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Does letting your cake batter sit a bit , while the oven you forgot to preheat, heats, affect it in any way?

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Sarah is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added about 2 years ago

Yes - how much depends on what kind of leavener is used (egg foam, baking powder/soda, creamed butter + sugar) and what your recipe is.

Regardless, your cake won't rise nearly as much as it's supposed to - every second out of the oven after the batter has been mixed results in the leaveners deflating.

gt9 added about 2 years ago

it probably doesn't take your oven more than 10 - 15 minutes to preheat...so you should be fine.

I am not sure what your other option would be...I would bake!

Esther Plume added about 2 years ago

That depends on your cake mix (what raising agents you've got in there, for example whether you've got vinegar or soured milk and a bit of bicarbonate in there together to set things going), what temp your cake mix is (did you do a lot of it in a saucepan to melt ingredients which means you've already got a slightly warm batter).... And how long your oven takes to warm up!

I have an oven that runs hot, so doesn't take long to warm up, so it'd be less of a problem. I'd probably cheat a little and put the cake in a bit before the oven gets to full temp, and let he cake mix and oven temp warm up together!

Lynnht added about 2 years ago

It depends on the type of cake, but it could likely be fine. I do this frequently with basic yellow cake and chocolate cake recipes. (I make batter for lots of cupcakes, but can only put 24 in my oven at a time.) In the 15 minutes or so it will take to preheat, it's likely okay. It could cause it to be a bit less airy/light than if you did put in immediately. If you made a sponge cake or something with folded in egg whites, then it may make a big difference.

Esther Plume added about 2 years ago

I've been thinking... When I make fairy cakes etc, I'll often make a large batch of mix, and then do a couple of trays at a time, the mix is sat on the counter while waiting for the first trays to bake with no real ill effect.

I'm presuming you'll bake the mix anyway, as it'll still be very tasty! If its doesn't work out, then you can always take it to the table and proudly declare it as a "sunken torte" (providing, of course that it's not a layer cake)

Maedl added almost 2 years ago

It can affect the batter, but not necessarily in a bad way. I bake a cake with olive oil and grapes from Patricia Wells. The directions say to let the cake sit for some time before it goes in the oven. This gives the glutens time to develop and strengthens the texture.


Anita is a vegan pastry chef & founder of Electric Blue Baking Co. in Brooklyn.

added almost 2 years ago

I agree with Maedl. Sometimes I do just what you did on purpose. I find that with most cake batters (and doughs--such as the one I use to make baked donuts), the more time you let it sit, the more time the leavening has to take action.

Also, you give the gluten a chance to rest and that can make for better texture.

Maybe it's because I don't use eggs. I especially use this trick when bringing cold, refrigerated batter down to room temp. I also find that pre-refrigerated batter rises more than fresh made. But you have to let it come to room temp before baking.

Elaine Ruth added almost 2 years ago

If using a boxed cake mix there would be no I'll effects. If baking from scratch get the battering the oven as soon as possible for maximum rise.


Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added almost 2 years ago
Voted the Best Answer!

It does depend what sort of cake you are making. If a chiffon, which contains a large amount of meringue which contributes to the cake's leavening, the answer is yes. The saying is that "a cold French meringue waits for no one" because it begins to deflate rapidly. Virtually all baking powder available commercially is double-acting. It contains 2 acids, one of which is activated in the presence of liquid, while the other is activated in the presence of heat. That's why bakeries often prepare large batches of muffin batter to hold in the refrigerator, then scoop the number of muffins needed on bake day. Cakes leavened with baking powder can easily sit while you oven heats. Cakes leavened only with baking soda (I make a chocolate cake that falls into this category) can sit while your oven heats, but not any longer than that. Baking soda reacts with acid to produce the carbon dioxide involved in leavening. A short rest period will also permit the gluten in your flour to relax, yielding a more tender cake. Although, if you've use cake flour, which has the lowest protein (gluten) content of all baking flours, and if you haven't over-mixed the batter, toughening of the gluten shouldn't be a problem anyway.


June is a trusted source on General Cooking.

added almost 2 years ago

<Virtually all baking powder available commercially is double-acting.> However the best baking powder available, Rumford, is single acting. and yes, a cake should be fine in that case.

ChefOno added almost 2 years ago

Beg to differ. Check the can.

creamtea added almost 2 years ago

I thought that if the gluten develops (i.e. meets the liquid and then rests) it toughens the final product??

ChefOno added almost 2 years ago

Spontaneous gluten development is a slow process. Gluten relaxation happens relatively quickly.


Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added almost 2 years ago

You're right, creamtea, gluten forms in the presence of liquid. It develops further via agitation - think kneading of bread dough. Cakes are cakes and breads are breads because of the different amounts of gluten in their respective flours, and also because of the way each is mixed. Cakes are mixed only as much as is required to hydrate all ingredients, and also to develop just enough gluten to help hold them up. Resting literally allows gluten to relax.

mensaque added almost 2 years ago

I think gluten only needs to relax so badly because of those tiny letters in every package:contains gluten...or free of gluten...even on water botles...poor thing,it feels rejected!SORRY_JUST MESSING WITH YOU!


Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

added almost 2 years ago


creamtea added almost 2 years ago

my kitchen is a gluten shelter.

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