Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Review of Betty Crocker Gluten Free Dessert Mixes and a Great "Sweet Treats" Prize Package Giveaway

Although I do not have to eat or cook gluten free on a regular basis, I have good friends who do and I have a keen interest in learning to cook for different dietetic needs. Having recently reviewed the Gluten Free Everyday Cookbook, I was happy to receive an email from Laurie, one of the nice people doing PR for Betty Crocker asking if I would like to try the new Betty Crocker Gluten Free Dessert Mixes. They offered to send me a prize pack with the four new mixes, coupons and other goodies and even better, they generously offered to provide an extra prize pack to one of my blog readers. (More about the giveaway at the bottom of the post!)

Since testing recipes for the cookbook review required me to buy a small (and not inexpensive!) arsenal of gluten free flours and ingredients, the idea of a mix, especially for someone who doesn't cook or bake gluten free on a regular basis is very appealing. Having gluten free friends and co-workers means having to think through meals, parties and potlucks to make sure they are included, so my interest was in finding out if these mixes were good enough to please not just the GF eater, but everyone else too. 

As the the Betty Crocker Baking Team says on the dessert mix boxes: "Why go gluten free? Not long ago, two of our co-workers found themselves in the gluten free world. Linc was diagnosed with Celiac disease, and Colleen's family switched to the diet for her son's well-being. Their experiences opened our eyes to the challenges families face following the diet. It's hard to be different, especially when it affects sweet moments with friends and family. No one wants to miss sharing a birthday cake or see their child have to turn down a homemade cookie from a buddy after a game. We hope we can help by bringing you these mixes for gluten free desserts that look and taste like the treats you've been longing to share."

There are four new mixes: 
• Betty Crocker Gluten Free Yellow Cake Mix
• Betty Crocker Gluten Free Devil’s Food Cake Mix
• Betty Crocker Gluten Free Brownie Mix
• Betty Crocker Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix

All are made in a gluten free processing facility, and all are ready to go with the dry GF ingredients you need. After receiving my box of goodies last week, I chose to try two of the mixes for this review and I will try the other two mixes later on.

First up the Gluten Free Brownie Mix. Being a mix, they of course go together quickly and easily and are moist with a nice chocolate flavor. I was happy with the texture, which had that great slighlty fudgy / slightly cakey blend that I love. If I hadn't baked them and known they were gluten free, I don't think I would be able to tell, and they would be crowd pleasers in any brownie-loving household. They were great as they were and would also be fun with ganche on top or some GF chocolate chips or chunks to dress them up a bit. 

I thought about trying the chocolate chip cookies next, but since Reeni gave them her stamp of approval last week, I decided to go for the Gluten Free Yellow Cake Mix. The box shows it as a cake with chocolate icing but to me yellow cake says cupcakes with fluffy white icing and coconut flakes. The cupcake mix uses rice flour and potato starch, giving it a lighter texture than the cupcakes I usually make, but that is not a bad thing. The crumb is tender and the flavor good. Frosted, with some dipped in coconut, I don't think anyone would be turning these down. Again, I didn't get a gluten free vibe at all from these, just a tasty cupcake. 

I liked both mixes and think they are perfect when you need a dessert that fits into the GF lifestyle quickly and easily without investing a lot of time and money into the process. I checked a couple of price points in the stores and although they are priced higher than the Betty Crocker regular dessert mixes, when you price GF ingredients or other gluten free baking mixes, they are quite reasonable. I am a total packaged food label reader and I was worried that these might have a bunch of hard to pronounce chemicals and ingredients in them to preserve them and make them taste better. I was pleasantly surprised to find the ingredient list to be shorter than I expected and containing just the necessary flours, stabilizers and leavening agents needed for baking.

The Giveaway!

Now how would you like to win your own Betty Crocker "Sweet Treats" Prize Pack and try the mixes yourself? The company will send one lucky winner a prize pack including: All four (4) samples of the dessert mixes, two (2) Free coupons for any of the varieties, a grocery tote bag, magnetic grocery list and pen to make shopping easier! This is a generous prize pack, with the 2 coupons, you are really getting 6 (full size) mixes for free! 

*Unfortunately, they can only send the pack to U.S. addresses at this time. (To my International friends, I am very sorry about this) ;-(  

How To Enter the Giveaway: (Up to three chances to win!)
  • Leave a comment on this post telling me why you would like to win the prize pack and try the products.
  • If you have a blog, you can get another chance or entry by mentioning this giveaway on your blog and linking to this post. Then leave a separate comment letting me know you did.
  • If you Twitter, you can get yet another entry by "tweeting" about the giveaway and leaving another comment here letting me know you did and your Twitter user name. 
You will have until midnight HST on Sunday, July 19th to enter. I will randomly draw the winner from all of the entries on Monday, July 20th. Please make sure you that you leave me a way to contact you if you win so that I can get your mailing address. 

Good Luck to all of you! Mahalo to the lovely people at Betty Crocker and Coyne Public Relations for sponsoring the giveaway. 


  1. I would love to win this! I have recently been diagnosed with celiac disease and really miss baked goods. I have often said that if I go to heaven and get the opportunity to tell God what my favorite thing was here on earth I would tell him cookies and jammies. It's really difficult not being able to eat cookies (sometimes I just have to cheat though and then suffer the consequences).

    I am very excited about these new mixes coming out!

  2. I am glad a big company like Betty Crocker is coming out with a gluten free line of products. And good to know it's not filled with chemicals and frankenfoodstuffs.
    The baked goods look very tasty, especially the brownies!

  3. What a great idea for boxed cake mixes. I'm surprised it took them so long to come out with this.

    I absolutely would buy these for friends that are gluten intolerant. What a great giveaway!

  4. Very cool. I've been wanting to try gluten-free baking for quite some time, but (fortunately) haven't been forced into it. A friend of mine has Celiac Disease and it has made me eager to try things I can make for her!

  5. It's wonderful to know that products like these are being made available to consumers. What you've photographed looks great. Thanks for letting us know about the mixes.

  6. I would love to make this for my hubby's birthday coming up!

  7. As a celiac, these products are some of the things I miss and would love to be able to enjoy again. No one likes to go to a party and have to turn down a cupcake!

  8. I would love to win these. I have CD and have been looking for these in the stores here in Hawaii...I haven't found them yet!

  9. We don't have gluten issues, but we like to try new ways of cooking. As much as we love desserts, it'd be great to experiment and taste test.

  10. Deb, what a great review! I am always happy to hear about companies introducing products to fit a range of health needs. Glad to hear that these taste great, too!

  11. I would love to try them. The brownies look like the brownies I grew up with. Would love to see how they stack up. Plus, I don't think we will get them in Montana anytime soon.

  12. Great to hear that you liked all of these. My son is allergic to wheat, eggs, soy, all nuts, and more. The gluten free mixes can be good, but it's always hard to find a replacement for eggs. What do these mixes call for? Are they processed with peanuts or anything?

  13. I would like to win and try these products because I LOVE baking! They all look absolutely delicious so of course I want to try them and maybe I'll even share ;)

  14. My parents made all of our cakes growing up, and iced them with Mom's "secret" recipe icing. When my dad passed away suddenly (he was the "cake decorator") my sister and I decided to take the Wilton cake decorating classes and carry on the tradition of homemade cakes. (We both now teach the Wilton courses) My family LOVES our cakes, but unfortunately my brother and one of his sons was recently diagnosed with Celiac Disease. I have not been able to find a yummy yellow gluten-free recipe (yellow is their favorite) to pair with our special frosting. I would LOVE to win this and be able to surprise them with a cake iced in Mom's frosting that they can actually eat! You should see the sad looks on their faces at birthdays and graduation parties when the cake is being served :( . In fact, today is my brother's 49th birthday, and I promised him that by next year, the big 5-0 I would find a delicious yellow cake that he could eat! Talk about a sign! It would be great to try them all and pass along the info to my students as well! Thanks for your consideration.

  15. A friend of mine was recently diagnosed with celiac disease. I would love to pass on these gluten free mixes to her for a little treat.

  16. Oh I want to try this! As another person that struggles with celiac disease, and a serious addiction to sweets, these mixes sound like the perfect option. I love that companies are realizing it is a big market, and making more options for people affected by the intolerance.

  17. My best friend who has a wicked sweet tooth has an allergy to gluten and it has been extremely difficult & costly trying to find mixes that taste good - I would love to win this, but even if I didn't I would still purchase them because of the betty crocker name and the products that they make.

  18. Wow what a great giveaway :) My husband was recently diagnosed with Celiac disease and I am having the hardest time adjusting our diet! Me being the carb freak I welcome all new gluten free products!

  19. It's great that companies are making such mixes for those who have dietary restrictions - as you noted, it can be quite expensive to buy certain ingredients and I, for one, would hate to have to give up baked goods because of that!

    I'm excusing myself from entry as I would rather see this great package go to someone who must adhere to a gluten-free diet. You're recipes are wonderful enough but you also have such great giveways!

  20. Kim--Unfortunately it doesn't look like they are there yet with these--beyond the GF part. It does call for eggs--unless an egg substitute would work? They don't mention nuts on the packages but they do say they may contain soy. So sorry these won't work for your son--it must be hard to find things for him.

  21. Betty Crocker has gone Gluten-free! This is the best day of my life to know that I can make quality products with Betty's seal of approval!! Since going through a lengyhy medical treatment ,I was diagnosed with gluten and dairy intolerance. The answers to my IBS problem was solved but what a consequence-to give up so much of what I love. Glad to see Betty Crocker stepping up for us!!Thanks!!


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