Butter is that not so secret ingredient that elevates any cakes, cookies, or cupcakes. But there is always a certain amount of butter you should put in your dish. If you mistakenly add too much butter to the cake, it will change the texture and flavor. So, what happens when you add too much butter to the cake and how to fix it?
If there is too much butter in the cake, you can add drying ingredients such as egg whites, flour, or baking powder to the mix. Too much butter can make the cake greasy and leave you with a runny consistency. Alternatively, you can put your cake in the oven for a few extra minutes to reduce the moisture.
In this article, I will give you more inside facts about baking a cake, and answer some frequently asked questions. If you want to experiment with your cake adding extra butter, read this article thoroughly and then decide if you still want to make the clutter.
What Happens if You Add Too Much Butter to the Cake?
We all know that anything excess than required is not good. This same formula also goes for cooking. When you are baking something, you have to be sensible about the ratio of the ingredients. Baking is an art, and something excessive in quantity can ruin your creation.
Having said that, if you put too much butter into the cake mixture, it will make your cake moist and dense. The more you add the butter the more moist the cake gets. And if you continue to do so, it will cross the breakpoint, and eventually, the cake will get denser. As a result, the cake will not set and will fall into itself.
When you put too much butter in the cake it gains the texture of a greasy brownie.
Another negative side of adding extra butter to the cake is, butter tends to decrease the sweetness of a cake. It will harm the taste of the cake. You have to maintain a proper ingredients ratio to make a good cake. That is why you should add a certain amount of butter if you do not want your cake to collapse like a house of cards.
Changing the recipe and experimenting with something new can ruin what you have prepared, creating a mess. For these reasons, rather stick with the main recipe.
Other than giving moisture and flavor, butter has several roles in the cake. It acts as a leavening agent (substance causing expansion of doughs or batters) in the cake. That is why you can see air pockets in the cake.
The fat in the butter creates steam and carbon dioxide when heated. This feature helps the cake to become fluffy and soft. But if you add too much butter into the cake batter, it would liquefy the mixture and would not set when heated in the oven.
How Much Butter Goes in a Cake?
You cannot define how much butter you should use in a cake. It always depends on what ingredients you are using and their ratio. No one could tell you how much butter you should use to make a perfect cake. Your question should be, what is the butter ratio in the cake according to other ingredients.
To make a perfect cake, you have to follow certain parameters and almost 80-85 percent of the recipe. If you follow this rule, you will be able to make any cake from scratch.
Having the proper sense of the ratio of the ingredients like flour, sugar, eggs, and fat (butter) is essential to baking a cake. To balance the proportions, an experienced baker always calculates the ratio of the ingredients before baking a cake that will perfectly set, swell and taste.
A cake has two main parts, or you can say two features that ensure a cake is well baked. One part is structure building, which is done with the help of flour and eggs.
Another part is tenderness and moisture, which is the opposite of holding the structure that is caused by butter (fat) and sugar. These two vice versa features need to be balanced accurately. Hence the cake becomes neither too dry nor too soft.
The two main protein ingredients, which are flour and sugar, hold the cake’s structure together. If you put too many structure-building ingredients in your batter, your cake will become tough and dry. If you put too much sugar and butter in the cake, it will wreck the cake structure, resulting in a soupy mess when heated.
Following a good recipe is important because the recipe lists the balanced ingredients to hold the cake together. If you follow the recipe, your cake will be tender and moist, giving a perfect taste. You do not have to follow the recipe blindly and if you are careful enough, you can stray out by 15-20 percent of the recipe.
Now as you know and understand the facts, it is time you learn about the ratio and have the answer to the question. The butter should weigh about the same or slightly less than the eggs. You have to be careful because this is all about the weight not about the quantity or volume.
A full egg out of shell weighs around 1.75 ounces. Suppose your recipe requires 4 ounces of butter, you should use two eggs to balance the cake.
But an egg has two separate parts which work differently in a cake. The white part dries out the cake and the yellow yolk part which gives a smooth texture to the cake. To balance the weight you could use one whole egg and three yolks which will weigh around 3.75 ounces.
How to Fix Too Much Butter in a Cake?
There is always a way to fix things you messed up under certain conditions. If you mistakenly put too much butter in a cake, it means you have softened and liquefied your batter. Butter tends to reduce sugar because it is salty in flavor.
To fix this mess, you could use extra flour and sugar, which will harden and restore the taste of your cake. But this solution is only applicable before putting your batter in the oven. If you oven your cake and then try to fix the batter, nothing can help you.
What Happens if You Add Too Much Butter in Cupcakes?
As I said earlier, butter is a leavening agent that emits steam and carbon dioxide when baked food is heated. The making process of a cupcake is quite the same as a normal cake, and the effect of butter in it is also the same.
Butter gives the cake a fluffy and moist texture. If you add too much butter to cupcakes, it will ruin the structure flavor and will not set.
Adding too much butter to cupcakes will liquefy the batter. That is why it will not set and gain the structure of a cupcake. Butter contains fat and flavor. It is quite salty (except unsalted butter) and will decrease the sweetness of the cake.
As butter contains fat, your cake will taste greasy if you add too much of it.
How Do You Dry Out a Cake?
Sometimes, it does not go as planned when you are baking treats. A cake has some features that tell whether it is a perfect one or not. It will set and gain a perfect structure containing a fluffy and moist texture. But if things do not go as per plan, it can be too moist and taste worse. In this situation, you have to dry out the cake before it becomes a mess.
Drying out a moist cake can be tricky but not impossible. To make a perfect cake, you have to mix the ingredients in a proper ratio. When you mistakenly put too much butter in your cake batter, it becomes moist. Another reason for moist texture is, if you put less egg than required, the structure can not be formed. Eggs work as a binding agent in the cake.
To make the moisty cake better, you have to put dry ingredients in a proper ratio to balance the batter.
Ingredients like eggs whites and flour can suck the moisture and dry out the cake. You have to be careful when adding these ingredients because it will harm your cake if you put too much of them. This method is applicable before baking the batter in the oven.
If you realize your cake has too much moisture after baking it, bake it for an additional 10 to 15 minutes.
To conclude, too much of anything is bad, even if it is something as creamy and delicious as butter. So, the next time you accidentally get too much of it in your baked goods, hopefully, this article will help you out.