How to Bake a Cake without a Cake Pan?

Are you wondering how to bake a cake without a cake pan? Even the most well-prepared baker can face this issue from time to time.

Sometimes, you just do not have the right cake pan available or you let someone borrow it. Regardless of the scenario, you will be happy to know that you can actually bake a cake without a cake pan.

It is the process of figuring it out, which is the complicated part. Luckily, improvisation is a core concept of cooking.

This means that you can use the following to improve and bake a cake without a traditional cake pan.

Use a Sheet Pan to Bake a Cake

Sheet pans are known for being extremely versatile and they are extremely useful to bake a large number of things. Luckily, they can also be used to bake cakes.

Use a Sheet Pan to Bake a Cake

Ideally, you should have a flat sheet pan with sides that come to one inch on each side. The dimensions of the pan do not really make a difference here.

This means that even a standard-sized sheet pan (18 by 13 inches) will be enough for a normal-sized cake. However, if you are thinking of making a smaller or larger cake, be sure to experiment with different sheet pan sizes.

Another thing to pay attention to is to line the sheet pan properly with parchment paper on the base and grease the sides thoroughly.

In fact, prepare it properly, just like you would prepare a regular cake pan. Once the pan is prepared, all you have to do is pour in the batter.

However, given how shallow sheet pans can be, you have to be very careful about filling it with batter.

Make sure to only fill it halfway up the sides. This means that if the pan side is one inch high, you should only fill the batter to ½ inch of the pan’s sides.

Doing so is necessary as it gives the cake enough room to rise. If you fill it to the top, you are more likely to get a cake that overflows when it rises.

This can ruin the cake’s consistency and cause the batter to fall in the oven.

For more consistency in the cake, make sure to tap the sheet pan properly to ensure that the batter is spread evenly and to knock out any air bubbles.

A sheet pan will give you a thin cake layer, so you will have to stack the cake properly in order to get a good slice and size.

For this reason, it is a good idea to have two or three sheet pans that you can use to bake together.

Otherwise, it can take too much time to wait for one sheet pan to finish baking before you add another pan.

Additionally, sheet pancakes are a favorite when you want to make specialty cakes, such as a jelly roll, or even for making thin-layered cakes.

Cutting out cakes from sheet pancakes is also easy so you can really mix and match or play with your cake shapes with this method.

Also read: How to Make Banana Bread Without a Loaf Pan?

Opting for a Pull-Apart Cake

Now, this is a different kind of cake but it is bound to be a huge favorite. Pull-apart cakes are designed to be very easy to pull apart.

Opting for a Pull-Apart Cake

However, you don’t have to deal with any of the mess because it’s not a traditional cake. Instead, it makes use of many cupcakes, pushed together, and iced over to look like one, coherent cake.

Think back to the beautiful peacock with tail feathers cake that you have seen on Pinterest or Instagram. That’s the best example of a pull-apart cake. Luckily, a pull-apart cake can be as extravagant or as simple as you desire.

The best part is that pull-apart cakes are also extremely easy to make. All you need is a cupcake pan instead of a cake pan.

You can use the cake batter to make the cupcakes. The number of cupcakes you need will depend upon the number of guests you are having.

Generally, one cupcake is equal to one helping/slice of cake. However, it is no harm to have a few extra pieces added there, especially if someone is feeling particularly snacky.

To make this cake, you have to prepare your cupcake pan exactly like you would but remember to add cupcake holders.

Now, fill them half with batter, tap the pan and then pop them in the oven. Once they are cooked, allow them to cool before you think about icing them.

The icing on hotcakes or cupcakes will melt right off. While the cupcakes are cooling, think of the pattern you want. Easy patterns to try are heart shapes or even a flower.

The best part is that you can make your pull-apart cake in almost any shape. All you have to do is arrange the cupcakes. Once you are happy with the arrangement, take your icing and place it in the center.

From there, start to spread it evenly across the tops of the cupcakes. Make sure they are all covered completely.

When it is time to serve, just grab a cupcake from the base and pull it out. You get a no-mess serving that has a nice dollop of icing on top of it!

Also read: What Pan Is Best for Baking Carrot Cake?

Making a Mug Cake

Another way that you can make cakes is by opting to make it in a mug. Now, this is a method that is best suited for one serving only.

However, it is great for parties where you can have individual mugs for each person. It definitely depends upon the theme.

Mug Cake

Nonetheless, there is no denying the fact that a well-made mug cake is delicious, moist, and tasty. There’s also the plus point that mug cakes can be made within 5 minutes.

They are easy, simple, and fast. They also don’t need to be cooked in the oven. Your microwave can be good enough for them.

So, for this, all you need is a large, oven-safe mug.

You can make a mug cake in two different methods.

If you want to make it from scratch, all you need to do is combine the wet and dry ingredients of the cake in the mug. Mix it well until it forms a batter, and then pop it into the microwave.

The second method involves the use of cake mix batter. For this, you can simply add the batter into the mug and pop it into the microwave.

Many people prefer this method because it is hassle-free. Regardless of which method you pick, once you are ready, you have to let it cook.

Let it cook for around 70 minutes before you take it out and check on it. If it is underdone, pop it back into the microwave and let it cook for another 20 to 30 seconds.

After that, you can enjoy it piping hot or let it cool and add some ice cream on top.

Also read: How to Make a Big Pan Smaller for Baking

Using a DIY Cake Pan

If you really must make use of a cake pan and can’t find one, you can make a DIY cake pan out of aluminum foil.

Aluminum Foil cake pan

The best part about this kind of pan is that it can be made in almost any shape too. However, if you are making it for the first time, it is best to make it simple.

For starters, suppose you want to make a cake in an 8-inch round cake pan. For this, you will need to measure the circumference of the cake.

This will come up to be 25 inches. Now, all you have to is cut a large rectangle of foil that is 25 inches in length.

Now, you have to start folding this piece until you get a piece of aluminum foil that is 25 inches in length and is 2 inches wide. Bring one end up to the other and see if it forms the perfect circle. Press the edges together to make sure that they make a proper circle.

This will give you a round cake pan shape without the base. To make the base, you need to take a square piece of aluminum foil.

Place the round pan shape into the middle and fold the foil from the outside into the inside of the frame. Make sure to press down on the edges and any lumps that may form.

To make it truly leak-proof, take another sheet and apply it in the same manner. After this, you can grease it up or use cooking spray on the pan.

Place it on top of a sheet pan to make it easier to remove this pan from the oven.

Pour in the batter and give it a tap by shaking the sheet pan. Then, pop it into the oven and let it cook.

This kind of DIY pan may be troublesome to make but the clean-up is extremely easy. All you have to do is rip out the aluminum foil and throw it away!

With the help of these methods, you can learn how to bake a cake without a cake pan. In fact, some of the methods are so easy that you might just put off getting a cake pan!

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