The Can Hack That Turns A Cake Pan Into A Bundt Pan

There are certain pieces of equipment that every baker needs, whether you're at an amateur level or are a professional. This includes baking pans, measuring cups and spoons, spatulas, and a rolling pin. A bundt pan is by no means a must-have item; it's really just a molded cake pan, designed mostly for looks and presentation. There are dozens of patterns and molds to choose from and they certainly make beautiful cakes, but, unless you're starting a bundt cake business, you can probably get by without one. 

Yet, if and when the day comes that your best friend requests a homemade bundt cake for their birthday or you've found a delicious bundt cake recipe that you absolutely must try, you don't necessarily need to run out and purchase any new baking tools. If you've got a standard cake pan and a mason jar, you're good to go.

Bundt cakes are distinguished by their round shape and signature hole in the middle. To recreate the look without the specific pan, simply place an inverted mason jar in the middle of a springform pan and pour cake batter all around the jar, as seen in this video from TikTok user @onegoodthingbyjillee. Once baked, and you remove the jar, you'll have a cake that looks like a smooth-topped bundt, complete with icing.

A simple mason jar hack creates beautiful bundt cakes

Bundt cakes are traditionally dense, like coffee and pound cakes, and the reason they bake so well in a specific bundt pan has to do with the hole in the middle. Thick, dense batters take longer to bake and since the middle of a cake takes the longest, using a bundt pan removes that obstacle. Ultimately, it allows for a more even bake, without underdone centers and overdone edges. By placing a mason jar in the middle of a cake pan, you're essentially doing the same trick.


How To Make A "Fake" Bundt Pan #bundtcake

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To do so, you'll need to make sure your cake pan or springform pan is well greased, and you'll want to do so with the outside of the mason jar as well. After the cake is baked, let it cool in the pan. Here's the trick though on removing the jar: If you're working with a springform pan, just take the rim off the outside and twist the mason jar out; if you are baking in a round pan, first remove the jar and then invert the pan onto a plate to release the cake. Then, you can get to decorating with thin icing for a classic drip effect, or try thicker frosting, fresh fruit, edible flowers, citrus zest, a shower of powdered sugar, or whatever else you'd like for the perfect finishing touch.

A soup can works just as well

If you use this method for baking a bundt cake, keep in mind that the vessel you use to create the hole in the middle of the cake matters. Not any old glass will do. You'll want to use something that withstands heat well. Small mason or canning jars do the trick because they are made to be used in canning, which employs very hot temperatures. If you don't have any, a clean aluminum can (like a soup can) will work well, too. Make sure it's empty, that the label has been peeled off, and it's greased well.

However, instead of inverting the can like you would do with a mason jar, keep it right side up in the cake pan and fill it about halfway with some pie weights or dried beans. If you don't weigh it down, the can will just bake up vertically along with the cake. When you remove the can (or glass jar), be careful not to just pull it upwards. If the cake is sticking at all, you could be left with some unsightly and jagged edges. It's better to twist the can up and out for the best results.