Regular Oven Vs Convection?

Decorating By TerriNM Updated 25 Jan 2009 , 8:57pm by GrandmaG

TerriNM Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 6:06pm
post #1 of 26

2 years ago I was able to make my DDs wedding cake thanks entirely to the wonderful ideas and instruction on this board. So now DS is getting married and wants me to do his cake also. But, we've moved recently and the oven in our new house is a JennAir convection oven. I did a practice cake last weekend, the WASC and it tasted WONDERFUL, but one layer came out great and the other was lopsided. We've checked for oven level and it is. I lowered the temp to 325 and total cook time ended up being 41 minutes (until a pic came out clean).

Can anyone give me any advice about using a convection oven? I have to do another practice cake this afternoon that will dress up as DHs birthday cake for tomorrow icon_smile.gif


25 replies
kakeladi Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 6:26pm
post #2 of 26

The fan on the JennAir is pulling the batter out of the pan icon_sad.gif
Can you turn the fan down or off?

TerriNM Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 8:11pm
post #3 of 26

wow I would have never thought of that. Can't turn the fan down but I did just do them on regular bake and they came out fine (well except for being domed to much). So much for the wonders of convection baking I guess lol.


JGMB Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 8:17pm
post #4 of 26

I recently visited the Wilton test kitchen at their headquarters (I only live 5 minutes away!) and asked the head baker if she uses a convection oven. She said, "no," so I guess regular oven really is the way to go.

Kitagrl Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 8:23pm
post #5 of 26

I just got a new oven that has a convection setting and the instruction book says cakes should be done on "bake" and not convection. The convection makes nice cookies though!

Still getting used to the oven actually...that's the only thing bad about a new oven...the slightly different temp variations and stuff!

shiney Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 8:36pm
post #6 of 26

Kitagrl, I have a new convection, and can't seem to get my cookies done evenly, they seem to more done on the outside before the inside. What's your advice? I have lowered the temp 25 degrees

TerriNM Posted 24 Jan 2009 , 8:40pm
post #7 of 26

Thanks everyone! I assumed when I had heard great for "baking" that meant all baking lol.

banba Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 12:29pm
post #8 of 26

I have both ovens and I gave up baking in the fan oven.

It is very difficult to get an accurate baking temp in the fan oven and it just makes everything rise and bake too fast and too hot.

I use the regular oven now with no problems. Keep the fan oven for non baking use, that's what works best for me anyway!

leah_s Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 12:52pm
post #9 of 26

I have both regular gas and electric convection. I LOVE the convection oven and use it almost exclusively.

I originally bought the convectin oven specifically for cookies. Having them bake fast so that the outside is firm and the inside is soft is the definition of a good cookie and the whole point of convection.

For cakes, turn that temp down - more than the usual 25 degree adjustment. For 6/8 diameter cakes, I bake at 315. For 10/12/14 I go down to 300. My oven's small so a 15/16 diameter won't even fit.

The convection oven is the best!

dahir Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 12:58pm
post #10 of 26

Do you guys bake more than one cake in a regular oven. I have found that I cannot bake more than one cake at a time in a regular oven. Has anyone found a way around this.

FullHouse Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 1:12pm
post #11 of 26

I have a GE Profile double wall oven, one is convection, one is basic electric. I have tried cakes in both ovens from the same batch of batter and find the convection bakes more evenly. I set the convection for 325 (which winds up being auto adjusted to 300), then I turn it up to 350 (adjusts to 325) during the last 1/3 of baking time. I also use bake even strips for all size pans (even 6"). I like it so much better, that I don't even use my lower oven when baking more than 4 layers of cake, I just wait to do a 2nd round of baking in the convection. I've also tried the convection oven using the regular bake option and still prefer the convection setting. It also allows me to do up to 4 cakes at a time.

Leahs, thanks for the temp recommendations, I'm going to try your next time icon_smile.gif.

GrandmaG Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 1:19pm
post #12 of 26

I hardly use my convection setting on my oven. The instructions do say to not bake cakes. The reason for that is convection is for baking things without pan sides. I had the same problem with my cookies not cooking evenly. Found out that the motor was out on the fan. Gone through two motors in the first year already. It's a LG and I would never buy again. They say bake cookies on the 4th rack down and 2nd one up. We did a test with two thermometers and the temperature was more consistent in that area. Also cakes need to be at least 2 inches from sides and each other so if you're baking a big cake then bake one at a time.

shiney Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 1:23pm
post #13 of 26

Wow, GrandmaG: WHat a difference our ovens are! I cannot do cookies on the bottom two racks, especially not the lower one, they burn on the bottom in no time. It's one of those ovens with the coils under the bottom (the coil is hidden). It's a new whilrpool

GrandmaG Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 1:28pm
post #14 of 26

My coils are hidden too. Better for clean up but I'm not sold on the temperature thing. Just look in your instruction book and it should tell you what level the racks should be for what you're baking. Your cookies shouldn't be burning just because they are on the middle/lower racks!

leah_s Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 1:37pm
post #15 of 26

I cram in as many pans as I can get in either oven.

Too used to working in volume I guess.

shiney Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 1:41pm
post #16 of 26

leahs, that was my idea with the new oven, since the air is circulating! I kept my racks from the old oven, and thought I'd half my baking time by doing four racks, but that hasn't worked out because of the lower ones burning. And I do rotate the racks, but still, in no time, the bottom are burning. I lowered the degrees from 375 to 350, so I don't know if I should go lower. I read the book, maybe i missed something, I'll have to get it out and read it again.

classiccake Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 3:14pm
post #17 of 26

I bake in commercial convection ovens and bake everything at 300 degrees. I can have pans stuffed in there like Leah said...with the convection you may not bake much faster, but I feel like I can get more in there at a time, but again, they are large commercial ovens. The only rack I have to watch is the one closest to the top of the oven. I will only bake 5, 6, and 7" cakes on that rack. It bakes too fast for larger cakes.

shiney Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 3:22pm
post #18 of 26

Can I ask, Classic, what degrees would a cake normally bake at? I'm just trying to decide if I should go lower than 350. For example, if cakes normally go at 325, then my theory of 25 lower would be correct. But if cakes normally go at 350, and you lower to 300, then maybe I should lower more than 25.
Did that make sense? I'm kinda googl-eyed from 'trying' to keep up with the officially embarassed thread icon_smile.gif

classiccake Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 3:37pm
post #19 of 26

I would just try baking a cake at a couple of different temps. There are so many variables between manufacturers, sizes of ovens, and the load in an oven. We have two large ovens and two smaller ovens from the same manufacturer. We had to turn the fa in the smaller set to LOW to get the cakes to bake properly. On the larger ovens, the fan stays on HIGH. We just found that 300 always did the best as far as temps. The higher temps made the outside bake too fast and the cakes were humped alot more and too done on the outside. In a traditional oven, most bake at 350 or 325.

If your pans are filled correctly and you are baking at a good temperature, then the cakes don't have much of a "hump."

shiney Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 3:41pm
post #20 of 26

Thanks Classic: I didn't make myself clear (not surprising), but I do cookies, so I'm unfamiliar with cake. I will actually try to go lower and see how I do. Thanks a mil

classiccake Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 3:45pm
post #21 of 26

Hey, not your fault! I just flipped back and you did say cookies in a previous post. I just have cake on the brain!

In my traditional home oven, I can not bake on the lower racks either....same problem. So I can't help you there.

I am spoiled by the large ovens at work and do all my baking there.

GrandmaG Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 3:51pm
post #22 of 26

Most of the bakers I know bake at 325 for a traditional oven. My convection automatically sets it down 25 degrees more. An instructor taught me that. She thought the cakes stay more moist and I believe she's right!

TerriNM Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:14pm
post #23 of 26

So when you are baking in the 300-325 range how much time do you add to your baking time? With the one I did convection I set the time for what was recommended and then had to keep adding to it. I would think opening the door so much to check on it wasn't good.

GrandmaG Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 4:52pm
post #24 of 26

It does take longer. You can kind of tell when it looks done by peeking. I guess not all ovens have windows though. I then set the timer for 2 minutes intervals and do the toothpick test.

Kitagrl Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 8:26pm
post #25 of 26

My new oven is a Samsung (similar to LG I guess), which I chose solely for the fact it has a huge capacity interior.

Still trying to get used to the settings....we got one, and it was baking my cakes nicely, but we found some stuff wrong with the back, so exchanged it for another identical model.

Since then, I haven't been able to figure out the oven cakes are baking up hard on the outside, and taking a long time to bake. Very frustrating. (Any clues? I've adjusted the temp both up and down, not sure which one is the problem. Ended up just calibrating it back to factory and I'll have to play around with the temps some more.)

The cookies turn out nice though. Although they seem to be baking a bit slower as well...but then I did buy a third rack for this oven and I think having three racks of cookies in there does slow down the baking process.

GrandmaG Posted 25 Jan 2009 , 8:57pm
post #26 of 26

I wouldn't bake cakes with convection. At least not in a non-commercial oven. Try getting a couple of thermometers, the kind you hang on the racks, and do some investigating to see where the heat is the most constant. I'm beginning to think the hype on convections is just that!

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