One Cake 5 Ways

This moist, sweet and tender cake is easy to make with homemade vanilla cake mix. This decadent dessert can take on different yummy flavors like pistachio, coconut and more. Learn how to make One Cake 5 Ways – and they’re all delicious!

A Collage of Slices of Cake in Vanilla, Lemon, Banana, Pistachio and Coconut Flavors

One Cake 5 Ways

Today’s recipe takes one super easy cake and shows you how to mix it up into five different flavors! Each is delicious and super moist. Pistachio, banana, lemon, coconut and vanilla – take your pick!

So you may remember the Homemade Vanilla Cake Mix I shared with you a few weeks ago. Well, I expanded upon that today and added pudding mix to the batter!

Like most cake mixes you buy at the store that come with “pudding in the mix!”, I decided to add some pudding to the mix. It not only adds moisture to the cake that lasts for days, it adds some fun and different flavors without having to change your recipe. I’m loving it! I’ve also included a couple different frosting options that are easy to adjust to the cake flavor you choose. One is a more standard buttercream and the other is a cream cheese frosting.

So to start, we’ve got our standard vanilla cake. You could certainly leave out the pudding mix, but it totally amplifies the vanilla flavor and adds moisture that lasts and lasts. I paired it with a vanilla buttercream, but you could change it up for the cream cheese frosting – or add some flavored extract.

A Plate Holding a Slice of Vanilla Cake with Buttercream Frosting and Sprinkles

Next up is the coconut. Again, so much amped up flavor and moisture. And with a coconut frosting – summer in a cake pan!

A Piece of Coconut Cake Topped with Frosting and Toasted Coconut

I also tried one of the new JELLO “Simply Good” pudding mixes in the banana flavor. I considered using the regular banana pudding flavored mix, which would totally work too, but I loved the idea of a more natural banana flavor. It was perfect in this cake! And when paired with the cream cheese frosting – it’s the jam!

A Slice of Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting on a Plate

Another delicious option is the pistachio pudding. Such a great way to give a cake some pistachio flavor! I topped it with some cream cheese frosting with a little honey mixed in and some chopped up pistachios. I’d be lying if I said I’m not slightly in love with pistachios these days, and this cake just made them even better!

A Piece of Pistachio Cake Topped with Crushed Pistachios on a Plate

And last, but not least – lemon! Citrus can be tricky when baked into a cake, so this is a great, easy way to make a moist and easy lemon cake. It’s perfect with a cream cheese frosting – yum!

A Slice of Lemon Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting and a Lemon Garnish

I did try a few other pudding flavors, but these were the ones I found to be most successful. One I really wanted to work out well was the butterscotch and sadly, even though it baked fine, the flavor didn’t come through. 🙁

All five cake options are delicious and super easy to make! It’s such a great way to mix up a cake flavor without a lot of fuss. Plus, the cakes are super moist! I hope you have fun switching it up!

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A Slice of Banana Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting on a Plate
Recipe

One Cake 5 Ways

  • Author: Lindsay
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 14 Slices
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

This moist, sweet and tender cake is easy to make with homemade vanilla cake mix. This decadent dessert can take on different yummy flavors like pistachio, coconut and more. Learn how to make One Cake 5 Ways – and they’re all delicious!


Ingredients

CAKE MIX

  • 2 1/2 cups (325g) all purpose flour
  • 2 cups (414g) sugar
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3.4 oz instant pudding mix*
  • 1 cup (240ml) milk
  • 1/2 cup (120ml) vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup (240ml) hot water

BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

  • 3/4 cup (168g) butter
  • 1/2 cup (95g) shortening
  • 5 cups (575g) powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp flavored extract
  • 3 tbsp (34ml) water or milk**

CREAM CHEESE FROSTING

  • 8 oz (226g) cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (57g) butter, room temperature
  • 4 1/2 cups (518g) powdered sugar
  • 23 tbsp (30-45ml) water or milk**

Instructions

TO MAKE THE CAKE:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F (176°C) and grease a 9×13 inch cake pan.
2. Combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and pudding mix in a large mixer bowl.
3. Add the milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract and eggs to a medium sized bowl and combine.
5. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
6. Slowly add the hot water to the batter and mix on low speed until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure everything is well combined.
7. Pour the batter into the greased cake pan and bake for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out with a few moist crumbs.

TO MAKE THE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING:

1. Combine the butter and shortening in a large mixer bowl and mix until smooth.
2. Add about half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
3. Add the flavor extract of your choosing (vanilla, coconut, etc) and the water or milk and mix until smooth.
4. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
5. Spread the frosting onto the cooled cake.

TO MAKE THE CREAM CHEESE FROSTING:

1. Combine the cream cheese and butter in a large mixer bowl and mix until smooth.
2. Add about half of the powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
3. Add the water or milk and mix until smooth.
4. Add the remaining powdered sugar and mix until smooth.
5. Spread the frosting onto the cooled cake.


Notes

Feel free to use the pudding mix of your choice. I used Jello brand and found vanilla, coconut cream, banana, pistachio and lemon to work the best.

The milk or water can be replaced with another flavoring, such as honey, lemon juice or something else to add additional flavor to the frosting.

Makes 12-16 servings.

Nutrition info is for any flavor of cake with buttercream frosting.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size:
  • Calories: 689
  • Sugar: 93.8 g
  • Sodium: 536.2 mg
  • Fat: 26 g
  • Carbohydrates: 112.7 g
  • Protein: 3.9 g
  • Cholesterol: 53.1 mg

Keywords: vanilla cake recipe, easy vanilla cake recipe, coconut cake, coconut cake recipe, lemon cake, easy lemon cake recipe, banana cake, banana cake recipe

Enjoy!

One Homemade Cake Mix - 5 different flavors! Easy to make and switch up!

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Recipe rating

79 Comments
      1. Beverly

        I would really like to add crushed pineapple and chopped pecans to this lovely cake. Do you have any suggestions how to go about doing that? Reduce the milk and/or water?

  1. Janet Hoes

    I have made this as written several times and it is amazing. Do I need to make any adjustments to bake in a bundt pan?
    Thanks

    1. Lindsay

      Glad you’ve enjoyed it! I haven’t tried it in a bundt pan, so I’m not entirely sure. I might try baking it at 325 though.

  2. Kelly

    Hi I love this cake recipe so much I have made it a lot,but yesterday I made this cake for a lady and she told me it was really gummy, didn’t taste l8me it was cooked and tasted like cake pop consistency? I don’t know what I did wrong?

    1. Lindsay

      Unfortunately this is a result that some people seem to get (check out the comments on these vanilla cupcakes, which is this recipe in cupcake form). It’s interesting that you have had it work several times and then gotten this result. I’ve never been able to recreate it myself to say what goes wrong. I’m sorry!

  3. Laura Maring

    Wow! Finally found a great recipe for moist cake! We changed the recipe to use for cupcakes which worked even better. Very pourable into the liners. The final product was super moist. 2 thumbs up!

Lindsay
About Lindsay

I'm a wife and mom to twin boys, a baby girl and a sweet black lab with a serious sweets addiction! Bring on the sugar!

Scripture I’m Loving

“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12