I pretty much don’t bake anything that doesn’t involve a box of cake mix. Baking requires chemistry and weird magical measuring tricks that I can never figure out, so cake mix boxes really increase the likelihood that my baking efforts will succeed.
Enter the Diet Soda Cake, which uses two of my favorite things in the world: a box of cake mix, and Diet Coke.
The only tricky thing about this one is the egg whites, but I often manage to separate my yolks with a relatively small amount of trouble– it’s one of the kitchen things that I usually don’t mess up, so I do it whenever possible. (There’s a life lesson for you: If you want to feel super smart, only do stuff you know you’re good at… Jeez, I should write a self-help book, for real.)
Once I mixed it up, the batter looked decent, if a little thin.
Turns out that’s what happens when you don’t put oil or yolk in your cake.
I decided to make these into tiny little muffins instead of a cake because I was having a party with little kids coming and every little kid loves bite-sized cupcakes and I love sending them home to announce to their parents, “I ate FIVE CUPCAKES!” and then watching the following parental apoplectic fit.
The problem? This batter does not behave as normal. Filling the cupcake tins half-full resulted in tiny, sad-looking mini cupcakes. Filling them more than half-full resulted in overflowing messy mini cupcakes. It took be about six tries to get the right amount. (The other problem is that mini cupcake tins hold very little and I had to bake them in like seventeen batches.)
When they were finally done, I had a stack of variously grotesque mini cupcakes. I was too tired to frost them, so I let the kids do it, and that was a big hit.
Then I sent the rest home with the parents. I win at cupcakes. And being an awesome auntie.