Have you been puzzled by how to keep bundt cake from sticking? Or have you wondered why there isn’t a single pan that promises to release the cake readily every time? Welcome to the world of bundt cakes. These are treats that taste like heaven but are still some of the most difficult to bake and remove from the pan easily.
Bundt pans are now made to give the cake a classical look of the most adorable natural or imaginary features you can fantasize about. They range from the peaks of a pine forest to an unbelievably realistic rose flower contouring, except that they don’t tell you one thing- bundt cakes often stick in the pan.
This article will go over several tips and hacks to prevent the cake from sticking in the pan.
Why do Bundt Cakes Stick on The Pan?
This is arguably the first question you’d ask if you’ve had no problem with other types of cake.
First of all, if you are baking an angel food cake in the bundt pan, you might be in for a surprise. The batter used to make these cakes is rich in egg whites but low on flour. The batter needs to stick on the pan (that’s why we use a tube pan to increase the surface area). Now, if the pan isn’t nonstick coated, trying to remove the cake will probably wreck it.
Secondly, today’s bundt pans are cast to give the cake a very detailed look. But come to think of the entire, complete entire detail- the crevices rise, dips, sharp curves- all as an extra surface onto which the cake sticks. Again, you won’t get to see the beautiful cake without a proper pan coating as the cake will break when you flip and lift the pan. You may even end up with a pile of crumble.
So, how do you prevent the cake from sticking to the pan? There’re a few things you’ll need to ensure.
How to Prevent The Bundt Cake From Sicking:
Follow these tips and hacks to keep your bundt cake from sticking:
Use a nonstick pan
Choosing the suitable pans makes the rest of your efforts at preventing the cake stick worthwhile. A nonstick pan is almost mandatory if you dream of making intact bundt cakes. Luckily most of the pans in the market today have some nonstick coating.
Apart from the coating itself, pay attention to the color of the pan. As we know, darker surfaces absorb more radiant heat than brighter or shiny surfaces. It thus makes more sense to go for a light-colored pan, in addition to the nonstick coating, to avoid over-browning.
If you have a nonstick pan, ensure not to use abrasive sponges and strong detergents for cleaning. A robust dish liquid can wear off the nonstick coating sooner than expected, while an abrasive sponge introduces scratches. A bundt cake sticks on these scratches as though it is meant to be.
Grease the pan
Cooking grease, when applied to the pan, allows the cake to slide out smoothly.
Just like with any other step in baking a bundt cake, do not overdo the greasing.
Generally, you should grease both the bottom and the sides of the cake pan with a pastry brush. Ensure the grease covers every surface that the cake will come into contact with. Pay more attention when greasing intricately designed bundt pans, such as the pine forest bundt cake pans.
The grease layer should just cover the pan surface but not drench it. Excessive grease would impact the taste of the cake.
You can also use spray grease, shortening, butter, or vegetable oil. You will want to avoid olive oil for this part. Go for a lightly flavored oil that will have the most negligible impact on the cake’s flavor.
Nevertheless, greasing is no guarantee that the cake won’t stick- it is just a preventive measure.
Sprinkle some flour
Although this isn’t a mandatory step, dusting the pan with flour or granulated sugar over the grease layer will help keep the cake from sticking. The flour or sugar forms, and the grease form a barrier between the bundt and pan. It’s as simple as that!
After dusting the pan, you do not want any excess flour damaging the final look of your cake- flip the pan to get rid of the excess flour.
Loosen the edges before cooling the cake
After baking, it makes sense to run a plastic spatula digging into the edge of the cake around the pan. Also, push the spatula a few centimeters down the pan surface to break any stuck points.
Don’t forget the tube area.
If you anticipate that the cake will rise above the tube, be sure to press it down when removing the cake. Alternatively, you can cut out the cake section encroaching the tube. The idea is to reveal the entire top of the tube.
Let the hot cake rest for a while
Chances are that if you flip the bundt pan immediately from the oven, the cake will be stuck on the inside, especially the bottom. This often results in the cake breaking leaving the intended top part embedded on the pan’s bottom.
Let the cake rest for at least five minutes with the pan upright before flipping and lifting the pan. Remember to flip it on a wire rack or a serving platter.
What if the cake is already stuck? Or if it sticks despite the above steps?
Sometimes you’re out of control of the results- the cake is stuck, and your guests have started arriving. You have no time for a fresh bake.
In such a case, you can try the following to release a stuck cake:
Steam the cake
Place a clean kitchen towel in the (clean) sink and pour boiling water on it. Stop when the towel is damp but not wet.
Place the towel draping over the top of the pan. Leave it there as the pan cools, for, say, five minutes.
When you invert the cake, there is a fair chance that the steam created and trapped between the towel and the cake will help the cake release.
The cake might still have some imperfections, but you can easily mend them with icing or glaze.
Give it some more oven time.
After the cake has cooled but still won’t release, heat your oven to about 250-deg F.
Bake the cake again for between three and five minutes, depending on the type of cake you’re baking.
Generally, if it’s a drier cake, like chiffon, don’t exceed three minutes, but if it’s a somewhat moist pound cake, five minutes should be enough.
Remove the cake from the oven, and without waiting for it to cool, flip it immediately over a serving platter. Jiggle the pan a little and watch your cake release effortlessly.
Again, there will be imperfections that you can conceal with frosting!
Freeze the cake
This method entirely depends on what substance you used to grease the pan. If it is a liquid oil or a nonstick spray, you can proceed; but if you used butter or fat that solidifies when cooled, you would only be adding to the problem.
Place the cake in a freezer for between 40 minutes to one hour until it becomes a hard mass.
Remove the pan with the cake from the freezer and invert over a platter. If it doesn’t come off, run a plastic spatula around the edges of the cake, flip the pan again, and gently tap on the pan.
The cake should readily release and rest on the platter.
If you used butter or some solid fat to grease the pan, you still have a chance with this method. After freezing, you will need to place the pan and the cake in a preheated oven for about 40 minutes. The pan will absorb the heat and conduct to the grease layer on the inside. On melting, the grease will readily let the cake slide out of the pan. This method doesn’t guarantee consistent results due to the different materials used to make pans.
It seems like baking a bundt cake is shrouded by uncertainties- from the delicate baking process to ensuring the cake doesn’t stick. Do not let these challenges throw you off; after all, the more you try, the closer you get to perfect the skill.
The above tips to preventing the cake from sticking, along with previous guides on baking with bundt pans, should give you a head start to becoming a professional level bundt baker!
Jennifer D. Simon has spent the last 26 years studying and practicing nutrition science. She has used a larger part of this time in improving people’s livelihoods. She has done so by coming up with unquestionable ideas on how to tackle food problems in her community. Read More