Elevate a Box Cake Mix to a Festive Easter Dessert

Find the steps and tips to doctor a box cake mix and elevate it for a festive dessert for Easter.

Elevate a Box Cake Mix to a Festive Easter Dessert | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Happy April!

I have an festive dessert to celebrate Easter that starts with a box cake mix!

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

I’m a fan of ‘doctoring the box’ when it comes to a cake or cupcakes, see -> Doctoring the Box: Carrot Cake from Spice Cake Mix..The dry ingredients are measured and ready to go which cuts down on prep time, and with just a few additions, your cake will taste homemade, especially topped with your favorite frosting recipe!

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

I used a Pillsbury Moist Supreme Strawberry Cake Mix for the pretty pink color for this cake, but feel free to use a lemon cake mix, white, yellow or even German Chocolate or Devil’s Food, if that’s your family’s favorite. Follow the box directions for mixing and baking with these additions and substitutions:

4 large eggs instead of 3

Substitute buttermilk for the water

Use melted butter for the oil

Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Mix as directed on box, until moistened and then beat with a mixer on medium speed for 2 minutes.

Elevating a Box Cake Mix to a Festive Easter Dessert | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Tip: Line a 13 x 9 pan with parchment paper for easy removal of your cake. Parchment paper also helps regulate the oven temperature and can neutralize hot spots as a barrier between the pan and your batter.

Spray your pan with baking spray then line your pan with parchment paper that hangs over the edge of your pan. The spray will keep your paper in place and from slipping. Parchment is nonstick so you can lift the cake out of the pan using the ends of the paper. Bake as directed on box in a 350 degree F oven for 34 – 38 minutes or until your cake tests done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. I used metal binder clips to keep the paper from folding into the batter during baking and blocking the heat of the oven so it would bake more evenly. 

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

When cake is cool, transfer to a serving platter or tray to decorate, using the frosting of your choice to cover the cake. I found these pretty enamel blue and pink cookie sheets at HomeGoods that I thought would also make a pretty serving tray.

Elevate a Box Cake Mix to a Festive Easter Dessert | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

 I used wax paper to keep the tray clean while frosting the cake, tucking the paper under all four sides, then removing them to finish decorating.

Elevate a Box Cake Mix to a Festive Easter Dessert | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Use the frosting of your choice to cover the cake to keep it moist and provide a base to decorate.

Here’s a favorite Cream Cheese Frosting:

Adjust amount of sugar to your taste and for your preferred sweetness. 


1/2 cup butter (1 stick), softened

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

3 – 4 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted so lump free

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon salt


Beat softened butter for 3 minutes on medium until light and creamy. Add cream cheese and beat on low until well blended.  Add salt and vanilla; add powdered sugar 1/4 cup at time on low. When sugar is combined, beat on medium speed for 1 minute. If piping frosting, refrigerate for 1 – 2 hours to allow frosting to firm up.

Start with 3 cups of sugar, add more after tasting to desired sweetness. Use a quality butter and full fat cream cheese for best results as it has less water content.

Triple star tip | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Tint your frosting using gel food coloring to your desired shade. I used a triple star tip to pipe “grass” along the edge of the cake.

Russian piping tip for flowers | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

I used my Russian piping tips that I used for my Blooming Bunny Ear Cupcakes to add flowers to the cake. Place the tip at a 90° angle to the surface of the cake, then pull the bag straight up slowly releasing the pressure at the same time. Practice on a piece of wax paper first so you know how much pressure to use.

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

The trick to using Russian piping tips is in the frosting, which allows it to hold its shape. You’ll want to use an American-style buttercream recipe which has a 1:2 ratio of butter to powdered sugar. If your frosting too soft, the piped design will look like a blob of frosting instead of a flower. You can also doctor a can of store-bought frosting by adding 1 cup of confectioners’ sugar, so it will hold the flower shape when piped.

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Find more on mixing your colors and how to fill your piping bag the easy way, HERE.

Leaf tip for piping frosting | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

I used a leaf tip to pipe some green leaves to join the flowers and an open star tip to pipe a ribbon of pink frosting around the edge of the cake, topped with some Easter egg sprinkles.

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Lindt mini chocolate chicks and bunnies hopped to the cake along with jelly beans and foil wrapped chocolate eggs for some Easter decoration. I found my Lindt mini Easter bunnies and chicks at Target and have also seen them at Publix and Walgreens.

Decorate a cake with chocolate chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

A larger foil wrapped bunny sets on the tray at the top of cake.

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

If you enjoy cupcake or cake decorating and haven’t used Russian piping tips, I highly recommend trying them!

Blooming Bunny Ear Cupcakes for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

 { Blooming Bunny Ear Cupcakes }

They’re more readily available when I bought mine several years ago. You can find them with the cake decorating supplies at the craft store. Affiliate links included below for your convenience.

Decorate a cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. If you purchase anything through an affiliate link, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.

Hop over to find 16+ Easter Recipes for Sides, Salads and Desserts, HERE.

16+ Easter Recipes for Sides, Salads and Desserts | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #recipes #desserts #sides #salads

Happy Easter ♥

Cake with chocolate bunnies, chicks and candy for Easter | ©homeiswheretheboatis.net #easter #dessert #cake #recipe

Thank you for your visit, sharing with:

 Between Naps on the Porch

  26 comments for “Elevate a Box Cake Mix to a Festive Easter Dessert

  1. Jane
    April 1, 2021 at 6:47 am

    Thank you for the delicious recipes!
    All look so yummy…….
    Happy Easter 🐥

  2. April 1, 2021 at 7:08 am

    You did a great job decorating that cake. Thanks for all the tips and pics!

  3. Ruth Miller
    April 1, 2021 at 7:09 am

    What a work of art! You are very talented. Happy almost Easter!

  4. Ann Woleben
    April 1, 2021 at 7:22 am

    Too pretty to eat – Almost! Happy Easter~

    • Kim
      April 1, 2021 at 4:17 pm

      The cake is gorgeous. I wish I could make it for Easter but my dil would turn her nose up. Unfortunately, her children are not allowed the delicious thing in life.

      Happy Easter 🐇🥕🐣

  5. Rita C.
    April 1, 2021 at 7:49 am

    Wow, you did a great job with that. I like the tip of adding the paper clips!

  6. April 1, 2021 at 8:13 am

    You are blowing my mind here! In addition to all of your other talents you can also decorate cakes? I never stop being impressed by all that you do. In looking at those decorating tips, I am reminded that, about six years ago, I bought a set of similar decorating tips and I have no idea what I did with them. Perhaps I should dig around in my “baking drawer of wonder” to see if I can find them and give them a try. Happy Easter, Mary!

  7. Barbara Zuleski
    April 1, 2021 at 8:13 am

    Absolutely the Best Easter Cake I have ever seen, It is snowing today, April first and your blast of spring has encouraged me to get out the Easter Decorations and plan a special dessert to celebrate on Sunday, even if it is just my husbands and I, for Covid is really Bad up here again in Jackson, MI (The New York Times said we were the worst in all the country per capita.)

  8. April 1, 2021 at 8:22 am

    Mary, I agree with Ann…this cake is too pretty to eat. It would make a beautiful centerpiece!

  9. Sami's Aunt Nancy
    April 1, 2021 at 8:27 am

    Mary, is there anything you’re not good at?! Thank you for the specific instructions that make me believe I could do this too!
    Happy Easter!

  10. Susan B
    April 1, 2021 at 8:33 am

    Mary your cake is beautiful!! I always enjoy your creations, thank you for sharing so much joy with us. I wish you and your readers a very blessed and healthy Easter.

    • Clara
      April 1, 2021 at 9:31 am

      Mary, Your Easter cake is way too pretty to eat! It is not only pretty but looks delicious! Binder clips to hold the parchment paper are a great idea. Your many talents amaze me! Happy Easter to you and your family. Clara❤️

  11. April 1, 2021 at 8:45 am

    Stunning cake Mary! The way you decorated it is show stopping cute! I love to use a box cake mix and “doctor” it with an extra egg, buttermilk, and real butter. Your piping skills are admiral, I am terrible at that :) Yep, too pretty to eat, but too hard to resist! Have a glorious Easter, it looks like perfect weather in the South 🐇🥕🌷🐰

  12. April 1, 2021 at 9:00 am

    This really is the prettiest cake! For the first time since probably college or shortly after, I bought a lemon cake mix to make a “pretty Easter cake” (of undetermined design) because I knew I wouldn’t have time this year to make my own. (And besides, I want a cute cake for our toddler grand, so it might be a bunny cake!). I know I could never pipe like this — it’s fabulous. But I learned so many good hints from this on elevating the cake (the buttermilk, etc.) that will make it less like a box-cake mix. I’m elated. I’m equally elated at those cookie sheets. I hadn’t planned to go to Home Goods before Easter but I will mask up and take my chances for those! Thanks! And have a very Happy Easter! ~ jeanie from Marmelade Gypsy

  13. LuAnn Pachkoski
    April 1, 2021 at 9:16 am

    Everything you create is so beautifully creative, imaginative, and festive! All so beautiful! I want to make everything you post 🐰🐾🌷♥️

  14. April 1, 2021 at 9:37 am

    Very sweet, marvel and your baking energy, too worn out from the garden to imagine being fun and cute in the kitchen…maybe one year time will be mine again!

  15. Bonnie Morgan
    April 1, 2021 at 10:45 am

    Mary, how many times have I said you were amazing! Your cake is darling! Such cuteness. Too pretty to eat!
    I would have dropped and cracked the cake moving the wax paper.
    Those Russian tips are awesome.
    Have a wonderful Easter. I am so glad the weather is going to be nice.

  16. Betsy
    April 1, 2021 at 11:11 am

    Thanks for the tips and tricks on the frosting! There’s nothing better than cream cheese frosting for an Easter cake. I do love a good opportunity to easily improve on a box cake; timesavers are always appreciated.

    I presume you consumed that gorgeous cake and are making another for Easter, yes?! Your husband is a lucky fellow to always have sweet treats!

  17. April 1, 2021 at 1:10 pm

    Soooo pretty!! AGAIN, thank you!! HAPPY EASTER!! 💝🐰🐇🐣🐥👒

  18. Adrienne S Hochee
    April 1, 2021 at 1:31 pm

    Absolutely gorgeous! Will be the star of the Easter dinner. Very creative. Thank you so much for sharing

  19. Deb
    April 1, 2021 at 6:02 pm

    Mary you continue to amaze me with all of your many talents! Beautiful cake and pinned it for next Easter. I just made Easter cut out cookies and still have to frost and decorate them!

  20. April 1, 2021 at 6:54 pm

    Your cake is a work of art, Mary! I must get out my Russian piping tips and do some decorating again. The enamel baking sheet sure makes a pretty serving piece, but your cake is a show stopper!

  21. Darlene
    April 2, 2021 at 1:50 pm

    Aww, a sweet Easter surprise🐇
    Easter Blessing to you and yours.

  22. April 5, 2021 at 3:33 pm

    LOVE this cake..you are making me want to take that cake decorating course I kept holding off on…I remember my mom “doctoring up” a boxed cake mix…You always have such fun in whatever you do!

  23. May 4, 2021 at 12:10 am

    How amazing!

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