Some Recipe Yeilds Bug The Crap Out Of Me!

Decorating By Trixyinaz Updated 6 Feb 2009 , 7:25pm by prterrell

Trixyinaz Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 3:27am
post #1 of 15

I have been helping this lady make sense of why her cake didn't rise high enough. In looking at the recipe she used (It's a Hershey recipe), I think I may have found the problem. The recipe says it will yield TWO 9" round cakes or ONE 9x13 sheet cake. There is NO WAY this recipe makes 11 cups of batter, which is needed to fill TWO 9" pans to make 2" cake layers. My recipe, which is similar and has double the amount of flour, 1/2 cup more sugar and 1/2 cup more cocoa, double the baking soda and powder, yields ONLY 6 cups of batter. So number one, I'm guessing this recipe yields about 5 cups of batter (if that) which is not even enough to fill one 9" cake pan to make a nice full 2" cake layer.

And then number two: Call me CRAZY, but if this recipe actually did fill TWO 9" pans to make a "real" cake....that would be WAY to much batter to put in a 9x13 cake pan, unless you don't mind cleaning up an oven filled with burnt cake b/c the batter spilled over the cake pan b/c there was too much in it. AARGH!!!!!

Why can't recipes also state how tall of a cake it is supposed to make and how much batter the recipe seriously would make BAKING so much easier....I rarely go by what recipes say anymore. I measure my batter first and make accordingly to fill my pans! But it would be much easier if you knew before you made the recipe how much BATTER it really made so you don't have to make one batch first just to measure it to know how many batches you really need to make a cake. KWIM????

Anyway, that is my rant for the day...thanks for reading icon_biggrin.gif If anyone else has ever noticed this about recipes and it irked you to death, feel free to join along in this thread! icon_lol.gif

14 replies
indydebi Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 3:50am
post #2 of 15

I've come across recipes like that when I'm scanning the 'net looking for new ones. I've made up a batch and the whole batch barely filled one pan, let alone the two it said it would "fill". I'm with you ... if it's only suppose to yield a 1" cake, then SAY SO!!

Trixyinaz Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 4:05am
post #3 of 15

Thank YOU Debi...I thought I was the only one! Honestly, if I ever write a cookbook, I promise you I will list how much batter the recipe yields and list the CORRECT size pan(s) it will fit in. Do you think people would buy it just for that???? icon_biggrin.gif

indydebi Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 5:05am
post #4 of 15

YOu'll probably confuse 'em since they are used to lower standards of quality! icon_lol.gif

Mike1394 Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 10:11am
post #5 of 15

I think a lot of the issues are in the cake pan sizes themselves. You get those goofy Wilton pans that are barely 1 1/2" tall then go to a 2" pan, then try resize your recipe to fit a 2". It's all enough to give one a headache. LOL


JanH Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 10:42am
post #6 of 15

Agree with Mike that cake pan sizes are key in this issue. icon_smile.gif

Most cake mixes, and recipes for home bakers are geared toward shorter pans in small sizes (for family consumption).

Knowing the batter yield of the recipe would be very handy. And if you wrote a cookbook giving that info, I would definitely buy one! thumbs_up.gif

Using DH white cake mix, a full WASC recipe yields a tad over 14 cups of batter. Just having that info makes the WASC one of my favorite recipes. icon_lol.gif

But as Debi pointed out, you'd need to market it to hobby/professional bakers/decorators who would appreciate the significance of the info. judge.gif

vinman9 Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 11:04am
post #7 of 15

I have yet to try my hand at baking from scratch. That being said, I took a local cake decorating class recently and we were asked to bring a 9" frosted cake to class. I got my box of Pillsbury white cake mix and baked it only to end up with 2 rounds that were surprisingly thin. So I went and looked at the Wilton website for advice and found out how many cups of batter should be used per pan, and ended up baking a new cake using 2 boxes to get enough batter to make the one 9" cake. I went to my class with my nice, "normal size" cake, and guess what? Everyone else has a tiny cake!

I shared my "experience" with everyone in the class, and completely agree that the box mix makers too should be more honest with their yield!

JanH Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 11:24am
post #8 of 15
Originally Posted by vinman9

box mix makers too should be more honest with their yield!

DH states that their cake mixes yield 5-1/2 cups of batter:


ThreeDGirlie Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 11:29am
post #9 of 15

4" tll cakes are normal to professional and hobby bakers. To the normal home baker (I know, I was one until this past spring), when you make a cake it is 2 layers, how high is kind of irrelevant.

And a "standard" pan marketed is only 1.5" deep.

Until I came here and started getting more serious about my cakes, I never had a cake that was over 3" tall when it was fully iced and decorated.

vinman9 Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 3:14pm
post #10 of 15
Originally Posted by ThreeDGirlie

4" tll cakes are normal to professional and hobby bakers. To the normal home baker (I know, I was one until this past spring), when you make a cake it is 2 layers, how high is kind of irrelevant.
Until I came here and started getting more serious about my cakes, I never had a cake that was over 3" tall when it was fully iced and decorated.

I don't think it's irrelevant at all. I am not a professional, I'm just a guy that wants to bake nice cakes. I expect that if I follow the instructions to the letter I should get a good result, a nicely sized cake. Take Jan's link to DH, and it tells you that from one box you'll get 5 1/2 cups of batter, (Pillsbury makes 4 1/2 I think) but it also says that one mix fills two 8 inch rounds, and you'll have enough batter to fill the pan 2/3 full. Not quite! But then you continue to follow the direction to bake at 350 causing the cake to dome so much that you have to trim it way down, and you're left with a result that is not what you expected when you started - given the scrumptious looking picture on the front of the box!

That's what I meant when I said that the box mixes should be more honest with their yield. And so should the scratch recipes, which one of these days I'm going to get the nerve to try. I would sign up for one of those cookbook too!

Trixyinaz Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 3:22pm
post #11 of 15

I never thought about the pans being different heights. So with that said, I went and measured mine. I have both Wilton and FD's. Both measured 2 inches high. But I don't have any goofy shaped pans (like character pans) so maybe that is where the difference lies. What pans are your referring to that are only 1.5" high?

Plus, ever since IndyDebi told me to try using the strips on all size pans (even the small ones), my cakes now rise about 1/2" to 1" over the pan giving me a nice tall cake that is super moist all the way through - no dry edges while the center cooks. And surprisingly, they are all level and I barely have to level my cakes anymore. Without the strips, my cakes were coming even with the top of the me a 2" tall cake. I didn't change the amount of batter I use or anything...just started using the baking strips on all my pans.

Yes, my cookbook would need to be marketed to the professional/hobbyiest. Although, I guess I grew up with a mom who knew how high a cake should be b/c we always had tall cakes growing up. She never skimped on anything icon_lol.gif

ThreeDGirlie Posted 6 Dec 2008 , 3:37pm
post #12 of 15

If you go to the kitchen section in any plain old store - Bed, Bath and Beyond, Target, KMart, even just the kitchen wares at WalMart, you'll find a lot of 9" round pans that are 1.5" deep. And you probably won't find any other round pans at all (6", 8", 10" or any other depth)... I know because I have 5 of these 9" x 1.5" pans that I have gotten over the years. I have only been decorating since this past spring, and just got mor einto it this fall... I know because I have looked in these regular stores and can't find anything different. icon_smile.gif Usually I just make 3 thinner 9" layers to get my 4" tall cake these days.

This is not including the Wilton baking area in WM or any craft stores where people who know a little something would shop. And anything you buy on-line or at a real cake supply store, well that owuld be more "standard" which would be a 2" or 3" pan.

sweetiesbykim Posted 5 Feb 2009 , 4:06pm
post #13 of 15

When I worked at a bakery last year, we always used a large professional cookie scoop to measure exactly how much batter to put into each pan. All the same size cake pans looked equal. We then made a chart of how many scoops to each pan size under each cake flavor. You do have to try each recipe first to judge how much rising takes place. And "YES", the small Italian family owned bakery used "add only water" cake mixes from 50lb bags for their white and yellow cake-YUK!.

xstitcher Posted 5 Feb 2009 , 11:21pm
post #14 of 15

Hey Vicki,

The pans that are usually 1.5" high are the ones that stack/nest inside each other. They also don't usually have the straight edges like you do with say Magic Line instead they kind of curve out a bit at the top (sorry if I'm not explaining it correctly) and that allows them to all fit inside one another nicely. Wilton makes theses kinds as well as those are the ones I purchased from Walmart last year before I knew any better icon_lol.gif .

Hope that answers your question. icon_smile.gif

prterrell Posted 6 Feb 2009 , 7:25pm
post #15 of 15

I swear the box mixes don't yield as much as they did in the past. I can totally remember my mom baking one box mix of DH or BC brand cake mix, undoctored, and it turning out a 9x13 cake that was a good 2+ inches high. The last time baked a box mix cake, I had to bake 2 9x13 pans and layer them with icing in order to have a decent height to the cake. This alone is one of the reasons I'm switching over to doing only scratch cakes. The first time I make any recipe, I measure out how many cups of batter it makes and notate that in the cookbook for future reference.

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