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Thread: Duncan Hines cake mixes shrink!

  1. #1

    Duncan Hines cake mixes shrink!

    I just noticed at the grocery store that Duncan Hines has joined Betty Crocker with shrinking cake mixes.

    The Pillsbury cake mixes on the baking aisle appear to be the same (larger) size as always. Don't know how long that will last.

    Duncan Hines just lost me as a customer (and I have bought their cake mixes for decades).

    I do have lots of scratch cake recipes, but we have some old family favorites that call for a mix. Too bad.

  2. #2
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    If they shrink the amount of mix, wouldn't that mean it won't fit the pans anymore?

    I had the same problem when they went to 6 oz. yogurt. I have so many recipes that call for 8 oz. cups.

  3. #3
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    Duncan Hines is the only brand I will use for the occasional recipe requiring a cake mix, so I'm not sure how that will fare for us. I am past the cupcakes for school stage, which used to be my main reason for buying a cake mix. I have one favorite snack cake that uses the mix. I may have to try to adapt the recipe -- with or without the mix.

    I wish we could convince companies that a 14 ounce can is not the same as a 15 ounce can or a 16 ounce can. Shrinking of all products throws off not only recipes using a mix but a lot of scratch cooking too. I love Blue Bell ice cream (first for being good, but also) for keeping true to the original half gallon size. Unfortunately, that is one product I don't think I have ever seen a recipe for a full carton of.

  4. #4
    We're huge fans of Blue Bell - but, as you say, not so much in recipes My current favorite flavor (after Homemade Vanilla) is Southern Blackberry Cobbler. Oh my, it's good.

    They also have a new flavor called Red Velvet Cake. I'm trying to stay away from it.

    Duncan Hines was the best of the boxed mixes IMO, which is why I am so disappointed in them.

  5. #5
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    Check out the Cake Doctor thread -- and check to see if your store's private label cake mixes aren't the 18.5 oz size (Kroger brand is)! I've really come to appreciate a quickly-made, non-mix-flavored cake!
    Kay
    I'm a WYSIWYG person -- no subterfuge here!

  6. #6
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    I buy the Duncan Hines Dark Fudge Brownies! I will check to see if they reduced the size of them too!!!
    Curleytop

  7. #7
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    Angry

    Your frustration is shared by many as you can read here:
    http://www.duncanhines.com/forums/sh...t=35585&page=2

    The reply given to knititgrammy by a customer service supervisor really takes the cake.

    Thanks Kay, I'll be checking the store brands.
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  8. #8
    Does anyone have any tried and true formulas for homemade cake mixes? Seems like it can't be too difficult. I very rarely make a cake, so I don't mind doing it from scratch. Actually I prefer that rather then all the extra stuff I'm sure they add to the boxes.

  9. #9
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    Angela, I could have sworn CL did a piece on homemade mixes years ago, but I can't find it and maybe I dreamed that....

    However, I do remember a freezer yellow cake mix from Cook's Country. I'd have to go track down the issue to compare, but I found this link for you to someone's blog who made the cake mix:
    http://www.kitchenkoala.net/2010/04/...cake-with.html.

    I don't recall if Cook's Country or Cook's Illustrated have done a white mix, sorry....

    Also, there's a blogger/cookbook writer, Camilla Saulsbury (sp?), who recently did a book, Piece of Cake: One bowl cakes. She might have some "mixes" in that, anybody on the BB have that book that can answer that question? It's still on my Amazon wish list....had to cut back, ya know. Her blog is Enlightened Cooking.

    Can't sleep, up surfing--Here's another one I found, supposedly this is the Top Secret Recipe guy's version of Duncan Hines Yellow Mix:
    http://www.buttercreambarbie.com/201...llow-cake.html

    Hope this helps!
    Last edited by Joanie B; 06-03-2012 at 01:38 AM.
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  10. #10
    Why in the world would anyone want to clone a cake mix. Out of curiosity I followed the link and - aside from the shortening which is an immediate turn off to me in a cake - most of my cake recipes aren't that complex.

    This is not meant as a dig to the people who googled for the information but more as a giant why?

    THere was a similar thread last month on shrinking sizes of consumer products used deceptively - i.e. same size box and very little to alert the consumer that the actual product is less than what they have been buying.

    It's bad enough when it's an item that isn't then used as part of a recipe but where will it end. Will canned tomatoes (a staple of lots of my recipes) be reduced? What about chicken stocked (canned or boxed).

    You know that they did tests on consumers to see whether it made a difference - i.e. some consumers had the same amount in box with higher price whereas some consumers had reduced size for the lower price.

    I haven't used a cake mix in years because it's not that hard to assemble a simple cake unless it's the kind that uses beaten egg whites but a lot of cake recipes are essentially one bowl.

    Given how few people actually do REAL from scratch baking, will it make any difference to 99% of the people. Even a lot of the "doctored" recipes just add flavoring to the recipe so there would be no difference in the outcome.

    Of course, there is the genuine tragedy like when the mix used for the Tunnel of Fudge cake disappeared and a whole industry arose to attempt to replicate the cake from scratch.

  11. #11

    Amarante

    Would you please post some of your cake recipes?? I have a chocolate one that makes a nice 8" cake and I use it for trifles.....will post it later. Thanks.

  12. #12
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    Amarante, if my kids were still small and my primary reason for having a cake mix on hand was to make cupcakes for a class, I would now be buying 2 boxes instead of one -- not a huge deal unless you hadn't noticed and it was too late to get a second or you consider having most of the second batch left over a problem.

    I am trying to think of when I use a cake mix -- there is a cookie recipe that is based on a chocolate cake mix and comes out well with DH. I could cut the water back a tad or find a recipe I could tweak to get similar results. I make two variations, usually once ro twice a year, but one of them was a specific request from DS while at college last year, so while not a weekly occurrence or anything, I will want to work that one out one way or the other.

    I also make a pumpkin crumb cake with a DH yellow cake mix. I always meant to work out the changes to make it with cooked pumpkin instead of the pumpkin pie filling mix it called for, so now I will need to figure out how to incorporate those things into a yellow cake and crumb recipe and try to get the same flavors and textures. That one will be a bit of a pain to work out, and I don't mind it in principle. It's a matter of time to play. I've been promising my son some snickerdoodles for a week or two now and I am determined to make them today. Knocking on wood.

    Canned good s have already been shrinking. Tomatoes used to be 16 oz cans -- now 15. Canned soup -- was 12 oz and now 10.75 oz. My Swanson broth was 16 oz and is now 14.5 oz.

  13. #13
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    I see a problem in the future. I was just checking the recipes I have that call for cake mix. I found that some of the recipes do not list what size box to use. That is fine now. I can tell by the condition or date posted on the recipe that it was printed long before the reduction of the mix happened. But what about future recipes? What if they don't stipulate the size? They may not indicate how old the recipe is.

    I, like a lot of us here, have a hard time parting with a recipe once it is in our binders and such, but I see a lot of recipes that I will be able to toss very easily

  14. #14
    I have a great sweet roll recipe that uses a box of DH yellow along with yeast and flour. I've tried zillions of other recipes and nothing touches this. I'll have to see if the smaller box changes the rolls or not, otherwise I'll be juggling several boxes to make 18 oz of my own.
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  15. #15
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    Amarante - I have tried several cake recipes, and they always come out tough!! I know it's something I'm doing wrong, but I'd rather tweak a cake mix than make something sub-standard for my friends. Now, yeast rolls -- that's something else! I can do those all day long!
    Kay
    I'm a WYSIWYG person -- no subterfuge here!

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by amarante View Post
    Will canned tomatoes (a staple of lots of my recipes) be reduced?
    Canned tomatoes have already been downsized to 15.5 ounces, and in some cases, even less. When I save a recipe I change the ingredient list to read 2 cups canned tomatoes. That way, if I have a smaller size can, I must decide if I can get by with a *tad* less, or should I add enough water to equal 2 cups.

    Given the success of companies who have downsized without reducing prices, I visualize it happening *across the board*. My favorite brand of ice cream is no longer being packaged in the traditional 1/2 gallon size.
    Pinterest recipe instruction: "2 Pita Pockets cut in half length-wise". Actually, I cut mine crosswise - I'm such a rebel.

  17. #17
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    I have 2 old recipes that I made last weekend and they called for a can of this and a box of that and sure enough, all the sizing was off, so I had to buy 2 cans and add to get the ratio right. One was a jello salad, so if the liquid wasn't right it wouldn't set.

    It is annoying.
    Cookie baker and cake decorator

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by LakeMartinGal View Post
    Amarante - I have tried several cake recipes, and they always come out tough!! I know it's something I'm doing wrong, but I'd rather tweak a cake mix than make something sub-standard for my friends. Now, yeast rolls -- that's something else! I can do those all day long!
    For most cakes, you want the opposite of what you do with yeast rolls. The beating to cream butter, beat in sugar and incorporate air typically want to happen before you add any flour. Once you add flour, you just mix or fold. You may also want to try a cake flour -- and be sure you don't use a bread flour. You want lower protein and gluten content where fat, eggs and baking powder or soda are giving the rise and high gluten where yeast is working.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1grl1by View Post
    I have a great sweet roll recipe that uses a box of DH yellow along with yeast and flour. I've tried zillions of other recipes and nothing touches this. I'll have to see if the smaller box changes the rolls or not, otherwise I'll be juggling several boxes to make 18 oz of my own.
    Can you share this recipe, please?
    Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.

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