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Duff Cake Mix Review: Tie Dye Nightmare

My daughter loves to bake.   She saw Duff’s cake mix in Target and was determined to make her own tie dye masterpiece.

Duff Tie Dye Cake Mix

Duff Goldman owns Charm City Cakes.  His elaborate creations are featured on the Food Network show “Ace of Cakes.”  I’ve seen the show a few times.  He seems like a cool guy.  I was very impressed with the way he stood up to help a same sex couple when another baker denied making their wedding cake.

As with many celebrity chefs – especially those who appear on Food Network – his face is now on several products.  There’s Duff Blue Bunny ice cream at Walmart featuring pieces of cake.   He has a line of cake pans, fondant, sprinkles and other cake decorating goodies.

And then there’s the mixes and frostings.

There were three choices of Duff cake mix at our Target:  tie dye, blue suede and zebra.  Tie dye is vanilla, zebra is marble and blue suede says it “has a hint of blueberry.”

Both chocolate and “white” frosting were available in the Duff brand.

Mixes and frosting were $2.99 each.

My teen daughter has successfully been making cakes herself from scratch for years.  Box mixes are nothing for her.

Not this one.

She sat out to make it Saturday morning and quickly called The Momma in for reinforcement.

The directions are long and not very clear.

First up is mixing the batter.  This mix uses only egg whites.  It was her first time encountering that.  She took her time separating them and then we scrambled the yolks up for the dog in the microwave.

After the batter is mixed, you dye it six different colors.

That means you need six different bowls.

And six different spoons.

Plus, the original mixing bowl and spoon.

Oh, and whatever dishes you used to separate the eggs.

There are three packets of dye to make the six colors.  Some colors are made by combining two dyes.

Once you get your six dyes made, you put half of each INTO ANOTHER BOWL.

That’s TWELVE BOWLS just for the dyed batter.

 tie dye cake

Then it’s time to spread each layer out.  That took forever.

cake making

The box tells you what order to go.  We did the two layer cake method.  She did the first layer according to the directions, carefully letting each color spread out on its own, and then lost patience.  I did the second layer for her.  I just slapped the batter in the pan one right after the other.

We baked it.  Cooled. Frosted it.  Ate it.

Oh, and washed a gazillion dishes.

tie die cake

tie dye cake

Duff's cake

These are not Pinterest worthy photos, but I’m going to put them up there anyway.

Because making this cake deserves a badge of honor

It was a pain in the butt.

I asked my daughter if she’d want to make it again.

It was a resounding, “NO!”

It tasted good.  Really good.  It was a moist, delicious vanilla cake.

Even my picky husband devoured it.

But we could have had yummy cake without all of the hassle and dishes.

It didn’t look cool enough to warrant all of the effort.

So if you’re a fan of Duff Goldman, “Ace of Cakes” or Charm City Cakes, give the Duff cake mix a shot if you’re looking for a delicious treat.  Just make sure you have plenty of dish soap on hand if you’re going with the tie dye version!

duff cake

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