Uh, Pardon Me, Is There MSG in This Cake?

If you are like me, and love to bake, chances are you use boxed cake mixes.

duncan hines
Top brand Duncan Hines, adds Soybean Oil to its popular line of cake mixes.

They’re a baker’s dream — just add oil, water and eggs to the mix and bake away. I’d been hearing that all boxed cake mixes contain MSG, so I did some research and found that the most popular boxed cake mix, Duncan Hines, does NOT contain MSG, per se, BUT, it does contain Soybean Oil , which may cause MSG allergy reactions in people allergic to MSG. It also contains small amounts of trans fats, along with artificial coloring, flavors and so-called product thickening ingredients, such as Xanthan Gum. You should note that if Gums are present, so is MSG.  Duncan Hines’ mix also includes bleached flour, which has been linked to ovarian cysts.

Pillsbury’s cake mix also adds Soybean Oil.

Pillsbury’s cake mixes mirror the ingredients in the Duncan Hines mixes, however, instead of Soybean Oil, the mix contains Canola Oil, which is low in saturated fat and high in unsaturated fats, including Omega-3 fatty acids.

The link to MSG in those two boxed cake mixes is through Soybean oil.  Remember, any inclusion of Soy protein can trigger MSG reactions.

Jiffy cake mixes include Soy Protein Concentrate and Whey – two MSG allergy triggers!

Jiffy cake mixes are also a no-no for those with an MSG allergy.  The Jiffy yellow cake and brownie mixes contain Soy Protein Concentrate and Whey, which can cause MSG related symptoms in someone who is allergic to MSG.

It should be noted however, their popular corn muffin mix does not contain any MSG-related ingredients. However, you should note that corn products can cause MSG allergy reactions in some people.

Baking from scratch is of course the best way to avoid preservatives and Soybean Oil, if you’re game.  Scratch cakes are a bit more time consuming because you now have to measure everything out yourself, but it is actually fun, and an excellent way to avoid MSG.