Wow! Use store-bought mixes to make spectacular desserts

On the prowl for fun and innovative dessert ideas that don't eat up too much time? You're in luck! Siri Pinter, the woman behind the SIRIously Delicious food blog and the mom of two kids with TV host Carson Daly, has great ideas for jazzing up an ordinary cake and pudding mixes. Here are her recipes for ombre box mix cake, candy melt cupcake toppers and chocolate-chocolate chip pudding cookies.

Ombre box mix cake
Servings:

Makes one three-layer cake.

Ingredients

    • 1 box mix white cake
    • Food coloring or paste
    • Frosting of choice

Preparation

Baking Directions:

1. Prepare cake batter as directed on box.2. Divide into 3 bowls (or more for more layers).3. Add food coloring in varying degrees into each bowl (i.e. 1 drop in first bowl, 3 drops in second bowl and 5 drops in third bowl). Stir well.4. Bake cakes as directed on box (adjust time slightly to account for 3 layers vs. the 2 it states on box, roughly 5 minutes less — when inserted toothpick comes out clean, cake is done).5. Once cakes are cooled, assemble layers with lightest on bottom and darkest on top, frosting cakes in between each layer. Frost top and sides.

Candy melt cupcake toppers

Ingredients

    • Wilton candy melts
    • Parchment paper
    • Piping bag (or plastic sandwich bag)

Preparation

Baking Directions:

1. On countertop, tape image you wish to trace underneath parchment paper.2. Melt candy melts as directed on bag.3. Place in piping bag (using the smallest circular tip) or plastic sandwich bag (clipping the very tip of one corner).4. Trace the outline of image first, then fill in (it helps to use the back of a spoon for this). If using multiple colors, finish with one first and then repeat with another. 5. Let cool completely before peeling off parchment and placing on cupcakes.Note: You can do this on a much larger scale for cakes.

Chocolate chocolate chip pudding cookies
Servings:

Makes approximately 2 dozen cookies.

Ingredients

    • 1 4-ounce package instant chocolate pudding
    • 1 cup all-purpose flour
    • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 1 egg
    • 1 egg white
    • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1 package semi-sweet chocolate chips

Preparation

Baking Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.2. In a small bowl, stir together pudding mix, flour, cocoa powder and salt. Set aside.  3. With an electric mixer, blend butter until whipped. Add brown sugar and blend until creamy.  4. Add egg, egg white and vanilla and continue to blend (batter might look runny).  5. Slowly add dry ingredients and blend until just combined. Stir in chocolate chips.6. Place by rounded spoonful on parchment-lined baking sheet. (I flatten mine with the bottom of a glass, otherwise they come out puffy.)  7. Bake for 10 minutes.

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