Fun da-Middles, reviewed

Fun da-Middles

Filled cupcakes are probably my favorite kind of cupcake. Whether they’re Devil’s Food filled with vanilla cream, Red Velvet filled with cream cheese or Lemon Cupcakes filled with homemade lemon curd, I like them all because the filling adds more moisture and more flavor to a cupcake. I often make my own filled cupcakes, using an easy method where a small portion of the cake is cut out and replaced with filling. This method can be used with homemade cupcakes, store bought cupcakes or cake mix cupcakes. When I saw a product called FUN da-Middles from Betty Crocker on the cake mix aisle at my local market, I assumed that it was a cupcake mix that came with instructions for hollowing out and filling the cupcakes in much the same way I do. It turned out that these cake mixes included a filling that you add to the cake before baking, but still ends up forming a fluffy center.

I was intrigued and wanted to see if the Fun da-Middles actually worked, so I picked up a box of chocolate cupcakes with vanilla cream filling to give them a try.

The cake mix was a standard cake mix, with oil, eggs and water added to it, and was divided into muffin cups to fill them part way.  The creamy filling came in a separate packet, and a blob a bit smaller than a tablespoon was squeezed into each of the muffin cups, then covered with the remaining cake batter. The cupcakes went into the oven and – to my surprised – came out with a soft, slightly gooey marshmallow center! The filling didn’t overcook, become too runny or migrate towards the edges of the cake.

I liked the marshmallow consistency of the filling in the finished cupcake. Before it was baked, it was a very thick but marshmallow-like paste. After baking, the consistency was like a soft marshmallow fluff. Marshmallows and marshmallow fluff typically don’t hold up well to baking, and will start to dissolve into the cake batter around them. The fact that these work makes me want to play with the concept some more at home. That said, the cake mix itself had very little flavor and the cupcakes were pretty bland overall, despite the creamy filling. The mix works and is worth picking up if you’re looking for a quick cake mix treat, but otherwise I’d still stick to homemade cupcakes with the homemade filling method.

FUN da-Middles from Betty Crocker

 

10 comments

  1. These remind me of Hostess cupcakes…I love them! I wonder if you could jazz up the batter with some extra cocoa powder and pinch of salt…I do that sometimes..

  2. Thanks for the review. Like Gloria, I wonder if you could jazz up the basic cake part ala the Cake Mix Doctor. Let us know if you have success with your own recipes!

  3. good to know for sure! I’ve been playing with the idea of filling some of my cupcakes but i’ll stick to homemade ideas!

  4. I’m toying with the idea of making the FUN Da-middles into a small cake instead of cupcakes, do you think that would work based on your experience with this product? Would love your input. Please email me. Thanks.

  5. Cindy – Were you simply thinking of making larger cupcakes or a full sized (8- or 9-inch) cake? You could easily use this mix in larger cupcake molds. The cake itself would work well in a full sized cake pan, but I cannot say whether the filling would hold up as well to a significantly longer baking time. It is worth a try!

    If you were thinking of making a big hostess cupcake-type creation? Something along these lines: http://bakingbites.com/2007/10/giant-hostess-cupcake-step-by-step/ Then you might be better off baking two layers of cake and using some marshmallow fluff (which has a similar consistency) to fill the layers.

  6. Here is a recipe where you can use the fan da middle cupcake mix and turn it into banana cream pie cupcakes.
    http://www.bettycrocker.com/recipes/banana-cream-pie-cupcakes/d0411ccd-3302-4bac-86d4-1b6f2d2d190b

  7. Ladies, I buy this all the time and the feedback from the people who have sampled my cupcakes is over the top….of course, I have doctored both the cake mix and the filling.
    I add coconut extract and real coconut flakes to the filling and I use extra light olive oil, some of my homemade vanilla extract to the batter (real vanilla beans in the extract)….OMG these are moist, do not taste like boxed cake mix and the filling is an explosion of flavor.
    Just thought I would help this out…I want to know what how they make the filling so I can make that myself.
    :)

  8. I love the fun da middles. Have one problem. I need 6 boxes for a birthday party next weekend and I can not find any at any f our local grocery stores. I live in Clarksburg West Virginia. Any suggestions? I have been to 8 local grocery chains. HElP!!!

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