Home Home Home Home Home Home Home
CakeSpy

Featured Post:
Of Eating Disorders and Food Blogs

 

 Buy my brilliant books!

Buy my new book!

Buy my first book, too! 

CakeSpy Online Retail!

 

Gallery

Fantastic appliance for cake making on DHgate.com

This area does not yet contain any content.
Craftsy Writer
« Sweet Art: Poster Design for CupcakeCamp DC! | Main | Batter Chatter: Interview with Craig McDougall of Frosting Cupcakery, Langley BC »
Tuesday
Aug032010

Ask CakeSpy: Shrinking Cupcakes?

Dear CakeSpy,

I have a technical question for you.  I tried making cupcakes from a Billy's Bakery recipe I found online and the cupcakes separated from the liners. Any idea why this happens?

-Shrinking in NY

P.S. Here's the recipe:

Billy's Bakery Cupcakes

  • 1 3/4 cups cake flour, not self-rising
  • 1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Procedure

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line cupcake pans with paper liners; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine flours, sugar, baking powder, and salt; mix on low speed until combined. Add butter, mixing until just coated with flour.
  2. In a large glass measuring cup, whisk together eggs, milk, and vanilla. With mixer on medium speed, add wet ingredients in 3 parts, scraping down sides of bowl before each addition; beat until ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat.
  3. Divide batter evenly among liners, filling about 2/3 full. Bake, rotating pan halfway through, until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean, 17 to 20 minutes.
  4. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat process with remaining batter. Once cupcakes have cooled, use a small offset spatula to frost tops of each cupcake. Decorate with sprinkles, if desired. Serve at room temperature.

Dear Shrinking,

It's true: not all cups runneth over. But I must confess, and I promise I am not saying this in a "I'm such a great baker" sort of way--I've never actually had it happen, so I wasn't quite sure what might be the cause. Happily, I was able to consult the world's most reliable information source--Twitter, natch!--about the subject, and received many ideas as to what might be the cause.

One thing which several respondents mentioned was humidity as a shrinking factor: it being that you were baking in the summer, in NY, it could be as simple as blaming it on the weather!

Another widely accepted response was that the shrinkage could be due to over-greasing cupcake papers, which can cause separation (even more so depending on the type of paper used).

However I also received some other interesting responses:

As Bakelab, a Los Angeles-based retail bakery and baking school informed, this can often be because of a high amount of sugar in the recipe--and while 2 cups is certainly normal in cupcake recipes, it is a pretty substantial amount. A friend once told me that the sugar in recipes can generally be reduced by up to 1/4 cup without sacrificing the structure of a baked good--she might have been lying to me, but I'm just passing on what I've been told.

Ryan's Baking Blog also pointed me toward this posting on the subject, which notes that often, shrinkage can occur when the cakes are overbaked, but that other culprits may be too little mixture in the pan, over-greased trays, over-beating your batter, or too much liquid.

Unfortunately, all of this doesn't add up to one easy explanation, but it may give you some ideas for next time! Of course, if the cupcakes still tasted good, I say shrink away, since I'm gonna take the wrapper off anyway.

If anyone else has ideas as to what might have caused this to occur, please leave a comment!

Reader Comments (16)

Shrinking cupcakes, eh? Maybe they are just cold...

August 3 | Unregistered CommenterRH

I've seen that you know a cake is done when it start pulling away from the sides of the pan. Maybe it's the same case with the cupcakes?

Wei Wei

August 3 | Unregistered CommenterWei Wei

I quick google search for "cupcake shrinking" returns several other blogs with posts dedicated to the same problem. Just as a heads up, none of these ideas are mine personally, so I can't gaurantee if they're accurate or not. Most people seem to think the shrinkage has something to do with the liner itself, the idea being that a waxed paper liner will prevent the batter from sticking to the liner. If this is the case, one baker suggusted overfilling the cupcake liners slightly, so when the batter rises it can latch on to the top of the liner and prevent shrinking.

Another theory is that the cupcakes shrink because of the air in the batter. While the cupcakes are baked they are partially leavened by steam. They lose moisture, too, and so they peel away from the liners when cooling. The solution here seems to be to ensure the cupcakes aren't disturbed during the first fifteen minutes of baking, giving them a chance to set and form strong side support to prevent later shrinking.

If you didn't open you oven, maybe the seperation was because you didn't turn your cupcakes out of the pan soon enough. One baker posted that leaving the cupcake filled liners in the pan too long will allow steam to condense between the liners and the pan, loosening the cupcakes.

Hope this helps!

Posts Read: http://forums.chef2chef.net/viewtopic.php?f=37&t=550640
http://www.realbakingwithrose.com/index_ee.php/forums/viewthread/570/
http://www.all-about-cupcakes.com/cupcakes-shrinking-from-cupcake-liners.html
http://forums.chef2chef.net/viewtopic.php?f=37&t=550640

August 4 | Unregistered Commenter--

First, Thank you CakeSpy for making such a thorough inquiry into my problem!!
I am inclined to think that I slightly over baked them because instead of making regular size cupcakes I made little mini ones (they are less fattening that way!) and I just eye balled when they looked done to me.
I did use two different kinds of cupcake liners. One set were more decorative and had an irregular shaped top edge - those ones were terrible. Almost all of them pulled away from the cake.
The regular liners worked much better and ones that were slightly fuller did hold on better.

I will give a report when I try it again, maybe with a bit less sugar. Thank you so much for your comments.

August 4 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

I just found the cupcake liners that didn't work for me...
I do love them though

http://www.bakeitpretty.com/item_25/MINI-SIZE-Fluted-Flower-Cups.htm

August 4 | Unregistered CommenterDanielle

That is a team with four people links of london in and the group enjoys great friendship. They are young people who come from different area and have different experience. But they have
links london the similar value and same goal. They have great ambition to conquer a work any one they do. Though they faced many difficulties, they never give up and retreat backward. They are links of london bracelet good friends and they help each other out when one of them meets challenges. They know that they should work together and the power would
london of links be stronger than ever.

August 6 | Unregistered Commenterwasai

That is a team with four people in and the group enjoys links of london great friendship. They are young people who come from different area and have different experience. But they have the similar value and same goal. They have links of london sale great ambition to conquer a work any one they do. Though they faced many difficulties, they never give up and retreat backward. They are good links of london jewellery friends and they help each other out when one of them meets challenges. They know that they should work together and the power would be stronger than ever.

August 6 | Unregistered Commenterwasai

Every one of the team has a links of london links of london friendship bracelet. the strength links of london jewellery of the friendship. It seems can not be defeated with any kind of obstacle to succeed. The effect and the significance links of london bracelet of the friendship to make customers satisfied and the perfect service to help the customers out. Either The dedication to the job links of london rings or the diligent and serious attitude towards customer is forced the four young men to be one of them.

August 6 | Unregistered Commenterwasai

Compare prices Guess handbags and save ,Top ranking quality of the designer guess

handbags for discerning ladies.Guess handbags are stylish accessories that complement a fashion-conscious woman's wardrobe and
Guess handbags.
.Enjoy a great selection of guess bags.Guess handbags. foror every discerning women

,free shipping,110% price guarantee.EFX bracelet

3mm thick power balance wristband made from 100% surgical grade silicone that is

extremely durable;Wristband has 40% stretch feature for extra stretch over the hands;Equipped with two, visible
power balance holograms; Improve balance, flexibility and strength as well as contributing

to an overall sense of well being.Welcome to enjoy
power balance for free shipping.

September 8 | Unregistered Commenterpower balance

Much deep description to your option p90x for sale,you also can support discount p90x dvd,also visit cheap p90x dvd.

September 9 | Unregistered Commenterdiscount p90x dvd

See you here now..choose the most popular style of jackects are north face outlet ,the north face jackets online.will be the biggest part in north face product.

September 9 | Unregistered Commenternorth face

prada handbags is an italian fashion label specializing in luxury goods for men and women.Welcome to enjoy designer and

discount prada bags sale.cheap and model prada handbags for free shipping.welcome to designer
prada handbags for quality guarantee.

3mm thick power balance wristband made from 100% surgical grade silicone that is extremely

durable;Wristband has 40% stretch feature for extra stretch over the hands;Equipped with two, visible
power balance holograms; Improve balance, flexibility and strength as well as contributing to an overall

sense of well being.Welcome to enjoy power balance for free shipping.
EFX bracelet.

September 13 | Unregistered Commenterguess handbags
Comments for this entry have been disabled. Additional comments may not be added to this entry at this time.
© Cakespy, all rights reserved. Powered by Squarespace.