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Mug Cakes: What’s the big deal?

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In the 21st century, the internet has made it possible for quirky, new trends to blow up basically everyday among teens and young adults.  One of these 2016 trends includes mug cakes.  “Mug cakes?” you may ask.  Yes, mug cakes.

They’re just mini cakes made in mugs.  These yummy treats have taken over Twitter, YouTube, Buzzfeed, and even trendy clothing stores.  There are tons of mug cake books in Urban Outfitters.  You can’t go anywhere without seeing a mug cake video or book.

I asked a couple of my friends their opinions on mug cakes to see if I should try them out,and I was struck with multiple opinions.  Anna Jenkins, a Junior at Blacksburg High School, said “Mug cakes are so gross! They’re always unevenly cooked and don’t even taste good!”  On the other hand, Neha Hudait, another Junior at Blacksburg High School, said “I love mug cakes!  They’re so easy and quick to make when you need a little something sweet, my favorite is some chocolate cake recipe I found online.”  Personally, I have never tried mug cakes so I decided to go to Google to find the “best” mug cake recipes and try them out!

  1. Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Mug Cake
  • 1 egg
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon softened butter
  • 3-4 tablespoons chocolate chips
  • ice cream/sprinkles (optional)


Add the egg, brown sugar, flour, butter (softened), and chocolate chips into your microwavable safe mug and mix well with a fork.  Once blended well, microwave your cake for 1.5 – 2 minutes.  Top with ice cream and sprinkles (optional).  Enjoy!

As I was searching through the many mug cake blogs with endless recipes, I came accross, and this recipe made by Brooke McLay caught my eye.  I love cookie dough, and if this recipe allowed me to have a cake that tasted like cookie dough I was all for it.  I printed the recipe and got all of my ingredients ready.  As I was combining the ingredients, I couldn’t believe how easy it was.  I thought it was too good to be true, and I turned out to be right.  As I got the mug cake out of the microwave I quickly added ice cream and sprinkles on top (to make it aesthetically pleasing like the blog pictures did).  I ate the first bite and couldn’t believe it, it tasted nothing like cookie dough or even cookies.  The cake was still tasty but I was expecting cookie dough.

I would give it 5/10 stars.

cookie-dough-2 cookie-dough-3


2. Gooey Chocolate Mug Cake


  • 1 egg
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • chocolate icing/ice cream (optional)

Add the egg, powdered sugar, and cocoa powder into your microwavable safe mug.  Whisk together with a fork until well blended.  Microwave for 50-60 seconds.  Top with chocolate frosting and ice cream (optional).  Enjoy!

brownie-2 chocolate-cake-3

When I came across this cake, also on by Brooke McLay, I immediately told myself I would make it.  The photos looked delicious on the blog and I was craving some chocolate.  After I made this mug cake, I was slightly disappointed because the cake didn’t rise in the mug and it only filled half the mug.  Quality over quantity I thought and took a bite.  I was disappointed again!  Sure, this cake is good for being made in a mug and only for a single serving, but I’ve tasted better.  In my opinion even boxed cake mix tastes better than this.  

I would give this cake a 6/10.


3. Funfetti Mug Cake

  • 4 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons white sugar
  • 3 tablespoons fat free milk
  • ½ tablespoon vegetable oil
  • ⅛ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ teaspoons rainbow sprinkles


Add the flour, baking powder, white sugar, milk, vegetable oil, vanilla extract, and sprinkles to your microwavable safe mug and mix until smooth.  Microwave for 1 minute.  Add extra sprinkles on top for decoration (optional).  Enjoy!

funfetti-2 funfetti-3

As I came across this recipe on, I was (obviously) very excited.  It looked so cute with the bright colored sprinkles in the pictures, and who doesn’t love funfetti cake? When I tried it, this was one of the best ones I had made.  It actually tasted like a funfetti cake, unlike the other two, and it was a good consistency.  Of course it doesn’t taste like your grandma’s secret recipe cake, but it only took a couple minutes to make, so it’s good enough!

I would give it 8/10 stars.


4. Chocolate Brownie Mug Cake

  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 dash salt
  • 4 tablespoons white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ice cream (optional)


Mix the butter, water, vanilla extract, salt, sugar, cocoa powder, and flour together in your microwavable safe mug.  When batter is smooth, microwave for 60 – 90 seconds.  Add ice cream to taste (optional).  Enjoy!

brownie-2 brownie-3

While I was finishing up finding recipes, I found this last one on  I knew I had to try it and believed it would be tasty because it had more ingredients than the less tasty ones.  I was definitely right.  This brownie mug cake was amazing.  Even though it took a little longer to make, it was worth it because it tasted just like your grandma’s homemade brownies.  It was perfectly gooey and not too overpowering but just the right amount of chocolate.  This was the best one by far!

I would give it 9/10 stars.


After trying all four of these mug cakes, I still don’t understand everyone’s obsession with mug cakes.  I agree, they’re quick and easy to make, and I guess that’s what we need in the 21st century;  everyone’s on the go and tries to save as much time as possible. Unfortunately, they weren’t the best thing I’ve ever tasted.  Personally, I would prefer to spend the time to make a full sized cake or brownie because 99% of the time it will taste better than the mug cakes although this could be a fun activity for teens and young adults to do with their friends.


Chocolate cake –

Chocolate chip cookie dough –

Brownie –


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The student news site of Blacksburg High School
Mug Cakes: What’s the big deal?