Mastering Layer Cakes: 8 Steps to Baking Perfection
If the idea of creating a stunning layer cake excites you but also seems a bit overwhelming, don’t worry—I’m here to help. Making a fantastic layer cake involves well-planned steps, from baking to decorating. I’ve broken down these steps into 8 simple stages that will ensure your baking process is smooth, your actions are organized, your creativity flows, and your results are consistently outstanding. If that is not enough, watch the video at the end of this post to see exactly how I do it.
1. Prepare for Baking Success
Before you start baking, it’s important to set the stage for success. Get your workspace ready, make sure you preheat your oven according to your recipe’s temperature, gather your baking tools, round up your ingredients, and have your pans ready. This preparation will make your baking experience go smoothly.
2. Keep Your Cakes Fresh
After you’ve followed your recipe and put your cake in the oven, the next steps are crucial. Allow your cakes to cool in the pans and then flip them. Wrap them tightly in cling film and freeze each layer separately. Remember, refrigeration can dry out cakes, so freezing is key to keeping them moist and fresh. You can freeze cakes for up to 3 months to have a delicious treat whenever you want.
3. Master the Art of Buttercream
Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced baker, learning how to frost your cake is really important. Start with easy-to-make American buttercream, which can be colored and piped easily. If you’re feeling more adventurous, try Swiss or Italian meringue buttercream for amazing flavor, although they require a bit more skill. All these recipes are available to you on the blog.
4. Trim and Prep Like a Pro
Before frosting, let your frozen cakes thaw for 15 to 20 minutes. Working with chilled cakes makes them easier to handle rather than soft and fluffy cakes that just came out of the oven. If your cakes have risen in the middle, level them to make a flat surface. Use a serrated bread knife to trim of the top.
5. Put Your Cake Together
Assembling your cake is where the magic happens. Start by putting a small bit of buttercream in the center of the cake board to hold the cake in place. Then add frosting between each cake layer, aiming for equal amounts each time. A pro tip: about 2 spoonful of buttercream per layer work well.
6. Achieve Perfection with Frosting
Frosting takes precision. Apply two coats: start with a crumb coat, then chill the cake before adding the final layer of decoration for a flawless finish.
7. Say Goodbye to Crumbs
For that perfect final coat of frosting, use a neat trick. Place a small bowl to catch any loose crumbs and keep them away from your beautifully frosted cake.
8. Effortless Cake Decoration
Elevate your cake with simple decoration. Consider a rustic design or elegant swirls on top of the frosting for a stunning finish that will impress everyone.
So there you have it: your 8-step guide to becoming a layer cake expert. You too can bake a cake from scratch and create cake decoration that will give instant and beautiful results. If you don’t believe it, check out my students work here. For a deep dive into baking and cake decoration, join Decorate With Confidence online cake baking and decorating class. This immersive experience will give you the skills and knowledge to become a true cake artist. Sign up now and create beautiful cakes that will impress everyone!
Need some inspiration recipes to practice baking? try Hershey’s Chocolate cake recipe of my perfectly fluffy vanilla cake recipe. Not ready for layer cakes yet? practice a basic pound cake recipe that still packs all the flavors.