Recipe Review

The “Honey Bun” Boxed Cake Mix Hack I Bake for All My Friends on Their Birthdays

published Jun 27, 2024
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a square piece of honey bun cake cut out of a large sheet pan cake
Credit: Photo: Eric Kleinberg; Food Stylist: Kristina Vanni

It’s no secret that I love gooey desserts like Neiman Marcus bars, chocolate earthquake cake, and confetti gooey butter cake. They’re rich and decadent, and most often are also super-easy to make ahead. Bonus points if it’s made in a 9×13-inch baking pan, which is perfect to bring to all the potlucks and cookouts this summer.

My latest obsession is this gooey honey bun cake. It has all the flavors of Little Debbie honey buns, but in cake form! Bring it to your next potluck and watch it disappear. Just don’t forget to save yourself a slice or two!.

Get the recipe: Honey Bun Cake

Credit: Photo: Eric Kleinberg; Food Stylist: Kristina Vanni

What Makes This Honey Bun Cake So Good

This honey bun cake tastes like a cross between two of my favorite pastries ever: cinnamon rolls and coffee cake. It’s a cinnamon-laced yellow cake topped with a thin layer of icing. It tastes homemade, but it comes together with boxed yellow cake mix that’s enriched with tangy sour cream (it’s the secret to the extra-tender and moist crumb!).

The cinnamon filling has a deep, caramelized flavor from the dark brown sugar, and the icing is flavored with honey, which is a nod to the “touch of honey” in the Little Debbie snacks. This honey bun cake is perfect for dessert or even as a breakfast or brunch treat with coffee. 

Get the recipe: Honey Bun Cake