Whether baking far in advance or salvaging birthday party leftovers, there is always a reason to freeze cakes.
Freezing is the easiest food preservation at home. And, freezing cakes is a no-brainer. But, you need to do it the right way to preserve their maximum freshness and texture.
Keep reading to find tips for storing, freezing, and thawing cakes. Sounds like what you’re looking for? Well, read on!
How To Store Cakes Properly
Cakes are best served fresh from the oven. Their peak quality doesn’t last long. But, does it mean that they should be refrigerated?
You have a few options for storage, depending on when you want to enjoy them.
With an exception for cheesecake and those with perishable fillings and frostings, most other cakes can stand at room temperature for 1 to 3 days.
Keep them in a box or airtight container and store them in a cupboard. Don’t refrigerate cakes. On the contrary, refrigeration dries out them much faster.
For long-term storage, freezing is your best bet.
The Best Types of Cakes To Freeze
Most cakes can be frozen successfully, especially if they are not yet frosted or iced. Just remember to cool them completely before wrapping and freezing.
Cakes with average to high-fat content are the best candidate. These include Bundt, pound, chocolate, coffee, pumpkin, banana cake, and even cheesecake!
Without further ado, let’s check our step-to-step directions on freezing cakes.
How To Freeze A Baked, Undecorated Cake
A fully baked, unfrosted, undecorated cake is the best candidate for freezing. You can add the frosting shortly before serving.
Follow our step-by-step guide below to freeze cakes properly and keep their maximum freshness.
- 1. Bake a cake as usual according to your recipes.
- 2. Allow it to cool completely on a wire rack. Skip this step for freezing store-bought cakes.
- 3. Wrap it tightly in heavy-duty plastic wrap. If using regular cling wrap, consider wrapping it in 2 to 3 layers. Make sure it is fully covered and leaves little room for air.
- For freezing cake layers, wrap them individually to prevent them from sticking.
- 4. Re-wrap it in aluminum foil to protect against freezer burn.
- 5. Place it in a zip lock bag or a freezer-safe container.
- 6. Suck out the excess air from the container and seal it tightly.
- 7. Label with the name and freezing date.
- 8. Place in the freezer. Be careful not to smash the cake with heavier items.
How To Freeze Frosted Cakes
If you plan to serve the sweet treats for an important occasion, freezing fully decorated cakes is not your best option. But, it is always a great way to save some leftovers of your birthday and wedding party to eat next time.
Unfortunately, not all frostings freeze beautifully. While buttercream and cheese cream frostings are suitable for freezing, avoid meringue-based frostings.
Here is our simple guide to freezing decorated and frosted cakes.
- 1. Pre-freeze the cake before wrapping. Place it in a tray and freeze for 1 to 2 hours or until the decoration is firm.
- 2. Wrap it carefully in plastic wrap followed by a layer of aluminum foil. Be careful when wrapping the cake to prevent the frostings from getting flattened and ruined.
- 3. If you want to eat a piece at a time, cut it into single-serving slices and wrap them individually.
- 4. Place the wrapped cake in a freezer-safe container or Tupperware to protect its shape. Otherwise, pack it in a zip-lock bag. But, make sure that it won’t be smashed by heavier items.
- 5. Write the name and the freezing date.
- 6. Pop it in the freezer for storage.
If you buy a bakery cake and want to freeze the entire cake, that’s the easiest thing to do. Simply wrap the box in plastic wrap and place it in the freezer right away, just like that.
How To Thaw Frozen Cakes
So, you have frozen cakes successfully. Now, whenever you’re ready to decorate them, simply unwrap them and let them thaw slowly on the kitchen counter for approximately 2 to 3 hours.
Once they reach room temperature, you can proceed with the frosting or icing to your liking. It is actually easier to trim, sculpt, and decorate the cakes while still slightly chilled.
How Long Can You Freeze Cake?
Depending on the ingredients, each type of cake has a different shelf life in the freezer. Generally, you can freeze them for several months, provided that they are properly wrapped and frozen.
The table below shows estimates of how long cakes preserve their best flavors. It is possible to stretch for a few weeks or months.
Just remember that the flavor and texture deteriorate after prolonged storage. Let your taste bud be the judge. (*)
|Angel food, sponge, chiffon cake||6 months|
|Cupcakes (frosted & unfrosted)||2 to 3 months|
|Shortened cake||2 to 4 months|
|Coffee cake||6 months|
Yes, a lot of cakes freeze well and taste as delicious as freshly-baked ones. Dense and moist cakes such as carrot, chocolate, and banana cake are ideal for freezing. Follow our instructions above on how to freeze these baked goods successfully.
Chilling it for at least 2 hours or overnight makes decorating and frosting a lot easier. Don’t frost while it’s still if you don’t want to end up with a messy kitchen.
A refrigerator has a dry environment that takes away the moisture of your baked goods. Therefore, make sure to place it in a sealed container to prevent it from drying out and harden.
Surprisingly, there are a lot of creative ideas to use up leftovers. You can re-bake it into delicious bread pudding, or make yourself decadent cake truffles, turn it into French toast, trifle, or profiterole!
If you have a stale or dry cake, you can bring it back to life by microwaving it. Start by placing a damp towel on a microwave-safe dish. Place it on top of the towel and microwave in 10 to 15 seconds until it is moist enough.
In short, you can freeze almost any kind of cake. For the best texture and flavors, freeze them before frosting and decorating. But, frosted cakes freeze quite well too. Make sure to cool them completely and wrap them properly.
When it’s time to serve, thaw them in the fridge or on the counter and enjoy!