The Order You Add Your Cake Ingredients Before Baking Actually Matters — Here’s Why

published May 2, 2023
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strawberry cake in round baking pan, cooling on rack
Credit: Joe Lingeman

There are some rules we follow in the kitchen without ever quite knowing the reason behind them. For me, one of the main rules I was taught was to always start your cake mix with your dry ingredients. Then, add in the butter, and wrap things up with the wet ingredients. I never questioned the rhyme or reason for the order of this rule, but according to @BenjaminTheBaker on Instagram, there actually is a very good reason why you do this. And, it’s all in the finished product of your cake.

Apparently, the order in which you mix your ingredients determines the way in which your cake will bake, and the method I’ve been using my entire life has a name — the “reverse creaming method.” Per Benjamin, this baking tip is his preferred method for baking layered cakes, as it delivers a soft and velvety texture, and prevents gluten from forming. 

On the flip side, the “creaming method” — which he also displays in the video — involves mixing the butter and sugar first, followed by the wet, then the dry ingredients. This method incorporates more air in the initial steps, making this order perfect for anyone looking for a taller, fluffier cake.

So as it seems, there is indeed a rhyme and a reason behind the baking rule I was taught years ago. There is a chance that the reasons were explained to me, and I simply forgot them. There is also a chance that all my cakes have come out the same because I’ve accidentally used the same baking method on all my cakes.  But there’s an even greater chance that I’ll be revisiting @BenjaminTheBaker’s page in the very near future for more tips, treats, and baking breakdowns.