Cake Mix

4.37 from 11 votes
Simple, white or yellow cake mix. Give as a gift or store in the pantry. Instructions for making cake, cupcakes or fun variations included!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 1 Equivalent to one 15 ounce box cake mix



  • In a medium bowl, whisk together all dry ingredients.
  • Store in a cool, dry place in a jar with lid or airtight container for up to 6 months.


To make cake or cupcakes:
  • 1 ½ cup whole milk 
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1  tablespoon vanilla extract
  1. Combine cake mix and wet ingredients until well combined. Do not overmix.
  2. Pour batter into greased 13×9 pan or divide into 18-24 cupcake liners.
  3. Bake cake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until it passes the toothpick test.
  4. Bake cupcakes at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test.
  5. Cool, frost and decorate.


Calories: 1154 kcal, Carbohydrates: 272 g, Protein: 16 g, Fat: 2 g, Saturated Fat: 1 g, Sodium: 1719 mg, Potassium: 672 mg, Fiber: 4 g, Sugar: 150 g, Calcium: 240 mg, Iron: 8 mg
Author: Jessica Formicola
Calories: 1154
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: homemade cake mix
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!

Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Jessica Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal and more!

Read More About Jessica

4.37 from 11 votes (8 ratings without comment)

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Recipe Rating

Questions and Reviews

  1. I think this recipe might need re-vamped. It was not good. I followed the directions exactly and used whole milk. The batter was so thin it was like water. I added some more flour and sugar so it at least had some body to be able to pour it in to a cupcake pan. The result was a sort of watered down, wet chewy crumb. I cook daily, pressure can, water bath can and bake often. I can tell you this just misses the mark. I would tell others to probably not waste your ingredients on this recipe.

  2. This does NOT make the equivalent of a 15.25 oz standard mix. The total of the flour and sugar (baking soda, powder and salt are not significant) is only 10.5 oz. Flour 1.25 c x 4.25 oz/c=5.3 oz, sugar .75c * 7 oz/ cup = 5.25 oz. This is also supported by the fact that a standard cake mix usually requires more liquid (closer to a cup). And 3 eggs, not 2. I ended up ruining first batch of a recipe that started with a box of white cake mix because there wasn’t enough flour and batter was way too thin.

    1. Hi Laurie- thanks for catching that- we had a typo on our end and the milk should be 1 1/2 cups (or water). This depends on the type of box cake mix you are making, but 15.25 ounces equals 2 cups (packed) and that is exactly what this recipe makes. I actually tested it myself today. This recipe was originally from a contributor who is no longer with us. I used it against a box of duncan hines and the ingredients to make the cake (liquids and eggs) were exactly the same.

  3. 5 stars
    We used this cake mix the other night and LOVED it! I think I will be packaging it up in jars for gifts this Christmas! Thanks for sharing.

  4. 5 stars
    I used this for a quick cake the other night. It tasted BETTER than a box mix! Used whole milk and almond extract. Will make again.