How Much Cake Batter Per Pan?

Once you’ve decided what size of tiers you need to make, it’s time to figure out how much cake batter you need per pan. Whether you’re making your own wedding cake, or making one for someone else, it can be challenging knowing how much batter you need to make.

There are a couple different ways to do this. This first is a simple calculation with cups. I include a chart below showing how many cups of batter you need to make different sized cake layers.

I’ve found using a liquid measuring cup for this works best, rather than a dry measuring cup.

However, you need to know exactly how many cups one batch of the cake recipe you plan to use makes. This can vary drastically recipe to recipe.

The second method is a bit more math intensive, but I actually prefer it! I think it’s more precise, and less messy 🙂

baked cake layers for a tiered wedding cake

Method 1: The Cup Method

If you don’t want to do any calculations, this method if for you! It will quickly give you the answer you need.

In the below table, I share how many cups of batter you need per pan. It’s based on pan size and shape. My one caveat is that certain recipes rise more than others.

My vanilla layer cake recipe rises less than sponge cake recipes, so I’ve also included a column with the calculations for it as well.

Based on the recipe you use, you may want to use slightly more or less batter to make your cake layers the perfect height (once baked and leveled). This is why it’s important to test a recipe before making a large tiered cake.

Testing a recipe in advance helps you know the rise of the batter, so you can adjust as needed.

I’ve included the amount of batter you need for a 1-inch cake layer, or a 2-inch cake layer. Traditional wedding cakes are made with two, 2-inch cake layers.

However, I like to make my tiered cakes with three, 1-inch cake layers. I also add a very generous amount of buttercream between each cake layer (about 1/4 of an inch). This makes my tiers the perfect wedding cake height (4 inches tall).

adding cake batter to 12 inch cake pans for a tiered cake

The height of my tiers can vary though! The amount of frosting I use, how many cake layers I use, and how I level my cake layers all affect the height of each tier.

While a standard wedding cake serving is 4 inches tall, sometimes I make my tiers taller based on the the look I’m after for a cake. I also vary the height based on what the bride and groom request.

My Cake Batter Calculator

cake batter guide for different sized pans

One batch of my vanilla cake recipe makes about 10 1/2 cups of batter. If I wanted to make a round cake with four, 7-inch cake layers, I would need about 1 batch of cake batter (2 1/2 cups per 7-inch layer, x 4 layers = 10 cups of batter)

I highly recommend testing out a cake recipe ahead of time, to know how many cups of batter it makes, and how high it rises as it bakes.

You also need to account for the finished height of your cake layers once they’re leveled.

assembled semi-naked tiered wedding cake

If you’d like to learn more about serving sizes for weddings and parties, I highly recommend checking out my cake portion guide.

It walks through how many people different tiered cakes feed, and what size of cake you should make for big events.

Method 2: The Calculation Method

Now for the nerdier, more precise method. You can use math to figure out how much batter you need per pan!!

To do this, you need to know two important bits of information. The first is knowing how much batter 1 batch of the recipe you plan to use makes.

The second thing you need to know is the equation of a circle! Get ready to relive traumatic memories from high school geometry 😛

Using A Recipe You Know

If you have a tried and true cake recipe that you know and love, you can use what you already know about the cake recipe to figure this out!

I love using my vanilla layer cake recipe or my chocolate layer cake recipe for wedding cakes, because they’re incredibly moist and have great structure. My WASC cake recipe is also always a crowd pleaser at big events.

Image of 3 tiered wedding cake with edible lace

When I bake a batch of either recipe, they both make four, seven-inch cake layers that are roughly 1-inch tall (once leveled).

I can back my way into the amount of batter one batch makes by knowing this!

The Equation Of A Cake Pan

This is where math comes into play. It’s nothing crazy. It really just uses the equation of a circle, which is Pi (3.14) x radius squared. In this example with my vanilla cake recipe, I would first calculate the volume of one cake layer.

I’d take 3.14 (Pi) and multiple it by 3.5in x 3.5in (the radius of the cake layer squared). This would give me 38.5 inches squared.

I know that my 7-inch cake layers are about 1 is inch tall one they’re baked and leveled. With that in mind, the volume of the a single cake layer would be 38.5 inches squared x 1 inch, or 38.5 inches cubed.

Since one batch of batter makes four cake layers, that means it makes about 154 cubic inches of batter (38.5 cubic inches x 4 cake layers). With this number, I can now calculate the number of batches needed to make for any size of tiered cake.

Example – Calculation For A Three Tiered Cake

Say I wanted to make a tiered cake with 12 inch, 9 inch, and 6 inch cake layers. Each tier would be made with 3 cake layers that are 1 inch tall. I would make the below calculations:

  • General Formula for any sized tier: Pi (3.14) x cake layer radius squared x cake layer height x number of cake layers
  • 12 inch tier: 3.14 x (6 in. x 6 in.) x 1 in. x 3 layers= 339 cubic inches
  • 9 inch tier: 3.14 x (4.5 in. x 4.5 in.) x 1 in. x 3 layers = 191 cubic inches
  • 6 inch tier: 3.14 x (3 in. x 3 in.) x 1 in.x 3 layers = 85 cubic inches

This means in total, I will need 615 cubic inches of batter (339+191+85). Since I know one batch makes about 154 cubic inches, I will need to make 4 batches of batter.

Let Me Know Your Thoughts!!

I hope this helps you know how many batches of batter you need to make for tiered cakes!!

For those of you who just want to know how much batter you need for different sized pans, I hope you find this helpful too.

Let me know your thoughts, whether you use my cake batter calculator chart, or whip out your calculator!! 🙂

136 thoughts on “How Much Cake Batter Per Pan?

  1. Good Morning, Been Waiting For This Forever,This Is A Great Tool To Have, Can I Please Ask A Few Questions The Chart Above Is For Round Cakes Only? What Would Be The Calculations For The 10″ and 8″ Cakes? Some Times I have to Make Square Cakes 10,8,&6. Would You Be So Kind To Help Me Figure Those Pans Out.
    Thank You Soo Much !!!!!!!!!!!

    1. The chart has a section for round cakes, and then a section for square cake layers below 🙂 They do use different amounts of batter! Hope that helps, happy baking!

      1. Hi Chelsey! I noticed that you used a baking nail in the red velvet cake batter above, Do you always us a cake nail or do you only use it for certain kinds of batter? Thank you for the chart! Your cakes are amazing! Thank you! G

      2. I like to use flower nails (sometimes I use 2 in a pan in 10 inches or more) if I’m making layers larger than 8 inches! It just helps them bake so much faster, and more evenly 🙂 And thanks!!!

      3. Gay Dubbs… I am assuming that Chelsey would have to use cake nails while baking her cakes since she mentioned that her oven is only 24 in. wide and her cake pans touch one another. I dont nails in my 10 in. pans and turn out fine. I have plenty of air/space between my pans.

    2. Maybe I’m being too simple. To figure how many cups of batter I need, I use water and count how many cups I need to fill the pan to the right height. Works with any shape or size pan….

  2. This is AWESOME! Thank you!
    Do you have the same info for amount of buttercream? I feel like I’m always way under or have buttercream for the whole neighborhood!
    I love your cakes and you!

      1. I’ve been racking my brain for a while now, have finally figured it out, but a chart for buttercream would be AMAZING! Can’t wait to see that one. It will be printed and posted in my kitchen 🙂

      2. I’ve been meaning to pull one together for a long time, but sadly I haven’t gotten to it yet! Hopefully I’ll have it up in the next month though!! <3

      3. Ohh God, I really love your contents. I really love if you also give us some info on how to measure the buttercream and all for a really large batter. I don’t know if I have to make my batter over and over again or I can just do that once without getting the measurements all messed up.

  3. I’ve recently started getting more serious about cake decorating and have been asked to do a few wedding cakes by friends and family and this has given me so much more confidence to start testing it out now so I have time to practice! Thank you so much! Also, your vanilla cake recipe is always my go-to starter base and such a crowd pleaser! I can fill it with anything and is so easy to manipulate to get what I’m looking for!

    1. I love hearing that Jessie! That’s what I love about it too, it’s so versatile and tasty! Best of luck with your upcoming wedding cakes, and happy baking!!! <3

    1. You can actually use the calculation method with CM! I don’t think it’d be helpful to share the volume/cup calculation with weight (grams), because cake batters can vary a ton when it comes to weight? It just wouldn’t be a very accurate gauge!

  4. OMG!!! thank you so much, I just started and I’ve been doing fine, but this just helps out so much more!!! I appreciate this and you are just a huge inspiration

    1. Haha I’m so happy to hear that Veronica!! It’s always a struggle to figure out, but I really do hope this will make life easier for us all 🙂 And you are too sweet, thank you!!

  5. Thank you so much! I agreed to make my brothers wedding cake in June and just made the 8 inch three layer vanilla cake as a test at the weekend and it was great! Had created my own excel sheet to work out the batter requirements for a 10 inch and 6 inch cake too, so very grateful that I can now double check if I’ve got this right (who doesn’t love a bit of nerdy spreadsheet action). Sending lots of gratitude from over here in the UK x

    1. I’ve used her vanilla cake and it was the best so far. I’m planning to have 8in and 10 in but this’s so complicated I didn’t really understand how much I should use for my 10 in. Reference to her vanilla recipe, shall I double the ingredients?
      Could you plz help me? Thank you

      1. Hi Salima,

        The volume you would need for one eight inch pan is about 50 cubic grams, and for a 10 inch layer you’d need about 80 cubic grams. One batch makes three 8 inch layers. if you want to make 3 10 inch layers, you will have a bit of leftover batter if you double the recipe, but that’s probably your best bet (unless you want to calculate the ingredients needed to make 1.666 batches) 😛

  6. This is so helpful, thank you! Will definitely give it a go when making my next tier cake. The naked sponges in your picture above look so great stacked on each other. How do you get them to sit so neat to the layer below? I use dowels but you can always see the join where the tiers meet. Thank you!

    1. I just add a little bit of frosting with a piping bag over the boards once they tiers are stacked, and smooth with a small offset! 🙂

  7. I love your tutorials! I have been asked to do a wedding cake for a a very special couple and want it to go well. I was wondering how you bake all of this in a regular size oven and keep them fresh? Thank you for any feedback!

  8. I love the calculation method! Thank you so much for sharing!!! I’m a big fan of your vanilla cake recipe. Have tried many others and none of them seem to be good enough. You are truly the best! Thanks again!

  9. Whenever I try out a new recipe I just try it out with 1egg and see how tall that rises in one 6inch tin and I weigh how much batter is made. I then use that to figure out how much batter I need to make per egg for each 8inch and 10 inch tin.

    1. But I love that you’ve shared with us a calculation and that you’ve explained it so clearly. I might give that a go if I have to go bigger than a 10inch cake. So thank yooouuuu

  10. Thought I’d posted but it’s disappeared. Just wanted to say thanks so much for this! I’m making my brothers wedding cake in June and just trialled the 3 layer 8 inch vanilla cake at the weekend (was great). Created an excel sheet to try and work out what I’d need for the 10 inch and 6 inch layers but now I have something to check against to make sure I get it right! Who doesn’t love a nerdy method and a spreadsheet?? Thanks so much again 🙂

    1. I’m so happy to hear that Kathy! And yes, excel all the way!!! Haha I really despise the cup method, but I know that not everyone loves math so I had to share it. Happy to hear you’re team math though!!! Happy baking!

  11. Thanks for the guide! I commented but I don’t think it went through. On average how many layers of cake for this guide? I’m making a horse cake for 25 people, so I need it on the taller side. If I do a 8in or 9in how many layers do you think it should be? Also, I bake eggless for allergy reasons if that makes a difference.

  12. This is amazing, thank you so much. If I wanted to make all 7 batched of batter I need then separate it out in the pans to bake, how do you keep the batter? Could I put it in containers and place in the fridge? Thank you again for all of your tips they are amazing, and this vanilla cake recipe seriously is the best out there.

  13. Thank you so much for this! This is very helpful, I’m going to be making my first wedding cake for a friend of mine. I’m actually buying a few more cake pans, what kind of pans and what do you recommend in terms of the depth? I see 6 x2 or 6×3 and am not sure if I should go with the extra inch or not.

    1. I love that fat daddios pans, which I order on amazon! mine are usually 2 inches deep, because I don’t really torte my cake layers. The 3 inch pans are just harder to stack and fit in my cabinets!! haha here’s the link to the pans I buy: https://amzn.to/2JV6xLI

      They come in like every size! 🙂

  14. Love your recipes! But I have a question, I just need one cake layer of a chocolate recipe. Instead of making a lot of batter, what would the measurements for just one layer?

    1. It depends on how much batter the original cake recipe makes, and what size of single cake layer you want to make! My chocolate cake recipe makes 3, 8-inch cake layers, so you could use 1/3 of the ingredients if you want to make one 8-inch cake layer. Hope that helps!

  15. Hi
    Your receipes looks really interesting and i really want to try but just wondering what i can use instead of eggs as i don’t eat eggs.it would be helpful..
    Thanks a lot

    1. For recipes which use eggs primarily as a leavening agent you can try a commercial egg replacement product (see above) or the following mixture: 1-1/2 tablespoons vegetable oil mixed with 1-1/2 tablespoons water and 1 teaspoon baking powder per egg. Note: this mixture calls for baking powder, not baking soda.

    1. Hi Heather,

      Sure! Rectangles are actually a lot simpler! You just need to know the dimensions of you pan (length x width), times the height you want the sheet cake to be <3

  16. Hey there,
    I just had to let you know-I just found this chart for the cups of batter per pan!! I am SO EXCITED TO HAVE FOUND THIS!! I am making a cake using 10″ and 6″ rounds and the amounts turned out perfectly!! I am using the WASC cake and just saw your totally homemade version! I cant wait to try that either! So excited to have found your website!! Thank you!!!

    1. I am so happy to hear both of those things Sydney!! 🙂 I put a lot of time into this post, so nothing makes me smile more than when people get as excited about it as I was <3 Happy baking!!

  17. Hi, I absolutely love your recipes and tutorials! I’ve been baking for a while now, but I’ll be making my first 3 tiered cake next month. I’m going to be using your vanilla cake recipe, which is one of my favorites (thank you!) and will need to make 4 batches. Obviously the bowl for the stand mixer isn’t big enough…do I actually need to make 4 separate batches? Or can I use a large bowl with a hand mixer? Same question for the frosting…

    1. Hi Ronnie! You can definitely make multiple batches at once! I make 3 batches in the bowl of my commercial kitchenaid, but using a hand mixer and a large bowl should work just as well! Same thing goes for the frosting!

      Making big batches at once makes the whole process go so much quicker 🙂 hope that helps!!

    1. Hi Jeanne! I usually bake sheet cakes at 350F, and I’d place two flower nails into a pan that size, to help that layer bake more evenly and quickly! The amount of time it needs to bake will vary based on how tall of a layer you make. Sorry I can’t be of more help!!

  18. Hi There! I just want to say thank you first and foremost with sharing all you tips and tricks. Your recipes are amazing! I’m a novice baker and have been asked to bake a chocolate wedding shower sheet cake (13×18) pan. I’m curious about the recommended batter needed and temp to use. Any help?

    1. Thanks Felicia! It depends on whether you plan to make a single layer, or two layers? I usually bake sheet cakes at 350F, and I’d place four flower nails into a pan that size, to help that layer bake more evenly and quickly! The amount of time it needs to bake will vary based on how tall of a layer you make. Sorry I can’t be of more help!!

  19. Hi Chelsey! I would LOVE if you put how many grams of batter for each cake you make right in the recipe! I’ve been calculating the weight of my batter minus the weight of my bowl and then divining that number by either 3 or 4 pans and it’s a total pain! Lol

    1. I usually do try to include it in the notes section of my recipe cards, but it’s a new practice! I will be sure to do this with future recipes 🙂

  20. I have been searching the website but cannot find the answer. When your white cake recipe says it makes 3-8 inch rounds, are these the 1 inch or 2 inch high.

  21. Hello Chelsey! I recently found your page and I’m so thankful!! I’m making my fist solo wedding cake ? My question is should I use the nail still if I’m using cake strips for a 12″ marble cake. I’m doing a test run today using your recipe and hoping I nail it, hehe thanks!

    1. That is awesome Cecilia!! I think you still should, even with cake strips. It just helps channel heat into the center of the cake, and cook it evenly! Cake strips do help the cake bake evenly too, but more so they help prevent the sides from over baking. I hope that helps, and I am SO happy to hear you are doing a test run!! Best of luck, and happy baking! Don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any other questions <3

  22. Im looking at your servings guide, and im wondering if each size cake is based off 3 or 4 layers per tier? If I wanted to make all my cakes 3 layers, does that affect the number of servings? I’m wanting to make a 3 layer cake to feed 25 people, so would that still be a 9 inch? Would i make a batch and a half of your vanilla cake recipe? Im terrible at math and so confused?

  23. Im looking at your servings guide, and im wondering if each size cake is based off 3 or 4 layers per tier? If I wanted to make all my cakes 3 layers, does that affect the number of servings? I’m wanting to make a 3 layer cake to feed 25 people, so would that still be a 9 inch? Would i make a batch and a half of your vanilla cake recipe? Im terrible at math and so confused?

  24. I have made your chocolate cake made with buttermilk. It is outstanding! I made the 4 layer 7 inch version and now looking to up that to 3 or 4 layers of 8 and 9 inch pans to feed more people.

    Can you tell me the number of cups of batter in each of your recipes make? That seems to be what your chart is based on but your recipes don’t state the number of cups they make.

    1. Hi Kathy,

      So happy to hear that! I recommend using the second method, which is what I do when using this!

      I find it’s more accurate than using a cup measure to ladle batter into pans. I’m not sure how many cups of batter my cake recipe makes, because I base the amount of batter I add to my pans off of the weights / grams. I pour directly into my pans. I’m so sorry!

      1. I too weigh everything and pour directly from my mixing bowl to the pans on a scale. Thank you so much for sharing your recipes and techniques! I can’t tell you how much I love your chocolate cake recipe as does my very large extended family! Good chocolate makes all the difference. Now I’m the cake baker for all celebrations and have to break out the thinking cap on the math.

  25. Thank you so much for the chart. I’m trying to convert a loaf pound cake into a 10″ layer cake for a friend’s 1st birthday party and had no idea on where to begin. This is most helpful.

  26. Love this post! Doing a three tiered wedding cake for end of next month for a friends daughter. What did you use for the support structure for the three cakes . I do use bubble straws for each cake. Can I use a wooden dowel and if so , do I need to treat it ?

    1. Thanks Ann! I used bubble tea straws! Most wooden cake dowels are already smoothed, so they don’t need to be treated. However, I’m sure it varies based on what brand of dowel you get <3

  27. Hi, I have 6 x 3 and 9 x 3 round pans. Can I still put the same amount of batter in them as per your chart, or must I put more in because of the depth of the pan?
    Thanks for the great looking recipes and tutorials. I can’t wait to try them.

    Regards

    Michelle

    1. Hi Michelle,

      The pan height won’t affect how much batter you need to add into them 🙂 What really matters is how tall you want your cake layers to end up being! Hope that helps, happy baking!!

  28. I Thank God that i have found you. I have a 11 month granddaughter and i’m trying to learn as much as I can from you, her birthday is on December and I will be making her cakes for her party. My wife and I will be making this party with all the Disney Princesses. God bless you!!!

    1. Aw that is so sweet! I’m happy you found my blog too! I’m sure your granddaughter’s cake will turn out great!! Let me know if you have any questions along the way 🙂

  29. Sorry. I’m HORRIBLE AT MATH.. I wanna make your marble cake recipe in 10” pans. Would your recipe make 1 cake layer or 2? I’m trying to make 4 layers of marble cake. Thanks in advance!

  30. Hi – I’m a home baker and I’ve been asked to bake my Goddaughters wedding cake! She’s planning on 130 guests. I need to know the pan sizes I would need and how many layers per pan size! Thank you!

  31. Hi Chelsey,
    I am horrible at math. My daughter is getting married and I need to make the cake. All of my cakes are super moist and I just everything at once without even thinking, so I end up with tons of supplies left over. I don’t want to do that right now, I want this this to be simple I don’t to stress over the cake.
    She wants a tuxedo cake, interimidiate layers of chocolate and vanilla bean cake. So is a 4 tier cake with 4 layers each tier. Can you help me with this please. Is for about 150 people so I thought 14, 12, 10 & 8. Do you think this is to big?? And how much batter will I need.

    1. You’ll definitely have some leftover cake, but that sounds like a good size to me! I have a cute little chart of tiered cakes in this post that shows how many people each combination feeds here: https://chelsweets.com/2019/03/24/cake-portion-guide/,

      but none of them are around 150 :/ You could probably feed 150 with a three tier cake of 14, 12, and 10, but I totally get it if you want to do 4 tiers for the look!

      I’m not sure what recipe you plan to use/ how much batter one batch of that batter makes, so I can’t really do the math for you. I’m so sorry!

  32. Hi Chelsea, Happy New Year!!
    For the amount of cake batter in each pan, are the cup measurements using liquid measure cups or dry measure cups?

    1. Happy New Year to you too! You can use either since they technically carry the same volume, but it’s much easier to use liquid measuring cups for this <3 Hope that helps, happy baking!!

  33. Hi there from Australia!
    I just recently found your page and you have given me SUCH helpful tips. I have only been baking for the last 6-8 months!
    I have purchased 7inch wide by 4inch deep pans from Fat Daddio’s. Then I learnt that people normally bake with 2inch high pans such as yourself. Bummer!!
    Any tips on baking with depper pans so I don’t have to pour batter into 2 separate pans? My oven is not wide enough for me to bake with 2 pans on the same level so if possible, I prefer to bake with 1 deep pan and then tort it into two layers!
    I’ve tried using 1 heating rod but the middle still came out gooey. Should I use 2 rods? or even 3?? Or would you just recommend against this and just use 2inch deep pans?
    Thank you!!

    1. Hi Tanya!!

      I’m so happy you’ve found my blog helpful 🙂

      You’re doing all the right stuff! heating cores do help, and if 1 wasn’t enough you can definitely try 2 or 3.

      Some recipe also bake up better for torting, like sponge cakes! most of my cake recipes are denser / more like a pound cake, and sadly they’re not great for baking in deep pans then torting. My friend Georgia has a great sponge cake recipe that she bakes in deep pans like that, I recommend giving it a try! Here’s the link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nrSJe2FOltA (the recipe is included in the video description)

      I hope that helps, happy baking!!

  34. Hi good morning! You mention 7″ cakes. I cannot find a 7″ pan- only 6″ or 8″. Which one do you use? I have made your vanilla cakes, frostings and chocolate ganache– yum!

    1. Hi Elisa,

      That’s totally fine! You can use 6-inch or 8-inch cake pans. My cakes recipes make 3 8-inch cake layers, or 4, pretty thick 6-inch cake layers!

      I order my 7 inch cake pans on amazon, here’s the link to the ones I have: https://amzn.to/3avrUxq

      Hope that helps, happy baking!

  35. Hi. In your example for the 3 tiered cake right. You calculated that you would require 154 cubic inches of batter house do you measure that on the scale, if that makes sense

    1. Hi Tebogo,

      I would just take the overall weight of the batter, then divide that by the number of pans you plan to fill (based on the formula you used). I hope that helps / makes sense. I do the formula in pieces, for each tier.

      1. Hi! Thanks soooo much for taking the time to explain this to us! You are absolutely amazing!!!

        To clarify to Tebogo a bit more, 1 cubic inch=0.554113oz.

        Example:
        12” tier is 339 cubic inches so it would be 188oz.

        This way you can make all your batter then measure out for each tier…then divide that by 3 for each layer.

        Sending lots of sweet and floury hugs! ?

  36. I AGREE WITH EVERYONE THIS IS THE BEST CAKE!!!!! I HAVE THE CONE SHAPE HEATING CORES FOR CAKES, DOES THE NAILS WORK BETTER THAN THE CONE SHAPED HEATING CORES, I WOULD LIKE YOUR RECOMMENDATION, IF THE NAILS WORK BETTER I WOULD LIKE TO BUY SOME AND HAVE ON HAND IF I EVER HAVE TO BAKE A LARGE CAKE

    1. Aw thank you Carol, you are too sweet!! I like the heating cores that are shaped like nails better than the cores, but I think both work! I use these ones made by ateco, and I get them on amazon: https://amzn.to/2tsw08Z

      Hope that helps, happy baking!

  37. Hello. Would you please clarify “sponge” vs “butter”. Is sponge made with oil and butter is made with, well..butter. I see on your batter recommendations for a 12″ square you recommend 8 cups of batter per 1″ butter layer, but 10 cups of batter for 2″ sponge. I am planning a 12″ square cake and making your vanilla recipe, looking to yield a 1″ ish cake. As this is a butter based recipe, I would think 8 cups of batter, but I am hearing 10 cups from the manufacturer of the pan, Fat Daddio, and some others that I have asked. Help! Thank you!

    1. Hi Paula,

      A lot of it has to do with how the batter is made. Sponge cakes cream together butter and sugar to whip a lot of air into the batter, and use more eggs to make a cake a light texture that is dryer. People usually have to add simple syrup to sponge cake to make them moist.

      Butter cake usually uses a reverse creaming method, and is more dense and moist. Most people don’t add simple syrup to butter cakes, because they don’t need it.

      I suppose to be safe you can follow fat daddio’s advice and use 10 cups if you’re worried. Hope that helps!

  38. In the pan that has red velvet cake you have a metal item in the center, what is that for and why aren’t they in the other pans?
    Thank you
    Shirley

    1. Hi Shirley,

      For large cake layers (pans bigger than 8 inches), I suggest adding a couple heating cores to the center (these are the ones I use: https://amzn.to/2NQ0lVZ) to help the layers bake more evenly and quickly! Hope that helps, happy baking!

  39. Thank you so much! I have to let you know that I have searched for the perfect vanilla cake recipe, for…maybe a few years??? My family has tried so many vanilla cakes over time, but yours is the best. I am very, very happy with the texture (I love denser cakes), flavor (great flavor and I do add the teeniest bit of almond extract), and color. It is perfect and I look forward to making it into different flavors and colors. I did put 10 cups of batter in my 12″ pan and I got about 1 1/2″ rise to the layer. I think you were correct on the 8 cups being fine. Next time! I am pairing your vanilla cake with a chocolate butter cake, 3 layers of chocolate and 1 vanilla, with homemade raspberry puree and chocolate buttercream between. Thank you so much for your reply and I love your site!!

    1. I am so happy to hear you love my vanilla cake recipe that much Paula 🙂

      And I’m even happier that my chart is ok!!! haha I was pretty worried/second guessing my chart after our convo earlier, so I really appreciate you following up and sharing this!! <3

      Oh man your next cake sound AMAZING!! Whoever is getting it is one lucky person! Happy baking!

      1. I made a little error: My cake is actually 3 layers total: 2 chocolate and 1 vanilla. It is a beast! 12″ square and almost 5″ tall. If I had put less batter in my pan, I would have had shorter layers, which was what I was going for. My friend’s eyes are going to bug out when she sees her cake! Next time, less batter, shorter layers, and maybe a 4″ cake. Thank you!!!

      2. haha I don’t think anyone has ever been upset that their cake is bigger than expected !! 😛 I’m sure she’s going to love it!

  40. Hi! Thank you so much for sharing this information as well as the videos. So I have two co-workers getting married on Feb. 22nd and since they are having to spend so much money on their wedding, I have offered to help them out a little and do a wedding cake for them. Either I’m a really good friend or I’m insane since I have NEVER done a Wedding Cake before. I have seen all of the valuable information on Pinterest and have saved just about all of but really just need to clarify before moving forward. Oh by the way, I have tried the Vanilla cake and its not your recipe that is the problem. I have also tried two others so I am pretty sure its the Gas Oven I am using since all 3 cakes have not risen. So initially the wedding was only going to be approximately 75 people, no problem I said. Now, it is approximately 150 people so I had to buy some larger cake pans and the other supplies to decorate. I have all round 6×2, 8×2, 11×2, 14×2, 16×2. Since I am not used to using the larger pans for baking cakes, I am not sure exactly how much butter batter to fill per pan and how many layers I should make per pan. I do feel that I should at least make a 4 or 5 tier wedding cake? Any help you can give me to clarify that using this chart you have graciously provided is what I should go with just let me know. I am really looking forward to doing this for the first time and want them to enjoy their wedding cake.

    Thank you,
    Jill

    1. Hi Jill,

      You are a very good friend!! The number of tiers you make is totally your call, you can pick a combination of different sized tiers, and you could make a 3 tier cake if you use large tiers. I share a great chart on different sized cakes and how many people they feed here: https://chelsweets.com/2019/03/24/cake-portion-guide/

      I hope that helps, and best of luck with this wedding cake! You’re doing all the research upfront, and that’s half the battle 🙂 I believe in you, I’m sure it will turn out great!!

  41. Please help with this . I found a cake recipe I’d like to use tonight and I would like to know will a two layer 7 inch cake recipe work if I use two 8 inch cake pans without been to thin? Hope you can answer right away

    1. Hi Destiny,

      if you use a larger pan and plan to make the same number of cake layers, they probably will be too thin! I’d recommend making more batter if you want the cake layers to be the same height as they’d be if they were baked in a small pan <3

  42. Hello, I’m using your red velvet cake recipe to make four ten inch rounds. I was wondering how many cups of batter would you use for one ten inch round?

    1. Hi Kylie,

      One batch of my red velvet cake recipe makes 3, 7-inch cake layers that are one inch tall! If you use the equation at the bottom of this post with that info, you should be able to calculate exactly how much batter you need for that size of cake / cake layers <3 Hope that helps, happy baking!

    1. Hi Laura,

      It can vary a lot based on the cake recipe you use, but mine usually take about 40 minutes. I’d just keep an eye on them once they’ve been baking for more than 30 minutes, and test them as soon as you think they’re done. You want to be really careful not to overbake the layers, so I recommend watching them closely 🙂 Hope that helps, happy baking!

  43. I need some major help! I am making my son a tier cake for his birthday and can’t figure out what I need. It will have two 10” cake rounds on the bottom and two 8” cake rounds on top. I’m guessing they are each one inch tall since that the type of cake pans I have. I’m going to be decorating it with a blue sky with white clouds and green mountains. I was planning on making 9 cups of buttercream. Is that enough to base and decorate? Any advice would help thank you!

    1. Hi Allie,

      The amount of buttercream you need can vary a lot based on the amount of frosting you add between your cake layers, and around the cake. That should be enough frosting, but you might want to make a bit extra to be safe! Leftover frosting can be stored in the fridge for weeks, so it never hurts to have extra on hand. Be sure to add supports into your cake too, since you’re going to be using big layers!!

      Hope that helps, and that your son’s cake turns our wonderfully!! <3

  44. Hi Chel, I have another question , well maybe two. If I want to make your vanilla batch in a 12 inch would you suggest four layers or three. Also, I think I understand the chart I would need 71/3 cups of batter for each pan ?? Four or three pans tho? I’m confusing myself I believe lol !

    1. Hi Lauren,

      It really depends on what look you’re going for. I’ve made 12 inch cakes and tiers with both three and four layers. and yup, you need a little over 7 cups of batter (if using my vanilla cake recipe) for each 12 inch cake layer you want to make. Hope that helps, happy baking!

      1. Thanks Chel! Thank you for being my muse! I’ve learned so much from you, i hope my own recipes I am working on will taste as wonderful as yours! Thank you for all your help!

  45. I cannot for the life of me find a recipe for a small smash cake. (4 inch x 2 inch pans) for 2 layers.
    Would you agree that I could cut your small batch recipes in half and be good?

    1. Hi Jennifer,

      You could make at least 2 smash cakes with a half batch of my batter! But yes, you’d def be good with half a batch 🙂

  46. Hi Chelsey! I’m making a cake this weekend for my nieces birthday and I was wondering if you knew how many batters of your vanilla cake recipe and vanilla buttercream a standard kitchen aide bowl holds. I need 4 1/2 batches of cake batter based on my calculations! Thank you so much and keep being awesome! ?

    1. Hi Alison,

      I’ve found I can barely make a double batch of cake batter in my 5 qt kitchen-aid bowl, and I can comfortably make a double match of buttercream. Hope that helps, sounds like you may need to make 2 double batches! Hope that helps, happy baking!!

  47. Hi Chelsey! I’m making a birthday cake for my niece this weekend and was wondering if you knew how many batches of your vanilla cake recipe and your classic American buttercream a standard kitchen aide mixer holds? I’m thinking I could make at least 2 but do you think I’d be able to fit 2 1/2 batches of cake batter in? Thank you for your help! ?

    1. Hi Alie,

      my 5 qt kitchen aid fits about 2 batches of cake batter, and two batches of frosting comfortably! Hope that helps, happy baking!

  48. Hello, I love your recipes, do you have a 10inch cake recipe? I would like to make a chocolate bottoms layer but so far not had any success finding a good recipe. Thank you!

  49. Hi Chelsey,
    I am making a small wedding cake this weekend to celebrate what would be my brother-in-law’s wedding. We are throwing them a small party and they asked me to bake the cake. I was thinking of using 2 9inch pans and 2 6inch pans to make a tiered cake. Since I’m not doing many actual layers, 4 total, do you think I need to find something to support the 6inch wide layers? I’m using your vanilla cake recipe and the cakes I’ve done always turn out well and in 3 layers and I’ve never supported them with anything in the past. Do you think they will be okay stacked on top of each other? Thank you!

    1. Hi Laura,

      So sorry for the delayed response! That’s a tough question. My cake recipe would probably hold up just fine since it’s pretty sturdy, but it depends on far you need to transport it and how long it will sit out! I’d recommend at least using a center dowel to make sure everything stays in place during transport.

      I don’t think you really need supports in that small of a cake, but I also get super paranoid and would probably add them anyways to be safe!! Haha it’s your call, but if you’re putting all that effort into making the cake, I’d say be better safe than sorry and add in a few support <3

  50. Good morning! I have 2 questions actually! My first question is that when do you need to use a heating core or flower nail for what size cake pan? Lastly if wanted to make a 4+layer cake with the same cake pan size what should I do?

    1. Hi Sandrabee,

      I use flower nails on any pan that’s larger than 8 inches! You can also use them on smaller pans if you want to make thick cake layers.

      I think what you mean in your last question is that you want to bake a thick cake layer and torte it into multiple layers? If so, you can use a flower nail in those thick cake layers. Hope that helps, happy baking!

    1. Hi Trina,

      It depends what recipe you’re using and how tall your cake layers are! It can vary a lot based on different types of cake <3

  51. Hey! I’m going to use your vanilla cake for a recipe. I need 3 layers, one inch seems fine considering I’m adding buttercream still and decorations for a 6 inch tall cake I think ? Is that tall enough ? It is 10 inch rounds. Or should I do one & a half inch layers? & does your cake double in rising ?
    Sorry so many questions I hope this made sense!!!

    1. Hi Kim,

      My recipe definitely does not double in height as it bakes! it’s rise is very small! If you’re only making 3 cake layers, I’d suggest making cake layers that are 1.5″ tall. Hope that helps, happy baking!

  52. I would love to try your vanilla cake recipe. I plan on doing a 8,6,4 inch tiered cake at 2 inches tall times 2 per layer. How much batter would I need for your recipe? I had trouble with the math…thank you!!!

Let me know what you think!