How To Use A Convection Oven To Cook Cake. What Kind Of Cakes Can You Bake In Your Convection Oven?
Convection ovens are currently the new craze in the kitchen credit to their fast cooking times and unbeatable efficiency. There’s one thing, though: these ovens are portrayed as not-so-good for baking cakes.
Reason? Their speedy operations and need for temperature and time adjustments.
Sure, it’s true that a slight mistake on these 2 aspects (temperature and time) could wreak havoc on your cake. But I like saying that the more you know about how a convection oven works, the easier it becomes for you to bake pretty much anything in it.
Countertop Convection Ovens Explained
What really is a convection oven and how different is it from other ovens?
A convection oven is also known as ‘fan oven’ or ‘fan assisted oven.’
This is because it has in-built fans which circulate air during the heating process, unlike the conventional oven where the air in the oven remains still during cooking. This is what makes it different from other fans.
The convection heating method basically circulates heated air evenly over the food through the oven cavity, and this speeds up the cooking process. This is the main advantage that convection ovens have over conventional ovens.
Due to even circulation of heat, the food cooks evenly without experiencing hot spots. Another advantage is that it easily browns food for a crunchy crust when need be. Another benefit of the convection oven is that it saves energy since food gets cooked faster than when using a conventional oven.
Now, we have seen what really a convection oven is and how different it is from other ovens or the conventional ovens. This far, it sounds fantastic, right? Let’s get to the heart of this article.
Convection Oven And Cakes
Every oven, whether convection or conventional, has a baking function. Therefore, it is always good to ensure that, you fully familiarize yourself with the functioning of the oven. Ensure you go through the oven manual.
There are buttons for every function. Know how to use them, know when to increase or reduce temperatures in order to get the best result of whatever you prepare.
Moreover, it is always good to have recipes of food which can be prepared using the type of oven you purchase. This will make your oven-cooking smooth. It will save you from frustration. Otherwise, you might end up having a bad experience with the oven, when you find that your cake has overcooked and been less fluffy than expected.
There are a whole lot of cakes that you can bake using a convection oven. The key thing that you need to understand is that it bakes at 25 degrees hotter than normal ovens.
Therefore, the general opinion of many who have had baking experience with the oven is that convection setting is much better for baking cookies, pies, and small pastries than cakes.
The reason for this is that the cake batter is usually lighter than for other pastries, and it cooks so fast. Hence, it can affect the smooth baking process of cakes and could result in hard or undercooked cakes. That is why care must be taken by ensuring the temperature is regulated when baking cakes for good results.
How To Bake Cakes In A Convection Oven
These are the general cake baking procedure in a convection oven:
1. Preheat the oven
First and foremost, you need to preheat the oven. Then make an adjustment of the baking temperature by lowering it by 25 degrees, and if the cake is big, reduce further by between 5 to 10 degrees.
2. Pour the cake batter
Then pour the cake batter in the baking pan and then put it in the already preheated oven. If the cakes are many, ensure you leave at least two inches on all sides between the pans to leave space for the circulating air. Ensure you don’t cover the pans using aluminum foils.
3. Don’t open the door regularly
Leave the door closed while the cake is baking until the cake is ready. However, check whether the cake is ready 10 minutes before the stated time in the recipe. This is because in a convection oven baking is considerably faster than in a normal conventional oven.
Remove the cake from the oven only if, when you put a toothpick at the center, the toothpick comes out clean.
Another thing to note is that small cakes normally bake faster than larger ones.
When these procedures are well followed, the baking results for cakes are usually great because this oven makes cakes fluffier and a bit larger. Also, for those who like a crunchy crust, the oven can give you your desired result.
The cakes also are evenly baked and browned due to the even circulation of heated air by the fan. So the position of the cake in the oven don’t matter, the results are usually amazing.
Types Of Cakes You Can Bake In Your Convection Oven
Now that we’ve seen that it’s possible to bake cakes with a convection oven, does that give you the greenlight to make all types of cakes?
Well, no. The truth is that not all cakes can be baked using the convection oven.
Below are some of the cakes which can be baked in a convection oven.
How to make chocolate sponge cake in a convection oven:
- Preparation time: 5 min
- Bake time: 45 min
- Bake temp: 320 ℉ (adjust to 295℉ for convection oven)
- Makes: 1,8 inch cake
- 1 1/4 cup multi-purpose flour
- 1/2- 3/4 cup powdered sugar (depending on taste preference)
- 1 cup thick yogurt
- 1 teaspoonful baking powder
- 1/4 cup oil
- 1 teaspoonful vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 teaspoonful baking soda
- salt - just a pinch
- Preheat the oven to 295 degrees F
- Grease line your baking pan
- Add the powdered sugar to the thick yoghurt and beat until smooth
- To the powder sugar yoghurt mixture, add baking soda, pinch of salt, and baking powder and beat the mixture well
- Put it aside to rest for 5-7 minutes
- As it rests, sift the wheat flour and cocoa powder twice
- By this time, your yogurt mix has rested for the recommended time, add oil and vanilla extract and mix well
- Next, add the flour mix to the yogurt mix one tablespoon at a time while mixing
- The batter shouldn’t be too thin or too thick. If it’s too thin, add a tablespoonful of sifted all-purpose flour. If it’s too thick, a little amount of water or milk might help
- Pour the batter in the grease lined baking pan and cover with an aluminum foil
- Slide in the oven and bake at 295 degrees F for around 40 minutes
- Mini chocolate cupcakes
- Chocolate fudge cakes
- Chocolate chip cake
- Coconut cake
- Rocky road cake
Tips For Baking Cakes With A Convection Oven
You don’t have to be a professional or have a certificate in bakery for you to bake a cake successfully. You only need instructions and tips on how to have successful baking. That is all.
So, here are a few important guidelines for a successful cake baking using a convection oven:
- If you’ve not bought one yet, ensure that you get a reliable oven. See my recommendations in these best countertop convection oven reviews.
- Know the basic oven or microwave functions – for baking and cooking other foods. It is important.
- Use good quality oven containers appropriate for what you are baking or cooking. They should be heat resistant, like Borosil glass bakeware.
- Have knowledge of the types of cakes which can be baked with this kind of oven. Not every foot fits in every shoe.
- Know how to adjust the temperature while baking cakes. Since this microwave cooks 30% faster than the normal ones. This ensures that cakes are baked evenly at the same pace. No spoiling, no undercooking.
- Preheat your oven to the desired temperature as directed in the recipe. As you do this, remember that ovens can be different, so ensure you go through the microwave manual.
- Always clean your oven. You may need detailed information on how to go about it but ensure you rub off the gunk from the oven using a clean warm wet towel. Dirt may interfere with its effectiveness. Remember that even normal cooking pots must always be washed after the food is emptied.
- Bake regularly. A single failure should not make you give up baking. Practice makes perfect. The more you practice, the more you get to know the functioning of the oven.