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Cakes from scratch can take hours to make and the taste or texture isn't always an improvement on a store-bought mix. A few minor additions to your go-to box cake mix can go a long way. Your creation will taste richer and moister than the typical cake from a box, which normally calls for just oil, water and eggs. It's easy to achieve reliably delicious results, as well as save time and money, by starting with a cake mix.

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Add one extra egg to the amount called for on the cake box directions (typically, mixes call for two to three eggs).

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Beat the eggs for two minutes in a separate bowl first, instead of tossing everything together and mixing at one time. Thoroughly beating the eggs first helps create a smoother batter with fewer air bubbles -- this gives your cake a more even, pleasing texture. After the eggs are a creamy, even pale yellow, blend them with the rest of the cake mix ingredients according to the instructions.

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Mix 3/4 cup of sour cream into the cake mix. Stir thoroughly. The richness of the sour cream gives your cake a denser flavor and consistency, and keeps your cake moister for a longer period of time.

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Add 1 small box of instant pudding or gelatin to the mixture. Choose any flavor you wish to complement your cake mix -- don't be afraid to experiment. If you are using a devil's food cake mix, for example, add a box of chocolate pudding. Vanilla pudding mix enhances the flavor of most boxed cake varieties. If you are using a white cake mix as your base, a fruity gelatin mix such as strawberry is a good choice.

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Toss in 1 cup of either semi-sweet chocolate chips, chopped nuts or frozen pureed berries to your mix. Experiment with different combinations. Add pineapples or chopped almonds to a yellow cake mix, for example, or strawberries to a white cake mix.

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Top your frosted cake with the rest of the chocolate chips, berries or nuts. Toss sliced almonds in a neat mound atop a doctored-up carrot or yellow cake. Arrange strawberries around the perimeter of a white cake. Decorate a devil's food or chocolate cake with chocolate chips.

About the Author

Alice Post

Alice Post began writing professionally in 1999. Her first job was writing for "The Baltic Times" in Tallinn, Estonia. She was a journalist for Reuters in New York City, and is now a copywriter for a nonprofit organization in her native Ohio. Post holds a Bachelor of Science in journalism from Ohio University.