Can Someone Please Help!(Bulging Cake)

Baking By Lisa9002 Updated 11 Dec 2010 , 3:40am by planetsomsom

Lisa9002 Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 11:24am
post #1 of 22

I don't know if it's my pans or something I'm doing in my cake mix that causes my cakes to bulge. They look perfect when I take them out of the oven, then when they start cooling they shrink (ALOT) and bulge at the sides! I can't figure this out! They've not always done this but I can't think of anything I'm doing different. Could it be the way they cool?? I put them on a cooling rack for a bit before turning them onto a board. ?? Please HELP!

21 replies
thumbs Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 12:16pm
post #2 of 22

oh, I haven't heard of that happening before. I thought you meant the bulge from the icing.

It might be the recipe you are using, maybe it's just not strong enough to support the weight of itself. I really don't know, hopefully someone else will come by with more help then I can offer.

mamawrobin Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 12:26pm
post #3 of 22

Are you using the same recipe? same pans? What kind of pans do you use? How long are you letting them cool in the pan before turning them onto a cooling rack?

summersusu Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 5:59pm
post #4 of 22

i dont let mine cool...their is a discussion on the forums about wrapping them right out of the oven and putting them in the freezer for the more moisture in your cakes. maybe you could try that? What recipe are you using?

SugarHighCakery Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 6:19pm
post #5 of 22

I am at a total loss, I have never had a cake itself bulge. I have had icing bulge...but not cake.

Can you post a picture or link to an example of this? I am interested in seeing it.

julesh268 Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 6:25pm
post #6 of 22

Can you show a picture? Could they not be cooked all of the way through?

Karen421 Posted 26 Jun 2010 , 6:29pm
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by julesh268

Can you show a picture? Could they not be cooked all of the way through?




That's what I was thinking also, perhaps they are slightly underdone and that is causing it to compress and bulge?

Lisa9002 Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 6:19pm
post #8 of 22

Thanks for all the suggestions/questions to help. I'm using a mix plus pudding and basically just a recipe I came up with. I've used it all along and had no issues with it. The only thing I can think of different that I done, is that I baked the layers and cooled them aproximately 10 min before turning them out of the pan. I use the wilton pans. I don't have a photo of the bulging layers, however, I will take one and post it if it happens again. I have put a splash of buttermilk in my recipe (just the last few times) and don't remember if that's how long I've had the bulging issue or not. There are getting done, I'm just confused. Can't really think of anything I've done different other than the buttermilk. I had to rebake the whole wedding cake the day of the wedding! Talk about STRESS!! I posted a pic in my photos. I'ts the last one posted. 3 tier with pale yellow polka dots. The wedding was at 3 and I got it delivered to the church at 2! Everyone was well pleased and said it was worth the wait. The new layers I baked still bulged a little. You can see it through the icing, I think. Nobody else really noticed. Idk..........any more advice is appreciated!

dalis4joe Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 6:22pm
post #9 of 22

cooling rack for a bit before turning them onto a board..... how long in the cooling rack? what kind of board? I have a feeling that's where your problem is...

Lisa9002 Posted 28 Jun 2010 , 7:38pm
post #10 of 22

I usually cool them 10 to 15 minutes in the pan (or until they are cool enough to release without sticking) and put them on a card board that I'm gonna use to put the cake on and leave on the cooling rack til completely cool. The bulging usually starts in the pan though. I can see the sides of the cake sticking out (like midways of the layer) before I ever turn in out of the pan. ?? So it must be the recipe. Right?

MissCakeCrazy Posted 13 Jul 2010 , 9:06pm
post #11 of 22

I would leave it for a little longer in the oven (lower temp and an extra 15 minutes?) then I would wait a longer time for it to cool down in the tin before turning out. (about half an hour or more). I think it bulges because of all that moisture in the cake. If you leave it time to settle in the tin, its less likely to bulge as much. Let me know how it turns out next time icon_smile.gif

CakeRx Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 12:05am
post #12 of 22

I had this problem when I first started baking. Sometimes my denser cakes, like chocolate fudge, still shrink a bit and bulge despite my best efforts. Those have to be trimmed. For everything else, though, here is what helped:

1. Oven no hotter than 325; increase baking time
2. Use thermal strips to distribute heat and humidity during baking
3. I use flower nails upside down in pans over 6" to pevent bulging and cracking at the top. Works like a charm.

Hope this helps!

Jayde Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 12:15am
post #13 of 22

Wilton pans do NOT have straight sides. This might be your problem. When you bake in a Wilton pan you have to trim off the top and then after stacking I go around the cake with a sharp knife to make sure the sides are straight up and down. This will help immensely with the bulge.

bmoser24 Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 12:23am
post #14 of 22

I would also look at what your using to grease your pans. Are your sides nice and done and firm or airy and flaky, crumbly and light colored? and also other suggestions. If the cake is nice when you cut it and it cooks well otherwise, i wouldnt think it was the recipe.
I always change on thing at a time, though.

Ruth0209 Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 12:26am
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayde

Wilton pans do NOT have straight sides. This might be your problem. When you bake in a Wilton pan you have to trim off the top and then after stacking I go around the cake with a sharp knife to make sure the sides are straight up and down. This will help immensely with the bulge.




That is not correct. Every Wilton pan I have, EXCEPT the 9" for some bizarre reason, has perfectly straight sides. I never have to trim anything to straighten the sides.

I gave the 9" pans to the Goodwill. They're useless.

Jayde Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 4:33am
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth0209

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayde

Wilton pans do NOT have straight sides. This might be your problem. When you bake in a Wilton pan you have to trim off the top and then after stacking I go around the cake with a sharp knife to make sure the sides are straight up and down. This will help immensely with the bulge.



That is not correct. Every Wilton pan I have, EXCEPT the 9" for some bizarre reason, has perfectly straight sides. I never have to trim anything to straighten the sides.

I gave the 9" pans to the Goodwill. They're useless.




Every Wilton pan that I have does not have straight sides, they flare out a little. Every single one of them. My Magic Lines are all straight.

picaboocakes Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 6:02am
post #17 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayde

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth0209

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayde

Wilton pans do NOT have straight sides. This might be your problem. When you bake in a Wilton pan you have to trim off the top and then after stacking I go around the cake with a sharp knife to make sure the sides are straight up and down. This will help immensely with the bulge.



That is not correct. Every Wilton pan I have, EXCEPT the 9" for some bizarre reason, has perfectly straight sides. I never have to trim anything to straighten the sides.

I gave the 9" pans to the Goodwill. They're useless.



Every Wilton pan that I have does not have straight sides, they flare out a little. Every single one of them. My Magic Lines are all straight.




I can second this. I don't use wilton pans anymore because of that reason.

I had a cake do that recently ! It was definitely due to being undercooked. It was bizarre actually. The cake was firm and springy to the touch but when I leveled off the dome it was mush. Had to start over again and the second time I added an additional 10 minutes to the baking time and turned out great. HTH

mamawrobin Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 6:28am
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruth0209

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jayde

Wilton pans do NOT have straight sides. This might be your problem. When you bake in a Wilton pan you have to trim off the top and then after stacking I go around the cake with a sharp knife to make sure the sides are straight up and down. This will help immensely with the bulge.



That is not correct. Every Wilton pan I have, EXCEPT the 9" for some bizarre reason, has perfectly straight sides. I never have to trim anything to straighten the sides.

I gave the 9" pans to the Goodwill. They're useless.




I agree with Ruth. Every Wilton pan that I have EXCEPT for the 9" have straight sides. I bought another brand of 9 inch pans but my others are perfectly fine. I do wonder why this is?

Karen421 Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 11:51am
post #19 of 22

How strange! I put my 9" Wilton in a garage sale I had! The other rounds are just fine. The squares on the other hand are not straight and square. Magic Line all the way!!!

LindaF144a Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 12:03pm
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa9002

Thanks for all the suggestions/questions to help. I'm using a mix plus pudding and basically just a recipe I came up with. I've used it all along and had no issues with it. The only thing I can think of different that I done, is that I baked the layers and cooled them aproximately 10 min before turning them out of the pan. I use the wilton pans. I don't have a photo of the bulging layers, however, I will take one and post it if it happens again. I have put a splash of buttermilk in my recipe (just the last few times) and don't remember if that's how long I've had the bulging issue or not. There are getting done, I'm just confused. Can't really think of anything I've done different other than the buttermilk. I had to rebake the whole wedding cake the day of the wedding! Talk about STRESS!! I posted a pic in my photos. I'ts the last one posted. 3 tier with pale yellow polka dots. The wedding was at 3 and I got it delivered to the church at 2! Everyone was well pleased and said it was worth the wait. The new layers I baked still bulged a little. You can see it through the icing, I think. Nobody else really noticed. Idk..........any more advice is appreciated!




Seeing how this is a recipe "you came up with", it could be a number of things causing this. I won't list the ones the others have listed. But I believe your recipe is now out of balance and you are getting mixed results. You can say that you did this before and it worked fine, but it could be a number of factors why it isn't.

1. Your oven - how old is it? I was making cakes fine too and then one day it was hit or miss. Come to find out it was my oven going and was always giving a constant temperature. Do you have an oven thermometer.

2. If you don't measure how much you put in the pan, you could be adding a little bit more or less throwing off the balance and getting mixed results.

3. And by adding a little buttermilk here and there sounds like you don't measure. You could be getting heavy handed and it is throwing things off.

I know there are others that think that scratch baking or doctoring a mix is a little of this or a little of that, but it isn't. It is a chemical experiment with edible results. You changed something somewhere and that is why you are getting mixed results instead of consistent results.

Edited to add:

After looking at your photos, I see it is on the larger pan. Like the others said it could be the larger pan does not have straighter sides.

But it could also be that your changes to the cake mix work fine for the smaller pans, but as you get larger it isn't working. It is the whole science of baking thing again. I can't help with that because I don't do doctored cake mixes, they give me the hives thinking I might ruin the cake. I do either box as is or scratch - 99.99999% of the time it is scratch.

Jayde Posted 14 Jul 2010 , 12:59pm
post #21 of 22




This is Sharon's (SugarShack) video on fondant (its just a preview of the DVD) but it illsutrates what I told you to do right at the beginning.

See how she goes up and down with the knife and trims off any excess bulge from the middle of the cake? That will help reduce the bulge in the middle of your cake when you put on fondant or BC.

planetsomsom Posted 11 Dec 2010 , 3:40am
post #22 of 22

do keep in mind that whatever you add to a recipe has to be balanced. If you add liquid, you have to add more dry or structural ingredients too to make up for it...

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