Question About Cracking/breaking Cakes

Decorating By Chrisl121070 Updated 25 Mar 2008 , 1:09am by Chrisl121070

Chrisl121070 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 5:23pm
post #1 of 23

For the first time today I made a 9x13 cake with more than 1 cake mix. I let it cool for about 20-30 min, and flipped it out onto a cooling rack (covered in saran wrap, because I read on here the tip about sealing the warm cake immediately in saran wrap to freeze).

In the few seconds it was sitting upsidedown, it cracked a few place, and one part almost fell totally away from the rest of the cake.

I quickly pulled up the sides of the saran wrap and got it all back together, but is it going to crack badly for me when I thaw it?

How do I keep this from happening?

(Yes, I used flower nails as conductors.)

22 replies
alanahodgson Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 6:11pm
post #2 of 23

Yeah, it's probalby going to crack and break when you thaw it. Did the cake have a dome? Was it resting on the domed side? If so, that's what likely caused your breakage. Flip the cake out then flip it back over onto it's flat side. If you were not dealing with a dome, then I'm not sure why your cake broke. I"m sorry that happened.

diane Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 6:26pm
post #3 of 23

sounds like you may have cooked it a bit too long. or you may even try lowering the temp. to 325. icon_smile.gif

Chrisl121070 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 6:54pm
post #4 of 23

It did have a bit of a dome. ugh. lol

I baked it at 325. I thought too that it took a long time to bake, but the middle wasn't cooked through yet. The edges were getting brown, but the middle was still raw so I had to leave it in longer.

JawdroppingCakes Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:11pm
post #5 of 23

You should try rotating the cake every 20 to 30 minutes to let it bake even. It always works for me along with baking strips and a flower nail in the middle.

Chrisl121070 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:20pm
post #6 of 23

Hm, I'll try turning it next time.

kansaswolf Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:21pm
post #7 of 23

When mine have a bit of a dome, I usually cool them upside down on a baker's rack for at least a little while with the pan still ON. That squishes the dome down a tad so you don't have to cut off so much. Of course, that only works if the cake is taller than the pan, so that may or may not help... But with two cake mixes, I'd think it'd be pretty tall! icon_biggrin.gif Good luck!

ssunshine564 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:22pm
post #8 of 23

I agree with Dianne. I bake at 325 and that solved the problem for me.

4starcakes Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:29pm
post #9 of 23

ThIs happens to me with Betty Crocker. What did you use?

Chrisl121070 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 8:49pm
post #10 of 23

It was Betty Crocker! Usually I use Duncan Hines for my other cakes, but I read on here that a lot of people like BC better so I tried that. Maybe that was part of the problem.


4starcakes Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 10:24pm
post #11 of 23

I read the same thing on here on the poll they had about the box mixes. I always use DH but tried BC and it was disastrous for me. It just crumbled and cracked. I recently made a pillow cake using BC and it completely fell apart. I had to go and buy DH and it worked out great. Never changing again!

kakeladi Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 10:49pm
post #12 of 23

The brand of mix makes very little, if any difference. The major thing here is the hump.
What you should do is have a 2nd rack OR any board to turn the cake out onto, then put another on it and turn it right back over so it is resting on what was the bottom of the cake in the pan.
To prevent baking w/a hump several things are important:
Using the right amount of batter in the pan
The temp - keep it low and your cak will bake w/o it! I bake at 300 degrees for about 20 minutes for any one mix size....maybe another 5 minutes if it's bigger then turn the temp up to 325 for another 20 minutes. That usually is enough for most cakes. Using the wet strips around pan and/or a flower nail in the batter should also help but are not totally necessary (if for some reason you don't have/can't use - no harm).
Your cake should come out almost perfectly level w/the top of the pan - & *NO hump*.
I never cared for pressing down the hump as it always caused cracks in the cake on the bottom at the edges icon_sad.gif

c420 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 10:58pm
post #13 of 23

Along with no hump (which you can easily trim if you've got one), turning out a cake when it is too warm will crack much easier. It can be a lil warm but as a professional baker I wait awhile until they are cooler. The brand shouldn't make a difference. Also if you don't spray your pans evenly you may have one part take longer to come off the pan another causing it to tear/crack. Hope this helps your problem!

Chrisl121070 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 11:29pm
post #14 of 23

Yeah, I had no problem turning it out, it came out nice and clean. I'm pretty sure it was the hump + the fact that it was still pretty warm.

How long do you let it cool in the pan before turning it out? Most things I've read on here say 10-15 min, but for a cake that large, it's still pretty warm even after 30 min.

indydebi Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 11:56pm
post #15 of 23

First, reduce the doming as much as possible by using baking strips. I never bake a cake without them.

Trim the dome while it's still in the pan. This at least gives you a partial flat surface when you flip the cake out onto the first cooling rack, where you are going to immediately (!) use a 2nd cooling rack and flip the cake so it's sitting on it's bottom during the cooling process. If you have to do any add'l trimming on the dome, you can do it after it cools.

When you flip a cake out and it has ANY kind of dome on it, gravity is going to work against you. Even for the few seconds that it's laying on the dome, gravity is going to pull down on the unsupported corners and cause the cake to break.

I always have my cakes trimmed and flipped out of the pans within 2 minutes of them coming out of the oven.

iamlis Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 12:13am
post #16 of 23

Don't leave your cake in the pan too long...the shortening/flour or spray or just shortening (WHATEVER YOU GREASE YOUR PAN WITH! icon_smile.gif) will cool and act like a glue and stick your cake TO the pan-learned that lesson the hard way 10 too many times! GOOD LUCK ON THE NEXT ONE!

ZAKIA6 Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 12:16am
post #17 of 23

i was having the "hump" problem.
today i made 3 cakes using the baking strips. i couldnt believe how flat and even they came out!

Chrisl121070 Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 12:17am
post #18 of 23

thanks Debi. icon_smile.gif

So... do we think I'll be able to salvage the cake I have in the freezer, or should I rebake? LOL

The pieces didn't totally break off, it's just cracks in the bottom.

It's for a friend's daughter's birthday next weekend. They aren't paying me for it, but I also don't want it to fall apart!

indydebi Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 12:53am
post #19 of 23

Chris, it depends on how deep the cracks are. If, after you trim any doming, the cracks don't go all the way thru, and they are on the bottom, then you might be ok.

Without seeing it, I"m just guessing, but I have iced and served cakes with partial cracks successfully.

Chrisl121070 Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 1:00am
post #20 of 23

I'm sorry for so many questions, but thank you for answering me!! icon_smile.gif

When I take it out of the freezer and trim it, can I crumb coat it while it's still partially frozen or do I need to let it thaw first? I assume I have to wait for it to thaw before completely icing it.

indydebi Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 1:21am
post #21 of 23

It only takes cake a few minutes to totally thaw (like an hour or so, dpending on the size of the cake). I usually crumb coat mine while partially frozen. It's usually still cold when I ice it. Some ice completely frozen cakes ... some will only ice completely thawed cakes. See what works best for you and go from there.

Chrisl121070 Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 1:46am
post #22 of 23


Chrisl121070 Posted 25 Mar 2008 , 1:09am
post #23 of 23

Update - I baked a new cake today... used DH mix, baking strips, & flower nails. Baked at 300 for 10 min, then at 325 for about 35-40 min and while the cake still had a bit of a top, it was much flatter than the last time, and I leveled it before taking it out of the pan and there were no cracks or anything. icon_smile.gif

Quote by @%username% on %date%