The Impulsive Buy

REVIEW: Duncan Hines Perfect Size for 1 Cake Mixes (Confetti Cake and Chocolate Lover’s Cake)

It goes without saying that the internet has given us many beautiful things. Memes, for instance, provide a necessary distraction from work, school, or the ads at the beginning of YouTube videos. Likewise, I’m not sure if I could survive a day without having my lame Baltimore Orioles spring training observations liked by random strangers.

But all these things pale in comparison to the internet’s greatest gift: the proliferation of mug cake popularity.

I used to be firmly against the mug cake. For starters, they’re just not practical. I like my cake after exceptionally large dinners with my belt loosened and eaten while sipping coffee. From what, may I ask, do I drink coffee from if I’m eating cake in my coffee mug? The cake pan?

And then there’s the issue of measuring out ingredients and having things like flour, eggs, and oil on hand. Frankly, I’m lucky if I have leftover McGriddles in my fridge. The odds of having all those ingredients in my apartment are worse than maneuvering a modified YT 1300 light freighter through an asteroid field.

That said, Duncan Hines new Perfect Size for 1 Cake Mixes are doing a lot to change my thinking, thanks largely to a dummy approach that involves nothing more than a few tablespoons of water and a mug. Thankfully, I do, in fact, own a sink.

The new mug cake packets come in 18 flavors, which, let me be honest, is more cake than anyone really needs. So it made sense to start with the essentials: A birthday cake flavor and something chocolaty.

The Confetti Cake is surprisingly good —- much better than your standard Pillsbury Doughboy Funfetti, if you ask me. I got notes of a strong vanilla and buttercream element throughout the cake, which was light and fluffy yet still moist. The little bursts of sprinkled sweetness provide a great touch, especially when you consider that you don’t have to eat them at a ten-year-old’s birthday party. My only complaint is that there’s a slight aftertaste and grittiness of uncooked flour.

Weary of the uncooked flour, I upped the cooking time by a whopping ten seconds on the Chocolate Lover’s Cake, which I imagine was inspired by all the past cake’s on Pinterest which were made for somebody’s DH. That, or the marketing folks ate it and proclaimed it to taste like the love child of a chocolate chip muffin and chocolate angel food cake. In this they were spot on. There’s a lightness and airy structure to the crumb, but there’s definitely a moist, rich element that explodes with little morsels of semisweet chocolate. This cake was excellent, even sans frosting.

Certainly, my mug cakes weren’t Pinterest quality in appearance, but I can live with that. In fact, since the Perfect Size for 1 Cakes only take about a minute to make, I plan on ditching cake porn altogether and investing even more quality time with memes while, as they say, having my cake and eating it too.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 pouch – Confetti Cake – 270 calories, 50 calories from fat, 6 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 370 milligrams of sodium, 50 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of dietary fiber, 30 grams of sugar, and 3 gram of protein. Chocolate Lover’s – 300 calories, 80 calories from fat, 9 grams of fat, 6 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 40 milligrams of cholesterol, 380 milligrams of sodium, 53 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 32 grams of sugar, and 4 gram of protein.)

Purchased Price: $2.50 each
Size: 4-pack
Purchased at: Walmart
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Confetti)
Rating: 8 out of 10 (Chocolate Lover’s)
Pros: Incredibly easy to make, even for the most kitchen averse people. Moist yet fluffy cake element combines best of muffin, poke cake, and angel cake worlds. More time for memes.
Cons: Varieties do not include chocolate eclair or pumpkin cheesecake. Undercooked cake has gritty texture and aftertaste. Will explode if you add to much water.