What Are the Best Tips for Microwave Cake?

Patti Kate

When preparing a microwave cake, ovenware specially created for a microwave should be used. Using a microwave turntable is highly recommended, as this will ensure even cooking. If brown sugar is one of the ingredients, it's helpful to soften it first by placing in a microwave bowl with some water and heating it on high for 60 seconds. Butter or margarine also must be softened before adding to the microwave cake recipe. This can be done by heating on high for 15 seconds. Using chocolate squares for a cake recipe will also require softening first, although this will generally take at least 90 seconds and should be done on medium power.

Cake mix for a microwave cake.
Cake mix for a microwave cake.

If there is no turntable in the microwave it will be necessary to rotate the baking bowl by hand. This can be done by turning the bowl halfway through cooking time. Doing this will avoid moist spots or unevenly baked cake.

Most microwave cakes are not made with eggs.
Most microwave cakes are not made with eggs.

Another tip when baking a microwave cake is to use some type of grease or cooking spray to avoid having the cake mixture stick to the bowl. If using shortening or butter, it should be applied very lightly and evenly on the bottom of the baking bowl, as well as the sides. A cooking spray works better, however, as it is less likely to form lumps.

A microwave turntable is important to have when preparing a cake, so that it heats up evenly.
A microwave turntable is important to have when preparing a cake, so that it heats up evenly.

Many people prefer to bake a microwave cake from scratch because it gives them control over ingredients used. Using a prepared cake mix from a box is perfectly acceptable, however. Whatever method is used, it's probably not a good idea to try to bake a pound cake or any cake with a very thick consistency in the microwave. For a light textured cake, batter should not be overstuffed with many ingredients.

There is a drawback to using eggs when making a microwave cake. Although an egg or two may be called for in most cake recipes, eggs may create a rubbery texture when baked in the microwave. This problem can be eliminated by substituting another ingredient for eggs. Meringue powder or applesauce may be used as alternatives. The key is to experiment to learn which ingredients work best.

One important rule to remember when baking a microwave cake is not to let it dry out. The way to achieve this is by covering the cake with plastic wrap during baking. Also, after the finished cake is removed from the microwave, it should be covered immediately.

Applesauce can help add moisture to microwave cakes.
Applesauce can help add moisture to microwave cakes.

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Discussion Comments


@fBoyle-- Don't leave out eggs if the recipe calls for it, but cut the amount in half. One whole egg per mug is too much for example, especially if it's a large egg. I use one egg for two mug cakes. If you make the batter in one mug and then split it into two, it will work perfectly.

Also, make sure to only fill the mug half-way with cake batter. My first cake in the microwave was a vanilla cake. I filled the bowl too much and it overflowed while it was cooking. Microwave cakes do deflate a little bit after they come out, but filling the bowl or mug too much is not the solution.


My roommate and I tried making a microwave cake mug. It was okay but tasted a lot like eggs. The recipe calls for eggs so I don't think I can leave it out. What do I need to do to avoid this next time?


I made a microwave chocolate cake today but I made the mistake of using regular flour rather than self-rising flour. Naturally, the cake didn't rise and it turned out horrible. It would have worked out if I had baked it in the oven. But since the cooking time is lesser and the temperature is lower in the microwave, it did not work.

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