Troubleshooting Guide - Cake Mix

Not seeing desired results for cake mix? Get help below!
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  • Why didn’t my cake rise properly?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Over measurement of liquid

    Use the proper amount of liquid. When possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Under mixing or extreme over mixing

    Read the directions thoroughly before starting. If possible, use an electric timer that shuts off the mixer automatically.

    Improper scaling weights / pan too large

    Follow the recommended scaling weights found on the package directions. If possible, use a scale to weigh the batter.

    Oven temperature too low

    Have oven checked for accuracy.

  • Why is my cake overflowing during baking?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Over measurement of liquid

    Follow directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Oven temperature too low

    Follow package directions for proper oven temperature. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    Pan is too small for the amount of batter

    Select proper pan size for the amount of batter. Disposable sheet cake pans are smaller and shallower than heavy aluminum sheet pans. Reduce amount of batter by 8 oz. – 1lb.

    Uneven heat and air circulation in oven

    Rotate pans one half (180°) after 10 minutes of baking. Check air baffles in convection oven to ensure even air flow.

    Opening oven door too frequently

    Open oven door only when necessary, especially when baking in a convection oven.

  • What is causing my cake to fall?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Under baking (oven temperature too low / too short of a bake time

    Follow package directions for proper oven temperature and proper bake time. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    Oven temperature too hot

    Follow package directions for proper baking temperature. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    Jarring cake in the first 15 minutes of baking

    Be sure not to bump cakes while turning or loading ovens.

    Over measurement of liquid

    Use proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

  • Why is the top crust of cake sticky?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Storing cake covered while still warm

    Be sure to cool cake completely prior to covering and storing

    Over measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Under baking; oven temperature too low or too short of a bake time

    Follow package directions for proper baking time. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    High humidity

    Place cakes in the freezer and ice while frozen to prevent sticky top crust.

  • What is causing the cake to tunnel?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Oven temperature too hot

    Follow package directions for proper baking temperature. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    Under mixing

    Follow package directions for proper mix time. If possible, use an electric timer to shut off mixer automatically.

    Bottom oven heat too high

    Check oven temperature for accuracy. Double panning may be necessary to prevent burning.

    Under measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

  • What is causing my cake to shrink?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Too little batter in pan

    Select the proper pan size for the amount of batter indicated. Follow package directions for proper scaling amounts. If possible, use a scale to weigh the batter.

    Pans greased too heavily

    Do not grease pans too generously

    Extreme over mixing

    Follow package directions for proper mix times. If possible, use an electric timer to shut off mixer automatically.

    Too much liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Over baking – too long or to high of an oven temperature

    Follow package directions for proper baking directions. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

  • Why is the cake soggy?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Over measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Under baking

    Follow package directions for proper bake times. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

  • Why does my cake have a peaked top?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Over mixing

    Follow package directions for proper mix times. If possible, use an electronic timer to shut off mixer automatically.

    Under measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Oven temperature too hot

    Check oven temperature for accuracy.

  • Why is my cake uneven?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Oven shelf not level

    Have shelves checked. Rotate cakes baked in a convection oven one-half turn (180°) after 10 minutes of baking.

    Batter not leveled properly

    Use an offset spatula to smooth out batter surface.

    Pans not rotated in a convection oven

    Rotate sheet pans one-half turn (180°) after 10 minutes of baking.

    Pans are bent.

    Do not use warped or bent pans for baking sheet cakes.

  • What causes cake to have uneven browning?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Uneven heat circulation

    Have air baffles checked in a convection oven to ensure even air flow.

    Pans not rotated

    Rotate pans one-half turn (180°) after 10 minutes of baking.

    Pans too close together in oven

    Do not allow pans to touch each other in the oven.

  • Why is my cake dry and crumbly?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Under measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid.

    Over baking

    Follow package directions for proper bake time and temperature

  • Why is the top of the cake pale?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Opening oven door too frequently

    Open oven door only when necessary.

    Oven temperature too low

    Follow package directions for proper bake temperatures. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    Too deep of a pan

    Select the proper pan for the amount of batter.

    Over measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

  • Why is the crust cracked on cake top?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Over baking

    Follow package directions for proper bake temperature and times.

    Under measurement of liquid

    Follow package directions for proper amount of liquid. If possible, use a scale to weigh the liquid.

    Oven temperature too high

    Follow package directions for proper bake temperature. Check oven temperature for accuracy.

    Cakes left out at room temp. too long

    After baking place completely cooled cakes in freezer in a covered cart until ready to use.

  • What is causing cake to have coarse grain?

    Possible Causes

    Possible Solutions

    Under mixing / hand mixing

    Follow package directions for proper mixing instructions. Do not mix by hand.