What to Avoid When Buying Cake Mix

If you're going to make cake from a boxed mix, make sure it's healthy.

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What’s Really Inside Boxed Caked Mixes (3:03)

Boxed cake mix is a simple baking shortcut that makes everyone's lives easier. From bake sales and holiday parties to birthdays, boxed cake is definitely a life-saver for a quick cake that still tastes delicious. However, cake mix today is not the same as it was when it was created in the 1930s. The original boxed cake mix included essential ingredients like flour, molasses, sugar, shortening, and powdered eggs. But the average boxed mix in grocery stores today also includes preservatives such as propylene glycol, which is also used in e-cigarettes and antifreeze! 

Not all boxed cake mix is bad, there are just certain things you need to look out for on the label. Check out these tips to make sure you're buying and baking the healthiest cake for your friends and family. 

1. Avoid Hydrogenated Oils 

Hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils are added into certain nonperishable foods in order to help them keep longer and taste better. But these oils are not necessary to improve flavor and instead may leave your boxed cake mix containing harmful trans fats. Look on the ingredient label of the mix you're thinking of buying: If you see hydrogenated oils listed, put the box back.

2. Stay Away From Artificial Coloring 

Food dyes help give things like yellow cake and red velvet cake their color. But artificial colors (and even artificial flavoring) are not healthy for you. Make sure to avoid boxed cake mixes with anything artificial and instead opt for mixes that use things like cocoa powder for natural coloring.

3. Look for Gluten-Free Labels

Oftentimes gluten-free and organic cake mixes are the healthiest to buy because they steer clear of preservatives. High-quality cake mix is most often found in these aisles, so if you're looking for a healthy and delicious cake you can make quickly, stop by the gluten-free section of the store.

Related: 

Healthier Boxed Cake Recipe 

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