Too good to be true? No, too legit to quit (Microwave Mug Cakes)

I’m one of those people who believes that if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. There’s always a catch.

I also love dessert, but pretty much don’t keep anything in my apartment except raw ingredients. So that way, if I’m craving dessert, I either have to make something (which takes time and effort) or go out to get something (which also takes time and effort). Probably 98% of the time I talk myself out of it by sheer laziness because I can’t decide exactly what I want, which my waistline appreciates.

So the idea of mug cakes is both brilliant and frightening, and also makes me a little skeptical. I love the single-serving aspect, since any time I bake a batch of cookies or cupcakes I end up eating half of them. I love the idea of something that takes less than 10 minutes to make. But is it legit? I decided to try a few out and see…

Regular Chocolate Mug Cake

First one I tried was a chocolate one from 2 Stews (the recipe is linked).

I went light on the sugar (only 2 T, maybe slightly under), and added peanut butter chips.

Overall good, though maybe needed a little but more sugar.

Didn’t cook evenly, bottom was too wet, top starting to get dry. I’m going to play around with differently-proportioned mugs to see if that fixes it—if maybe a slightly wider, shorter mug will cook more evenly. But overall can’t complain.

But it’s a dangerous path…now I delicious dessert is literally only a couple minutes away.

Peanut Butter Mug Cake

The second one I tried was a peanut butter mug cake ( recipe here

Didn’t love the texture on it, too dry—and I under-sweetened a little. If I were going to re-try, I’d cook for less time.

I like the peanut butter taste but the texture needs improved upon.

Chocolate Lava Mug Cake

This one intrigued me, it’s a chocolate lava cake in a mug.  First time I tried it I did use the orange extract it called for, and overall I liked the cake. Also thought it was interesting that it called for a whole egg, where the other two just called for egg whites.

You can use the original recipe here, my thoughts/tweaks below…

You drop the chopped-up chocolate (or chocolate chips, in my case) in the middle but don’t stir.

The taste was great (particularly the dark chocolate and orange), but I think I’d cut the cooking time for the first bit. It says to cook 1 minute, stir it up and then cook 20-30 seconds. I’d cook 40 seconds for the first bit, stir, then cook 20-30 seconds. Mine was too cooked, too dry—meant there was no lava, just cake. Update: I tried this recipe again, microwaved 40 seconds, 30 seconds, and 10 seconds, much better texture.

So, mug cakes…I’ll keep trying different recipes, but these are a few good ones to start with. Definitely err on the side of under-cooking, and over-sweeten a little.



  1. The chocolate mug cake used has too much liquid. If you don’t have chips or pb you can tru it by reducing the oil and milk by 2T and IT or if you don’t have milk make it with only egg(whole) and IT butter/oil.


  2. *try
    i.e. if you don’t have the ingredients of the vegetarian cake which I do admit is better. I’ve tried 3-4 versions of it when it first came out, with 1T more flour, with 1T less sugar, with 1/2T less oil -there are quite a few of those versions floating around but I just thought I’ll give a tip based on my mug cake obsession.


    • That’s weird that yours is too runny…mine tends to be a little on the dry/cakey side if anything. That’s why I always undercook. Glad you found some tweaks that work!


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