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FAQ Cake Mix

FAQ Cake Mix

To help you achieve the best outcome at home, like we do in our kitchen, we have put together lots of questions we commonly find ourselves asking.  

We love it when we have new friends or team members try our products because then we get to learn all over again how a new baker, or even an experienced one, thinks about their home baking and using our products.  

So if you have a baking, decorating, melting or icing question, then we want to hear it - ask away so we can share with the rest of our baking network - there is a handy "ask a question" form at the bottom of the page.

and Remember to also check out our other information Pages

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Our Top Baking Tips

  • Pre Heat Your oven before you start mixing.
  • Read the recipe completely before you start
  • Measure the ingredients accurately and prepare them before mixing 
  • Line cake tin with non-stick baking paper

Do I need to preheat my Oven?

Yes this is very important for your cake to cook properly

Do I need to line the tin with baking paper?

For best results, yes, this is our preferred method.  We like to use baking paper as it helps release the cake from the tin after cooking. It also has the added benefit of protecting your baked cake from drying out, as we recommend leaving your baking paper on the cake, until you are ready to store it in an airtight container, or decorate.

Greasing and flouring your tin is another popular method, and whilst it has its benefits, we prefer to use baking paper, for the reasons above.  The grease & flour method, will often leave a rim of flour around the outside of your cake so you need to take this into consideration when choosing the method that you prefer. 

How do I line my Tin?

Spray the sides and base of tin lightly with cooking spray. 
Cut out strips of baking paper approximately 3 mm higher than your tin and line them first around the side, ensuring the bottom edge of the strip rests at the bottom of the tin.    If you need to join two pieces together to go around, just overlap them so there is no gap or tin showing in between the joins.   Then using the bottom of the tin as a template, trace around the tin and cut out the shape.  Place the cut shape into the bottom of the tin.
Just remember any bumps or kinks in your paper, may show up on your cooked cake, so try to keep things as smooth as you can.

What if I don't have Baking Paper?

You can use the alternative method of greasing and flouring the tin

  • smear butter generously over the sides and base of tin
  • add a spoonful of plain flour
  • Shake the flour all over the inside of the tin and base
  • Then tip out the excess flour

Do I need to weigh the ingredients?

For the most accurate measurements, it is best to weigh ingredients using digital scales.

Digital scales are also a great help when splitting the cake batter among multiple tins of the same size, as you can ensure each tin gets the same volume of mix.

Do I use Room Temperature Eggs?

Yes, for best results when baking use eggs at room temperature

What type of oil do I use?

Vegetable Oil or Canola Oil 

Can I use Olive Oil instead?

The best flavour is achieved with Vegetable Oil,  so its best to stick with this or use Canola Oil.  Olive Oil will change the taste of the finished cake, so if you have to use this, make sure its the Light Olive Oil. 

I have a square tin, but your recipe is for round.  
How do I convert the round size to an equivalent square cake tin?

The general rule of thumb is reduce the tin size by 1” (2.5 cm)
For Example  an 8" Round = 7” square
We are continually adding more variations to our Cake Tin Chart so make sure you check there as well to see if we cover the size you are after. 

How much cake batter do I use for a rectangle or Layered Sheet cake?

Have you had a look at our Cake Mix Variations Chart? We list all of the popular cake tin sizes, plus many more! - Click Here.

Plus We are continually adding more variations to our Cake Tin Chart so make sure you check there as well to see if we cover the size you are after. 

If I am making a cake different to the sizes on the pack, what do I do?

Our Roberts Cake Mix batter is extremely versatile. One batch of mix can be used for many different cake sizes.  See our Cake Mix Variations Chart for all the variations we have tested and confirmed.  Just keep in mind that the height of the cooked cake may differ to the standard 3" Height.  

Otherwise here is the general rule to follow:

  • Make up the quantity of batter to the larger size that is closest to your custom shape
  • Fill your cake tin up to 2/3 full of cake batter
  • Follow the general cooking time guide for a similar sized tin, but reduce the time and check at regular intervals. 
  • It is cooked when a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.  
  • If you have left over batter, use this to make cupcakes or a small cake rather than just pouring more into the tin.  If you overfill the tin, you won't get an even rise as the mix will spill over the sides.
  • The cupcakes or small cake can be frozen for later use

Can I double the recipe, versus following the batch ratios?

Don't be tempted to just double the mix and the relevant extra ingredients.  Cake Mix is a gentle balance of wet to dry ratios.  

  • If using our Chocolate Mud Cake Mix - most cake sizes and shapes up to a 14" are covered within our 500g – 2kg recipes.  Mixing any more than 2 kg at a time isn't recommended.
     
  • If Using our Vanilla Mud Cake the maximum batch size is 1kg .  If you want to make more than 1kg at a time, make 2 separate batches and then blend together.  

What do I do, if I can't fit 2 kg of mix in my Kitchenaid or Mixer?

A 2kg recipe is best made in an extra-large bowl and mixed using electric hand beaters

Can I add Flavour, Colours and Oils to the cake mix?

  • Yes and Raspberry is one of the most popular
  • We recommend our Roberts Flavour Food Colourings or Flavoured Oils.  They are highly concentrated so you only need a small amount
  • Our Flavour Oils are even stronger than Flavour Colours, therefore we recommend using drops not spoonful’s
  • If you only want to colour and not flavour, then add a small amount of Food gel, paste or liquid food colouring to colour your batter

How do I make the Vanilla Mud Cake a White Chocolate Mud Cake?

See our Cake Mix Variations Chart for all the variations you can do with the vanilla mix.  To make it a White Chocolate mix, you add melted white chocolate - check the chart to see how much per batch of mix. 

How do I make a Marble Cake?

  • Make up two separate batches of cake mix. One Chocolate and one Vanilla
  • Pour ¼ of the vanilla cake mix batter into the prepared cake tin then 
  • Pour ¼ of the chocolate cake mix batter into the center of the first poured vanilla batter
  • Keep alternating the batters until the cake tin is 2/3 full
  • You can use the same method to make cupcakes or just use up any leftover mix to make single flavour cupcakes or a small cake 
  • Bake as per usual cooking time for the tin size

Can I do other Marble Variations?

Yes, for sure.  Use the same method to make

Rainbow Marble Cake - make coloured bowls of Vanilla cake mix and use the alternating filling method above 

Also try:  ChocMint = Chocolate + Peppermint,   Jaffa = Chocolate and Orange

What if I don’t have an Electric Bench Mixer or Electric Hand Beaters?

You can mix the cake in a large bowl using a hand whisk

My cupcakes end up all different sizes and heights - how do I fix?

For Perfect Uniform Cupcakes
• Use an Ice-cream scoop for accurate measuring 
• Fill your cupcake papers 2/3 full

One of the most common reasons cupcakes bake unevenly, is because each cupcake case had an uneven volume of mix to start with.  Oven Temperature and position within the oven can impact on their individual rising as well,  so give them the best chance by filling them evenly to start with. 

On which oven shelf do I cook my cake?

For best results, bake cakes on the middle shelf in the oven.  If you are baking multiple cakes, spread the shelves evenly and bake using the Fan Forced setting

How long should I bake my cake, if I am making a different size to the packet?

Use the Cake Mix Chart as a guide and then add or reduce cooking time to suit.

If a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean, your cake is cooked

Do I cool my cake in the tin?

Yes, cool your cake in the tin on top of a wire cooling rack.  You can cool overnight.

However, as old tin can cause rust stains on cakes, we suggest that if you are baking in an older style tin, that you did leave the cake sitting in it for an extended period.  It is best to cool the cake completely in the tin, but then remove it and store in an airtight container. 

How do I store my cooked cake?

Remove your cooled cake from the tin and store in an airtight container.
Alternatively wrap tightly in Glad Wrap.  You can leave your baking paper on, if you are wrapping in cling film, rather than storing in an airtight container.  This will add another layer of protection to prevent it from drying out. 
To avoid cake absorbing odours in the fridge its best to store them in an airtight container.

How many day in advance can I bake and decorate my cake?

  • Day 1 - Bake cake and let it cool thoroughly.
  • Day 2 - Apply Ganache, Buttercream or frosting in the morning and cover cake with Fondant if required later that day/night
  • Day 3 - Add Decorations & Serve

Note - This is a basic timeline. Adjust timeline according to weather conditions, type of icings and fillings used etc.  Depending on the Icing / filling used, some cakes may require refrigeration.

Why do I need to leave my cake cool thoroughly?

The taste and texture of the cake intensifies as it cools.  Try it for yourself - sample a cake fresh out of the oven, and then compare to one you have baked and cooled overnight.   As it cools it settles, the flavours are enhanced and you have a better cake platform to decorate from.  You must always ensure your cake is completely cool before you try and decorate, as otherwise the residual heat in the cake will melt your icing and toppings, leaving you with a disappointing result.  So don't rush it, cool your cake, and applaud your handy work!

 

 


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