Triple Chocolate Devils Food Cookies

filed under: Chocolate Cookies on July 10, 2013

I remember the first time I met my husband’s grandma Carol.  We had been dating a little over a year and I was still very eager to impress all his family members.  (and failing miserably, buts that’s another story)  I remember being very anxious and nervous and wishing I had brought flowers or something as a gift.

We arrived at a home smelling of freshly baked cake and smiles around.  I was in shock, it appeared that his grandma had baked for us!  Carol was a busy wife and grandma (taking care of her wheelchair-bound husband) and it was such a precious gesture on her part.


Triple Chocolate Devils Food Cake Mix Cookies!

“Thank you so much, Carol!  This is delicious!  And thoughtful.  And delicious!  Did I mention delicious?  I cant believe you took the time to bake for us today.  It just means the world to me!”

I couldn’t stop gushing.  Her act of confectionery kindness had taken all my nervousness away.  I was starting to feel welcomed by Chad’s family.  He just might be a keeper! 😉

I was chatting with some of soon-to-be-hubby’s extended family while devouring the fantastic cake and mentioned just how good I thought it was.  Someone leaned over and whispered into my ear as if to share a deep dark family secret.

“It’s from a box.”

Devils Food Cake Mix Cookies

A box?  Wasnt all cake from a box? (This was many years ago, long before I had ever baked a cake!) I was silenced and confused.

That moment changed me.  I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why they would tell me that.  I could not figure out why it was even significant!  Never mind the fact that I had no clue that cake could even be made without a box, I just thought it was so unnecessary to point it out.

It hurt me.  I can only imagine how Carol would have felt had she heard.

Did the source of the ingredients decrease the value of the gift?

Fast forward to 2013.  There is still ongoing baking war in terms of box vs. scratch.

People dismiss and reject others that do not profess to be 100%, from-scratch bakers.  Magazines, authors, publishers, fellow bloggers all esteem that “from scratch” is the only way to bake and that anything less is unacceptable.  If you cannot prepare (and create!) quality from-scratch recipes then your value as a baker is significantly diminished.  I too have been sucked into the “from scratch is best” way of thinking.  You will see that if I ever share recipes on my blog that involves a box mix I find a way to explain it or give a list of excuses why as if trying to defend myself.

These days it’s pretty common knowledge that you will not be considered for any awards or publication if you embrace the “lazy” way.  People look down their nose at box cakes and actually sneer as they discovered that a  .99 box was the entire ingredient list.  Then there are those folks who pride themselves on instantly being able to determine if synthetically chemically flavored preservative laden box mix was served or if the ingredients were from scratch!

Why is there in innate fear of proclaiming the use of boxed cake mix?

When did it become shameful to admit that Betty Crocker had a hand in your confectionery masterpiece?


Devils Food Cake Mix Cookies

I get it.  I get it.  From-scratch is better for you.  It’s sometimes cheaper.  It’s more easily personalized.  Some think it tastes better.  Some think the crumb is better.  You are a real true, honest-to-goodness, original and accomplished baker if you make it from scratch.

And in all honesty, I am not concerned as to why people choose box vs. scratch.  What does concern me is the intent behind it.

I know there is no way I can win this particular baking war, but I would like to try and wage at least one small battle.

My goal is simple.  Look beyond the cake.  Yes, taste and appearance is of utmost importance and I fully support you embracing what you love best.  But its almost as if we have missed a small step in the directions.

Remember the big picture.  The giving, sharing, and devouring of cake together is a wonderful gift.  It is a time to celebrate people and make memories.

I can’t think of a single time I ever made and decorated a cake to simply devour it all myself in private.  To not photograph it or show it to family or share it with friends.

Cakes are made to be shared.

At that glorious moment when a surprised birthday girl cuts into a beautiful pink cake or when a tired neighbor opens the door only to see a sinfully decadent chocolate cake in front of a friendly face… in that moment it surely does not matter if the cake was a box or from scratch.  What matters is that you touched someone’s heart.

That you brought them joy.

That you now have a lifelong memory based on a generosity of spirit and a willingness to serve.

That is what matters, right?

Devils Food Cake Mix Cookies

That being said, I proudly share with you today a far-from-scratch recipe that I have come to love.  It’s over the top and rich and easy and wonderful.  There is an obscene amount of white chocolate chips and that is just the way I like it.  (You can certainly decrease the amount you use to accommodate your tastes.)

I share it with you in the hopes that it brings you as much joy as it has brought us.  But if you just cant beyond the fact that I used a box mix, I understand.   I can’t help but think that maybe somewhere along the line though, you may miss a blessing.

Triple Chocolate Devils Food Cookies
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
Total Time
25 mins

I share it with you in the hopes that it brings you as much joy as it has brought us. But if you just cant beyond the fact that I used a box mix, I understand. I cant help but think that maybe somewhere along the line though, you may miss a blessing.

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Triple Chocolate Devils Food Cookies
Servings: 24 cookies
Author: Amanda Rettke
  • 1 box Devils Food Cake Mix
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup White Chocolate Chips
  • 1/4 cup Milk Chocolate Chips
  1. Pour dry ingredients into medium bowl.
  2. Add oil and eggs and mix until well combined.
  3. Stir in all chips.
  4. Using a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon, scoop out small balls of dough. This recipe makes 18-24 cookies, so I had three cookies sheets prepared.

  5. Place eight dough balls on each cookie sheet. (If you would prefer a smoother appearance for your cookie, go back and roll each cookie between your hands.)

  6. Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes.



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  • Leah says:

    So true! Great post! (and, BTW, we all thought you were cool from the get-go) XO

  • bridget {bake at 350} says:

    Amen! And not just because I made cookies from a cake mix today. 😉 Look, I’ll take a cake mix over quinoa any day. (Am I still allowed to blog?)

  • Charul @ Tadka Masala says:

    You are so right! In all this hoo-hah of making things from scratch that we actually ignore the genuine effort of the person on the other end. For me, it is the thought that has gone behind baking my favorite cake rather than whether it comes out of a box or your pantry. I don’t care. For that matter I don’t care if it doesn’t taste that good. Its the gesture which is overwhelming.

    And with Indian desserts, trust me, even with the box mixes there is a huge amount of work that is involved, so definitely can’t underestimate it. 🙂

  • Lynn says:

    what kind of oil do you use for these?

  • Margie Fuller says:

    I am a “from scratch” baker (Margie’s Cottage Kitchen). I operate a cottage kitchen, so I sell my baked items. It is my experience that there is NEVER a real comparison between the two. From scratch has always tasted better, and without the added chemicals and preservatives, it’s just nice to know there are fewer ingredients to make an awesome tasting product.

    Also, I feel if my customers are going to pay a nice sum to have me bake a cake, brownies, cookies, or whatever for them, they deserve it to be from scratch. If they wanted a box cake, they could make that themselves. It’s when they go looking for that taste from their grandmother’s famous cake that they come looking for me because a box has never delivered them that same flavor.

    I think many don’t bake from scratch because they are intimidated by the recipe itself, or they don’t want to deal with all of the ingredients. In a pinch, I see no problem with box mixes for those who don’t bake professionally, especially for those on a really tight schedule. It gives them a chance to enjoy the baking process. As a professional baker, my quality promise to my customers is that their product will be made fresh and from scratch.

  • Jackie says:

    Made 3 batches of these. They were so simple to make and were absolutely delightful! Can’t wait to put them out at Christmas!!

    • Amanda says:

      YAY!! Have a wonderful Holiday Season!!

  • Lisa says:

    First of all, you are an inspiration to me! I keep saying how I am going to make a cake decorated with the roses! So beautiful! Also, thank you so much for this post! It was a good one for me, because I am NOT a cake mix lover….but my husband loves cake and keeps on buying them! I put off making them forever and then say silently to myself as I finally do, “I just hate cake mixes!”. Anyway, now you have taught me that there is more to it than the cake mix. Look beyond the cake mix and see the blessings! Family time…eating cake….together. Thank you! I will never complain about a cake mix again. Also, the cookies look fantastic with the white chocolate chips. I think I will be making those with one of the box cake mixes! So glad that I was led to your page. Keep up the great blog posts and beautiful baking!!!

  • Andrea says:

    I have made a variation of these cookies, along with a slew of other cake mix cookies with my sons. It was a great way to introduce them to the kitchen and share my love of baking while being fun.
    I do love my scratch cookies, cakes, and pies but the memories I’ve made with my sons keeps me loving boxed mixes. My 9 year old is now known for his box mix chocolate peanut butter cookies and the look of accomplishment on his face when he hears people raving about them just melts my heart.

  • Patty Montpetit says:

    Very well put! Shouldn’t always be the thought behind it rather than how it was made? Your cookies look delicious. But all you cakes and goodies always look so yummy. You are one talented woman!

  • Priyanka says:

    I really like your recipe and your thoughts behind it.

    For me, living on my own, I find making from scratch is too cumbersome. Don’t get me wrong. I like making from scratch. it gives a sense of accomplishment. However, there is nothing wrong with using a box mix. Sometimes when I want a cake or yummie cookies and I do not have the energy to make from scratch, box cake and cookie mixes make my day..or days (Depending on my self control while eating). So for me, this recipe is great! Thank you!

  • Ihjaz Ahmad says:

    Oh my goodness, this looks delicious! I’m definitely making this! thanks for sharing!

  • Juliarobert says:

    Nice post! i like this chocolate cookies. Thanks for sharing.

  • Carolyn says:

    I make cake mix cookies a lot. I only use Duncan Hines cake mix and butter or Smart Balance instead of oil. My favorite is a white cake mix, use peanut butter instead of butter, 2 eggs, peanut butter chips, 1/2 – 1 cup oatmeal, 1/3 cup brown sugar, and 3-4 tablespoons water depending on how thick the batter is. Same baking directions.

  • Vonnie says:

    I use this recipe ( minus the white and chocolate chips to make chocolate crinkles! MUST use Betty Crocker Devil’s Fiod cake mix! ( Trust me I have tried them all). Chill batter for 30 minutes and shape into balls. Roll in confectioner sugar. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 min. Remove from oven and cool for 5 minutes on baking sheet. Remove from baking sheet to cooling rack for 10 minutes. A bit soft and delicious!!!

  • Cheryl says:

    Not everyone has time to bake from scratch. I use a box mix when making cakes but make homemade frosting. The only cake I make from scratch is pound cake!