When it’s time to make a cake, it’s important to know how to grease and flour a pan properly. These helpful tips using a variety of ingredients will give you lots of choices when it comes to prepping your cake pan before creating the world’s tastiest cake.
Why do you grease and flour a pan?
Most cake recipes are fat-based (meaning they use butter or oil). So they tend to stick to the bottom and side of cake tins when baked. Unless your recipe uses egg whites that naturally need to grip the pan, greasing your cake pan can help your cake make it safely to the serving plate in one perfect piece.
How to grease and flour a pan
Whether you are using butter, vegetable oil/shortening, or cooking spray, you can lightly grease the bottom and sides of any cake pan. After the pan is greased, you can sprinkle all-purpose flour onto the bottom of the pan. Turn the pan on its side and keep hitting the pan as you move the flour over the sides so it covers the surfaces.
How to grease and flour a baking pan would be the same. Make sure to cover all the sides of the baking pan, since its sides may be higher than a typical cake pan.
Greasing and flouring a bundt pan is virtually the same process. Grease and flour thoroughly into each of the grooves, depending on the design of the bundt pan. Also if you love making bundt cake do check out our Gingerbread Bundt Cake recipe, its perfect for the holidays!
To grease and flour a pan, you might want to have a pastry brush around. Otherwise, you can do it all yourself with a little know-how.
Each of the following can be used along with flour to grease and flour a pan before baking.
- Cooking Spray or
- Unsalted Butter (approximately 1-2 Tablespoons) or
- Vegetable Shortening or Vegetable Oil (approximately 1-2 Tablespoons) and
- All-Purpose Flour (approximately a few tablespoons to ¼ cup)
Greasing or Flouring a Pan: 4 Different Options
1. Using Cooking Spray: Shake the can and lightly spray the pan.
2. Using Butter: Allow the butter to soften completely. Using a pastry brush or even your fingers, rub the butter in all over the sides and bottom of the pan. If you see any clumps of butter, rub them in or remove so the layer of butter is thin and even.
3. Using Vegetable Shortening or Vegetable Oil: Use a pastry brush or a piece of paper towel to rub the oil evenly into the cake pans. If there is too much oil, you can lightly wipe the pans with a dry paper towel to thin out the oil layer.
Pro Tip: After greasing the pan using any method above, sprinkle some all-purpose flour onto the cake pan and lift the pan. Tap the sides of the pan so the flour covers the entire bottom. Turn the pan on its side and hit the side of the pan as you rotate the pan and coat the sides with flour.
💭Tips & Tricks:
- When using butter to grease a pan, make sure the butter is softened to room temperature so it completely covers the surfaces of the cake pan.
- When finished flouring the pan, make sure to tap the pan upside down to shake off excess flour. You don’t want to have flour baked into your cake batter.
- Don’t over grease your pans. A thin layer will get the job done. Over greasing may cause the batter to get soupy and affect the outcome of your otherwise perfect cake!
How do you grease and flour a pan without shortening?
You can grease and flour a pan without shortening by using cooking spray, butter, or vegetable oil. Any of these choices will work fine, as long as you evenly coat the cake pan.
How to grease a cake pan without parchment paper
If you follow the instructions above, you can easily grease a cake pan without parchment paper. If you prefer to use parchment paper alone or by greasing the pan, that is also a great way to ensure the cake will come neatly out of the pan.
Can you grease and flour a pan with butter?
Yes. It is a good idea to let the butter come to room temperature so it coats the pan and doesn’t come off in clumps. Though it may seem like a good idea to melt the butter before greasing a pan, it's not.
The fat of the butter is what is going to prevent sticking. When you melt the butter first, it's not the fat, but the moisture that will be used so it doesn’t work as well.
Can you oil and flour a pan?
Yes - you can use vegetable oil or canola oil to grease and flour a pan. By using a paper towel or pastry brush, you can coat the pan just the same.
If you have a spray bottle, you can put the oil in the bottle and spray it onto the pan as well.
Is it necessary to grease and flour a nonstick pan?
Yes - no matter how great the nonstick pan is, it is always a good idea to grease and flour the pan so your cakes are guaranteed to come out cleanly.