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  • Writer's pictureThe Bendy Baker

Divide Batter Evenly: Sure, How?

If you've ever seen this direction in a recipe and wondered how to pull this off, you're not alone.


This broader challenge isn't unique to Bendy (aka substitute ingredient) baking by any stretch, yet it's worth spending time talking about. For some recipes, "eyeballing" the distribution of batter or icing works totally well and even I can pull it off admirably.


But for other recipes, such as a naked layer cakes where you can see all the layers of cake and fillings/icings, precision comes into focus.


Let's focus on a few different approaches out there for even cake layers out there but come back and talk about "divide batter evenly", which can be used for cake, fillings and icing layers, in more detail.


One method is to bake the cake in a rimmed baking pan and use a cake ring to cut out 3 equal circles (look for an upcoming recipe using this method). This uses a sheet of even cake with, by using a cake ring to cut the rings, cake rounds with exposed crumb edges.


cake ring cuts even layers as well
Cake ring is an option to cut layers from sheet cake

Another common approach is baking the cake in one round pan, then slicing it into "even layers." For this method your cake needs to rise well enough and be baked all the way through and have a pleasing texture. I have eyeballed the cuts and also have used a ruler, both with reasonable but mixed results.


slicing cake is another option for cake layers
Another option is to slice the cake layers

My preferred method, when I want good rise, even bakes and uniformity in multiple layers, is the "divide batter evenly" approach. This is the one we will dive into.


equal batter in each pan
Equally sized, baked cakes

For illustration purposes let's use 3 layers: have paper, a pen, a calculator and a digital scale all ready.


Steps:

  1. Mix your batter in whatever method/tool/bowl you typically use

  2. Place a lightweight bowl large enough to hold the batter onto a digital scale and select fluid ounces as your measurement type

  3. Zero out the scale so all you're measuring is the batter

  4. Pour your batter into the bowl and make note of the total batter weight

  5. Using your excellent math skills or a calculator (I always use one), divide by 3

  6. Pour, or ladle, out the batter in decreasing increments of 3


The Math:

  1. I start with a total of 64 fluid ounces (which is equal to 8 cups of batter)

  2. 64 fluid ounces is distributed into 3 pans, which is 21.33 fluid ounces each

  3. Remove the first 21.33, and the scale shows 42.66

  4. Remove another 21.33 fluid ounces and the scale shows 21.33

  5. It's ok if your scale uses 21.3, 21.33 or 21.3333 increments - you're still better off than eyeballing


digital scale is a great tool in baking
Math in baking using a digital scale

If you find the math a bit intimidating at first, stick with it. I promise that if you sketch out the numbers on a piece of paper and practice this method, you'll become more comfortable with it over time. You can also apply this technique to distribute icing and fillings more evenly.


You can even practice using water to get the hang of it!


Remember to have fun, learn new skills and enjoy yourself.


Happy Bendy Baking!

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