How to prevent dense, gluey streaks in your cake: Quick tip

See the two slices of lemon cake above?

The one on the right has a typical texture: an even, fairly close grain.

But the one on the left shows streaks – areas of dense, sodden cake. Taking a bite, you’d think it was under-baked – even though it’s actually completely baked.

One of my fellow King Arthur Flour test bakers, Frank Tegethoff, recently called me into the test kitchen for show & tell.

We bakers often do this with one another – “Hey, wanna see something interesting?” someone will say, pulling a deflated loaf of bread, ultra-flat cookie – or perfectly shaped muffin – out of the oven.

We then gather around for a quick lesson in the particular area of baking science demonstrated by said unsuccessful (or super-successful) baked good.

Frank said, “Both of these slices of cake are from the same recipe. Same ingredients; same pan. Same baking time and temperature. Why do you think this one has this pasty middle, and the other one looks fine?”

I considered the question. Preparation method must be the variable. “Ummm… something about how you put together the batter?” (The girl’s a genius!)


Frank proceeded to share his secret. The cake with the pasty center was “over-creamed.”

“How do you over-cream cake batter?” I asked. “I thought the more air you beat in, the better.”

Frank explained that’s true, but creaming (beating together sugar, butter, and eggs) has to be done slowly; “no higher than medium speed.”

And once any flour is added, the mixing has to be slower still. Developing the flour’s gluten too much means the cake will rise beautifully in the oven – then sink (a little, or a lot) as soon as you pull it out.

And the sinking cake is what makes dense, moist, gluey streaks.

Lesson learned: beat butter and sugar and eggs at medium speed. Once you add flour, mix gently.

Thanks, Frank!

Since you can’t be right here in the test kitchen with us, we offer you the next best thing: our toll-free baker’s hotline, staffed by test kitchen bakers. Next time your cake collapses, your cookies crumble, or your bread behaves badly, call us: 855-371-BAKE (2253). We’re here to help.

By the way, since I know you’ll ask – that’s Lemon Bliss Cake Frank used in his experiment.

PJ Hamel

PJ Hamel grew up in New England, graduated from Brown University, and was a Maine journalist before joining King Arthur Flour in 1990. PJ bakes and writes from her home on Cape Cod, where she enjoys beach-walking, her husband, two dogs, and really good food!


    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      On my 10-speed KitchenAid, I consider medium speed 4-5, either one. Hope this helps – PJH

    2. Cynthia Beaver

      Got the same streaks at the bottom of the loaf, cooked both loaves in oven together, could that be the problem? I don’t like the streaks, want to make the loaves as gifts.

    3. The Baker's Hotline

      Cynthia, over-creaming could indeed be the cause! If we can help you troubleshoot in more detail, feel free to give our Baker’s Hotline a call at 855-371-BAKE. Mollie@KAF

    4. Excelsior Crocker

      My pound cakes not just have streaks, it’s entire bottom half. The top part is so light and the bottom part is so dense. It’s seems like the melted butter settled in the bottom. Any idea?

    5. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Excelsior, a few of us bakers put our heads together to come up with a list of the most likely causes of this. It sounds like you might be using a high-fat (European-style) butter, which can produce a denser, slightly greasy bottom. If you’re not already doing so, you’ll want to use a Grade AA, American-style butter. Also, be sure your butter is not too warm/soft to start with. It should be room temperature and maintain some of its shape when pressed with your finger. Lastly, check out our video about creaming butter and sugar together to give you an idea of how long it should be mixed. Creaming shouldn’t take longer than 2-3 minutes maximum, otherwise you run the risk of over-creaming and having your cake turn dense and heavy (either in streaks or the whole bottom, as you describe if it’s over-mixed for long enough). We hope these tips help point you in the right direction, and you can always give our friendly bakers on the Hotline a call at 855-371-BAKE(2253) if you continue to have trouble. Kye@KAF

    6. Ariane

      Hi, thanks for the tip but I actually it can’t have been the problem for me. I made a cake with a pumpkin-apple puree, and and mixed the batter really gently with a whisk and certainly not for too long. Put it in the oven the said time and it seemed like it wasn’t cooked so I but it longer and then my knife looked okay and the check-up, put I ended up with an entire flat, dense, pudding-like cake. I followed a recipe and it wasn’t supposed to look like this. Could it be because I took it out of the oven twice to check? Please help me my cake is barely edible…

    7. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Ariane, if nothing else, it’s good to be able to rule out one possible cause. Other reasons a cake can fall include using too little or too weak flour, using too much leavening, and as you mentioned, opening the oven door before the cake has set, as this lowers the temp of the oven and disrupts the bake. Since there are so many factors that may be at play, we encourage you to give our free Baker’s Hotline a call at 855-371-BAKE to troubleshoot directly with one of our bakers. We’ll be happy to try to help you get to the root of the problem! Mollie@KAF

  1. Lea

    But what if those dense streaks make you all nostalgic because they are the best tasting part of a homemade cream cheese pound cake?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Then by all means, Lea, long live the dense streaks in your cream cheese pound cake! Happy baking! Elisabeth@KAF

    2. hddonna

      Yay for dense poundcakes! Although I wanted a lighter white cake (see my comment below), for years I have enjoyed Martha Adams’ Amish Half a Pound Cake. You put everything in the bowl, beat it for 20 minutes, put it in a cold oven, turn it to 350 degrees, bake, turn out immediately, and let cool. It breaks a lot of rules, but it is fast, easy and delicious. It comes out with the dense streaks about two times out of three, and we prefer it that way!

    3. The Baker's Hotline

      Those old-fashioned recipes that often defy all the rules of modern baking convention often turn out to be some of my favorite! Thanks for sharing and happy, rule-breaking baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  2. hddonna

    I am so glad you wrote about this, PJ! Just a few days ago, I made your Tender White Cake for the third time, and each time I make it, I get the result you refer to. I have always had great success with cakes, but this is the first recipe I have made a recipe using the paste method. I used medium speed throughout, including after adding the milk at the end, and must have beaten the batter too long. I was thinking I’d have to start hunting for a different easy white cake recipe–I wanted one that didn’t require the whites to be beaten separately in order to streamline preparation and cleanup. I can’t wait to try this recipe again, using a slower speed at the end and a shorter beating time.

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Donna, let us know if your next cake turns out to be exactly what you’re looking for – good luck! PJH

    2. Heather

      hddonna – I had problems with the KAF white cake recipe too. I also wanted one that didn’t require the whites to be beaten separately. I follow another blog – Joe Pastry – and early this year he was taking requests for recipes. I asked him for a white cake recipe. His recipe is similar in ingredients and preparation. One big difference is how you add the liquid. You combine the milk, egg whites and extract then add half, beat, scrape, half, beat, scrape then add balance of liquid and beat a little longer. I love KAF and go to them first for all things baking but I do use Joe’s white cake recipe – using KAF cake flour of course : )

    3. hddonna

      PJ–thanks–I’ll report back here when I do get a chance to try again. It may be a while. Heather–thanks for the tip. Maybe I’ll have to do a comparison between methods/recipes.

  3. Heather

    I always wondered what made those dense streaks! I just assumed I undercooked the batter 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

  4. PAUL from Ohio

    Way to go FRANK, and PJ for sharing. Absolutely one of the finer points of baking but something many of us, myself included, have oft wondered about…ps – Lemon Bliss cake is THE BEST!

  5. Laurie

    In pound cakes, I have heard that doughy bit called a “sad streak”, and I like it! But I will certainly try creaming at a lower speed to get a more even texture.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Laurie- Who knew there was actually a name for those things? Thanks so much for sharing and teaching me something new today and best of luck on your pound cake adventure! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

    2. NS

      My grandfather – a baker – also called this a “sad streak.” But he was never ashamed of a cake that exhibited that trait. (But he probably would not have sold it)

    3. Gaynelle

      I grew up in the South ( a good number of years ago!) and the dense part was always called a “sad streak”. Many folks preferred them and said they were the best part of the cake. They were delighted when it happened – me, not so much.

  6. Joe

    So, if over beating the gluten causes dense streaks, what happens if using gluten free flour? Is it immune, or does this have the same effect on potato starch and xanthum gum additives.
    (Unfortunately, my wife also seems to have a reaction to tapioca as well, otherwise I would just ask you about your gluten-free all purpose flour).

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Joe- Using gluten-free flour would have its own set of issues. Although the final result may present the same way in your cake (gummy or greasy steaks), it would not be because of the same reasons, as the hydration, incorporation, and stabilization of ingredients in gluten-free baking is a different can of worms entirely. If you have a particular recipe you were interested in trouble shooting, please feel free to give our Baker’s Hotline a call at 855-371-2253 and we’d be happy to help you out over the phone. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  7. Carol Ashworth

    For me what works even with box cake mix it to beat the eggs by themselves till nice and foamy. Then proceed with the recipe!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Thanks for the suggestion Carol! It always helps to have new ideas on what might work for different recipes when your first try doesn’t succeed. Happy Baking and thanks again for sharing! Jocelyn@KAF

  8. Karen

    Really? Thanks! I do beat on high speed, oops. I thought my cakes had streaks because I use egg substitute instead of real eggs ( we have cholesterol issues). Thanks for the great information.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It’s always hard to tell what can cause the millions of issues we have all run into with our baked goods at one time or another, but hopefully we’ve helped you at least solve this one mystery. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  9. Mike Patterson

    Recently had this happen. A beautiful pound cake so big and fluffy, then as it started to cool, it deflated. When it was cut there were greasy looking bands inside.Now I know why! Thanks for the tip. Keep up the good work.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It’s great to hear you found this tutorial so useful! Hope your next one come out streak-free and beautiful risen! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  10. kathyd

    I am so glad to read this. I spent about a month making cream cheese pound cakes that came out this way. Nobody at work complained but I was annoyed. Everytime I would take it out of the oven it fell. Even friends on the Baking Circle thought it was under baked. I can’t tell you how much butter/sugar/flour/cream cheese I went through testing. And how much I whipped those eggs, butter, and sugar! Lesson learned! I can’t wait to make another cream cheese pound cake now.
    Thanx again for sharing,

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi KathyD- I know how you feel when you can’t figure out the one little thing in your recipe that just isn’t right- it can be terribly frustrating. I am thrilled to hear we helped you figure that out! Best of luck with the next cream cheese pound cake and happy baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  11. Lori

    Interesting! What about when this happens with a Portuguese sweet bread that was mixed and risen in a breadmaker but baked in the oven? Would this mean that the sweet bread batter was over-creamed too and should be kneaded in the KA or by hand before baking? I was just wondering if this only applied to cake, or to bread too. I haven’t had this problem with any other bread recipe other than sweet bread. Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Lori-
      The issues that arise in bread doughs will be different than those you see in cakes as the ingredients will interact differently. If you’d like to talk about the issues you are having with your Portuguese Sweet Breads, please feel free to contact our Baker’s Hotline at 1-855-371-2253 and we’d be happy to help you figure out whats going on over the phone. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  12. Robin

    Thank you so much for this useful and enlightening lesson! This just happened to me last week because I gave both children time to help mix the cake. The cake was delicious as always but had fallen in the middle. Now I know why! 🙂

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We’re so glad to hear that you could put this advice to good use! I guess next time you’ll have to try one round of team mixing with the kiddos, but in the end, sometimes a little bit of sunken cake (still as delicious as a pretty one) is worth a great memory with your family. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  13. ML Chow

    Thanks for the tips. But I still don’t quite understand how the speed of mixing would give you the steaks? Would it be the heat generated by the high speed melts the butter? Or is the gluten got developed by over mixing? If gluten is the culprit, then why not the whole cake becomes pasty but only streaks?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi ML- The details of everything that is happening is quite complex and not dependent on any singular factor in the recipe. The important thing to note is that the general act of over-mixing, particularly at high speeds, whether at the creaming or flour addition stage, will cause interactions between ingredients that lead ultimately to a breakdown of the proper structure of the cake, which is what you spent so much effort developing before we beat it back down. So just stick to slightly lower speeds and watch your batter to be sure you stop it as soon as it is fully incorporated and fluffy and you should be all set to go with a beautifully-crumbed cake. If you have any more questions, please feel free to contact our Baker’s Hotline at 1-855-371-2253. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  14. carol gronli

    So if I mix it by hand with a whisk/wooden spoon/fork, what speed do I put my arm on? *giggle*
    Actually I grew up mixing by hand and that’s how I was taught. Want a challenge? Make an angel food cake from scratch by hand. I promise your muscles will hate you!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Carol- Just an average speed by hand should be fine for bringing everything together, with maybe a little quick mixing just to fluff up the batter a bit at the end to ensure a full creaming and incorporation of all the ingredients. No need to kill yourself with a super-fast whipping throughout, but I hold a great deal of respect for anyone who dares to take on an angel food cake from scratch. You are a braver woman than I and this cake should be a walk in the park for you! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  15. rltracy

    I have also had that problem. I assumed I under baked it. But it is interesting that the toothpick came out clean which stumped me. Been leery of trying that recipe again but I will now.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Best of luck with your next attempt and feel free to be in touch with our Baker’s Hotline at 855-371-2253 if you have any other question we can help with to get you on track to a lovely pound cake in no time! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  16. Elaine

    Thanks! I could not figure out what happened to my black walnut cake, it looked just like this the last time I made it. I will pay much more attention to the settings and timing for the next one.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Best of luck Elaine! I’m sure you’re increased attentiveness will lead you too a wonderful, streak-free black walnut cake this time around…happy baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  17. Ricardo Neves Gonzalez -SENAC R.J. -Petrópolis R.J.- BRAZIL-

    Excelent post.
    One of the best acts we professionals must encourage is to share all our own experiences among partners at kitchen.
    Can i share something i discovered about baking breads adding acid fruits such Kiwi and even papaya in great amounts at the dough?
    One evening i decided to bake some kiwi fruit bread and after i´ve added an amount of fruit to the dough at begining of mixing time, at first speed, i set the mix velocity at second speed and started developing faster. The dough was a soft one with little addition of eggs and butter. After 4 minutes beating i stopped the mixer and checked all the work done! And what happened to the dough?
    It turned heavy a lot and very dense, something new to me who always worked with well developed gluten dough with softly results at the end of developing work. That dough turned bad and completely unapropriated to growth and turn on a nice bread. I threw it out and started to think what could be happened to that dough. Something really bad occured. The dough turned so heavy that was difficult to turn it out from the bowl. And the elasticity was losted definitely with no way back to normal condition. After study a lot about that situation and after consulted to my biology teacher he noticed and cleared my mind about what really occured. what happened was a denaturation of protein bonds due to high acidification caused by the fruit addition at dough!
    It was right. But one another question occupied my mind!
    I would never be able to make Kiwi breads, anymore?? How can i do to face that challenge?
    I started to think and after several times of study that bread question, i´d got the answer.
    What i needed to do is to develop the dough first with none addition of fruit. After the dough achieved the full development of gluten, then i turned the mixer velocity to low speed and added Kiwi acid fruit at finalof the process. It works great and i obtained the best Kiwi bread i was looking for so long time!
    Another conditions that could cause denaturation on bread doughs are high temperature exposition of dough by long time and heavy and prolongated mechanical work of dough, damaging the gluten chains permanently!

    So, we need to be in tune with the others who may have some answers to our technical questions.It´s fantastic and must be incentivated!
    Nice and opportune post!!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Ricardo- Thank you so much for sharing all your experiences and for emphasizing the importance of everyone in the baking community working together to share their experiences and solve their problems. That camaraderie is what makes this such a wonderful community to be a part of. Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  18. valerie46

    I never add the dry ingredients with mixer – always gently fold in by hand, using a METAL spoon for lightness – wood, plastic or silicon are too heavy, although they may feel lighter in the hand. Metal has a much cleaner edge, which is what you use when “folding”.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Thank you so much for sharing your own experiences with this common issue. It’s wonderful that you have found a solution that works so well for you and we wish you the best of luck in your pound cake endeavors! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  19. Sherry Boyd

    So glad to see this article! I’ve made a lemon sour cream pound cake from a recipe I found last year and up until recently I had not experienced this happening to my cake. I knew the moment the cake cooled that something was amiss but I had promised it for a cookout and didn’t have a back up! I do remember creaming the butter, sugar, flour (King Arthur of course) and egg yolks on higher than medium speed for a longer time in my lift stand kitchen aid mixer. Thankfully my friend and her family know that I’m a great baker so I took my licks for the bad cake gracefully. I can tell you that shook my confidence a bit and I have yet to attempt the cake again since. I just thought I hadn’t baked it enough. Now thanks to understanding the science behind this particular problem, I will happily get back to baking this awesome cake!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Way to get back in there Sherry! Hopefully armed with your new found knowledge you can conquer that cake without any fear and all those who were giving you grief will be forced to bite there tongues when they taste your next, sure to be delicious, attempt! Happy Baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  20. Carolyn

    Post like this are why I love this blog so much. Thank you for sharing information about technique and science.

  21. marietta

    Thanks for the info. I made a coconut pound cake last month and used a Bundt pan instead of a loaf. I had the streak effect and basically assumed I shouldn’t have switched pans. I did test with a toothpick and thought it was done. I will remember from this day forward to use medium speed and even less when adding the flour. Feeling much better now.

  22. Tomoko

    I really enjoy the posts here, but this was a real help. I always wondered what happened and why? Thanks for the education. Very appreciated.

  23. Lorraine Stevenski

    Thank you KA for another great baking tip! My baking mentor, Nick Malgieri, wrote a fabulous cookbook called PERFECT CAKES. There are a few recipes in this book called “High Ratio Cakes”. He explains “a high-ratio cake is one in which the weight of the sugar equals or exceeds the weight of the flour”. Basically you mix all the dry ingredients with the butter on LOW speed. Then the liquids are whisked together and added in a few increments on MEDIUM speed for about 2 minutes each increment. Finally a “vigorous” stir by hand with a rubber spatula just to insure the batter is properly mixed and smooth. Would you think this method would work for all pound cakes and insure a smooth crumb? The lemon bliss cake is not a high-ratio cake in measure, but is almost borderline so. Love this baking class!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      If you want the best cake or baked results, use the method described in the recipe (we trust it’s been tried and tested!). If you are an experimental baker, bake one cake according to the recipe directions and the next cake using the method you described. You’ll be able to see (and taste) your results, knowing which method works best for you in your kitchen. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  24. Ria Koper

    Well, what do you know ? I made the lemon bliss cake and had exactly the same cake as the one on the left. With the dense streak in it. And indeed I was wondering how that happened. Because it did taste done ! so next time I will follow the instructions regarding beating Thanks everybody !!

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Try, try again, Ria – I’m sure it was delicious anyway, love that recipe! 🙂 PJH

  25. Laura Fischer

    The cakes with a ‘sad streak’ are considered the BEST, according to all my Virginia friends! They all have fond memories of their grandmother’s, or mother’s cakes being that way sometimes. The term ‘sad’ refers to the heaviness…or solidity…like a ‘sad iron’, the extremely heavy irons women used to have to use. Or, even the heavy physical feeling, we have when we experience sadness, like a weight on your chest.

    Thanks for tips/technique tune ups! You guys are wonderful!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      I love the image of the “sad iron” and how much history and emotion is wrapped up it. Thanks so much for sharing. Barb@KAF

  26. Craig

    Thanks for sharing this wonderful method tip. I’ve always been one the beat the daylights out of the ‘creamed’ ingredients for virtually all recipes. And to think that I’ve been doing it wrong for nearly 50 years! I made my own test yesterday; the proof is in the cake! -Craig

  27. "Midnite Baker"

    I, too, think this is a “aha” blog. Would you be so kind as to add a link from the recipe to this very informative blog? Thanks so much. Mary

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Mary, it doesn’t apply to only this recipe, but to many cake recipes, so I’d prefer not to appear to single this one out as requiring any “special” help. We’re currently working on a new baking guide section, and this blog will definitely link from our cake-baking guide. Thanks for the suggestion – PJH

  28. Dee Robinson

    I read on another forum years ago, that it was from under beating, so I beat my cakes more! Now I see that I was going in the wrong direction.

  29. Loretta Shearn

    I have been making the most beautiful pound cake, then all of a sudden the streaks were there. I was so heart broken about it that I stopped baking them. Here it is Thanksgiving holiday, I have a new electric range and could not wait to finally make a pound cake. The first one came out good. It did not fall at all. I thought hey, I’ll make another one. However it fell once out of the oven and the streak was there. I am so glad there is a reason for it. I could not figure it out. After adding my flour and milk I would beat it very well. (too well). Thank you so much. I will follow your suggestions. Happy Thanksgiving!

  30. Nunnie

    Thank you so much for this article. I made an Almond Bundt Cake that turned off heavenly the first time I made it. I go so many compliments. The 2nd & 3rd time I tried the same recipe, I got those streaks and thought I undercooked it. I’m going to go try the recipe again right now and am slowing down on the mixing. Thanks!

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Good luck, Nunnie – if you’ve succeeded once, I know you can do it again! PJH

  31. SJ

    Well, I just made a sour cream pound cake, and sad streak occurred. So glad to know what I just learned. I have a new Kitchen Aid mixer and first time using it. Not really sure which speed to use I don’t think I went over #4 speed. But I apparently mix ingredients too long.
    Oh well, I will try again and see what happens . Thank for the advice…

  32. Ellen C. Derby

    Thank you! My grandmother’s poundcake, which I have made dozens of times and which is practically fool proof fell after baking. The texture was wrong, the flavor was off, the crust wasn’t right. And it did have those horrible dense areas…. this cake has a very fine texture normally and practically melts on your tongue but not today. This is the first time this has EVER happened. My daughter found this post and it confirmed my suspicion of not beating it enough in the sugar and butter stage and too much in the flour stage. The only unwritten guide for this cake is to beat the heck out of the butter and sugar – you cannot cream it too much. Today my back was hurting a lot and I was in a bit of a rush and I ended up beating the end part a lot and not the beginning. Live and learn!

  33. Peggy Eifler

    What a great tip I bake lots of cakes and some I’ve had those streaks and some not. and sometimes it was the same recipe done within days and I always wondered what I was doing wrong. well now I know and it will be a great help, thank you. Love KAF

  34. Shai

    I Recently started making cakes with my own twist. But I add too many ingredients and every time. I bake the cake comes out dense. Every one loves it but I’d like a fluffy cake at least once. I put yogurt and soda in the batter and milk instead of water. Is having too much liquid causing that? And how do I adjust the consistency? Do I add more flower?
    Also, normally I beat the eggs first add all the liquids beat with a mixer and then put in the dry. Is the orders making it dense too? Questions that need answers. Help me lol thank u

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      These questions would be great for our Baker’s Hotline, Shai. Give us a call at 855-371-2253, and we will be happy to talk cakes with you! Barb@KAF

  35. Christiana


    I’m British and use Kenwood.

    On a Kenwood Major premier stand mixer 1200w with a 6 speed setting, what level would be considered medium speed and which will be considered slow?

    Many thanks

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      I’d say the first speed is slow, Christiana. For medium, your best bet is to run the mixer all six speeds, and determine, by ear, which one sounds like it’s in the middle – that’ll be medium. I’d guess it would be speed 3. Good luck – PJH

  36. Betty Harvey

    I have cakes rise beautifully, then fall while cooling a few minutes in the pan. What is the cause of this? My chocolate chip pound cake always falls. It has 12 ozs. Of chips. Could that be too many chips? Everyone likes it because it is so moist.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Betty, cakes can fall for a number of reasons. To prevent this sad deflating, you can try boosting your oven temperature by 25 degrees and shortening the baking time by 5-10 minutes (test with a sharp knife or tooth pick inserted into the center–it is done when it comes out clean). Also be sure you are using a quality cake flour and not over-creaming the eggs and the sugar. This can actually create a weak structure to the cake, which may be the source of your deflating cake. As for your pound cake in particular, we have a pound cake recipe that calls for 16 cups of chips! So it’s is not your 12 ounces that is making the cake deflate, but feel free to adjust this amount to your personal taste. You can try tossing the chips in 2 tablespoons of flour before adding them to the batter to help them stay suspended. Hopefully these small changes can give you a lofty, chocolate, beautifully-risen cake. Happy baking! –Kye@KAF

  37. Kim Onofrio

    I have a chocolate cake recipe that this happens to. You add the wet ingredients to the dry then mix for 2 minutes. Could this be the reason for it to fall and have that dense streak?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Over-creaming the butter and eggs in a cake recipe is the most common cause of a pasty-looking streak in a cake. Mixing the wet and dry ingredients together for a long time can make the cake tough and not rise quite as much, so you can reduce this mixing time until the dry and wet ingredients are just incorporated. Cakes can also fall if you have too much sugar, shortening, or leavening, so be sure you are using a tried and tested recipe. Here is our favorite chocolate cake recipe if you are looking to experiment: Happy cake baking to you! –Kye@KAF

  38. sha

    I don’t use recipes that call for creaming butter and sugar. I use an oil based recipe, where I beat eggs first, then add the dry and wet ingredients. I get the streaks often. Why is that?

    1. Susan Reid

      How often are you scraping the bowl, both sides and bottom? It’s a tedious step, but it’s really the only way to prevent those streaks from happening. Susan

    2. The Baker's Hotline

      Oil based cakes tend to be made by the muffin method of mixing by the cake method or creaming – it still is a good idea to scrape down the sides and use low/medium as the top speed for mixing. Happy Baking! Irene@kAF

  39. Sara

    my family has a great recipe for pound cake, but everytime I try to make it, it get the streaks despite passing the knife test! The crust is perfect, but it sinks 10 minutes out of the oven! I frustrated when other people can do it and not me although I am an avid baker. Do you have any suggestions on the method for me (ex. Mixing time and method)? Here is the recipe:
    1.5 sticks butter
    3/4 c shortening,
    6 eggs
    1.5 tsp vanilla
    3 cups flour
    3 tsp baking powder
    3/4 c milk
    Mix all together and beat for 30 minutes. Grease and sugar a large loaf pan (it is huge!)Bake in a 350 oven for 1 hr 15 minutes. Cool.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yowza, 30 minutes is a super long time to mix cake batter. Are you mixing by hand or with a machine? In either case, it sounds like the batter is over mixed. We’d be happy to chat further about this, just give our hotline a call. 855 371 2253 Jon@KAF

  40. Sara

    My family has a tasty pound cake recipe, but each time I make it, it falls and develops these dense streaks. I always thought that it was not baked but was baffled since the toothpick test passed and it had the perfect crust and taste. How would you recommend that I approach the following recipe (ex. Kitchenaid mixer speeds, order, etc)? I want to get it right and will even mix the flour in by hand for 30 minutes if I have to!
    1.5 sticks of butter
    3/4 c shortening
    6 eggs
    1.5 tsp vanilla
    3/4 cup milk
    3 c flour
    3 tsp baking powder
    Pinch salt

    Mix all ingredients together for 30 minutes. Grease and sugar coat a large loaf pan (it is huge!) and bake for 1 hr 15 minutes at 350. Cool.

    Thank you!

    1. PJ Hamel, post author

      Sara, I assume there’s sugar in this cake that you failed to list. I’d beat the butter, shortening, and sugar together at medium speed (speed #4 for the KitchenAid) until lightened in color; this should take maybe 4-5 minutes or so. Add the eggs one at a time, scraping the bowl and mixing thoroughly after each. Add the vanilla; then whisk the flour with the baking powder and salt, and add it, 1 cup at a time, to the egg mixture, alternately with the milk. Do this all at lower speed (speed 2 is fine), and beat only until the mixture smoothes out each time. There’s no need to beat this cake batter for 30 minutes; perhaps, if it originally lacked chemical leavening (baking powder; many older pound cake recipes don’t include baking powder), it needed 30 minutes of beating to lighten and aerate the eggs/sugar/butter. But this isn’t necessary, considering the baking powder. Good luck! PJH

    2. Sara

      Thank you PJ! Yes, it did have sugar 🙂

      I am trying to surprise my mom with it on Mother’s Day and do not want to mess it up again! The baking powder actually was in the original recipe, which called for the 30 minute mixing time, but I will make sure everything is nice and fluffy before baking. Hey, it will save me loads of time too 🙂

  41. Raneen

    What if you cake looks like this but there is not butter?? I just used oil.
    Vanilla Cake Recipe
    4 or 200g (7.05 ounces) eggs
    1 1/2 cup or 360g (12.7 ounces) sugar
    2 tablespoons vanilla
    1 cup or 250g (8.82 ounces) oil or margarine
    1 cup or 250g (8.82 ounces) milk
    2 tsp vinegar
    2 1/2 cups or 380g (13.4 ounces) flour
    3 tsp baking powder
    Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Place all the ingredients in a bowl and mix with an electric mixer until smooth and lighter in colour – approx 4 minutes on high. Pour into cake tin and bake in moderate oven until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      You were spot on to add either oil or margarine to mix and bake this vanilla cake. Since it’s a one bowl cake, all ingredients are placed in the bowl and mixed and Voila!Vanilla Cake! Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  42. elly

    i made a lemon drizzle cake by hand, normally cheat and use my kitchen aid.
    It started to crack right through the middle of the cake and looked squigy.
    I left it in there for about 35/40mins, testing it using knife to make sure it was clean when put through the cake.
    i let it cool down and went to cut it up this morning. It doesn’t look quite right, it is spongy and light at the top and even has a nice glaze. But then looks undercooked/big white streaky section at the bottom.
    Will it still be edible or have i just wasted a whole cake 🙁

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It is still edible but obvious will have a different taste and mouth feel. I believe that you over creamed your sugar, butter and eggs. Always use medium speed when creaming and a slow speed when incorporating the flour. Hope this helps! JoAnn@KAF

  43. Karina

    Wow!!!!!!! I feel so wonderful 😀 I was so confused n confused as whats going wrong with my chocolate cake????

  44. Vanessa

    I’m so say–I’m making a strawberry cake that will be turned into a dog for my niece’s birthday and they all ended up like this. The recipe called for creaming the butter and sugar on medium speed first “until light and fluffy,” then adding eggs at medium, then alternating flour and milk/puree. I thought I did all this–and I scraped frequently (or so I thought), but all the cakes are extremely dense. It’s the whole cake too, not just a streak. What should I do if the recipe calls for mixing until light and fluffy? I used speed 4 on my stand mixer.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Sounds like the cake was over mixed, Vanessa. Do you happen to know how long you mixed the cake batter for? It generally won’t take longer than 30-45 seconds to fully mix a batter. Jon@KAF

    2. Vanessa

      Hi, it was probably longer than 35-45 seconds. What if the batter isn’t entirely mixed? Or does that just mean I need to scrape the sides sooner?

    3. The Baker's Hotline

      Scrape the sides early and often when making the cake. You do want the batter fully mixed, and spatula vigilance will help make for a short and sweet final spin in the mixer. Happy baking! Laurie@KAF

  45. qsbj

    Something else I learned to avoid overmixing is to let all ingredients come up to room temperature … the butter, eggs, and sugar come together so much quicker and thoroughly, making the “light and fluffy” stage happen sooner.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      For best results, have all ingredients at room temperature unless otherwise specified. Happy baking! Laurie@KAF

  46. Beth

    I have had a gluey streak problem with sourdough bread, which is a new thing I am trying. No commercial yeast. Tastes delicious, and the internal temperature test indicates it is cooked, but I am often getting that gluey streak…and there’s no beating involved! All done by hand. Any suggestions appreciated!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      To avoid confusing people with sourdough bread advice in a cake blog, please give our Baker’s Hotline a call at 1-855-371-2253. Happy baking! Laurie@KAF

  47. Joanne

    I always heard that called “a sad streak” in a cake. I never understood why because it seemed to make everyone in my family SO happy it was there!! Often called the best part of the cake!!

  48. Angie

    Hi! Thanks for the great article!

    Ok, so I totally get over developing the gluten/sinking cake bit, but what does fast creaming or over creaming do to cause the streaks?

    1. Susan Reid

      Creaming is the process of creating air pockets in butter; the mixer uses the crystals of sugar to create small holes in the butter, that are expanded by the cake’s leavener when the cake is baked. Overcreaming does a couple of things: it overheats the butter, making it soft, and it creates so many holes that the structure that’s created can’t hold itself together, and the weight of the batter collapses the cake, creating the streaks you saw in the picture. Susan

  49. Cricketswool

    I always cream by hand. With a spoon. I have no idea how that compares to a mixer speed. It probably varies with what type of day I’m having and how well I slept the night before.

  50. Susmera

    Thanks a ton. I have been searching for answers on this. My cakes from past 2 years have been coming like the glutened one on the picture. Especially the one made with butter. I almost gave up baking. Finally now I have the answer. I’ll try this soon. Thank you .

  51. Jacky Barker

    Thanks for the tip! Has only happened to me occasionally and wondered why as appeared perfectly cooked. Will keep an eye on the beater speed hence forth. 🙂

  52. LG

    Thanks so much for posting this article on preventing these gooey streaks! I made two Angel Food cakes and seemed to get these streaks the last two times I made them. I just threw them out thinking they weren’t fully cooked even though my toothpick came out clean. The taste was fine. I took your suggestions and was pleasant surprised, SUCCESS and one beautiful fluffy Angel Food cake. YES! Thanks for explaining the science behind this, so I can produce better baked goods in the future. KAF rocks!

  53. BJ

    Thank you so very much for this.
    I had not baked very much except brownies for over 30 years, but decided to do a pound cake (1 lb. of butter, 6 eggs, not cheap!). I never had this sad streak in a cake before and I thought it was the recipe. I had read that since a real poundcake (unlike the recipe I used to make that did have baking powder) has no baking powder it’s important to really beat the butter, sugar, and eggs; I guess I overdid it. So my beautiful cake with the sad streak made me very sad, indeed!
    Perhaps, I will now buck up and try this recipe again.
    Thanks for the info. I always love learning something. Who knew?

  54. ytossie

    Thanks for the info. The exact thing happened to me, I thought the temp in the oven was uneven. And then I thought maybe bc I used margarine instead of better. Never though it was over creamed. Will bake again soon

  55. Lanette

    I am making a cake today and the recipe says to “with a hand mixer or kitchen mixer for 30 minutes at medium speed” (see below for full instructions.) This recipe uses a white cake mix and the 10″x3″ cake will then be cut into 4 layers. During assembly, the layers will be sprayed with rum. I started researching because I thought the 30 min mixing time must have been a typo. Based off this being a layer cake that will be soaked/dense, do you think the 30 minute mixing time is appropriate? I really appreciate any feedback you can provide. Thanks!

    Here are the instructions:
    1. Pour half of the water into a mixing bowl.
    2. Add eggs and oil.
    3. Add the cake mix and whip for 2 minutes.
    4. Scrape down the sides using a rubber spatula.
    5. While mixing, add the other half of the water gradually over 1 minute.
    6. Again, scrape down the sides using a rubber spatula.
    7. Mix with a hand mixer or kitchen mixer for 30 minutes at medium speed.
    8. Pre-grease a 10” x 3” cake pan with butter or nonstick spray and add the batter to the pan.
    9. Bake the cake in a convection oven that’s been pre-heated to 300° F, on a low fan setting, for 1 hr. and 5 mins.
    10. When the timer goes off, place a toothpick in the middle of cake; if it comes out clean, the cake is done. Allow it to cool completely in the pan.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Yikes, 30 minutes! We would not recommend mixing a cake for that long. It will make a very dense, chewy cake. Usually about 3 minutes of mixing is the most we recommend to get a light and tender cake. Any chance there is an error in the recipe and it should read 3 minutes? Sounds like the case to us. Best of luck, we’ll keep our fingers crossed. Kye@KAF

  56. Cheryl

    All of a sudden I am noticing my (yellow)cakes are dense and gummy. They use to turn out perfect. (same recipe). The edges are baked & brown and the top is lightly browned. I have read your suggestion that it might be over creamed. I have also read you have to make sure you get enough air into it so it doesn’t become heavy. What is the balance? Thank You

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      It is a balance, but we did write a blog about the creaming process to address this very issue: It may help to have a conversation with one of our bakers on the Hotline to fine tune your technique. Laurie@KAF

  57. Valarie

    Thank you so much. This article is a lifesaver. Yesterday I made sure not to mix too much after adding the flour to my cream cheese pound cake. When I took the cake out of the oven, it was beautiful and looked perfect. A few minutes later, it deflated to almost half its size. When I sliced it, the whole bottom half of the cake was gummy and wet. I used a hand mixer instead of my KitchenAid mixer. I guess I beat the wet ingredients too long… My family was gracious, and said they enjoyed the cake, but something went terribly wrong. I’ve had a few gummy streaks before, but never the whole bottom half of the cake. I stored the cake flour in the freezer, but made sure all ingredients were room temperature. Could freezing the cake flour have affected the cake?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Valarie, freezing the cake flour was not likely the source of your troubles. (We actually recommend storing the flour in the freezer to help keep it fresh for longer.) It sounds like the butter and sugar were creamed together for too long before the dry ingredients were added in this case. Beating the sugar into the butter creates lots of little air pockets, which can make the structure of the cake very weak if it is done for too long (and therefore more likely to deflate). Next time, try creaming the butter and sugar together in 30 second intervals, scraping down the sides in between for no more than 2-3 minutes total. Also, be sure that you remove the cake from the pan after about 5-10 minutes of cooling so that the bottom does not steam. I hope this helps with your next cake! Kye@KAF

  58. Rainman

    Thank you for sharing this!!! this has been happening to me lately. Can i over cream the butter and sugar, then medium beat the eggs one at a time, then slowly fold in the flour?

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      If you have already over creamed the butter and sugar, you are not off to a good start. As Frank states, when creaming the butter and sugar and then adding the eggs, use medium speed. Flour should be folded in gently. Good luck! Elisabeth@KAF

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Creaming, whether it’s with butter or oil, must be done on the medium speed of a stand mixer. Over-mixing is the culprit to the gluey streaks, so slow mix to incorporate flour into the other ingredients is key. Once a cake is over-mixed, it will rise in the oven then settle once it’s out and that is the true culprit of the streaks. Happy Baking! Irene@KAF

  59. Jan Garrett

    The ‘sad streak’ happens to me every year when I make my daughter’s birthday cake. I make the strawberry ribbon cake which begins with a box cake mix then has a cream cheese mixture center. Same as everyone else says — it comes out of the oven perfect then drops! To me that ‘gummy’ part spoils the taste as well as the look. I use a tube pan and tried the stoneware type as well as the metal pans. The streak happened in both. So I plan to try your technique and hope for the best. Thank you!

  60. Brittany

    So what will make a really dense and moist cake on purspose without being streaky? I want to make a dense moist cake with an even texture. A local bakery does it so well and I want to mimic the texture so bad! Thanks!

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Brittany, try using a pound cake recipe (our Golden Vanilla Pound Cake is a delicious choice) and just be sure not to over-cream the butter and sugar mixture. Review this video that shows how to properly cream butter and sugar, and take note of the mixing times. This will incorporate just the right amount of air into your batter to give you a tender yet pleasantly dense pound cake. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  61. Lisa Compo

    I am 47 and have baked with great success since I was a child. I always used a hand mixer or my vintage Sunbeam Mixmaster stand mixer. I had beautiful, fluffy cakes every time. Great cookies etc…
    Recently, I wanted to try baking my own bread, so it became necessary to buy a KitchenAid stand mixer. I can’t bake a cake with this mixer to save my life. I thought I had lost my skills or constant bad luck or recipe choice. I stopped trying cakes from “baker’s trauma”. Ha ha ha Flat, dense, gummy…you name it. I thought I was an idiot because I now had the famous most popular mixer and couldn’t make anything but bread.
    Reading this article has proven that I am over creaming and also over mixing the flour. I think it’s a really easy mistake to make because these mixers are so powerful. I also have issues with how the ingredients stick to the paddle, the constant need to scrape the bowl even using the rubber edged paddle and my OCD need to mix well. 🙂
    Thanks for the excellent article, perhaps many of our failures are from too much power and our desire to mix well. Knowing when to stop is the trick I need to master with my new mixer.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Sometimes less is more, Lisa and this is certainly the case with creaming butter and sugar together. Resist the urge to mix too well. Good luck! Kye@KAF

  62. Batsheva Ribiat

    I feel so silly asking this, but here goes anyway.
    I’m working on a brand new recipe for a food column. Cooking i have no trouble with, actually, I’m pretty good at it! but baking… oh dear. I can follow a recipe no problem, and i’ve made delicious cookies, brownies, cakes, breads and muffins. even slightly altering a recipe seems to be ok. but coming up with a recipe from scratch seems like I’m in way over my head. I just wanted to make sure I wasn’t copying any existing recipes and doing it completely from scratch is the only way i know how to do that. I do have a somewhat rudimentary understanding of some basic baking principles, so I thought I would just throw together all the things i’ve learned from my baking experiences over the years and see what would happen.
    Here’s the recipe I came up with from scratch just as a starting point (not that it’s anything impressive, lol). I did bake this cake and it came out dense and rubbery and gummy. The flavor was disappointing as well. I was just wondering if you could tell me where I went wrong.
    1 3/4 cups cake flour
    1/2 tsp baking powder
    2 lg eggs
    1/3 cup honey
    1 cup mott’s unsweetened applesauce
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/4 tsp ground ginger
    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    1/4 cup olive oil
    1 tsp lemon juice
    1 1/2 tbsps brown sugar
    1/8 Cup apple cider
    i baked it on 325 for about 8 minutes, realized it was probably too low, then raised the temp to 365 for another 5 minutes and then thought it should be even higher, at 375 where i baked it another 17 minutes. again, i know practically nothing about baking so if the above ratios seem ridiculous it’s because this is the first time i’ve attempted anything like this. to be honest, i was surprised that something with a form that was somewhat edible came out of the oven. I’m thinking it could have been anything from not using the right flour (i used cake because in my research i found that it’s supposed to rise better and result in lighter cakes), or whipping the batter too much ( i did everything by hand because i wanted to make sure it would be slowly incorporated), or using too much liquid, or fat, or maybe the honey+ olive oil meant too much dense liquids, i don’t really know. any amount of advice would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Batsheva Ribiat

      Just a couple more things- i wanted to keep the cake from being dairy, so i used oil instead of butter. i also started the cake by sifting the dry ingredients in a separate bowl, then broke the eggs into another bowl, whisked them, added the honey and applesauce and blended, then i added the flour mixture, but also kept adjusting and adding flour and other things until it was the consistency and flavor i liked.

    2. The Baker's Hotline

      What an ambitious undertaking, Batsheva! A few of our bakers took a look at the recipe and agreed that there are a few things you might want to consider, including keeping your temp stable at something closer to 350 and re-evaluating the proportion of ingredients — at first look, the liquid seems high and the fat low. It also looks like you have a lot of acidic ingredients but don’t have any baking soda (the leavening looks low in general). While we certainly understand the desire and the motivation to start a recipe from scratch, and we’re happy to try to help, recipe development projects generally require a lot of learning and experimenting before getting it right. It may help to compare the ratios of ingredients used in a sampling of similar recipes you enjoy before going back to yours, or consulting expert works on the subject. Rose Levy Berenbaum’s Cake Bible can be a great resource as can the ratios provided by Michael Ruhlman on his site and in his books: We hope this helps get you headed in a productive direction! Mollie@KAF

  63. colleen

    Thank you so much for this post.
    I was about to loose hope and started to think baking is not for me.

    I had issues where the whole cake ends up dense, not parts of it.
    I think I was mixing the butter and eggs and sugar too much.

    It shows more when I dirty ice the cake and place it into the fridge, I was thinking maybe the fridge is doing this, I only have a problem with vanilla sponges.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Colleen,
      We’re glad to hear you found this post enlightening. We hope it helps improve the texture of your cakes in the future. If you find you’re still ending up with dense cakes, you might want to measure your flour by weight (if you’re not already doing so) and you can always give the Baker’s Hotline a call. We have a team of bakers at the ready: 855-371-BAKE(2253). I hope that helps! Kye@KAF

  64. Melissa Ellis

    Hi. mine doesn’t always end up with streaks, but sometimes they do and i do everything the same each time. i put sugar, cake flour and butter together, mix it for 3 minutes per the recipe, and then add my egg mixture, which includes eggs, buttermilk and vanilla. please help

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Melissa, as a baker it’s easy to feel like everything is exactly the same from batch to batch, but when you’re trying to troubleshoot it’s best to put on a scientist’s hat. Even seemingly small variables like the temperature of your ingredients and how you’re measuring (by volume or by weight) can cause differences among batches. For best results, make sure you’re using room temperature ingredients that have been measured using a scale, and you might even want to time how long you mix you butter and sugar together. We have a helpful video on our website about creaming butter and sugar together, which you can use for guidance. Try thinking like a scientist when making your next cakes, and see if that gives you consistent results. Good luck! Kye@KAF

  65. Sheila Nichols

    omg this was so helpful and now i do remember beating my butter and sugar fast becasue butter wasnt soft enough.

  66. Alpa

    I have been trying making eggless whole wheat cake and it’s always dense n gluey ..I will use the tips given here …thank you

    Here is my recipes:

    Whole wheat flour chocolate cake

    100 gms sugar
    160 gms curds
    140 gms whole wheat flour
    1 tsp baking soda
    1/2 tsp baking powder
    3 tbsp cocoa powder
    2 tbsp clarified butter (ghee)

    -Beat sugar and curds with electric hand beater till sugar dissolves
    -sift all dry ingredients together
    -add dry ingredients and beat
    -finally add clarified butter and mix
    -pour in greased tin and bake in
    -preheated oven for 30-35 mins at 180C.

    I will now try this recipe by beating curds and sugar on medium speed and after adding the flour will beat at medium speed..

  67. Dolores

    I am just finding this article in January 2017. I am so happy to find this as I have literally lost sleep trying to figure out why my beautiful cakes would deflate. The crumb would be awesome except for this thin line of sadness that still tasted heavenly. No one but me complained about it but it worried me. Thank you so much. Recuperating from major surgery right now but my first order of business?……make my pound cake following the advice given here.

  68. SanTri

    I am so glad to find this article. I just baked a cake on Friday and noticed the cake seemed to be under baked but the tooth pick came out clean when I checked it. Now I know. I will try to bake another cake and watch how long I mix and the speed.

  69. Tiwalola Olamide

    This dense cake has been my challenge, my cake will look down side the upper side will turn out well, Im following the medium speed now to see what comes after It, thank you.

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      We hope this blog has helped shed some light on how to lighten up your cakes, Tiwalola. If you’d like some further assistance, you can always give our friendly bakers on the hotline a call at 855-371-BAKE(2253) so we can talk further. Happy baking! Kye@KAF

  70. Meredith

    Wow…thank you so much for this.I love creaming by hand despite having a mixer and all the time my cakes comes out hard and sunken at the middle after 10 minutes out of the oven.Really appreciate this trick

  71. Bella

    Hi normally I mix my cakes by hand using a whisker and they come out ok but yesterday the cakes came out so dense it was as if water had been added into the mixture. I don’t know what happened

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Bella, good for you for going the distance by hand! Whether or not this works may have to do with the kind of cake you’re making. A blended cake, one where all of the ingredients are simply mixed together, should be just fine mixed with a whisk. Boxed cake mixes fall into this category, for example, as do any recipes where wet and dry ingredients are mixed separately and then stirred together. A cake that uses the creaming or foam method, on the other hand, relies on mechanical leavening that comes from whipping air into the butter and sugar or eggs and may be more challenging to do by hand. For more details about the different cake mixing methods, please see our blog article on the topic. Hope this helps to make for more happy baking and less dense disappointment! Mollie@KAF

  72. Denise Cobb

    I used medium speed creaming the sugar and butter and even slower with the flour and mine still had a small sad steak right at the top of the cake. The recipe said cream sugar, cream cheese, and butter 5 minutes and I timed it. ???

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Denise, we’re surprised to hear that your recipe called for creaming the butter and sugar together for 5 minutes. Typically we recommend creaming for about 2-3 minutes maximum in order to avoid a dense gluey streak. Next time, try creaming the butter and sugar in 30 second intervals, scraping down the bowl between, until the mixture looks light (about 2-3 minutes). (Check out this video here for a visual demonstration.) Once you add the dry ingredients, mix just until the ingredients are evenly combined, stopping to scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl once during mixing. The final batter shouldn’t be mixed for more than a minute or two. This should help eliminate the streak and also produce a tender cake. Good luck! Kye@KAF

  73. JDN

    😂 It sounds like y’all are trying to solve the secret to Atlantis – here it is ..:”we couldn’t breath when my granny cooked a pound cake…don’t even come in the house …you have to bake it and cool it in the over slowly too, done move it . If you bump it , even vibrate a fluff pound cake batter it will fall….did none of you bake with a grandma in the south. I know this is the cause because my uncle likes sad streak so my grandma beats it thin then we would go in and literally jump by the stove when we were little and sure enough sad streaks !!! 😂

  74. Manali kapoor

    My family says that cake is soft but it doesn’t tastes well and if forms a chewy ball that sticks to the top of mouth. I make eggles cakes and i m totally helpless of what’s wrong with my cakes. Kindly help me please. What could be the possible reason in eggless cakes that my cakes are forming ball like structure that sticks to the throat after eating?
    I use curd in cakes as substitute for eggs.
    Kindly help

    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Manali, while there are a number of different options when it comes to replacing eggs in your baking, different replacements work best in different applications. We haven’t experimented with curd ourselves, but it may simply be that this isn’t the best choice for the type of cake you’re looking to make. Our all-around replacement of choice is re-hydrated ground flax seed. It too has limitations, but if you’re interested in giving it a try, you can read more about it here. It’s also worth considering whether or not the recipe itself is conducive to egg replacement. Generally speaking, recipes that call for fewer eggs are better candidates than those that call for more, as these recipes are often relying on eggs for structure, which is more difficult to replicate. Mollie@KAF

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