Have you ever tried making a cake, only to end up with a dense, rubbery disaster that resembles something more akin to an egg dish than a sweet treat?
If so, you may have fallen victim to the dreaded “eggy cake” phenomenon. But fear not, because in this article, we’ll explore why this happens and, more importantly, how to fix it.
Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a novice in the kitchen, mastering the art of creating the perfect cake is a must-have skill, and learning how to prevent an eggy cake is a crucial step in that journey.
So, let’s dive in and discover the secrets to a light, fluffy cake that will have your taste buds singing joyfully!
The sulfur compounds in eggs are responsible for the eggy taste or smell you may experience. Exposure to high heat can intensify this aroma. However, some types of eggs are more prone to this than others.
You can avoid this by whisking the eggs thoroughly or by adding a pleasant ingredient like vanilla. There could be several reasons for the egg-like flavor of your cake.
It may be due to the number of eggs used in the recipe or the quality of the eggs themselves. It is also possible that some recipes will have a subtle eggy taste or smell, which is perfectly normal.
The cause of the eggy flavor can differ depending on your cake recipe. Therefore, I have listed below some possible causes of this issue and provided solutions to help you overcome them.
What Causes Cake To Be Eggy?
There is no easy way to identify what causes a cake to taste or smell eggy. Obviously, the eggs in the batter are the culprits, but the type of eggs and how they’re handled can also make a difference.
My experience with eggy cake has shown that the smell is worst when the egg is not beaten thoroughly into the batter.
Although I don’t know the exact reason for this, I know that when eggs are beaten, the protein chains become straightened and uncurled, reducing the amount of egginess they produce.
Hence, if you’re worried about eggy smells or tastes, it’s better to beat your eggs properly, at least in some instances.
An electric hand mixer will ensure the eggs are beaten most effectively. There is no need to worry about under-beating them since this is much faster and more accurate.
You might also have this problem if you overcook your cake. It certainly makes sense since overcooked eggs release sulfur when they’re overheated. I haven’t personally experienced this, but I have heard of it from other bakers.
Your cake will have a different texture if it has been overcooked, so try not to overdo it again. Your cake is likely both overcooked and eggy because of overcooking.
There are several reasons why your cake may taste too eggy. Here are some possible reasons:
1. Not Using Enough Flour
Not using enough flour in your cake recipe can result in a dense, eggy cake. Flour is a crucial ingredient in cake baking, as it helps to provide structure and texture to the cake.
If you use too little flour, the cake may not rise properly and may have a heavier, denser texture. To ensure that you are using the correct amount of flour in your cake recipe, always measure it accurately using a kitchen scale or measuring cups.
Be sure to level off the flour with a knife or spatula to ensure you use the correct amount.
If your cake is still too eggy despite using the correct amount of flour, you may want to try using a cake flour or a combination of cake flour and all-purpose flour in your recipe.
Cake flour is a low-protein flour that helps to produce a lighter, more delicate texture in cakes.
2. Using Too Many Eggs
Using too many eggs in your cake recipe can result in an overpowering egg taste and smell. Eggs are an important ingredient in cake baking, as they help to provide structure, moisture, and richness to the cake.
However, using too many eggs can throw off the balance of the other ingredients and result in a cake that tastes more like eggs than cake.
To avoid using too many eggs, follow the recipe instructions carefully and accurately measure your ingredients.
If you find that your cake has an eggy taste, try reducing the number of eggs in your recipe by one or two, or consider using a recipe that calls for fewer eggs.
If you prefer a lighter texture in your cake, you can also try using only egg whites instead of whole eggs in your recipe. This will reduce the richness of the cake and result in a lighter, fluffier texture.
Additionally, you can try using a combination of eggs and egg substitutes, such as applesauce or yogurt, to provide moisture and richness without adding too much egg flavor.
3. Using Eggs That Are Too Large
Using too large eggs in your cake recipe can also result in a cake that tastes too eggy. Egg size can vary, and using eggs that are too large can throw off the balance of ingredients and result in a cake that has too much moisture and richness from the eggs.
Always use large eggs to ensure that you are using the correct size of eggs in your cake recipe unless the recipe specifically calls for a different size.
If you are unsure of the size of your eggs, you can weigh them on a kitchen scale to ensure that you are using the correct amount.
If your cake has an eggy taste despite using the correct number of eggs, you may want to try using medium-sized eggs instead of large ones.
This will reduce the amount of moisture and richness from the eggs, resulting in a cake that has a more balanced flavor.
Additionally, you can combine whole eggs and egg whites to provide structure and moisture without adding too much egg flavor.
4. Not Incorporating The Eggs Properly
Not incorporating the eggs properly into your cake batter can also result in an eggy-tasting cake.
When eggs are not thoroughly beaten or are added to the batter all at once, they can create pockets of egg that result in an uneven texture and flavor.
To ensure that you properly incorporate the eggs into your cake batter, beat them separately in a small bowl before adding them. This will help to break up the eggs and create a smoother texture.
When adding the eggs to the batter, add them one at a time, mixing well after each addition. This will help ensure the eggs are evenly distributed throughout the batter.
If your cake still has an eggy taste despite incorporating the eggs properly, you may want to try reducing the number of eggs in your recipe or using a recipe that calls for fewer eggs.
Additionally, you can try adding other flavors, such as vanilla extract or lemon juice, to help mask the egg flavor.
5. Using Low-Quality Eggs
Using low-quality eggs in your cake recipe can also produce an eggy-tasting cake. Old or not fresh eggs can have a stronger and more pronounced egg flavor, which can overpower other flavors in your cake.
To ensure that you are using high-quality eggs in your cake recipe, try to use fresh eggs that are not close to their expiration date.
You can also choose organic or free-range eggs, typically of higher quality and have a better flavor than conventional eggs.
If you find that your cake has an eggy taste despite using high-quality eggs, you may want to try reducing the number of eggs in your recipe or using a recipe that calls for fewer eggs.
Additionally, you can try adding other flavors, such as vanilla extract or lemon juice, to help mask the egg flavor.
How To Prevent The Eggy Taste And Smell?
Sadly, a cake cannot be cured of its eggy taste or smell once it is baked. You can only hope for the best by covering it with icing. In most cases, the smell or taste will dissipate over time, so it’s not something you need to worry about all the time.
If the egginess doesn’t go away, you should learn what went wrong to prevent it in the future. If you want to make sure the egginess doesn’t ruin your cake again, here are some tips:
1. Add Vanilla Extract To The Cake Mix
Adding just 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of vanilla extract can do wonders for your cake. Vanilla helps cover up an overpowering egg taste or smell and adds another layer of flavor to your cake. Once you’ve beaten the eggs and mixed your cake batter, add 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
However, it’s essential to use it sparingly as a little goes a long way when it comes to vanilla. Adding vanilla extract to your cake batter can improve its taste and aroma, especially when dealing with an overwhelming egg flavor.
Remember to use it in moderation to avoid overpowering your cake with the vanilla flavor.
2. Apply An Extra Layer Of Frosting After Baking
If you’ve already baked your cake and find that it has an unpleasant egg taste, there is only one way to get rid of it. One option is to disguise the taste with more icing.
Adding extra icing can help to overpower the egg taste or smell, making it less noticeable. Additionally, you can add toppings such as sprinkles, fruit, or other edible additions to your finished cake to mask the egg taste.
While it’s not a perfect solution, it can make the cake more palatable and enjoyable to eat.
3. Beat The Eggs Before Adding Them To The Cake Mix
To ensure that your cake has the right texture and flavor, it’s essential to let your eggs reach room temperature before incorporating them into your batter.
Once your eggs are at the right temperature, beat them thoroughly in a separate bowl, aiming for a smooth and even consistency. Using an electric mixer will yield the best results.
When added to the rest of the ingredients, these extra steps will help create a stable emulsion of liquid and fat.
By taking these precautions, you ensure that each ingredient is mixed and blended correctly, ultimately avoiding an overpowering egg taste in your cake.
In summary, a little extra care and attention when adding eggs to your cake batter can make a big difference in the overall outcome of your cake.
4. Watch Your Cooking Time Carefully
There is a notion that overbaked cakes taste eggier due to a chemical reaction between the sulfur in the egg whites and the iron in the yolks, which can occur at higher temperatures.
To prevent this, it is essential to double-check the temperature on your oven with a thermometer and set a timer to prevent accidentally baking the cake for too long.
5. Use Stronger Ingredients To Hide The Egginess
Some people mask the eggy taste and smell by using ingredients that have a stronger taste and smell.
Cinnamon, cloves, lemons, oranges, coffee, and vanilla can mask egginess. To overwhelm the egginess of your cake, you might want to use a strong extract if it becomes too eggy. It is generally better to use extracts rather than essences for this since they are stronger.
Even though this can be quite effective, your sensitivity to egginess will determine its effectiveness. It is still possible for some people to smell or taste the egg even after using these masking ingredients.
6. Give Your Cake A Tart Kick By Adding Lemon
If you’re looking for a simple way to combat the overpowering egg flavor in your cake, using lemon zest is an excellent option. Adding just 1 tablespoon (6g) of lemon zest can make a significant difference.
On the other hand, if you prefer to use lemon juice, add 1 US tablespoon (15ml) to the wet ingredients of your cake batter. However, it’s crucial to balance the acidity by incorporating 1/2 teaspoon (2.5g) of baking soda into the dry ingredients.
Lemon zest or lemon juice can be used to offset the egg flavor in your cake. Just a small amount of lemon zest or juice can greatly affect the overall taste. If you choose to use lemon juice, be sure to add baking soda to maintain the proper balance of acidity in your cake.
7. Avoid Overcooking The Cake
Overbaked cakes are not particularly popular. In addition to being dry, tough, and crispy, it has a strong eggy flavor.
The smell associated with eggs happens when eggs are heated over 180°F, where hydrogen sulfide compounds are produced. Whenever you overcook something, it gets too hot and starts to release this awful odor.
Even though some cakes smell of eggs after being overcooked, not all of them do. As long as the eggs are in good condition, it will still depend on how overcooked they are.
8. Replace The Water In The Cake With Coffee
Adding coffee to your chocolate cake batter is a simple yet delicious way to enhance its flavor. Instead of serving coffee alongside your cake, try incorporating it into the batter!
Coffee helps offset the eggy taste and adds a toasty and nutty flavor to your cake. It intensifies the chocolate flavor, making even a boxed cake mix taste homemade and decadent.
You don’t have to worry about complicated measurements; just substitute any water in the recipe with an equal amount of coffee. This straightforward substitution will elevate the flavor of your cake and impress your guests without any extra effort.
9. Skip The Eggs
While skipping the eggs may seem like a sin to some bakers, it’s not terrible. Don’t get me wrong, you can’t just leave out eggs from a recipe or you’ll end up with horrible results.
For a cake to be successful, eggs or something that can substitute for them are essential. You need a good recipe to make a cake that tastes good without eggs. Vegan cakes are available, but you need a good recipe.
If you don’t find anything, try researching ‘eggless cake recipes’. Maybe you would like to try out a vegan recipe if none of these appeal to you? You will be surprised by how good they are.
10. Try Different Eggs
You can buy many types of eggs, as you probably already know. In some cases, the product is of high quality and very fresh, but in others, the product is terrible. It doesn’t matter what kind of yeast you use; your bread might still smell eggy.
It is generally recommended that you try eggs from different brands and places. Sometimes, you might find that eggs do not leave as much eggy odor, but you cannot be sure.
11. Find A Recipe With Less Egg
You might think your cake has too much egginess, but it might be because it contains more eggs than most recipes.
Some cakes are bound to have more egginess to them as they contain more eggs. Cakes shouldn’t already be extremely eggy as they are. Trying another recipe with fewer eggs might be the best option if you’re particularly sensitive to them.
The only solution is to try something else if you’re still getting eggy-tasting or smelling cake after reducing the number of eggs.
12. Beat The Eggs In With An Electric Mixer
Before adding the eggs to your cake batter, thoroughly beat them in to avoid the eggy taste. Whether you are beating the eggs beforehand or along with the butter and sugar, it is important to do it well.
The method you use to beat the eggs will depend on the type of cake you are making. If you are whisking them before adding them to the batter, incorporate plenty of air into the eggs to increase their volume significantly.
This technique should eliminate or reduce the egginess of your cake. If you are beating the eggs with the butter and sugar, ensure that you beat the mixture until it becomes light and aerated before proceeding to the next step.
Also, beat the eggs into the mixture one at a time to prevent curdling. To improve the effectiveness of eliminating the egginess, try adding flavorings like essence or extract and beat them in with the eggs. This can have a positive effect on the taste of the cake once it is baked.
How To Fix An Eggy Cake?
Regrettably, there is no definite solution if your cake turns out to be eggy, but I can offer some advice to try and alleviate the issue.
It is important to follow the recipe and measure the ingredients properly when fixing an eggy cake. To balance the flavor of the cake, add more flour or sugar.
Add lemon juice or citrus to the batter for a neutralizing effect if you still taste eggy. Rather than discarding the cake, it’s worth letting it cool and sit out overnight.
Though this may result in slight drying out, with any luck, the eggy taste will dissipate into the air. Give this a try and observe the results.
Another approach worth trying is soaking the cake in some kind of syrup or alcohol. If the syrup or alcohol is potent enough, it can entirely mask the eggy flavor, allowing you to enjoy a sweet or boozy cake.
Lastly, you can try covering the cake with icing and hoping for the best. If the icing is flavored, it’s even better, as it can work to mask the eggy flavor. Even if it’s just regular icing, the sweetness can help to detract from the eggy taste.
How To Get Rid Of Egg Taste In Cakes After Baking?
The egg taste in cakes can be eliminated after baking by adding additional flavorings such as extracts, spices, or zests.
In addition to adding moisture and sweetness, oil or applesauce can be used to replace eggs.
If this does not work, you can try another recipe that does not use eggs or a different type of egg, such as a pasteurized egg.
The last thing you can try is to bake the cake longer, because longer baking times can help reduce the taste of eggs. However, don’t overcook it!
In conclusion, the infamous eggy cake can be a frustrating problem for any baker, but with the right knowledge and techniques, it’s a problem that can be easily solved.
By understanding the science behind the issue and implementing the tips and tricks we’ve outlined, you can be confident in producing a deliciously fluffy cake every time.
So next time you’re ready to whip up a sweet treat, don’t let the fear of an eggy cake hold you back.
Instead, put your newfound knowledge to the test and enjoy the satisfaction of creating a perfectly moist, tender cake that will impress all who taste it. Happy baking!