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HomeFood ScienceAir Fryer vs. Common Chocolate Cake - What's The Distinction?

Air Fryer vs. Common Chocolate Cake – What’s The Distinction?

Wish to bake a cake, however have a damaged oven, or is it stuffed with different bakes? Eyeing that air fryer within the cabinet and questioning whether or not you possibly can simply bake it in there? Isn’t an air fryer sort of like a small oven? So shouldn’t that work?

Seems, it in all probability will. That’s, so long as your cake tin suits in your air fryer, and should you don’t thoughts it trying a bit completely different when it comes out. Tastewise, there’s barely any distinction between your air fryer and traditional oven!

Are you able to bake a cake in an air fryer?

The quick reply: sure, you possibly can bake a cake in an air fryer. Though most air fryers are marketed as a alternative for deep fryers, they’re, in actuality, simply very environment friendly, small ovens. Similar to a traditional oven, they use air to warmth up meals. The principle distinction is the effectivity with which they achieve this. Air fryers are designed in such a means that sizzling air might be moved by way of effectively, utilizing a well-positioned fan. It’s why numerous meals that you just’d usually make in a daily oven, prove nice in an air fryer.

As such, many, however not all desserts might be baked in an air fryer. Nonetheless, there are some main limitations, particularly as regards to sizing.

heating spiral with fan in air fryer
The within of an air fryer. The heating spiral (B) sits proper above the product to be baked. Above that you just’ll discover a fan (A) which pulls the air by way of the air fryer.

Drawback 1: Restricted in dimension

The primary, and possibly most limiting drawback of baking a cake in an air fryer is the limitation in dimension. Most air fryers are significantly smaller in dimension than typical ovens. As such, you possibly can in all probability solely match a small cake tin. Within the air fryer we examined, we might simply match a spherical tin with a 15 cm (5,9 inch) diameter.

Maintain the air flowing!

One of the crucial essential causes air fryers work so effectively is their inside airflow. They’ve been designed for warm air to move by way of and across the product very effectively. It’s why air fryers have wire baskets or grills with holes, air can move by way of these buildings. Once you bake a cake, you block a good portion of that move together with your cake tin. It’s essential to make sure that the air can a minimum of move alongside the tin. So, make it possible for the air can move across the tin as simply as attainable. Don’t place the tin proper towards the edges of the air fryer, and make it possible for no parchment paper stands proud on the edges.

orange cake baked in air fryer basket
A 15cm (6 inch) pan simply suits on this air fryer.

Drawback 2: Can’t see what’s occurring

Most air fryers don’t have a glass window. As an alternative, they actually are a black field and you may’t see what’s happening inside. There’s no strategy to simply peak inside to see how your cake is doing, with out opening up the entire air fryer.

There’s cause for this, and once more, it’s to make sure optimum move of air. Including a window would jeopardize the move. Nonetheless, opening up an air fryer causes much more disruption. Since air fryers are usually on the smaller facet, a good portion of sizzling air will escape throughout opening. It causes an air fryer to chill down greater than a traditional oven would while you open its door.

Philips air fryer
There aren’t any home windows on this air fryer.

Drawback 3: Much less correct temperature management

Thirdly, most air fryers don’t have as fixed and exact a temperature as a traditional oven does. When monitoring the temperature in our air fryer, we seen means larger swings in temperature in comparison with a traditional oven.

Once more, that’s because of the design of an air fryer. It’s smaller in dimension and has much less mass to carry onto warmth inflicting the temperature to fall quickly when opening the air fryer. Fluctuations of 20°C (40°F) had been fairly regular, particularly proper after placing within the cake.

Whether or not your cake suffers from these fluctuations relies upon loads in your cake. Some desserts are very delicate and wish fairly exact temperatures. Others can deal with these temperature adjustments fairly effectively. It does make the baking course of considerably much less predictable, and also you’ll must verify in your cake extra to find out whether or not it’s prepared.

Benefit 1: The cake bakes quicker

Even when set at the very same temperature, your cake will possible bake extra rapidly in an air fryer than it should in a traditional oven. As a result of environment friendly move of air, it heats up your tin extra rapidly. This isn’t distinctive for desserts, potatoes as an example, additionally bake (loads) quicker in an air fryer. So, when baking a cake in an air fryer, you would possibly wish to flip down the temperature in comparison with the one you’d use in a typical oven.

Benefit 2: Shorter pre-heating time

Since an air fryer is smaller and strikes air extra rapidly, it heats up extra rapidly as effectively. We even discovered that pre-heating barely had any impact on the air fryer since opening it up so as to add the cake would cool it down fairly a bit anyhow. A pre-heat of some minutes is probably going already adequate in your cake.

Benefit 3: Bake anyplace you need

Whereas most of us can’t unplug our ovens and carry it alongside, you possibly can take alongside your air fryer! So long as there {an electrical} outlet, you possibly can theoretically bake your cake anyplace you need!

Benefit 4: Decrease vitality consumption

Air fryers use much less vitality to get to their goal temperature. So, should you’d bake the identical cake in an air fryer vs. a traditional oven, it should most probably take much less vitality to bake. Nonetheless, if it is advisable bake a number of desserts and would find yourself baking numerous desserts one after the opposite in an air fryer, your typical oven will likely be extra vitality environment friendly since you possibly can bake a number of desserts in a single go.

An air fryer cake differs from a traditional one

Course of-wise, it’s fairly easy to bake a cake in an air fryer. Nonetheless, the ultimate cake will prove a bit completely different than one baked in a traditional oven. Once more, it’s all due to the move of air.

Air fryer desserts are extra crispy

We discovered that in all examined desserts, the desserts baked within the air fryer had been a bit extra crispy on the skin. Nonetheless, after simply someday of storage in a closed container this distinction disappeared. Each desserts can be simply as moist and smooth.

The crispier exterior is probably going because of the extra environment friendly baking course of. The surface heats up extra rapidly and dries out, turning it barely crispy.

orange cakes baked in conventional oven vs air fryer
A fundamental orange cake, baked in two methods on the identical set temperature. The air fryer cake was completed extra rapidly, had a crispier exterior and a darker colour.

Air fryer desserts are darker in colour

Air fryer desserts additionally turned out barely darker in colour. For our chocolate cake the variations had been negligible because it’s a darkish cake already, however for lighter desserts, similar to an orange cake, the distinction was clear. You’ll be able to clear up for this by merely turning down the temperature of the air fryer. Greater warmth makes desserts flip darker in colour extra rapidly. Though the set temperature was the identical, the skin could have been in a position to warmth up extra rapidly due to the environment friendly move of sizzling air alongside the cake.

Air fryer desserts have a special prime

Essentially the most attention-grabbing distinction although between the 2 types of desserts was the distinction in how the desserts had risen. All of the desserts we examined contained some type of leavening agent similar to baking powder or baking soda. Because of this, the desserts overrated throughout baking. Nonetheless, how they overrated differed fairly a bit, inflicting the ultimate desserts to look fairly completely different.

We haven’t (but) discovered a constant sample within the seems to be of desserts from the air fryer vs. a traditional oven. It does appear to rely upon the recipe how the desserts prove within the two several types of oven.

Which cake types work greatest in an air fryer?

When baking a cake in a traditional oven, you possibly can typically select between two settings:

  • convection: a fan blows air by way of the oven
  • typical: the oven is heated from above and under (within the case of gasoline ovens, solely under)

An air fryer is an excellent charged convection oven. As such, if a recipe very explicitely requires a traditional oven, as a result of it wants the extra stagnant air to bake correctly, it possible gained’t work effectively in an air fryer. Likewise, desserts that bake superb in both sort, will in all probability work effectively in an air fryer, although would possibly nonetheless want a slight temperature adjustment. The recipe under works effectively in each an air fryer in addition to an oven, as does our eggless orange cake (although make half a batch to make sure it suits you air fryer).


  • 1,5 tbsp instantaneous espresso granules
  • 60g ml sizzling water

Dry elements

  • 80g entire wheat pastry flour*
  • 40g all goal flour
  • 50g cocoa powder
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 115g granulated sugar

Moist elements

  • 50g oil (e.g. canola or sunflower)
  • 140g milk (plant based mostly or cow’s milk, we used almond milk)


  1. Add the moment espresso granules to a cup with the recent water. Stir and let the granules dissolve totally earlier than utilizing.
  2. Put together a spherical caketin/springform with a diameter of 15 cm (approx. 6 inches) by lining the underside with parchment paper.
  3. Within the meantime, add all dry elements to a bowl and stir by way of.
  4. Pre-heat the air fryer to 180°C (350°F).
  5. Add the moist elements & espresso combine to the dry elements and stir till it has all blended in utterly.
  6. Pour the batter into the ready cake tin.
  7. Bake within the air fryer, set at 180°C (350°F) for 16-20 minutes. Our cake took 17,5 minutes, however the precise baking time will rely in your air fryer mannequin. A tester ought to come out clear when inserted. Strive to not take a look at too usually to forestall the oven from cooling down an excessive amount of.
  8. Go away to chill on a rack and luxuriate in with a drizzle of dulce de leche or some fruit jam.


*This must be a finely floor entire wheat flour. Alternatively, you may as well use entire wheat chapati flour or common all goal flour.


Mior Zakuan Azmi M, Taip FS, Mustapa Kamal SM, Chin NL. Results of temperature and time on the bodily traits of moist desserts baked in air fryer. J Meals Sci Technol. 2019 Oct;56(10):4616-4624. doi: 10.1007/s13197-019-03926-z. Epub 2019 Jul 10. PMID: 31686693; PMCID: PMC6801284. hyperlink



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