Five cake recipes you need to know about: How Bundt cakes changed my world

No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world ~ Robin Williams

Each day on the Baker’s Hotline, we’re reminded by bakers from all over the globe how we’ve changed their world in some small way.

We helped you make the perfect birthday cake for Mom? Fantastic! You learned how to roll perfect pie crust from one of our videos? OUT-standing! Oh, your bread fell and dinner seemed ruined? Ouch, let’s see how we can fix it.

For me, I’ve been lucky enough that my world’s been changed and become even more full of laughter from one such exchange – and it all started with Bundt cakes.

Back in 2013 I was assisting a customer in Australia place an order and through our emails, we started sharing our favorite kinds of baking. Come to find out, Dianne and I were both big Bundt cake fans – just 10,445 miles apart.

We started exchanging recipes, book recommendations, and Bundt techniques. A few packages started crossing the ocean, and many emails crossed the airwaves. In the last year, Di and I have started calling ourselves “long-lost sisters.”

Besides being Bundt fiends, we love biscotti, collect teapots, and so much more. When I think I’m crazy for arranging my cookbooks at home by category, along comes Dianne to tell me she does the same. Yes, the song is right: it’s a small world after all.

So, my friends – and Di in particular – this Bundt’s for you. I hope these recipes will inspire you to share your love of baking and make wonderful new connections in the process.

Batter up!

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Let’s start with a classic Bundt cake. Our King Arthur Flour’s Original Pound Cake is truly the essence of Bundt. Rich with eggs and butter, the ultra-fine texture is the result of beating (“creaming”) butter and sugar. In reading the recipe, I can’t improve on the original explanation, so I’ll share it with you here.

When you cream butter, it may seem at the beginning as if you’re just mashing it flat. But if you persevere, you’ll begin to see it get “fluffy.” What you’re really doing is adding air. When you beat the butter with sugar, it becomes even fluffier, evidence of more air. And when the eggs are beaten in, the fluffiness is at its peak. That’s why this part of the mixing is so important. The more air bubbles you can beat in at this stage, the more air bubbles there are to expand in the heat of the oven. Baking powder or soda can do part of the work of leavening, but the more air bubbles you can get into a batter manually, the finer and lighter the texture of the finished cake.

If you are looking for a place to start your own love affair with Bundt cakes, you can’t go wrong starting here.

RumCake

Spring, summer, autumn or winter, this Caribbean Rum Cake is perfect for any season. Since we published the recipe in 2012 we have received numerous calls, emails, and recipe reviews from customers who consider this the ultimate rum cake.

With a 5-star rating and an annual holiday following, this tender and super-moist cake uses butter, pastry cream mix, and plenty of rum for its outstanding texture and taste. Be sure to invite friends over to imbibe, err consume this potent pastry at your next party!

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I’ve always considered Bundt cakes to be blissful, so when you make a cake called Lemon Bliss, it just makes sense to make it in a Bundt pan, right? Fresh lemon zest (grated rind) makes all the difference, and you can add a sweet/tangy glaze of sugar and lemon juice to really send this cake to lemon heaven.

We’ve always been proud to be a vendor of fine Nordicware bundt pans, and this diamond pan, reminiscent of the Diamond Jubilee, is one of the newest in the line. The deep diamond wells hold pockets of glaze or a flurry of confectioners’ sugar. Even served plain, the beauty of your baked goods really shines through.

For intricate pans like this, try a good old-fashioned grease and flour technique. The extra 5 minutes you take to really spread the shortening (I like trans-fat free Crisco) with a pastry brush will come back to you 20-fold when you present a perfect cake with every detail intact.

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As autumn approaches, a baker’s thoughts can’t help but turn to all things pumpkin, like this Gluten-Free Pumpkin Cake. Knowing how much our gluten-free friends can miss their treats, our team found a way to create a rich, spicy cake from our regular Gluten-Free Yellow Cake mix. No need to purchase different flours and starches, we’ve done that work for you.

Knowing, too, that gluten-free baked goods benefit from the extra support of a good pan, this denser type of cake is spot-on for using a Bundt pan. Try a slice with your pumpkin spice latte, or even better, have one mini bundt all to yourself for a special afternoon treat.

OrangeFruitCakeH-C9H

If the Caribbean Rum Cake is the epitome of summer, Orange-Cranberry-Nut Cake heralds the Christmas holiday season like no other.

Bright jewels of candied fruit take a luxurious soak in brandy or juice, then are set afloat in an orange-scented cake. Not a fruitcake, but rather a cake with fruit. Like potato chips with their satisfying crunch, the texture of this cake will keep you coming back for slice after slice. The “pop” of the cherries, the snap of the nuts… it is one deeply satisfying experience.

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We hope you’ve gotten some inspiration from this short list of our favorite Bundts. Bundt cakes in particular freeze beautifully, so they can be made just after Thanksgiving and rest happily in the deep freeze until you need them. Why not whip up a couple early in the season?

Knowing you’ve got stash of flavorful cakes with style and flair ready to go may not change your life like making a new friend can, but I guarantee it’ll keep you smiling all year long!

MaryJane Robbins
About

MaryJane Robbins grew up in Massachusetts and moved to Vermont 20 years ago. After teaching young children for 15 years, she changed careers and joined King Arthur Flour in 2005. MaryJane began working on King Arthur Flour's baker’s hotline in 2006, and the blog team ...

comments

  1. Karen Turner

    Can you bake the Original Pound Cake and the Lemon Bliss in the small cakelette pans and they keep the intricate shapes? It is my first try with any shaped bundt pan and the mini’s are so cute.
    And if I can use these recipes what would the cooking time be?

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Karen, both of those would work beautifully in smaller, more intricate pans, as they’re denser cakes that hold their shape well. You’ll want to check regularly, but for the Mini Swirl Bundtlette pan pictured here, we’d estimate a baking time of around 18-22 minutes. Happy baking! Kat@KAF

  2. Fabby

    Thank you for the recipes, I am a fan of the Nordic Ware bundt pans and I have all three in the image.
    Thank you for the recipes.
    Fabby

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Hi Kristi, while we don’t have an Old-Fashioned Oatmeal Cake recipe on our website currently, we love the idea of adding one! We do have a recipe for Oatmeal Muffins in The Baker’s Companion, which might be something you could use as a base and tweak it to be more like your grandmother’s version. If you’d like a copy of it, you can give our Baker’s Hotline a call at 855-371-BAKE(2253) and speak with one of our friendly bakers to help with this. Kye@KAF

  3. Mary T. Morris

    I have been frantically searching for a recipe for Banana Nut Bread made with All-Bran with the recipe set up for a large Bundt pan. I have found some recipes with the All-Bran but for a small loaf pan. I used to make this recipe all the time when we were stationed in Guantanamo Bay, but somehow in one of our moves my cookbook box went missing and I have never found it again. I would love to do it again to give my daughter a memory of when she was 4 and lived in that special place. You can shoot me an email if anyone has one, as I don’t get much time on the computer. Thanks

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Mary, we have a fabulous recipe for Banana Bran Bread that you might want to try. It calls for an 8 1/2″ by 4 1/2″ pan, which will only scantily fill a 9- or 10-cup Bundt pan. If you have a large Bundt pan (12 cups), then feel free to increase all of the ingredients in the recipe by 25%. (Multiply everything by 1.25x.) Don’t forget to adjust the baking time too; it will likely take notably longer than the original recipe specifies. Hope that helps and happy baking! Kye@KAF

  4. Cathy Basdekis

    I was looking for a gluten-free pumpkin whoopie pie recipe, and saw the recipe for GF pumpkin cake using the KA yellow cake mix as a base. I followed the recipe as written, but used a whoopie pie pan, lightly greased, filling the spaces with just enough batter to cover the bottom of each space. 8-10 minutes at 350 degrees, a few minutes cooling in the pan before gently removing the cakes from the pan, and I had wonderful whoopies waiting for a cream cheese frosting-type filling. The recipe made about 30 cakes (15 whoopie pies), and no one could tell they were GF. I will definitely keep this recipe for whenever I want a pumpkin whoopie pie, GF or not. This worked so well, I used the KA GF chocolate cake mix as a base for classic whoopie pies. I followed the recipe as written EXCEPT that I used 1/4 cup LESS water to make a slightly thicker batter (I planned to add in more water after mixing if the batter was too thick, but I didn’t need to). Again I used the whoopie pie pan to give the whoopies the proper structure while baking, and again, it took about 8-10 minutes at 350. Classic filling this time, and whoopies that could fool anyone into thinking they were not GF. The chocolate cake batter was thinner than the pumpkin, and made more pies. Another success, and a keeper. Hope this works for anyone who is looking for GF treats.

    Reply
  5. FABBY

    I love BUNDT PANS and cakes of course. Thank you for the recipes, I too think the Nordic Ware pans changed my life in a cute happy sort of way. I am a happy baker, as nothing makes me happier then to bake cakes in pretty bundt pans.
    Nice to meet you and thanks for the recipes.
    Hope you come to visit. I have a blog: http://fabbysliving.blogspot.com
    FABBY

    Reply
  6. Claire Zelasko

    I have a great recipe for chocolate Bundt cake that has sour cream, chopped prunes, nuts and brandy (1/3 cup). I want to bake it for a future event but not sure if it would freeze and thaw ok. And how to wrap to freeze. Not sure if I didn’t freeze it if it would still be fresh to serve from a Sunday bake to a Wednesday serve! Thanks for help.

    Reply
    1. The Baker's Hotline

      Most cake recipes do freeze very well and still have a delicious flavor and texture after freezing, Claire. Even with all the nuts and fruit in your cake, it will still hold up well during freezing. You can try making your cake ahead of time and storing it in the fridge before serving, but it can get slightly dry and tough if you extend this time frame past 2-3 days. To freeze, bake the cake as you normally would and then let it cool completely. Wrap it in plastic wrap and store in the coldest part of your freezer for 2-3 months. To serve, let it thaw in the fridge overnight in its wrapping and then take it out and rest at room temperature for at least 2-3 hours before serving. Enjoy! Kye@KAF

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