Cake tins with chocolate cake batter

Cake & Pastry

Can You Make Cake Batter Ahead Of Time?

You can make cake batter ahead of time, but there are some caveats. It depends on the cake mix and the methods you’ve used. If it’s a mix that contains a lot of air, like a chiffon sponge or Genoise, then storing the cake batter can be very difficult, and they are best baked as soon as possible. However, if the cake mix is more like a brownie or regular sponge cake batter, then it should last a bit better in the fridge or freezer.

How long can you leave cake batter in the fridge?

The longer the batter stays in the fridge, the higher your risk of the batter failing to rise. Usually, we would not want the batter to be uncooked for longer than 24 hours. In cases where you would need to store the batter for this length of time, you might be better off baking the cake ahead of time and freezing the whole cake. This can be a great way to retain freshness.

Cake tins with cake batter in before baking.
Cake tins with cake batter in before baking

How to freeze a cake

The best way to freeze a whole cake is to wrap the cake tightly in plastic wrap or cling film and then wrap it again in foil. We always label our cakes at this point. It’s essential in a commercial kitchen to meet food safety standards, but also a great tip for home bakers wanting to keep their freezer well organized. This is a foolproof method for freezing cake layers. When it’s time to use them, get them out of the freezer to defrost, get them out but keep the foil on until they have come up to room temperature. At this point, they will be fine to decorate or eat whatever you had in mind!

How to freeze a cake - wrapped cake layers in clingfilm.
How to freeze a cake – wrapped cake layers in clingfilm

Can I Refrigerate the cake batter and bake it later?

Sometimes there might be short-term reasons you need to bake a cake later, for example, if you need to nip out of the house and don’t want to leave the oven on. The cake batter will usually last just fine in the refrigerator until you return. We usually recommend keeping it in the mixing bowl because you don’t want the baking tins to get too cold before baking. This can mean you get an uneven bake, especially on smaller layer cakes, as the mixture won’t come up to temperature evenly.

Can you store cake batter in the freezer?

Not really, a brownie batter that doesn’t have any air will last much longer in the freezer compared to cake. If you need to store cake batter in the freezer we would recommend baking it first. This may sound obvious but you will make the cake batter much more stable. Always make sure the bakes come up to room temperature when defrosting before eating.

Can you make cake batter last longer?

When preparing cake batter in advance, you can make them last longer by mixing in slightly more baking powder. Only do this if you know you won’t be baking it for a few hours. We would also recommend putting it in the fridge to slow down any reactions with the baking powder or baking soda.

How long can a cake batter sit before baking?

It’s usually okay if the cake batter is chilled for at least 1-2 hours. The cakes can be slightly less high in volume when baked and are sometimes a bit dense when baked later. In general, if you wait longer they won’t rise as much. This depends on how much air was whisked into the mixture when following the recipe.

Making a cake batter ahead of time can save you time in the long run. If you are going to user the freezer, we recommend freezing cake layers which have already been baked. Storing the cake batter can result in the cake layers losing a precious amount of air. We hope our advice has been useful with advice for making your cake batter ahead of time.