When it comes to baking, the tools you use can make all the difference. One question that often comes up is whether or not you can bake a cake in a cast iron skillet.
Cast iron skillets are known for their versatility, durability, and even heating, but can they handle the task of baking a cake? In this article, we’ll explore the answer to that question and provide some tips for successfully baking a cake in a cast iron skillet.
Understanding Cast Iron Skillets
Before we can determine whether or not cast iron skillets are suitable for baking cakes, it’s important to understand their characteristics. Cast iron skillets are made of iron, which is an excellent conductor of heat.
They are also known for their ability to hold heat for long periods of time, making them ideal for cooking and searing meats. However, cast iron skillets can be quite heavy and require some maintenance to keep them in good condition.
Advantages of Baking a Cake in a Cast Iron Skillet
While cast iron skillets may not be the first tool that comes to mind when you think of baking cakes, there are some advantages to using them. One of the main benefits is that they distribute heat evenly, which can help ensure that your cake cooks evenly as well.
Cast iron skillets also retain heat well, which can help keep your cake warm after it comes out of the oven. Additionally, baking a cake in a cast iron skillet can give it a rustic, homemade look that many people find appealing.
Tips for Baking a Cake in a Cast Iron Skillet
If you’re considering baking a cake in a cast iron skillet, there are a few things you should keep in mind to ensure success. First, be sure to properly season your skillet before using it. This will help prevent the cake from sticking and make cleanup easier.
You should also preheat your skillet before adding the cake batter to ensure that it cooks evenly. Finally, be sure to check the cake regularly while it’s baking, as cast iron skillets can be more prone to hot spots than other baking pans.
Recipe for Cast Iron Skillet Cake
Now that we’ve covered the basics of baking a cake in a cast iron skillet, let’s look at a simple recipe you can try.
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Grease your cast iron skillet with butter or cooking spray.
- In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, cream together the sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs, one at a time.
- Stir in the milk and vanilla extract.
- Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, stirring until just combined.
- Pour the batter into your prepared skillet.
- Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
- Allow the cake to cool in the skillet for 10-15 minutes before slicing and serving.
While you can use any size cast iron skillet to bake a cake, it’s best to choose one that’s close to the size of the cake you’re making. Using a skillet that’s too large or too small can affect the cooking time and result in an unevenly baked cake.
Yes, it’s important to preheat your cast iron skillet before adding the cake batter. This helps ensure that the cake cooks evenly and prevents it from sticking to the skillet.
Yes, cast iron skillets are versatile and can be used to bake a variety of desserts, such as cobblers, crisps, and even pies.
While it’s possible to use a cast iron skillet with a lid to bake a cake, it’s not necessary. The lid can help trap moisture and create a more tender cake, but you can achieve similar results by covering the skillet with foil during the baking process.
Yes, you can store a cake in a cast iron skillet, but be sure to cover it tightly with plastic wrap or foil to prevent it from drying out or absorbing any flavors from the skillet.
In conclusion, baking a cake in a cast iron skillet is definitely possible, and can even have some benefits over traditional cake pans.
By understanding the characteristics of cast iron skillets and following some simple tips for success, you can create a delicious, rustic-looking cake that’s sure to impress your guests.
With a little practice and experimentation, you may even find that you prefer baking cakes in your cast iron skillet over traditional pans.