Helpful info for a healthier lifestyle
cupcakes with less sugar

You CAN Have Your Cake with Less Sugar and Eat It Too!

June 16, 2014

I have been compensated for my time by McNeil Nutritionals, LLC, the maker of SPLENDA® Sweetener Products. All statements and opinions are my own. I have pledged to Blog With Integrity, asserting that the trust of my readers and the blogging community is vitally important to me.

A tidal wave of nostalgia swept over me when I discovered a picture online of my favorite (and only) child-safe oven. What a find! Seeing the boxes of cake and cookie mixes and the small aluminum pans made me teary-eyed. It seems as if it was almost yesterday that I was “baking” my first cake in this tiny oven situated in Mom’s kitchen. Little did I know at a rather young age that working as a food professional would be my calling.

One of my fondest memories of making “culinary delights” in this relatively primitive (light bulb heated) device was baking the little cakes with my mother. Her large cakes were always made from scratch and beyond description. Boxed cake mixes were relatively new and considered a luxury back then. Now that the times are different, making cakes from scratch is considered the luxury since many people don’t have time to bake…or they think they don’t. Let’s face it: Boxed cake mixes are quicker to make and taste good but made from scratch cakes are simply divine!  

Another significant change in the world of baking is that cakes can now be made with less sugar, thanks to the availability of two products: SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated and SPLENDA® Sugar Blend. A complementary product to the well-known and widely-used SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated in the yellow bag, the Sugar Blend is a mix of pure sugar and SPLENDA® Brand Sweetener. It provides functional properties for your baked goods - such as browning, volume, texture and moisture retention – but with only half the calories and carbohydrate of sugar. Simply substitute half a cup of SPLENDA® Sugar Blend for every full cup of sugar required in a recipe.  

If you are looking for ways to reduce the amount of sugar in your next cake, you will want to try one of these three reduced sugar cake recipes. Two of them use SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated while the other uses SPLENDA® Sugar Blend. In all three cases, you will be reducing not only calories from sugar, but carbohydrate as well.

Let’s get baking!

Double Layer Chocoholic Cake
A traditional two-layer chocolate cake made without full sugar? Now, that sounds delicious! Serves 16.


  • ¾ cup butter, softened
  • 1 ¼ cups SPLENDA® Sugar Blend
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 ¼ cups cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ cup water or coffee
  • 1 ½ cups 2% reduced-fat milk 


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. COAT two eight-inch cake pans with cooking spray. Dust with flour. Set aside.
  3. Beat butter at medium speed of an electric mixer until creamy; gradually add SPLENDA® Sugar Blend, beating well. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Add vanilla; mixing until blended.
  4. Combine flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, and baking powder in a medium mixing bowl. Set aside.
  5. Combine water or coffee and milk. Set aside.
  6. Add 1/2 of the flour mixture and mix on low speed until well blended. Add water and milk and mix on low speed until well blended. Add remaining flour mixture and beat at medium speed of an electric mixer until smooth.
  7. Spoon batter evenly into prepared pans.
  8. Bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans, and cool on wire racks.

NOTE: Spread reduced-fat whipped topping between layers and on top and sides of cake. 

Source: (and you can view the Nutrition Facts on this page)

Tropical Hummingbird Cake
A tropical tasting cake, it is the next best thing to a tropical vacation. Also known as a Bumblebee Cake. Serves 24.


  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 ¼ cups SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup 1% buttermilk
  • 1 cup applesauce
  • 2 cups diced bananas
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 2 (8 ounce) containers fat-free cream cheese, softened
  • ½ cup light butter
  • ¾ cup SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated
  • 1 teaspoon banana extract 


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a large cookie sheet with sides, or an 11 x 17 inch jelly roll pan.
  2. Combine flour, 1 1/4 cups SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl. In a small bowl, beat together eggs, buttermilk, and applesauce; pour into dry ingredients, and stir until moistened. Do not beat. Stir in bananas, vanilla, pineapple, and pecans.
  3. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until done. Cool on a wire rack.
  4. Beat together cream cheese, light butter, 3/4 cup SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated, and banana flavoring until light and fluffy. Spread over the top of the cooled cake.

Source: (and you can view the Nutrition Facts on this page)

Yellow Cupcakes
Moist, delicious cupcakes are always a favorite, and with less sugar in this recipe you can enjoy one even more! Serves 18.


  • 2 ¼ cups cake flour
  • ¾ cup SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup softened unsalted butter
  • ½ cup nonfat dry milk
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup buttermilk
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract 


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Place 18 paper baking cups into muffin pans. Set aside.
  2. Place cake flour, SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granulated, sugar and softened unsalted butter in a large mixing bowl. Mix 1 to 2 minutes with electric mixer set on medium speed, until butter is mixed into flour mixture.
  3. Add nonfat dry milk, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Mix on low speed until blended.
  4. Mix buttermilk, eggs and extracts in a small bowl. Stir well. Add 2/3 of the buttermilk mixture to the flour mixture. Mix on medium speed mixing until the liquids are just blended into the flour mixture. Stop the mixer and scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. Mix on medium-high speed about 45-60 seconds until the batter starts to become lighter in appearance. Reduce mixer speed to low and add remaining liquids. Mix on medium speed until blended. Stop mixer and scrape sides and bottom of bowl again. Mix on medium high speed an additional 30 seconds.
  5. Pour cake batter into prepared pans. Bake cupcakes in preheated oven for 12-15 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted in the center of the cupcake comes out clean.

Source: (and you can view the Nutrition Facts on this page)

More tips and guidelines when baking with SPLENDA® Sweetener Products (my previous blog on this topic)

Sue Taylor is a consulting nutritionist with more than 35 years of experience. She is passionate about sharing her nutrition knowledge and fondness for good, healthy food. Sue will put relevant information in consumer terms and provide valuable perspective to clear up misinformation and confusion about nutrition and food safety. 

June 16, 2014  |  POSTED BY: Sue Taylor, MS  |  IN: Healthy Lifestyle, Cooking & Baking


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