I recently made a chocolate cake out of a Betty Crocker cake mix. I followed the directions exactly. After letting the cakes cool, I froze them for 2 days and then unthawed to decorate. I noticed when leveling that the cake was really crumbly and a little dry. I asked the friend I made it for to be honest about the taste ... she said it was dry on the outsides, but moist toward the middle. Does anyone use a particular brand of cake mixes that result in nice, moist cakes?
I always use Betty Crocker and Duncan Hines (tend to use DH more) and always add a box of pudding to each cake mix - makes a HUGE difference and I rarely have a problem with crumbles and dryness that way. I notice that if I use white cake (the one where you add only egg whites and no yolk) will give me a super dry, crumbly cake that can't handle the weight of fondant even if I add whole eggs and pudding to it (so I always use french vanilla and never white cake mix now) I almost never freeze cakes so I don't know how that affects things but I imagine it would really dry a cake out as well.
The #1 cause of dryness is overbaking, and the fact that it was still somewhat moist in the middle leads me to believe this is the case here.
I use pudding too sometimes and add an extra whole egg ( if box calls for three I add four) my other "secret weapon" is buttermilk in place of water, makes cakes moist without being "gummy" and you can't taste the buttermilk flavor. If I overbake I use a simple syrup mixture (1part water to 1 part sugar, boiled together until sugar dissolves) with a pastry brush on the edges, moistens them up a bit.