The Most Important Information You Will Ever Learn.

Stop what you're doing. You HAVE to read this. Your life will be changed forever.

Mug Cake Cooked.JPGYou can cook a cake in a microwave. In 5 minutes.

Seriously.

Barry stumbled across this recipe for how to make a cake in a mug. In a MUG.

How did I not learn of this during all those years as an undergrad?! I suddenly feel inadequate, like I haven't truly mastered life as a poor college student. If you can bake a cake in a microwave, what other culinary arts have I yet to discover? Casserole in a toaster oven, perhaps?

I simply had to have my cake and eat it, too, to see if this recipe really works. Here's what we did:

Mug Cake Mix.JPG

  • Took Mug. (Note the unsponsored ad for NESCent. Thanks for the mug, Dr. M.)
  • Added 4 tablespoons of flour, 4 tablespoons of sugar, 2 tablespoons of baking cocoa, and mixed.
  • Added one egg. Mixed thoroughly.
  • Added 3 tablespoons of milk and 3 tablespoons of oil. Mixed again.
  • Added a 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla and chocolate chips (not required, but delicious), and mixed a final time.
  • Popped in the microwave, and put it on high for 3 minutes. (NOTE: Cake will rise! If we'd used a smaller mug, it would have risen out of the mug - so don't freak out.)
  • Allowed to cool a couple of minutes.
  • Ate.

As far as the cake itself goes... it's not going to win you any prizes in a baking contest. But you know what? It's not terrible, and the more chocolate chips, the better. It was a cake. And it was made in a microwave.

I am so stocking our lab kitchen with these ingredients. A little late night cake while waiting for PCR to finish? I think I will, thanks.

Barry eating Mug Cake.JPGMug Cake Final.JPG

OK. You can return to your normal activities now.

***Sone notes based on people's comments***

I can only truly claim to know about what I have done, and you can see my results from my experiment with this recipe above. My "tablespoons" were roughly estimated using a regular spoon (I know, very unscientific of me). It worked pretty well for me the first time - the cake wasn't too greasy or dry, although it lacked flavor wherever the chocolate kisses weren't.

However, some people have claimed that there are ways of improving upon the recipe, particularly if you are getting mushy blobs instead of a cake. So here are some potential ways to make it work for you:

  • Check your microwave settings. I cooked mine on "high" for 3 minutes, but I'm sure with the wide variety of microwaves, more or less time or a different strength setting might work better.
  • Add more chocolate chips. Trust me.
  • Cut down the oil amount, particularly if it tastes greasy.
  • Substitute butter for oil. Soften 2 tablespoons of butter and mix it with the sugar. Proceed with the recipe as normal, except excluding the oil. (Great idea, Binks!)
  • Add a pinch of baking powder

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cake from a microwave...
beer from a coffee brewer...
all i need is someone to figure out how to make bourbon with a rice cooker and i'll never leave the house again...

Awesome! But you forgot the two last steps:

9) ?????

10) Profit!

By Lotharloo (not verified) on 02 Apr 2010 #permalink

But you can cook a casserole in a toaster oven. In fact, I bake so many things (and rotisserie) in my tiny oven that I haven't got around to putting a 'real oven' in the house since 2003.

If I ever sell, I'll likely put a wall oven in. Unless the prices plummet on drop in ranges with induction cooktops and speed-cooking ovens...

You can't possibly be a REAL Nerd - a REAL Nerd would have specified the ingredients (at least the dry ones) by WEIGHT, not volume!

Uh, did I say "weight"? I meant MASS. Mass. Sorry. Please don't revoke my Nerd Card!

I just made this. What a perfect recipe! Thanks so much! I am going to share it will all of my college buddies

I've made this before. It came out like a rock. Not good.

Shouldn't this be written in passive voice?

LOL! Barry has a halo! Is it angel food cake?

.fiiiiiiiiiiiiiino

By .keksoliko i fino (not verified) on 03 Apr 2010 #permalink

I discovered this recipe when I moved into an apartment without an oven. As Comrade PhysioProf pointed out, it is astonishingly greasy. I've found that cutting the oil to 1 tbsp is more palatable, though any less makes it too dry.

Imagine, what this guy could accomplish if we really let him go! Jiffy Pop pot roast!, flame-on dude!

I tried this, thinking it might be ok... now I'm a reasonable cook, in fact cooking class was one of the only classes I was good at.

Now what resulted from this experiment was a gelatenous splodge that could have been either...

A - A week old Dead squid
B - The Blob
C - Mr. Hankys cousin

Added to this that somehow, and I don't know why, but my kitchen smelt of fish after the event.

Spend some time and make a proper cake, Microwaves are pretty crappy when it comes to cooking at the best of times.

Wolfie!

The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!
The cake is a lie!

shopped!

Not good. This lab experiment creates a sweet edible goo alright, but calling it cake is an insult to all bakers. Cake is soft on the inside, but more or less dry and crunchy on the outside. A microwave can not produce this result, because it heats the dough from the inside. The Maillard reaction (look it up) doesn't happen, so there is hardly any aroma to be expected. Still, if starvation is imminent it's better than eating microwaved rats.

By Marinus Vesseur (not verified) on 03 Apr 2010 #permalink

I'm with Tree. You can bake, roast, toast and broil anything in a toaster oven that you can in a conventional oven provided it fits through the door. I broil steak and shake 'n' bake pork chops, even bake small cakes and cookies in mine all the time. I'm sure I could bake a small casserole in there if I wanted to. In fact, all my cooking is done with either the toaster oven, the microwave or on the range top. My range oven doesn't even work.

I don't know what the guy above did wrong, but it works for sure. We even tried a few modifications (banana, etc) and it's pretty darn good.

Is it good for health.

By Munish Kaura (not verified) on 03 Apr 2010 #permalink

Hey, I gotta try it. I am wondering if altitude may play some part in the fluctuation of results?? I bake a mean apple pie - have since I was little - but the one I made in Colorado was just hopeless, runny, liquid-y, undone, and gooey-crusted. Ever make field cookies (Army trick...we get desperate for treats) 1 tspn creamer, 1 tspn sugar mixed and sealed in foil. place on nearest hot surface (engine, grill, stovetop, etc) till hard. go ahead, do it for your country! :) It helps if you forgo sweets for at least six weeks...

Epicanus or whatever
die alone

By xxxxxxxxxxxxzzzz (not verified) on 03 Apr 2010 #permalink

Darn, I was beat to the portal reference. -_-

I bet this works like those 'warm delights' things at the store that are also microwave cake. Those things are weird.

awsome!! my friend emailed me this 20 mins ago.. and now on a very hungover easter sunday i now have cake! im gonna go nick some easter eggs and try agin.. haha. an ingenius recipie!!

This cake is delicious, albeit not moist.

Any idea how to make it a little bit softer or how i could add a layer of nougatcreme or stuff?

@ruskin santorius lol that was funny I was completely thinking of Portal when I saw this post.

@Chaki, you could try a little baking powder.

5 minute weed brownies anyone.....

We have made pancakes in a toasted sandwitch maker, We've made pizza in the same one (coz its a hotplate from 2 sides), we've made pasta using the snackwitcher and a kettle (Fettuccine with mushroom, cream, bacon, mushrooms and rocket ), and then the usual of boiling eggs perfectly in a kettle

I had the experience of my life making this cake. What a hoot. My boss came in just as I opened the microwave to get my cake. He checked it out and then fired my ass out of there. I lost my $105,000 job with full med benefits and am now working the windows at Mickey D's.

By Ich habe Gelos… (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

wow, the ultimate cup cake... wa wa waaaa

This cake is discusting, i do not recommend it

By I tried this cake (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

Nasty, nasty, nasty.......tried it and it came out exactly like I thought it would. If you rarely eat cake and don't know what the consistency is supposed to be then go ahead and make this cake. Otherwise, don't bother because its not what you'd expect.

By bakerbynature (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

this is gross. made it. it taste like plastic. gross,gross,gross. Don't be lazy....make a real cake.

To the guy that got a nasty, spongey mess: make sure your microwave is set to at LEAST 1000 watts (from the original recipe in that URL that the author so kindly provided).

I also stumbled across the original recipe the other night. It's just like you said. It's really not the best cake, so if you're a food snob this is NOT the stuff for you. I'm basically saying that if you've never had to live for weeks on cup ramen, eggs, and peanut butter sandwiches, you probably won't appreciate how amazing it is that I JUST MADE CHOCOLATE CAKE! IN A MICROWAVE!! Do you know how often I make cake at all? Never.

This is magic. Mess around with stuff and figure out what works. I subbed a tablespoon of instant cappuccino mix for a tablespoon of cocoa. It was good by my standards (see above).

Keep in mind what normal cake batter looks like. If it's too dry, add a bit of milk. Too wet, a pinch of flour. You get it

By ManderPants (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

we had a package of cake mix in the counter and i mixed it up and put some in a mug and put it in the microwave for 2 min. it was a delight! you dont need to keep it in for 5 min. or it gets too hard and crunchy!

By Anonymous (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

Are you an idiot? "The Most Important Information You Will Ever Learn. Stop what you're doing. You HAVE to read this. Your life will be changed forever". People don't have all night to stay up on line and read so when you put a title entry like this up and then write something as inane as you did simply annoys the real world who care about changing things and making way for assholes like you to bake cakes. And, yes....my sense of humor outweighs yours about what the world would weigh on a scale so do even go there fool. Have a nice day. Go bake a fucking cake.

By Shari Ives (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

@Shari WTF? Your sense of humor clearly lacks in sarcasm. I have to agree with ManderPants. As a poor college student already deep in debt, I must say that life sometimes requires things like ramen, peanut butter sandwiches and--you guessed it--microwave cake! BTW, JAke, OMFG, I'm gonna go make a cannabrownie...

Perhaps the work cake is ill-advised but mmmmmmmm anyway

By rocket ron (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

Now why would the intelligent cook their food in a Microwave? I predict that in a hundred years the people of the near future will be say, " Can you believe they use to cook this way?" "Ya I know, but they also use to X-ray pregnant women, and those people took medications they were told would help, but it didn't and they basically allowed themselves to be like rats in a lab. So really what do you expect from these slightly evolved Neanderthals?"
There is a line were convenience becomes an inconvenience people. We aren't meant to ingest these different forms of foods filled with bleach and other poisons, or to use these cooking devices. If a crack dealer told you crack was good, would you take it? Start questioning what doesn't make sense, just because someone tells you something is okay does not make it that way, and that does not stop the higher you go up the chain.

Seriously Gross! You're going to die eating shit like that.

"I don't have a microwave, but I do have a clock that occasionally cooks shit."- Mitch H.

--Which is gross. Stop being lazy and try making a real cake. Or better yet if you're that busy go buy one!

@ B

Wtf man? No one wanted to turn this into a social health referendum. Cmon. Just enjoy, or not enjoy for the smug people in the audience, the post. In response to your post though, sure microwaves use radio waves to cook things but the air is already so inundated with low frequency radiation that honestly if there are any serious medical detriments, they wouldn't be any worse than the radiation we experience on a daily basis.Oh, and before you get on your high horse again, remember all those environmental crazies who thought the world was getting hotter from humanities's affect on it? Boy oh boy. Sometimes people will believe just about anything as long as it makes them feel better. Sorry, not calling you an environmentalist, just saying you shouldn't fall into the pit of convenient "truth".

By Coffeedude (not verified) on 04 Apr 2010 #permalink

Hi, you did good job. Hey there is another such kind of awesome task which i did. I have made a cup of tea in a glass bulb. it is a electric glass bulb used for lightening.

Gentlemen...

THANK YOUU!!!

Sweet Delicious Caek!!

I am so stupid

"There is a line were convenience becomes an inconvenience people. We aren't meant to ingest these different forms of foods filled with bleach and other poisons, or to use these cooking devices."

hahaha!

i used to bitch about people too much also. then i got a fish tank. they weren't meant to eat microwave cake: but as soon as i'm done drinking bladder infections and smoking lung cancer, i think i'm gonna have to make myself some microwavable chocolate goodness.

yea.

By donald432 (not verified) on 05 Apr 2010 #permalink

I have officially improved upon your methods.

For those of you who who are complaining about the cake coming out spongy or dense, it is because the recipe uses oil instead of butter, like most real cake recipes use.

So, knowing this, I modified the recipe slightly.

If you have room temperature butter on hand, great, use about 2 tablespoons of that. If not, you'll need to soften (i.e. defrost) 2 tablespoons for just a few seconds (it warms up REALLY fast, so careful). Whip this butter with the sugar until blended, then mix in the rest of the ingredients, excluding the oil. Cook normally.

tried this, made a volcano, tasted like school chocolate pudding, ate it all now feel bit sick :0( what size are your tablespoons? made enough for two volcanos...substituted butter for oil and used muscovado sugar as i bit posh :0)

By moydarling (not verified) on 06 Apr 2010 #permalink

THE CAKE IS NOT A LIE, darlings :)

I added some baking powder and reduced the amount of oil as recommended here to one TSP and it got out of the mug easily and tasted fine, like a boring muffin. still, it's amazing! try it!

OK. I bit. Cute science experiment. And yet, any food is best when made with LOVE. We miss out on so much when it becomes a hassle we must rush through. Baking can be an enjoyable sensory experience and an offering to others of that careful, loving effort. Make it a shared activity ... and give it a try. :)

By Meryl Steinber… (not verified) on 06 Apr 2010 #permalink

i've been cooking in the microwave-11yrs now-i have no stove, nothing but micro and coffee pot-use glad press'n seal for the micro-just put any food combo you like,seasonn too,place press'n seal on plate w/enough to cover food to center pince together put in micro- walla home cooked meal,you do not need oil or butter-the food uses it's own jucies,example,some fresh or frozen vegies,a breakfast steak,add lemon peper or just season salt,or any Dash product[natural seasons] always use a micro plate under press'n seal-seal food in press'n seal on plate-cooking variers-so w/this in mind-cook above food about3-4min-use instant potatoe's for any liguid that accoures-wala-meat,vegies,potatoes-if you add any oil product it has been known to catch on fire-it happens-put butter on after you cook-the food and plate will be hot-please let cool-always cut the meat into bite size portions,cooks faster-use hamberger w/dash product 3-4min-use instant potatoes for any jucies-it is endless on what press'n seal and a microwave can do-food come out moist and delishes'

By souyhrenbella (not verified) on 07 Apr 2010 #permalink

Let the gourmet cooks go back to their kitchens!! This is for bored, busy, or required-to-stay-present late-night lab workers and dorm students, or other such geeks. Those indignant for reading this stuff shouldn't be reading it anyway! For "who cooks in toaster over" --how the heck do you clean it after you rotisserie?? (I know, leave it, let it burn off, but. . .can't do that.) Genuine help appreciated!

By eaglegreen (not verified) on 07 Apr 2010 #permalink

I don't know what I am more impressed by: your culinary innovative-ness, or that you frequently use polymerase chain reactions as part of your job. Jealous!

By theaveragecati… (not verified) on 07 Apr 2010 #permalink

Well, many things can be cooked in microwave. You can cook an egg (with water besides) or let your pressure cooker quiet : you can cook potatoes in microwave for only 2 or 3 minutes.
The only things you have to do is to put your potatoes in a little hermetic freezing bag and close it.
lets cook at 800W for 2-3 minutes and it's done.

By scmilblick (not verified) on 07 Apr 2010 #permalink

I tried this straight away! Came out PERFECT!!! Soft and spongy, though it did bubble out of the cup. I used SELF-RAISING FLOUR. Important. But I forgot the choc-chips and vanilla but it still tased good (with some icecream).

Have you ever had a tv dinner. Remember the dessert. Its a small cake. Before cooking its just batter. In order to cook a tv dinner the instruction tell you to use a microwave. Your a moron. Now go back to school.

this was a waste of time

Microwaves modify molecular structure of food that can't be good for humans, unless you're methane-breathing petrol-drinking plastic-brained mutant. You might as well melt some plastic cups in your microwave and have the final product for dessert. Par for the course in the society that drools over any kind of moronic techno-toys.

The previous two comments appear to be approximately .8 Time Cube.

By Katharine (not verified) on 11 Apr 2010 #permalink

This information landed on my desk, so it's seems only fair to pass it on. Don't know if it's true but you can make up your own mind.

Ten Reasons to Throw out your Microwave Oven

From the conclusions of the Swiss, Russian and German scientific clinical studies, we can no longer ignore the microwave oven sitting in our kitchens. Based on this research, we will conclude this article with the following:

1). Continually eating food processed from a microwave oven causes long term - permanent - brain damage by 'shorting out' electrical impulses in the brain [de-polarizing or de-magnetizing the brain tissue].

2). The human body cannot metabolize [break down] the unknown by-products created in microwaved food.

3). Male and female hormone production is shut down and/or altered by continually eating microwaved foods.

4). The effects of microwaved food by-products are residual [long term, permanent] within the human body.

5). Minerals, vitamins, and nutrients of all microwaved food is reduced or altered so that the human body gets little or no benefit, or the human body absorbs altered compounds that cannot be broken down.

6). The minerals in vegetables are altered into cancerous free radicals when cooked in microwave ovens.

7). Microwaved foods cause stomach and intestinal cancerous growths [tumors]. This may explain the rapidly increased rate of colon cancer in America .

8). The prolonged eating of microwaved foods causes cancerous cells to increase in human blood.

9). Continual ingestion of microwaved food causes immune system deficiencies through lymph gland and blood serum alterations.

10). Eating microwaved food causes loss of memory, concentration, emotional instability, and a decrease of intelligence.

Have you tossed out your microwave oven yet? After you throw out your microwave, you can use a toaster oven as a replacement. It works well for most and is nearly as quick. The use of artificial microwave transmissions for sub lim inal psychological control, a.k.a. 'brainwashing', has also been proven. We're attempting to obtain copies of the 1970's Russian research documents and results written by Drs. Luria and Perov specifying their clinical experiments in this area.

This sounds good, but ever try baking cake in a slow cooker?
It works great. Follow the recipe on any mix. Just remember to prop up the lid with a match stick to let the steam out.

Oh no, we're all going to die! We're eating food cooked in a microwave...

This looks really cool. I may have to try the cake, if I don't die from something else I cooked in my microwave.

I can recommend having some cinamon in it. Really good :)

I didn't have any cocoa so I used the same amount of chocolate syrup instead. It wasn't bad, spongey as mentioned. It tasted better with extra chocolate syrup on top of it. I rather regret eating as much of it as I did though, after a while it gets too much and made me feel sick. I'd only eat half of it if I did this again. It's alright if you're really craving something, but there are much better options. Pretty nifty that it's made in a microwave though.

Best thing ever is to turn this into a pudding!
You make a simple chocolate sauce with just chocolate chips and hot water, mix those together and pour ontop and it is truly amazing!
I've known about this recipe for a while now!

first of all..
as if no one here has said 'cup cake' yet...
bit disapointing lol

secondly, why not use some chocolate milk..
or you could put a dash or chocolate icecream topping, wouldn't work with runny cakes but those that are a bit dry, would make it a bit moster.
or i was thinkin putting some melted cocolate in there if you didnt have any choc chips.

just some ideas :)
but yeah, seriously... CUP CAKE. cuz its in a cup lol

Now why would the intelligent cook their food in a Microwave? I predict that in a hundred years the people of the near future will be say, " Can you believe they use to cook this way?" "Ya I know, but they also use to X-ray pregnant women, and those people took medications they were told would help, but it didn't and they basically allowed themselves to be like rats in a lab. So really what do you expect from these slightly evolved Neanderthals?"
There is a line were convenience becomes an inconvenience people. We aren't meant to ingest these different forms of foods filled with bleach and other poisons, or to use these cooking devices. If a crack dealer told you crack was good, would you take it? Start questioning what doesn't make sense, just because someone tells you something is okay does not make it that way, and that does not stop the higher you go up the chain.

For what it is worth, what I've found most important about using microwaves is that you cannot use plastic containers. When they are heated in a microwave, there are toxins that are released to the food.