Last Updated on June 18, 2022
We often find ourselves in a position where we are left with cake batter that needs storing. But, can cake batter be refrigerated? And for how long?
In this jam-packed informative article, we will have a look at exactly how long cake batter will keep and how to properly store it. All of these factors will help you avoid being left with unused or useless batter.
What Is Cake Batter Made Of?
Cake batter is a pretty simple ingredient once it has been made. Regardless of which type of cake batter you are making, they all include the same basic ingredients. These basic ingredients include fat (butter, shortening, or oil), sugar, eggs, flour, flavorings, and a leavening agent.
But, even though these make up the bases of most cakes, doesn't mean that recipes are limited to them. Another very common additive you will see in many cakes is dairy. It can be in the form of milk (most common), heavy cream, or yogurt.
You can also add flavorings in the form of juices (which will alter the consistency), purees, whole pieces, melted chocolates, and many more. Then, other powders, like cocoa powder, are an ingredient that adds a chocolate flavor, but also a tender texture.
Now, each and every cake batter has more or less the same shelf life. This is because of the leavening reaction, not necessarily the ingredients it contains. Sure, cake batter does contain perishable ingredients, but these aren't what limit the shelf life of cake batter the most.
Once the leavening reaction has worn down, the batter is as good as useless. So, as you can imagine, the true shelf life of a cake batter isn't very long.
Can Cake Batter Be Refrigerated?
So, can cake batter be refrigerated to extend its shelf life? Cake batter can be refrigerated if you plan on storing it. As we have said, the leavening abilities of the batter will lessen the longer the batter is left. But, the batter can still be kept inside of a fridge for up to 48 hours.
After 2 days, the mixed ingredients will start deteriorating. This will cause physical changes in the batter, but also change the way the ingredients react to each other. So, as the most obvious example, the leavening agent will no longer be effective. Thus, your cake will turn out dense and flat.
While it is possible to store cake batter in the fridge, we only recommend doing so if you absolutely have to. Or if you are making a cake or product that has to be dense, like a banana bread batter.
How to properly store cake batter in the fridge
S0, now that you know the answer to "Can cake batter be refrigerated? let's have a look at the best way to do so.
This method is the best option for long-term storage (up to 2 days). But, don't just use any container and toss it in the fridge.
Make sure that the container is completely free of any stains or odors. Glass containers always work the best because they are naturally resistant to these elements. You can also sterilize them if you have to.
The reason you have to use a stain-free and odor-free container is because of how porous the cake batter is. It will quickly and instantly start absorbing those odors and flavors. Then, pretty soon, your batter will also taste like last week's leftovers!
Then, once stored, place a sheet of non-stick plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the batter. This will help prevent the top layer of the batter from hardening. If it does end up forming, just carefully remove it.
And finally, when placing the batter inside of the fridge, do so away from any cooked food or strong aromatic ingredients (like garlic and onions). Also, make sure that it stays in an area that doesn't have fluctuating temperatures and that won't freeze (at the back of the fridge).
How long will cake batter last?
Cake batter doesn't have a particularly long shelf life. If kept inside of the fridge, it will last up to 2 days. But, this is only if the batter is kept under the perfect conditions that we have laid out above.
But, if you want a perfectly good working batter, it should only be kept in the fridge for an hour. You should still cover the surface with a sheet of plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out. This short time frame is almost exactly how long it takes because the leavening agents completely lose their leavening abilities.
So, it is a race against the clock, but unfortunately, there isn't much you can do to save it.
What causes cake batter to spoil?
If we look at elements that make cake batter spoil completely, the leavening agent has nothing to do with it. There are two main causes of spoiling cake batter - perishable ingredients and flour.
First up, the perishable ingredients. As soon as they are removed from their original packaging, the clock starts ticking, and fast! These ingredients include dairy products and eggs. And, because you have mixed them into the rest of the batter, the entire product will deteriorate.
The second factor that spoils cake batter is flour. When combined with a liquid, the flour will eventually start fermenting and cause the rapid growth of bacteria. This will lead to spoilage.
So, unfortunately, neither of these elements can be changed. So the best way to prolong the shelf life of your cake batter is to store it correctly inside the fridge.
Wrapping It Up
Hopefully, you found this article on "Can cake batter be refrigerated?" helpful. It will definitely help avoid any shocks when the batter doesn't rise in the oven! This will not only enable you to plan your baking schedule but also how you can potentially fix it.
Let us know what you think in the comments below, and share this handy guide with your fellow bakers!
How long can you keep raw cake batter in the fridge?
The leavening agents in cake batter will start losing their effects after an hour if the batter is kept in the fridge. But, if that doesn't matter, your batter will last in the fridge for up to two days.
Can you refrigerate the cake batter before baking?
You can refrigerate cake batter before you bake it, but we don't recommend it. The batter will become stiffer as it cools, making it less prone to rising high. So, if you need beautifully risen cakes, then try to bake the batter immediately.
How long can a cake batter sit before baking?
At the most, you shouldn't leave cake batter for longer than an hour before baking it. After an hour, the leavening agents will drastically start losing their effectiveness. This will ultimately leave you will a dense and flat cake.
Can I refrigerate batter with baking powder?
You can refrigerate a cake batter that contains baking powder. However, as we keep saying, the baking powder (leavening agent) will lose its effectiveness after an hour. So, you will have to make another plan if you need a high fluffy cake.
Lindy Van Schalkwyk is a culinary specialist with a background in Advanced Cooking, Advanced Pâtisserie, Media Communications and Nutrition. She has gained invaluable experience in the culinary industry having worked in some of the top restaurants in Africa in 2016 and 2017. Her expertise in nutrition has enabled her to develop recipes for special dietary needs. In 2018, Lindy began working in the Food Media industry, focusing on recipe development, recipe writing, food writing and food styling.