How To Make Half A Cake Mix

How To Make Half A Cake Mix

Did you know you don’t have to use a whole cake mix when making a cake? I didn’t for years! Totally blew my mind when I realized I could make a smaller cake or fewer cupcakes. Here I’ll show you how to use half a cake mix to make a smaller cake or cupcakes!

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How To Make Half A Cake Mix

I frequently use cake mix when making cake. I like it, my family likes it, it’s way easier than making a cake from scratch. And, if you make your frosting from scratch, nobody will even know.

Right now, a lot of us are celebrating birthdays at home with smaller celebrations that maybe don’t require a whole big 9 inch 2 layer cake or 24 cupcakes (or 22 in my case-I never seem to manage to get 24 out of a cake mix…).

Tiny Cake

How to reduce a cake mix:

A typical Pillsbury cake mix is about 3 cups of cake mix.

To make 1/2 a cake mix, you would need 1 1/2 cups cake mix, 1/2 cup water, 2 1/2 tablespoons oil, 1 whole egg and 1 egg yolk.

To make 1/3 of a cake mix is even easier! You would need 1 cup cake mix, 1/3 cup water, 2 tablespoons oil, and 1 egg.

How much cake does a 1/2 cake mix make?

Half a cake mix should make about:

  • 12 cupcakes.
  • 2 very full layers of a 4 inch round cake
  • 2 layers of a 6 inch round cake
  • 1 layer of an 8-9 inch round or square cake.

The cake in these photos was made with 1/2 a cake mix and poured into two 4 inch cake pans. It was frosted with a little less than 1/2 batch of chocolate peanut butter buttercream. I used a Wilton #21 star tip for a swirl border, rainbow jimmies, and filled the middle with some chopped up leftover Reese’s Eggs.

half a cake mix cake

Half A Cake Mix Cake

Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 4 inch cake


  • Cake pans
  • Mixer


  • 1 1/2 cups boxed cake mix
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 egg yolk


  • If using stand mixer, fit with paddle attachment.
  • Pour cake mix into bowl. Add in water, oil and eggs.
  • Beat on high speed for 1-2 minutes.
  • Pour into prepared cake pan and or muffin pan.
  • Bake at 350 degrees until done.


Half a cake mix should make about 12 cupcakes. It makes 2 very full layers of a 4 inch round cake, 2 layers of a 6 inch round cake, 1 layer of an 8-9 inch round or square cake.

For other cake decorating tips, you might want to check out my posts on how to fill a piping bag using a water glass (makes it super easy) or how to fix an ugly cake.

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Happy Baking!

To make things a little easier in the kitchen, I’ve created a handy printable conversion chart (cause honestly, who can remember how many teaspoons are in a tablespoon?). Sign up below and I’ll send it to you!

Happy Baking!