Cake Decorating Community - Cakes We Bake

Question for anyone who displays their (from scratch) cupcakes for events like weddings etc.. How do you keep them from drying out?  Do you use oil instead of butter in your recipe?  I have tried brushing with simple syrup, it helps a little but, not enough. A friend told me she went to a wedding and the cupcakes were out all day were still moist the next day.  What is the trick I am missing???  Please help.....

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Well Celly

I have never had a problem with dry cupcakes. I don't use butter in my recipe for cake/cupcakes, only shortening & oil. If they have been dry, it was because I over baked them. We have often had cupcakes the next day that have sat on the counter all night.  I also have done cupcakes for weddings & showers where I have also been told they were still moist the next day.  I guess I would have to know your recipe & method to figure out what the problem seems to be. Then myself & others here can offer some practical solutions.   :o)

Thanks June, I use butter in my recipe. And use the sugar/butter creamy method.  Maybe that is the problem.  I love the taste but, would like my cake to stay moist a little longer and be able to stay out on display without worry.  It makes sense that oil binds to the flour better.  Can I use both oil and butter and get the best of both worlds? thank you (as always) for your help:-)


Yes Celly

By all means, use the combo of shortening/oil/butter. I shouldn't say I never use butter. I do, but always in a 50/50, or 40/60 ratio.  I also most times use sour cream or mayo, a 1/4 or so in my cakes. Not enough to make the cake dense, but enough to make it moist. This is on top of the oil called for in the recipe. I also use the cream butter/oil/shortening & sugar method. That is pretty much standard in scratch baking. I just made red velvet cake for a rehearsal cake for this Fri & made cupcakes with the leftover batter. Came out moist & flavorful.

I would do a 1/4 shortening, 1/4 butter, 1/4 - 1/3 cup oil ratio. Give it a try & let me know how they turn out.


Thank you June, I will definately give it a try:-)  I bet your red velvet cupcake were delicious!  I will keep you posted on the outcome!

Okey Dokey....... I'll be right here..... waiting to hear.  :o)

Hi Celly.  I use the creaming butter and sugar method with my cupcakes too and they seem to last fine.  Do you use butter or margarine?  I actually use Stork margarine - I wonder if that's the difference?  Do you beat your fat and sugar for quite a while, so that the fat is really, really soft and creamy?

Hi Katy. Thanks for responding.  Sorry it took me so long to get back here.  I have been using butter and creaming it until light and fluffy.  I have never heard of Stork margerine. But, I wonder if it acts more like oil since margerine seems softer and more oily than butter....  Does it still give the flavor of butter?  I am looking for a cupcake that can stand up to being out on display all day / night and still be moist.

Hi Celly.  I honestly can't tasted the difference between Stork and butter once it's baked into a cake.    I think you could be right about the consistency as the Stork is of a 'spreadable' consistency in the first place, not a hard block that needs to soften.  I had another thought as well - what about baking your cupcakes in a double layer of baking cases?  That might protect them a wee bit more from the atmosphere as well.  Or you could fill them with a little butter cream too with one of those wonderful cupcake filler nozzles.  I tried that for the first time last week - carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting piped into the middle and then covered in frosting too.  They were delicious.  Also make sure your buttercream completely covers the cupcake to keep the moisture in.  

btw I googled Stork Margarine and it's made by Unilever and I saw a blog that says they think Imperial Baking Margarine is the same thing in the US.  Have you heard of that?

Hi Katy!  I can't tell you how great it is to talk to people who actally understand what I am talking about.  I have heard of imperial margerine and I am going to try it.  I tried just using oil in place of butter.  Cupcakes were definately more moist but lacked that butter flavor and also seemed a little doughier (if that is a word.).  June suggested a mix of butter, oil and shortening.  That could work as well.  I think I will try margarine  and then a blend and see which works best..  Your cupcakes sound delicious!  I usually use my apple corer to pop a hole in the top for filling. That works pretty good as well:-)  My sister went to a party where the cupcakes were out all day and into the night and then only stored in a cardboard bakery box and she says they were still moist in the morning.  That is what I am looking for.  Feel like I am chasing a unicorn!!!  Thanks again Katy for all of you wonderful tips!

Celly - you are so welcome and I'm glad you feel I have been of some help.  I shall be very interested to hear the results of your experimenting, so don't forget to let us know how they come out and SHARE THE RECIPE!! x

I have used half butter half oil sometimes - but have found that if I subsitute sour cream for the majority of whatever liquid is called for in a recipe it becomes much more moist and tends to stay that way. Do that with all my cakes and cupcakes and have comments all the time about how moist they are. Good luck!

Yes Joann
As I said in a earlier post I add sour cream or mayo + my oil. Works for me. :o)

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