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Vegan Cake Mix – Everything You Need to Know

Cake mix is a pre-mixed powder that can be turned into a cake batter when you add a few extra ingredients to it. They are made up of pantry staples such as flour, sugar, cocoa powder, fat and flavourings. But is box cake mix vegan? And can you veganize cake mix? Keep reading to find out!

Box Of Betty Crocker Cake Mix

If you’ve ever been into baking, you’ll have most likely started out using cake mixes. I know I certainly used my fair share of them when I was a child! Boxed cake mixes are an easy way to make a cake without having to buy lots of different ingredients separately. There’s also less chance of mishap!

To make a cake mix into a cake, all you need to do is add wet ingredients, mix it all up and pop it in the oven. Typically, these wet ingredients are eggs, butter, oil, milk and water. The ingredients you need to add depends on the particular boxed cake mix you use- each one is different.

Are box cake mixes vegan?

A lot of the time, in the UK at least, they actually are! Even though the instructions say to add eggs, butter and/or milk, it’s easy to veganize cake mix. You can do this easily by using a few nifty vegan boxed cake mix hacks!

Of course, as with any food that is accidentally vegan, there are some things to watch out for. Some cake mixes include things like chocolate chips, sprinkles or colourings that may not be vegan-friendly. Non-vegan ingredients to look out for would be things like milk and milk powder, gelatine, carmine or E120, egg powder, beeswax and shellac. In the USA, sugar is sometimes processed using bone char- therefore cake mixes may not be vegan-friendly unless specifically marked as such. See: Is sugar vegan?

There are also a few boxed cake mixes that are specifically made for vegans and marked as such. The only ingredients you’ll need to add are vegan-friendly ingredients like banana, oil or water.

How to make cake mix vegan

So, how on Earth do you veganize cake mix?

There are many ways to make a vegan cake from boxed cake mix. The first way is by using the vegan cake mix hack. The second is to use dairy and egg substitutes.

Butter substitute

For a butter replacement, you can use a dairy-free block butter such as Stork. If your cake mix recipe calls for margarine, you can use vegan margarine (the spreadable type that comes in a tub) instead, in the same quantity. If the cake mix box says to add melted butter or margarine, you can use vegetable oil instead if you don’t want to use vegan butter/margarine.

Milk and egg substitute

Individual milk and egg substitutes will work just fine in cake mix but sometimes they can make your cake a little dense or chewy. In my opinion, the best option for a fluffy cake would be to use vegan buttermilk in place of the eggs and milk in your cake mix. Do not add buttermilk as well as water/dairy-free milk, or the mixture will be too runny.

Add the other ingredients you need for the cake mix (usually this will be a fat such as oil), then add your vegan buttermilk in slowly until you get a cake batter consistency. You can always add more buttermilk but you can’t take it away! I’d also recommend adding a teaspoon of baking powder to the mixture too, to help the cake rise in the oven.

If you prefer not to use buttermilk, the next best egg substitute would be a flax egg or a chia seed egg. Check out my vegan egg substitute post for other alternatives and exact quantities per egg.

For a milk alternative, any dairy-free milk with exception of coconut milk can be used at a 1:1 ratio. I personally find that soy milk works the best as it’s the closest thing macro-wise to cow’s milk.

Two Vegan Sponge Cakes On A Cooling Rack

Which cake mixes are vegan-friendly?

I’ve listed some of the accidentally vegan cake mixes below and a few that have been created specifically for vegans. Keep reading to find out how to make accidentally vegan box mixes without eggs or dairy.

Accidentally vegan cake mixes

These are all of the cake and cupcake box mixes that I could find that don’t contain eggs or dairy. Some are marked as vegan but require you to add eggs or dairy, which is why I’ve listed it here and not in the certified vegan section further down. You’ll find all of these in either Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, Asda, Waitrose or Holland and Barrett.

Certified vegan cake mixes

The cake mixes listed below are clearly marked as vegan and only require vegan ingredients be added. Some may instruct you to add a vegan egg or dairy replacement. You’ll find these in Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s Waitrose or online.

If you have milk or egg allergies, make sure to check the allergy warnings on the packaging before you purchase. The mixes are prepared without eggs or dairy but there may still be risk of cross-contamination.

How to veganize Betty Crocker cake mix

Is Betty Crocker cake mix vegan? Technically yes, although it is not explicitly marked as such. The mixture itself doesn’t contain animal products but the box will tell you to add milk and eggs. However, it’s super easy to veganize Betty Crocker cake mix.

You may have seen the Betty Crocker vegan hack already but if not, allow me to explain! The secret vegan cake mix hack is to add some fizzy juice (soda) to the powder. That’s all you need to do to veganize cake mix! You don’t need to add anything else- no eggs, oil, water, butter or milk. It sounds like magic and it really is!

You need to add 330ml of soda to one box of Betty Crocker cake mix. This is the amount that comes in a typical can in the UK. For chocolate or red velvet cake mix, use Coca Cola (or off-brand alternative). For other flavours like vanilla or carrot cake, use lemonade or Sprite.

You can use the Betty Crocker cake mix hack for other kinds of vegan box cake mixes too. You’ll probably need to adjust the amount of liquid depending on how much cake mix comes in the box. If we use the same formula as the 425g Betty Crocker mix, you’d need to use 0.77ml of soda per 1g of cake mix. So if your cake box mix is 350g, you’d need around 270ml of Coke or lemonade.

Vegan Betty Crocker Chocolate Cake

Which Betty Crocker cake mixes are accidentally vegan?

Luckily, all of the Betty Crocker mixes in the UK are vegan-friendly! This does not apply to all Betty Crocker boxed mixes, only the cakes. The muffins, cookies and brownie mixes contain milk and/or eggs.

Betty Crocker offers the following egg-free and dairy-free flavours, although these are not suitable for those with allergies due to the risk of cross contamination.

Which Betty Crocker frosting is vegan?

All Betty Crocker frosting is accidentally vegan in the UK. Much like the cake mixes, there is a risk of cross-contamination so they are not suitable for those with milk allergies. Check out my vegan icing post for more vegan frosting recommendations.


Is cake mix vegan? Vegan cake mix does exist and there are also many accidentally vegan cake mixes. You can use an easy hack to veganize cake mix with a can of soda, or you can use individual dairy and egg substitutes.

Slice Of Vegan Chocolate Cake Made With Betty Crocker Cake Mix Hack
5 from 1 vote

Vegan Cake Mix Hack (Betty Crocker Box Mix)

An easy vegan boxed cake mix hack using just a few ingredients.

Course Dessert
Cuisine vegan
Keyword vegan cake mix hack with box mix
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 8 slices
Calories 221 kcal



  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C for fan assisted ovens) and line two 7-inch cake tins. Using a smaller size of cake tin will help you get thicker slices.

  2. In a large bowl, mix the cake mix and baking powder together then stir in the Coca Cola. Keep stirring until you have a smooth cake mix and there's no powder left in the bowl.

  3. Split the mixture between the two cake tins and spread it out evenly.

  4. Bake for around 25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes, remove them from the tins then leave them to cool completely.

  5. Once the cakes are cool, sandwich them together with the Betty Crocker icing and add a little more on top.

  6. Decorate with vegan chocolate chips or any other decorations if desired and enjoy!

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

  • Any of the Betty Crocker cake mixes listed in the post above can be used for this vegan box mix hack. For non-chocolate cakes, you can use an equal amount of lemonade or Sprite.
  • You can pair your cake with any kind of vegan-friendly frosting you like. 
Nutrition Facts
Vegan Cake Mix Hack (Betty Crocker Box Mix)
Amount Per Serving (1 slice (without frosting))
Calories 221 Calories from Fat 27
% Daily Value*
Fat 3g5%
Saturated Fat 2g13%
Sodium 3mg0%
Carbohydrates 45g15%
Fiber 2g8%
Sugar 30g33%
Protein 3g6%
* All values are an estimate only and will vary depending on the food brands used.
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Monday 13th of May 2024

What can I use to replace the coca cola


Monday 13th of May 2024

The post has info on egg and dairy replacements.


Wednesday 3rd of April 2024

Just a heads up, there's carmine in the red velvet and rainbow party cake mixes which isn't vegan😳


Wednesday 3rd of April 2024

Thanks for pointing that out Jesse, I hadn’t noticed that! I will update the post :)


Sunday 31st of March 2024

I tried this hack but unfortunately i used Coke Zero by mistake! for future reference - it does not work lol im assuming its to do with the sweetners it uses but it smelt and tasted really weird! It did however make a lovely looking cake, it had risen well but unfortunately ended up in the bin.

Will definitely try this again with classic coca-cola!!


Monday 1st of April 2024

Oh no, sorry to hear! Hope the next one is more tasty🤞

Jacqueline Mahon

Thursday 8th of June 2023

Cake mix is not “typically vegan.” It has sugar in it, and you’ve no way of knowing if that sugar was finished with animal bone char. Best to find vegan mixes or bake from scratch.

Jacqueline Mahon

Sunday 11th of June 2023

@Chloe, Wonderful! Thank you.


Thursday 8th of June 2023

Hi Jacqueline. Sugar is vegan in the UK and all of the mixes I've linked to are produced in the UK. I have updated the post to clarify, thanks.

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