Cake Filling & Freezing

Decorating By lauralee422 Updated 18 Apr 2014 , 6:48pm by katan

lauralee422 Posted 23 Feb 2013 , 7:48pm
post #1 of 18



Everytime I have a big cake to do I bake it, fill it with something, crumb coat it and wrap it nicely and defrost it the day before its due and frost it/cover it etc.  I've done this countless times with ganache, buttercream, dulce de lece etc.  I have never done it with a white cake with raspberry filling.

Im still toying with which recipe to use as filing.  This is going to be buttercream covered- and it's a wedding cake.  I want to make sure there isnt bleeding thru the cake.  One recipe is butter flavored shortening, one is just the jam heated up, cooled and then combined with jello mix (does that sound good?)


Can anyone provide some feedback if 1.) filling a freezing with a fruit filling is do-able and  2.)if there is a better method of raspberry filling using ingredients i have on hand (I have raspberry jam, raspberry extract.. I just dont have fresh strawberries)  Thanks in advance everyone!!!

17 replies
BakingIrene Posted 23 Feb 2013 , 7:59pm
post #2 of 18

You should consider filling with a raspberry flavoured buttercream: 1 cup buttercream and 1/3-1/2 cup raspberry jam plus some extract to boost the flavour.  This will not bleed when you freeze and thaw it.


It's an unfortunate fact of life that both gelatin and cornstarch bleed when they are used to make fruit fillings that are frozen with the cake.  Mixing jam with buttercream makes it much more like the buttercream which freezes fine.


You might also consider freezing the cake layers without any filling, and assembling after thawing.  Then the jam-and-gelatin recipe works.  FYI the gelatin helps the jam to set stiff between the layers, important if you are stacking several tiers.

lauralee422 Posted 23 Feb 2013 , 8:05pm
post #3 of 18

I knew if I threw this question out there that I would learn something new. I had no idea about the cornstarch and gelatin bleeding issue.  Thank goodness I didn't do that!


I will probably go with the buttercream idea since I like to leave mostly just decorating for the day before... Im not sure if I can make that filling prior to the day of stacking/decorating.  Thank u so much for the feedback!

AtomicBakes Posted 25 Feb 2013 , 7:21pm
post #4 of 18

I need to add a question to this topic. I frequently bake and freeze my wrapped layers, then fill and decorate after thawing. I have never frozen a filled and crumbcoated cake, but I had wondered if you could. I know you said that you thaw it the day before, but do you thaw it in the refrigerator or out on the counter? I would think in the refrigerator it would take longer than a day to thaw, especially if I was going to cover the cake with fondant ( I live in a hot/humid area). I wish I didn't need to freeze cakes, but my day-job doesn't always allow me to work on an ideal time schedule. Any info would help greatly.

Marianna46 Posted 25 Feb 2013 , 7:31pm
post #5 of 18

My two-cents worth is this, Atomic Bakes: freezing your layers has the important advantage of helping them retain moisture. I always do it. I've read in several threads here that some people level, fill, stack and crumb-coat cakes before freezing them, so it must work. If it's not a cake with fresh fruit or cream in it (and you probably couldn't freeze those, anyway), there doesn't seem to be any reason for thawing in the fridge over thawing on the counter. The one big problem with letting cakes come to room temp in cllimates like ours (ah, sweetie, I could tell you stories!) is the condensation that forms on the cake. You can avoid that if you leave the plastic wrap on the cake until it's at room temp - that way, the condensation forms on the plastic wrap and not on the cake itself.


And, oh, yes, I knew BakingIrene would know the lowdown on this - she's a genius!

AtomicBakes Posted 25 Feb 2013 , 8:45pm
post #6 of 18

Thanks, Marianna. I do frequently use the pudding mousse type filling (pudding mix whipped with heavy cream instead of milk), so maybe it wouldn't work for that, but I'll give it a try with buttercream. I have a cake layer left over from my last cake that is wrapped in the freezer now and no real use for it, but I want to try making a bananas foster flavor of pudding mousse (banana pudding mousse and whip in dulce du leche), so I might just whip that cake out of the freezer this weekend, try my new flavor mousse filling, then freeze it and see what the freezing does to it. I'm sure it wouldn't work with a typical whipped cream/cream filling, but I wonder if the pudding stabilizes it enough? I'll have to report back on my findings.

lauralee422 Posted 26 Feb 2013 , 12:49am
post #7 of 18

I agree with Marianna.  I'm not in an unusually humid area but I have done this in the summertime when it's warmer than usual and I have yet (*knocking wood*) had a problem with this method:  I bake, level, torte, fill and crumb coat the cakes.  I chill them in the fridge till the frosting sets up a bit, then I wrap the cake in saran well and freeze.  Marianna mentioned leaving the saran on- I do this while defrosting the cake right on my counter.  Once I feel it's fully thawed (usually overnight is more than enough) I carefully unwrap and then start from the point of the crumb coat.  HTH :)

AtomicBakes Posted 26 Feb 2013 , 7:48pm
post #8 of 18

Excellent information guys. One more question, Lauralee, does it matter at all what type of frosting you use? Are there any types of frostings that you wouldn't freeze (I am thinking maybe cream cheese frosting or something due to dairy)?

Marianna46 Posted 26 Feb 2013 , 10:07pm
post #9 of 18

Good question, AtomicBakes. I would freeze any kind of buttercream, but I don't know about cream cheese-based frostings, either. Be sure to let us know what happens with your experiment. I don't know whether you can freeze pudding-based things, either.

lauralee422 Posted 27 Feb 2013 , 3:57pm
post #10 of 18

I agree- buttercream seems very safe to me but I have yet to crumb coat anything with a cream cheese frosting (which is the only other frosting I use aside from buttercream) I've just made a batch of chocolate cream cheese frosting and had about a cup and a half leftover, so I'm freezing it.  It's an exeperiment I'm going to see how it holds up.  My main concern is that cream cheese is not altered in any way, it's just mixed into the frosting and it may spoil quickly once it comes to room temp...

AtomicBakes Posted 18 Mar 2013 , 7:10pm
post #11 of 18

Any updates on how the cream cheese frosting froze? I have yet to make another pudding filling because it looks like I will only be able to use those for family since it is perishable and I am really trying to limit my recipe testing to ones that I can use when/assuming Louisiana's cottage food law passes in April. I did freeze filled cakes for the first time last week, though. I used Whimsical Bake House house buttercream (one flavored with a can of dulce du leche the other flavored with strawberry puree and LorAnn strawberry oil) as the filling and crumb coat. After filling the cakes, I compressed the cakes, crumbcoated to remove the filling bulge, and froze them briefly with no cling film so that I could trim the sides of the cakes first. Being able to easily trim around the sides of the cake is reason enough alone to freeze them filled. After trimming, I wrapped them in cling film and placed them in the freezer. I set them out on the counter late the night before I was to cover them with fondant. The only issue I had was unrelated to the freezing. Despite everything, I had bulges on the sides of the larger cake. So frustrating after all that work. The weird thing is that I seem to have less issues with the dreaded bulge when I don't compress the cakes. It probably would have been less apparent, but I covered that cake in homemade MFF (WC) and it tasted amazing but it was sooooo soft that it just showed the defects way too easily. But that is a post for the MFF thread. 

AtomicBakes Posted 2 Apr 2013 , 7:40pm
post #12 of 18

One more question on this, guys, if any of you are still paying attention. What is the longest you would typically freeze your cakes? Is 2-3 weeks too long? I'm baking this Friday and will have the filled cake in the freezer for a week, but it would be nice if I could do an upcoming cake at the same time and that one would need to be frozen for closer to 3 weeks. I just don't want the cake to end up being dry from being frozen too long. 

CWR41 Posted 3 Apr 2013 , 12:22am
post #13 of 18
Originally Posted by AtomicBakes 

One more question on this, guys, if any of you are still paying attention. What is the longest you would typically freeze your cakes? Is 2-3 weeks too long? I'm baking this Friday and will have the filled cake in the freezer for a week, but it would be nice if I could do an upcoming cake at the same time and that one would need to be frozen for closer to 3 weeks. I just don't want the cake to end up being dry from being frozen too long. 

Not including filling, frozen layers typically have a 6 month freezer life.  However, we all know 1st anniversary cakes are frozen for a year or longer (filled, frosted, and decorated).  Wrap well, they'll be fine.

Aurora42196 Posted 3 Apr 2013 , 12:30am
post #14 of 18

ASorry but if I could add another question. But when you wrap the cake layers only in plastic wrap, do you wrap it tightly? I thought that would squish the cake or mis-shape it. The same question to crumb coated cakes. Wouldn't that mess up the icing and straight edges wrapping it like that? Thanks for the help ;)

CWR41 Posted 3 Apr 2013 , 1:55am
post #15 of 18
Originally Posted by Aurora42196 

But when you wrap the cake layers only in plastic wrap, do you wrap it tightly?

No.  Not tight enough to misshape.  If it's on a cake board, the board prevents wrapping too tightly.  You don't even need to use wrap unless freezing for a long time -- a food safe bag will do.


I don't crumb coat -- therefore I don't freeze crumb-coated cakes, but it would be similar to freezing 1st anniversary cakes... freeze first, then wrap well after frozen solid (if freezing for a long time).  Wrap isn't necessary if you're freezing for short periods while working on your cakes.

Annabakescakes Posted 3 Apr 2013 , 2:26am
post #16 of 18

What CWR41 said. If I have chocolate cake this week, and chocolate cake in 3 weeks, I make all the batter, bake and freeze, all at once. If I am making the filling this week, I go ahead and fill it this week, too. I will set this weeks in a food safe bag, and frozen for 2-3 days. the one 3 weeks from now is frozen for an hour, wrapped in plastic wrap, then set in a bag. And labeled! My freezer is dedicated to freezing cakes, and is not frost free, so I will often set a cake in there over night, unwrapped, just on a tray, and have never had it dry or taste off. (I accidentally did it the first time, when a nap turned into a good night's sleep!)

MsNeuropil Posted 4 Apr 2013 , 5:10am
post #17 of 18

I have had luck with storing cakes in the freezer by wrapping each cake layer in wrap, then putting the layers on a board, with a board in between and then put a board on top.  Then I wrap all of it together snuggly.  Then I wrap this bundle into heavy duty foil. 


This helps prevent someone in the family from dropping a bag of ice on top of the cakes and ruining a nice edge.  Overkill for sure...but when I had 2 teen boys...the heavier the wrapping the less likely they would decide to raid the freezer for cake while I was sleeping.  ( bet you wonder how I know this...LOL)


This worked for a crumb coated cake...but I preferred to not crumb coat.  Kids like crumb coated frozen cakes.  Un iced cakes are less appealing...especially if wrapped up like a mummy.


I don't do this is the cake is to be frozen over night however. 

katan Posted 18 Apr 2014 , 6:48pm
post #18 of 18

Hi, I read your  advice and experience concerning cake fillings on line at Cafe Central . I  learned a lot, thank you for sharing your knowledge. I think the classic Julia Child  French Cream Filling is the best, light and delicate, can be  colored and flavored using extracts to specific tastes. However it will make cake soggy. Have you ever prepared this  French Cream Filling for use several days later? I am preparing an Easter Extravaganza, multiple layers, I would like to use the french cream every other layer, I can't envision having time on Sunday to whip up enough filling.

 Bottom layer is French Brantom cake hopefully topped with French Cream, Second layer is Queen of Sheba, topped with caramel, then a  pound cake with liberal Grand Mariniar Brandy, followed by more Queen of Sheba with some fudge icing and finally the top more French Brantome.

This is a classic European layer cake, the cakes are rather dry and dense the fillings are always a Chef's signature. Each layer is quite thin (1/4 to 1/2 inch depending on how many layers) The portions are small by American standards.


Do you have any ideas for fillings or can you let me know if the French Cream (Julia Childs) should be in refrigerator or freezer until Easter morning?


Thank you,


Kathryn Ann (katan)

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