72 Desserts That Start with Cake Mix

Updated: Apr. 29, 2024

These great cake mix recipes use the store-bought mix as an ingredient, not an end point. Your gorgeous dessert will still be distinctive and delicious—and look nothing like the photo on the box.

Get more of our sweetest recipes mailed straight to your inbox! Sign up for our free Desserts newsletter.

1 / 72

Peanut Butter Chocolate Poke Cake

When my family is planning a get-together, I can count on three or four people asking if I’m bringing this chocolate peanut butter poke cake. If you don’t have a chocolate cake mix, use a white or yellow one and stir in 3 tablespoons of baking cocoa. —Fay Moreland, Wichita Falls, Texas

Go to Recipe

Love easy-to-fix cake mix recipes? You’ll adore these cake mix recipes made with pudding.

2 / 72

Blueberry Lemon Cake

“I always set aside some of my fresh-picked blueberries to make this quick and easy dessert,” says Leona Luecking, West Burlington, Iowa. Lemon flavor sparks the fruit layer and the tender cake.
3 / 72

Cake Mix Brownies

These cake mix brownies are a mash-up of two of my favorite desserts. A woman I worked with gave me a recipe for chocolate caramel brownies, and I have a recipe for yellow cake mix bars. I wondered what they would taste like together, so I tried it—and I’ve been making them ever since! —Staci Mergenthal, Verdi, Minnesota
4 / 72

Dutch Oven Chocolate Dump Cake

Looking for a quick dessert that will make people think you spent all day in the kitchen? This Dutch oven dump cake will wow your guests. Feel free to use your favorite pie filling in place of cherry. — Rashanda Cobbins, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
5 / 72

Red Velvet Jar Cake

I love to make these red velvet jar cakes for friends, family and teachers. Red velvet is my favorite during the holidays, but you can use any cake and frosting flavors you like. Then dress up the jars with homemade labels and ribbons for gifting. Don't forget to tie a spoon to the jar; everyone likes to dig right in! —Lillie Collier, Mobile, Alabama
6 / 72

Pumpkin Spice Cake

We sometimes call this pumpkin spice cake "Thanksgiving Cake" because it's a tasty alternative to pie, but we don't relegate it to just that holiday. I think you'll agree it's delicious any time of the year. —Kathy Rhoads, Circleville, Ohio
7 / 72

Pistachio Quick Bread

I love making many of these special loaves to give away for the holidays. They also freeze well, so it is easy to pull out for unexpected guests. —Judy Fischer, Green Bay, Wisconsin
8 / 72

Birthday Cake Fudge

This decadent birthday cake fudge is the perfect thing to make your big day special. Or prepare it ahead and package it as a surprise gift for a friend. —Rashanda Cobbins, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
9 / 72

Rhubarb Custard Cake

Rhubarb thrives in my northern garden and is one of the few crops the pesky moose don't bother! Of all the desserts I've tried, this rhubarb custard cake is my first choice. It has old-fashioned appeal but is so simple to prepare. —Evelyn Gebhardt, Kasilof, Alaska
10 / 72

Devil's Food Whoopie Pies

These mini cookie cakes were one of my favorite treats while I was growing up in Pennsylvania. We called them gobs because they are gobs of fun to eat! The recipe can make fewer or more, depending on how large or small you make the cookies. Place the finished chocolate whoopie pies in large cupcake liners for a professional look. —Pamela Esposito, Galloway, New Jersey
11 / 72

Angel Food Cake Roll

There's always room for dessert—especially when it's this eye-catching angel food cake roll. We like strawberry yogurt in the filling, but different flavors work well, too. —Joan Colbert, Sigourney, Iowa
12 / 72

Pineapple Pudding Cake

My mother used to love making this easy pineapple sunshine cake in the summertime. It's so cool and refreshing that it never lasts very long! —Kathleen Worden, North Andover, Massachusetts
13 / 72

Red Velvet Cinnamon Rolls

Turn a box of red velvet cake mix into this easy dessert—or breakfast! The icing tastes good and makes a pretty contrast with the rolls. —Erin Wright, Wallace, Kansas
14 / 72

Slow-Cooker Spumoni Cake

I created this cake for a holiday potluck one year. It has become one of my most requested desserts. If you prefer, you can use all semisweet chips instead of a mix. —Lisa Renshaw, Kansas City, Missouri
15 / 72

Strawberry Rhubarb Dump Cake

It always seems like my rhubarb goes bad in a hurry, so I was looking for a simple way to combine two of my favorite flavors in an incredibly easy dessert. I added extra spices to enhance the flavor of this strawberry-rhubarb dump cake for a sweet treat my whole family loved! —Jessica Bridge, Grand Junction, Colorado
16 / 72

Margarita Cake

This margarita cake is perfect for a picnic on a warm day. You’ll be surprised at how closely it tastes like the real thing. These other margarita dessert recipes are delicious, too. ?—Dawn Lowenstein, Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania
17 / 72

Pineapple Upside-Down Dump Cake

This dump cake recipe is wonderful topped with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. It works well with sugar-free and gluten-free cake mixes too. —Karin Gatewood, Dallas, Texas
18 / 72

Birthday Cake Pancakes

For my kids' birthdays, I like to make these cake mix pancakes. Frosting and more sprinkles seal the deal! —Dina Crowell, Fredericksburg, Virginia
19 / 72

Black Forest Upside-Down Cake

The divine flavors of this simple Black Forest cake will impress your guests and leave you with many requests for the recipe! —Kimberly Campbell, Wheeling, West Virginia
20 / 72

Chocolate-Dipped Ice Cream Cone Cupcakes

I created this recipe based on our family's love of chocolate-dipped ice cream cones. Red heart-shaped sprinkles make them fun for Valentine's Day. Vary the color to match the occasion. —Jennifer Gilbert, Brighton, Michigan
21 / 72

Giant Buckeye Cookie

I’m from Ohio, and we love our buckeye candy! Buckeyes are a delicious combination of peanut butter and chocolate, which is exactly what this cookie is. All you need is a box of cake mix, a few common pantry ingredients, and voila—you have a tasty dessert ready for family and friends in under an hour. You can customize it, too, by substituting other mix-ins for the chocolate chips. We serve it warm with ice cream or whipped cream. —Arianna Harding, Cincinnati, Ohio
22 / 72

Favorite Banana Cream Pie

Homemade banana cream pie is my mom’s specialty, and this dreamy dessert has a wonderful banana flavor. It looks so pretty, and it cuts easily too. —Jodi Grable, Springfield, Missouri
23 / 72

Double Butterscotch Coconut Cake

I got this recipe for coconut cake from a co-worker years ago, then I changed it up a bit by adding a family favorite: butterscotch. It’s super easy to throw together and it makes a perfect accompaniment to coffee or tea. —Marina Castle Kelley, Canyon Country, California
24 / 72

Strawberry-Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake

I prepare this colorful dessert quite often in the late spring or summer when fresh rhubarb is abundant. I make this rhubarb cake with cake mix and take it to church potlucks. People actually line up for a piece. —Bonnie Krogman, Thompson Falls, Montana
25 / 72

Angel Macaroons

These chewy coconut cookies start with a boxed angel food cake mix. —Renee Schwebach, Dumont, Minnesota
26 / 72

Chocolate Peppermint Cake

Guests make sure to save room for this light and moist cake with its refreshing mint flavor and chocolate glaze. Its seasonal look makes it perfect for Christmas…a holiday birthday party…or other festive gatherings!
27 / 72

Pressure-Cooker Chocolate-Apricot Dump Cake

Years ago, I used to prepare a dessert similar to this in the oven. Oh, it was so good. I converted the recipe to use my pressure cooker and now we can enjoy it quickly. Try it also with white cake mix and blueberry pie filling. Best served warm with ice cream or whipped cream. —Joan Hallford, North Richland Hills, Texas
28 / 72

Mocha Truffle Cheesecake

I went through a phase when I couldn't get enough cheesecake or coffee, so I created this rich dessert. Its brownie-like crust and creamy mocha layer really hit the spot. It's ideal for get-togethers because it can be made in advance. —Shannon Dormady, Great Falls, Montana
29 / 72

Berry Dream Cake

I use cherry gelatin to give a boxed cake mix an eye-appealing marbled effect. It's so festive-looking. Top it with whatever fruit you like! —Margaret McNeil, Germantown, Tennessee
30 / 72

Red Velvet Cake Bites

Everyone loves red velvet, but any cake mix can work here. I've even rolled chopped macadamia nuts into pineapple cake and dipped them into white chocolate. Whatever you do, have fun! —Anne Powers, Munford, Alabama
31 / 72

Pecan Coffee Cake

My mom serves this nutty coffee cake for Christmas breakfast each year. The simple recipe is a big timesaver on such an event-filled morning. Everyone loves the crunchy topping. —Becky Wax, Tuscola, Illinois
32 / 72

Banana Flip Cake

Here's a recipe that will bring back memories of your childhood. Banana flip snack cakes taste just like the banana flips we used to eat when we were kids. —Berta Hagen, Int'l Falls, Minnesota
33 / 72

Apple-Sweet Potato Pecan Dump Cake

This quick cake has lots of delicious apples, sweet potatoes, spices, pecans and caramel. mdash;Kathy Specht, Clinton, Montana
34 / 72

Chocolate Comfort Cake

This moist and delicious chocolate cake is usually the first dessert to go. People even eat the crumbs. It’s always my top choice for holiday dinners. —Ellen Riley, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
35 / 72

Double-Layer Cheesecake Bars

Can't choose between chocolate and vanilla cheesecake? Have both when you make this bar recipe with two distinct layers. —Andrea Price, Grafton, Wisconsin
36 / 72

Raspberry Cake

Jazz up plain cake with raspberry gelatin and frozen berries. Spread with a light, fruity whipped topping (or this whipped topping substitute), the festive results make a cool and refreshing dessert. —Marion Anderson, Dalton, Minnesota
37 / 72

Birthday Cake Waffles

These super fun waffles—soft on the inside, crisp on the outside—taste just like cake batter! They are quick to whip up anytime but would make birthday mornings feel even more special. —Andrea Fetting, Franklin, Wisconsin
38 / 72

Cinnamon Pecan Bars

I'm a special education teacher and we bake these bars in my life skills class. It 's an easy recipe that my special-needs students have fun preparing. —Jennifer Peters, Adams Center, New York
39 / 72

Hazelnut Cake Squares

When one of my daughters is asked to bring a dish to a church function, a birthday party or any special occasion, she asks me for this recipe. It is so easy to prepare because it starts with a cake mix. It doesn't need icing, so it's perfect for bake sales too. —Brenda Melancon, McComb, Mississippi
40 / 72
41 / 72

Pear Upside-Down Cake

Using a packaged cake mix speeds up the preparation time of this tasty pear and pecan upside-down cake. This moist cake is pretty to look at and luscious, too. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
42 / 72

Pretzel and Salted Caramel Chocolate Cookies

Sweet meets salty in these shortcut cookies that only require six ingredients.
43 / 72

Butterfinger Cookie Bars

My boys went through a phase where they loved Butterfingers. We made Butterfinger shakes, muffins, cookies and experimented with different bars; this one was voted the best of the bunch. Make sure you have an extra candy bar on hand because it’s hard to resist a nibble or two while you’re chopping. —Barbara Leighty, Simi Valley, California
44 / 72

Apple Pie Cupcakes with Cinnamon Buttercream

These apple pie cupcakes are always a hit! They are so easy to make and the flavor just screams fall. Of course, they're equally delicious any other time of year. —Jennifer Stowell, Deep River, Iowa
45 / 72

Peanut Butter Caramel Bars

When my husband and our three sons sit down to dinner, they ask, "What's for dessert?" I have a happy group of guys when I report that these rich bars are on the menu. They're chockfull of yummy ingredients. —Lee Ann Karnowski, Stevens Point, Wisconsin
46 / 72

Almond Chocolate Biscotti

These white chocolate-drizzled cookies are a cinch to make, so I’m always happy to whip up a batch. This is good because my neighbors always look forward to them! —Ginger Chatfield, Muscatine, Iowa
47 / 72

Pear Bundt Cake

Next time you make cake from a mix, try my easy and delicious recipe. The pears and syrup add sweet flavor and prevent the cake from drying out. And since there's no oil added to the batter, this tender fall-perfect cake is surprisingly low in fat. —Veronica Ross, Columbia Heights, Minnesota
48 / 72

Lemon Snowflakes

You’ll need just four ingredients to make these delightful lemon snowflake cookies. Confectioners’ sugar highlights the cracked tops to give them their snowflake appearance. —Linda Barry, Dianna, Texas
49 / 72

Irish Creme Chocolate Trifle

I was given a bottle of Irish cream liqueur as a gift and had leftover peppermint candy, so I created this delicious trifle. It's always rich and decadent. —Margaret Wilson, Sun City, California
50 / 72

Cake & Berry Campfire Cobbler

This warm Dutch oven cobbler is one of our favorite ways to end a busy day of fishing, hiking, swimming or rafting. It's yummy with ice cream—and so easy to make! —June Dress, Boise, Idaho
51 / 72

Pecan Pumpkin Dessert

I always make this treat for Thanksgiving. A friend gave me the recipe, and I've since shared it with many others. —Sue Williams, Mount Holly, North Carolina
52 / 72

Caramel Apple Cupcakes

Bring these extra special cupcakes to your next event and watch how quickly they disappear! With a caramel topping and spice cake base, they're the perfect mix of two fall-favorite treats. —Diane Halferty, Corpus Christi, Texas
53 / 72

Lemon Angel Cake Bars

A neighbor gave me this recipe years ago and it's been in flavor rotation ever since. It can be made ahead and serves a bunch, so it's perfect for parties and potlucks. —Marina Castle, Canyon Country, California
54 / 72

Butterscotch Toffee Cookies

With its big butterscotch and chocolate flavor, my cookie stands out. I like to enjoy it with a glass of milk or a cup of coffee. It’s my fallback recipe when I’m short on time and need something delicious fast. —Allie Blinder, Norcross, Georgia
55 / 72

Cranberry Layer Cake

I adapted a Bundt cake recipe to create this layer cake. Cranberries, walnuts and homemade frosting make it taste so delicious that you'd never guess it starts with a convenient cake mix. —Sandy Burkett, Galena, Ohio
56 / 72

Pina Colada Tube Cake

We named this a “pina colada” cake because it has coconut, pineapple and rum. It’s a soothing finish at the end of a big spread. —Debra Keil, Owasso, Oklahoma
57 / 72

Caramel Nut Breakfast Cake

I first tasted this incredible coffee cake when a kind neighbor brought it by. It was so good that my brother-in-law tried hiding it from us so he wouldn’t have to share. —Arlene Isaac, Crooked Creek, Alberta
58 / 72

Easy Oatmeal Cream Pies

These easy cookies use only five ingredients and taste very similar to a store-bought cookie. Of course, everything's better from your own kitchen! —Crystal Schlueter, Northglenn, Colorado
59 / 72

Macadamia Sunshine Bars

Your guests will be delighted with my bars. They are packed with nuts and dried fruit. I think that when you take a bite of this treat it’s like a mini-vacation to a Polynesian paradise. —Jeanne Holt, Mendota Heights, Minnesota
60 / 72

German Chocolate Tres Leches Cake

I first tried tres leches cake while I was in Ecuador several years ago. Since then, I’ve changed it up by adding some of my favorite ingredients, namely chocolate and coconut. This version also has a splash of rum for an adults-only treat. —Lisa Varner, El Paso, Texas
61 / 72

Graham Streusel Coffee Cake

I use this sweet coffee cake recipe often. It's quick and easy to make. —Blanche Whytsell, Arnoldsburg, West Virginia
62 / 72
63 / 72

Pumpkin Spice Cookies

These big, soft spice cookies created by our staff have a sweet frosting that makes them an extra-special treat. Enjoy! —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
64 / 72

Minister's Delight

A friend gave me this recipe several years ago. She said a local minister's wife fixed it every Sunday, so she named it accordingly. —Mary Ann Potter, Blue Springs, Missouri
65 / 72

Can’t Leave Alone Bars

I take these quick and easy treats to church meetings, potlucks and housewarming parties. I often make a double batch so we can enjoy some at home. —Kimberly Biel, Java, South Dakota
66 / 72

Apricot-Pecan Thumbprint Cookies

I enjoy experimenting with cake mixes to make new cookie recipes. I love apricot, but feel free to fill the thumbprint in the center of these goodies with any fruit preserve you like. —Nancy Johnson, Laverne, Oklahoma
67 / 72

Little Holiday Cakes

My college friend shared this cupcake recipe that has pie crust on the bottom, raspberry jam in the middle and cake on top—scrumptious for a buffet or potluck. —Dana Beckstrom, Salt Lake City, Utah
68 / 72

Peppermint Patty Sandwich Cookies

At my annual holiday party, these cookies are a big hit with everyone, especially when I mix festive food coloring or crushed candy canes into the filling. —Amy Martin, Vancouver, Washington
69 / 72

Cherry Dream Cake

I serve this cherry cake for holidays because it's so festive and easy. No one will know your secret is adding a package of cherry gelatin to a boxed cake mix! —Margaret McNeil, Germantown, Tennessee
70 / 72

Giant Spice Cookies

I heard this cookie recipe over the radio about 1950—shortly after my husband and I married. The big spicy treats are so nice and chewy, they remain my favorite to this day. —Sandy Pyeatt, Tacoma, Washington
71 / 72

Root Beer Float Cake

I add root beer to both the cake batter and fluffy frosting of this summery dessert to get that great root beer float taste. Serve this moist cake to a bunch of hungry kids and watch it disappear! —Kat Thompson, Prineville, Oregon
72 / 72

Easy Cake Mix Bars

I take this dessert to work for Friday pick-me-ups. It's one of my favorite yellow cake bar recipes. I love to share them because they're so easy to eat, easy to make and easy on the wallet. —Amy Rose, Ballwin, Missouri