Got A Birthday Coming Up? Think Twice Before Buying This.

I know life can get crazy.  Especially when you have kids.  Sometimes it just seems easier to pick up a box of ready made cake mix instead of making one from scratch.  You may want to think twice before buying this one.

Look familiar?  I can tell you I have bought this on more than one occasion before I went unprocessed.  Let’s look at the ingredients.

The first ingredient is enriched bleached flour (processed flour).  The next ingredients are sugar (processed sugar) and corn syrup (more processed sugar).  The next few ingredients are modified corn starch and corn starch (most likely GMOs).  After that, partially hydrogenated soybean and cottonseed oils (trans fats).  The next one down is propylene glycol (chemical which is also found in antifreeze and brake fluid)
Further down is dicalcium phosphate.  If you click on the word, you can learn more about that.  Cellulose gum is wood pulp.  Looking a bit further down there is natural and artificial flavors (who knows what they are).  After that there are more artificial dyes yellows 5 & 6, which are derived from petroleum.  You can read more about artificial dyes here.  So far the only ingredients I have seen that go in cake are flour and sugar.  The rest of the ingredients are nothing more than toxic additives.

Here is a recipe for a single serving cupcake that is super easy to make.  The blog is and it’s a healthy dessert blog.  She makes awesome healthy desserts.  Check her out sometime.  I made one of her cupcake recipes for Meadow’s birthday.  They did not take long at all.  If you want to save some time, maybe you could mix the dry ingredients and set them aside for when you have time to make the whole thing.  For my younger daughter’s birthday, I made cupcakes using this recipe.  They were moist and delicious without too much sugar.  Lastly, Betty Crocker is owned by General Mills who paid a lot of money to make sure GMO labeling did not pass.

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27 thoughts to “Got A Birthday Coming Up? Think Twice Before Buying This.”

  1. Thanks for bringing this to our attention. I rarely use cake mixes but in a pinch some time I resorted to using a cake mix. I'll think twice before I do that again.
    1. Sure! Anytime! I used to use this and I was pretty grossed out at what was in the ingredients when I actually bothered to look!
  2. Can you put together a quick list or some sort of shopping tool that we can have easily accessible. Like the EWG Dirty Dozen... You seem to be able to pull out the junk on the ingredients label, but for most of us, it's a foreign language. It would be a great tool and greatly appreciated! Thanks!
    1. You can check for non GMO products here. I also have a post about food additives to avoid. Here is a list of my pantry staples. Here is a list of hidden sources of MSG. Hope all this helps!
    2. I use alot for finding out about ingredients, I feel it is a good source of info. and does not lean one way or the other. I was quite WOWed when I read their articles about sugar.
  3. Scratch is definitely the way to go! If you bake often, you can just mix up your own "box mix". For those who just won't cook from scratch (or are still intimidated by it), the ingredients list for Trader Joe's yellow (or maybe it was white) cake mix is a lot closer to what you'd make at home. My mom demanded a box mix one time and that's the one I got.
    1. Thanks! I love to bake so making it from scratch is fun for me. I know that's not the case for everyone so I am glad there are decent choices out there.
  4. Gross!! Last time I thought about making an angel food cake, I thought of a box mix and although it has very few ingredients in it, one of them happens to be sodium laureth sulfate! I really don't want to eat something that is also used in shampoo!
    1. It gets pretty nasty once you start realizing what they put in our food. I was amazed at the antifreeze. Gross!
  5. I would like to know how they get away with doing this if it's so bad? Don't you think if the ingredients in the boxed cake mixes were harmful or poisonous, people wouldn't allow them to be made? Such as the FDA? And how do they get antifreeze to taste so good? It just seems there would be more publicity on issues like this if it was really an issue, you know?
    1. The FDA has admitted to not even testing these products anymore. Read this article.
    2. It "tastes" so good because sugar is the 2nd ingredient & most people are addicted to the sweetness of sugar can hide a lot of other flavors...that's why they sweeten kids medicine. I put tastes in quotes because once you break the addiction it doesn't taste so good any more. I believe more often than not the FDA and other groups operate on the "what they don't know won't hurt them" idea and deliberately help us not to know! Just my opinion after doing lots of research myself. :) Only whole real foods for me!
  6. I would love to have a recipe for a home made general mix! A mix that I could make and store for a month or so but when I needed a quick cake or biscuits or pie crust I could add some almond milk to or water to and "presto" I have my baking done in no time. Do you have such a recipe?
    1. I don't have one, but I will add it to my list of things to try. :) In the mean time, I bet Pinterest has something like it.
  7. Thanks so much for this post:) I thought they were unhealthy but we can't buy them because my youngest daughter is allergic to milk,eggs and dairy. It's actually gross that almost everything in it is so un-healthy.
    1. It is gross! My daughter is allergic to milk, eggs, soy and sesame seeds. I totally understand how hard it is to have a child with allergies. It breaks my heart telling my daughter she can't have the cheese sticks her sister is eating.
  8. I agree completely. Although, I'm glad that we don't buy most dairy because it's not very healthy. We also have our own stuff such as, Earth Balance Butter, Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips, Silk Soy Milk, Daiya Cheese and Coconut Yogurt:) Your recipes and tips are awesome and really helpful! :)
  9. It's sad that our society has become a "convenience" food society, No one wants to cook from scratch anymore and a whole generation of little girls are growing up not know HOW to cook a healthy meal as a result. I agree with a post above that if you really need to, you can make your own "packed" cake mix and it will be so much healthier than anything bought in a store. But where it all should begin is with each of us. TEACH your children and grand children how to cook. It's a good way to instill healthy choices and a great way to spend time with the kiddies. (And don't forget the boys... THEY need to learn these skills as well!)
    1. I was one of those that grew up not knowing how to really cook...because my mother was a single mom of 4 and worked so hard to keep a roof over our heads, etc. BUT the good news is I have turned out to be a really good cook...with the help of Melissa's site & the internet in general. I have googled so many things - how to prep an eggplant, how to cook spaghetti squash, and endless other items for prepping along with countless recipes!! Said all this to say there is hope! :) Following a whole foods plant based diet has put me in the best health of my life & got me off all the meds to feeling better naturally is so awesome! So yes, teach your children (boys & girls) how to cook, but it is never to late...I have actually had fun teaching my mom some things!! :) Happy Friday to all...
      1. Thanks Tracy! I was raised on convenience foods, so I also did not learn to cook until later in life. I think the idea of cooking or baking may sound intimidating to some, but I promise it really becomes like a second nature once you start doing it. The more you cook and bake, the better and more efficient you will get. :)
  10. I think even without knowing what those nasties are, the fact that the ingredient list has virtually nothing that sounds natural in it should be such a heads up! Compare those to a cake you have made yourself - flour, butter, sugar! I'm not a keen cook, by any means) or a particularly good one, but homemade is the way to go. If I can do it, anyone can! Oh, and I am an expat, who has lived all over...outside of the US/UK convenience foods are much, much less common. No pre-packaged meals, cake mixes etc.

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