Here, kid-friendly recipes that don’t require fancy ingredients.

By Laura Fisher
May 14, 2020
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Between limiting trips to the grocery store and an overall shortage of flour and lack of yeast across the country, you might be running low on baking supplies (or inspiration). If boxed cake mix is all you can find at the store, or you were lucky enough to find a forgotten box in the back of the pantry, it’s time to get creative!

Of course there's nothing wrong with baking the contents according to the directions on the box and letting the kids go wild with decorating. But if the idea of straight-up sheet cake sounds boring to you or you’re just looking for something new to try out in the kitchen, check out some of these unique, kid-friendly ways to use up that cake mix and bring an element of celebration to even your most basic desserts.

Pancakes and Waffles

Cake for breakfast? We don’t think you’ll get too many complaints on transforming boxed mix into your family’s favorite morning treats. The technique remains the same as your standard waffles and pancakes, but the batter gets a sweet, cakey boost from the mix. For waffles, simply mix up the cake mix using the directions on the box, but pour into your waffle maker instead of into a cake pan. For the pancakes, you’ll just substitute three-quarters cup of flour in your pancake recipe for cake mix when mixing together your dry ingredients. Use whatever flavor you have on hand and play around with the toppings for a fun and different way to get everyone to the breakfast table.

Cake-Shake

For a different take on an ice cream cake, try using your cake mix to blend up a tasty milkshake with only 3, easy-to-find ingredients: cake mix, milk, and ice cream. Just blend the ingredients together until creamy, using about ½ cup cake mix for 2 milkshakes, and top with sprinkles for an extra festive touch. Because nothing says happy birthday like a creamy drink that tastes like licking cake batter right off the mixers.

Rice Crispy Treats

Dessert doesn’t have to require an oven, and there’s no better example than rice crispy treats. Yellow cake mix and sprinkles make this recipe a festive twist on those gooey, chewy, beloved squares. Just mix a half cup of dry cake mix into your melted butter and marshmallows before mixing with the cereal, being sure to add any sprinkles (if using) at the end and giving just a quick stir to avoid their coloring from bleeding into the whole pan. Find the full recipe here.

Ice Cream Sandwiches

Sure, you could make cake mix cookies, but why stop there? Take those easy, fluffy cookies and combine them with ice cream for the quintessential summer treat. Get creative with any variety of mix and ice cream you have stocked for endless combinations. Make the cookies by combining cake mix, eggs, vegetable oil, and powdered sugar, and once cooked, scoop in your favorite ice cream, and make them into delicious sammies. Don't forget to add sprinkles to the sides.

Whipped Cream

Yes, you read that right. The cake mix acts as a thickener with the heavy cream, creating a rich and creamy topping that you can use on…more cake. Or on hot chocolate, fruit, or anything else you want to spruce up with a festive dollop. This recipe couldn’t be simpler: just beat one cup of heavy whipping cream until you start to reach that whipped consistency, add in one-third cup of vanilla cake mix and continue mixing until you get stiff peaks. If you have them on hand, fold in some sprinkles right at the end.

This Story Originally Appeared On realsimple