Baking for Beginners | 10 Tips You Need to Know

Not all of us grew up baking from scratch. Following the directions from the back of a box is quick and easy, but if you’re trying to take your baking skills to the next level, this isn’t the way to go.

Cakes, cookies, brownies—the list goes on and on. No matter what decadent dessert you want to master, there’s a few things that remain consistent. Here are a few baking tips for beginners from our kitchen that will help you take on your next complicated recipe with confidence!

Lay Out Everything You Need for the Recipe

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Before you get started, read through the entire recipe. Jot down a list of all the necessary equipment, ingredients, and tools that you’ll need. Lay them all out on your workspace so you can easily and efficiently manage your cooking process. There will be less mess, less confusion, and a better outcome!

Follow Every Step of the Recipe

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

It’s so easy to cut corners or skip ahead when following recipes, but with baking that’s a big no-no. Bite the urge to go on your own path and stick to the recipe. In many cakes and pastries, the ingredients need to react to each other at certain times to achieve the best possible flavor. By swapping the order of your recipe, you can compromise the entire dish.

Let Your Ingredients Reach Room Temperature

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Letting common baking ingredients, such as butter and eggs get to room temperature is critical to the composition of most baked goods.

In a lot of baking recipes, butter is called for as either cold, room temperature, or melted. This is because butter at different temperatures creates different effects with flour. Our in-house chef, Caroline Smile shares this effect.

“Ever wonder why cakes get so moist? The moisture in cake comes from the butter and oil used to make it. Cakes call for melted butter so that it blends more thoroughly with the batter. If it’s too cold, it won’t blend enough, leaving you with a less-than-amazing cake.”

The same goes for eggs.

“When creating things like custards, eggs need to be at room temperature. When a cold egg is added to a hot liquid, it can begin to curdle rather than mix.”

Use a Silicone Baking Mat

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Source: Sur La Table

Investing in a silicone baking mat will save you time, money, and stress in the kitchen. Silicone baking sheets are a reusable, non-stick surface that you can prep, cook, and clean. They allow for bakers to easily

Invest in Quality Silicone Spatulas

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Source: Sur La Table

A well-made silicone spatula ensures that your batter or dough can be scraped from the bowl in a quick, clean matter. Use the spatula to transfer all of your batter and you can rest assured that no gooey deliciousness will be left behind! Wasted batter is a thing of the past.

Crack Eggs Separate From Your Baking Mixture

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Nervous about getting shell in your mixture? Does your recipe require separating yolks from whites? Cracking your eggs separately into a small bowl is a sure-fired way to incorporate your eggs properly.

Don’t Over Mix the Batter

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

It’s very easy to lose track of time, keep your mixer running and pretty soon your batter is completely over mixed. So what happens when you over mix batter? Depending on the recipe, over mixed batter can result in an extremely tough product. Biscuits and pizza can become hard as a rock, cakes no longer moist and fluffy, the list goes on. Be sure to mix until just incorporated, or according to the directions.

Use a Cookie Scoop for Consistency

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Source: Sur La Table

Have you ever rolled out cookie dough by hand, only to find that you have 4 different cookie sizes once they come out of the oven? To guarantee size consistency, use a cookie scoop to create perfectly round, even cookies!

Don’t Guestimate—Use a Timer

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Should Know

Source: Sur La Table

Nothing is worse than burnt baked goods, or undercooked, doughy desserts. Avoid under and overcooking with the use of a handy kitchen timer. Once you get to know the temperature and cooking style of your oven (trust us, they all vary) you can make slight adjustments to the time on recipes based on how your oven operates.

Increase Your Plating Game with a Zester

Baking for Beginners | Tips You Need to Know

Zesting not only elevates the flavor of your baking, but it also is great for presentation! Top a delicious bundt cake with fresh lemon zest around the top of the cake, as well as around the base of your cake stand for a special touch!

Ready to Put Your Skills to the Test?

Get ready, get set, BAKE! Here are 5 dessert meal kits that will put your new skills to the test!

Flourless Chocolate Torte

Baking for Beginners | Flourless Chocolate Torte

Try it: Flourless Chocolate Torte

Lemon Chia Cupcakes

Baking for Beginners | Lemon Chia Cupcakes

Try it: Lemon Chia Cupcakes

Vanilla Cheesecake

Baking for Beginners | Vanilla Cheesecake

Try it: Vanilla Cheesecake

Unbelievable Fudgy Brownies

Baking for Beginners | Unbelievable Fudgy Brownies

Try it: Unbelievable Fudgy Brownies

Mixed Berry & Mascarpone Pie

Baking for Beginners | Mixed Berry & Mascarpone Pie

Try it: Mixed Berry & Mascarpone Pie