Better Bake Better

Issue 2: Best Online Recipes for Better Baking


Vanilla cupcakes with chocolate fondant and a chocolate covered maraschino cherry

Lindsay Duell, Staff Writer

The web is full of recipes, but what ones are actually good?

Looking for the perfect recipe takes a lot of trial and error, but I’m going to save you the hussle and give you my personal favorites. Although my family has a home recipe for almost everything, I like to branch out from time to time. Making a different recipe can be a fun Friday night adventure. Please note: these recipes are not gluten free, dairy free or vegan unless mentioned otherwise on the original recipe website. 

  1. Cafe Delites Chocolate Cake This is my absolute favorite chocolate cake recipe, it is so moist! I originally made it for my step mom’s birthday cake, it was used in a buffalo plaid cake with both chocolate and vanilla layers. It made me learn that this cake is very crumbly. While taking the cake apart, it would immediately crumble, so I would recommend this cake to stay in one piece until time to eat. The secret to the perfectly moist cake is to sift the dry ingredients then when the dry and wet ingredients are combined mix in a cup of boiling water. It sounds scary, right? I was afraid the eggs would scramble but they didn’t. The results were amazing!
  2. Pillsbury Classic Yellow Cake This cake was also used in the buffalo plaid cake. It was extremely dry but it stayed together much better than the chocolate cake. An important tip for this recipe is to add a box of pudding or dream whip to make it more moist. I did not add it and suffered the consequences.  
  3. Preppy Kitchens Shortbread This recipe was mentioned in my frosting article. During that article I made lemon shortbreads because I ran out of vanilla, how embarrassing right. Since then I have made the recipe with the vanilla extract and the results were… okay. I am a person who likes the flavor in food, and shortbreads are a very bland cookie. When I replaced vanilla with lemon the cookies were much better. 
  4. Gimme Some Oven Pasta It’s not a baked good, but it is delicious. This pasta recipe is very basic, just a few ingredients.  I never knew fresh pasta was so good until I tried this, although preparation can take a while. I learned the first time I made this pasta that it needs to be rolled very thin. If it is too thick then the pasta will turn hard as a rock when cooked. Another thing you may think about is the raw egg in the pasta, this ingredient is the reason this pasta should not be eaten raw. Once the pasta is in the water, the eggs and flour will react and cook out any bad toxins. 
  5. Allrecipes Chocolate Chip Muffins Here’s a secret, I love chocolate. When I am alone for a weekend I always turn on Full House and make a chocolate recipe. These muffins were quite a find, I had never made muffins from scratch and they turned out surprisingly well. I am not someone who likes super messy foods, so I only made half of the topping to cut down on both mess and sugar. They are quick, easy and delicious. 

All of these recipes have inspired my own baking or elevated my other components immensely. 

Almost all were found in a time of distress because we were missing an ingredient to the family recipe (egg, vanilla, sugar, flour, milk, ect.) Not only was I impressed by these baked goods, but my family was too! This is a family consisting of a father that hates butter in baked goods, a mother that used to be a professional baker, and a stepmother who hates fruit and most chocolate (remember I made her a chocolate cake, not my best move but I digress.) If they pass the test for my family, I’m sure they’ll pass yours too!