Unlevel cakes can be a disaster for any baker. They will not bake evenly and will look terrible when you serve them.
Cakes can be a tricky thing to bake. Whether you’re new to the bakery scene or just want some more tips on leveling your cakes, this blog post is for you! We will discuss different ways of leveling a cake and what tools might work best for each level.
There are many steps involved in leveling a cake, so we’ll also give you an overview of how it’s done before diving into the nitty-gritty details.
Well, for starters, it’s easier to write on flat surfaces. When you are icing a cake, levelness is the best kind of evenness.
The top of the cake will be nice and flat so that you can center your design or message straight across the top.
This also makes decorating much easier because the surface is even. This means that there are no ridges or dips in what would otherwise be an asymmetrical canvas all around your cake. Instead, it is just one big smooth surface with nothing stopping you from getting creative with your icing job!
Ways to Level a Cake
- Serrated Knife and Turn Table
- Dishcloth Method
- Cake Leveler Tool
- In the Pan
- Band Leveler Tool
- Sheet Cake Method
1. Serrated Knife and Turn Table
A serrated knife is also used to cut through the top of the cake and create a flat surface. The cake stand will help make it more stable, too. Slice horizontally with your serrated knife once you’ve found the right spot to remove an inch of cake.
You’ll want to make sure that the blade of your knife is lying flat on the cake before cutting. This prevents any spillage or crumbling on top.
Be sure to cut at an angle to remove the top portion of the cake clean and even way. To create a perfect level, place the knife at the desired height and turn the cake stand that the blade is resting on to get a smooth, even cut. A serrated knife can also level a cheesecake, but be extra careful when slicing through the top.
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2. Dishcloth Method
The dishcloth method is not recommended for cakes where the domed top is not readjusted. It is for cakes that are domed enough to flatten out with this technique.
Cover the top of the cake with a damp dishtowel or cloth, and then place a cutting board on top. Press gently to help flatten it more, remove the cutting board and towel, and ta-dah! You should be golden!
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3. Cake Leveler Tool
The Cake Leveler Tool is a level that helps to make even cake layers. This tool can be adjusted to the height of the cake.
It has a wire or thin serrated blade that connects two sides of the U-shape. The blade is adjustable and can move up and down, which allows you to adjust it.
To use the tool, you put your cake on a flat surface and then hold the tool over it with the feet of the U touching either side of your cake.
Then adjust the blade to set at the height where you want it to cut off the top part of your cake. Saw back and forth gently with Cake Leveler Tool on the table and slicing off the top part of cake.
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4. In the Pan
If your cake just came out of the oven and it’s domed more than 1/2 inch above the top of the pan lip, you can fix it without ever taking it out of the pan!
Gently insert a long serrated knife next to the cake, hold it parallel with the cake pan’s edges, and start cutting in small circles. Your cake will be back down in no time!
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The toothpick technique is intelligent to ensure your cake is entirely level. The only downside of the toothpick technique is that you need four toothpicks and a ruler, which takes a few extra steps.
Grab four toothpicks and a ruler, then place your cake on a table. Use the ruler to measure where you want to cut the cake (are you cutting the top off at 2 ½ inches? Maybe 2 ¾ ?).
Stick a toothpick into the side of the cake at the height you would like to cut the cake. Then, insert the remaining toothpicks at the same size all around the cake, placing them in at the 12, 3, 6, and 9 o’clock positions.
The toothpick method is beneficial if your cake is at an angle or cutting more than one piece.
These steps can be used to cut a single layer, but for multiple layers, you need to make four cuts into the cake with the serrated knife around each of the four toothpicks; these steps will help ensure your cake ends up perfectly level.
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There are several different cake-related items that you will need to level a cake. As a cake can be a tall cake, it would be easier to use a cake tin with a removable bottom, which will have been designed explicitly for cake leveling purposes.
You can also level cake using cake spacers, or if you don’t have any of these items, you could also level cake utilizing a piece of floss! Get a long piece of floss and hold both ends tightly in your hands.
Make sure the width of the floss between your hands is longer than your cake (so if you have an eight-inch cake, the floss should be at least 9 inches). Place the floss where you would like to cut, and then, pulling the floss tightly between your hands, pull the floss through the cake, cutting off the top as you go. While this will cut off the top of your cake quite nicely, it is best to use this method in a pinch.
To level cake successfully using cake spacers, first, place them around your cake at equal distances from each other.
Then carefully bring your cake closer to you as you push one cake spacer away with even pressure until you reach the desired size for that section of cake. This might take a few tries, so be sure not to rush! It’s better to have more sections rather than uneven sections.
7. Band Leveler Tool
There is a cake leveler tool that makes cake cutting easy. Place the cake on a cake board. Use the cake leveler to get an even cake height.
This leveler is an adjustable metal band that goes around the cake and has multiple horizontal slits that you will use as a guide to cut into the cake.
Remove the band from around the cake. Choose the height you wish to slice your cake with now that it’s on a leveler.
To prevent moving, carefully cut into the cake with a serrated knife, pressing against the leveler slits to keep it steady.
8. Sheet Cake Method
One cake leveling method that helps cake layers stay nice and flat is the cake “sheet” cake method.
This cake leveling technique works by baking your cake batter in a thin sheet pan (1/2-inch to 1-inch) rather than in cake pans or baking dishes.
Simply pour cake batter into a rimmed sheet pan – no need to grease the pan. The cake will bake quickly, and then, once cooled, use your round cake pan to help you cut out circles from the sheet cake.
There are many cake-related items that you will need to level a cake. The toothpick technique is the best option for leveling cake if it is at an angle or you’re cutting more than one piece, but there are other options as well.
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