Can You Bake a Cake in an Air Fryer?

Is a kitchen complete without an air fryer? I certainly don’t think so. My air fryer has become an absolute staple in my kitchen, whether baking an entire dinner or reheating pizza slices. But that’s not all it can do – it can bake tasty cakes, too.

While unconventional, baking a cake in the air fryer is relatively simple, and you’re bound to enjoy the results. All you need to do is purchase a smaller cake pan that will fit your air fryer – six or seven inches max. Then, pour the batter, and bake at 320F for about 20 minutes.

Hey, there! My name’s Michelle, and I am a self-taught baker with over ten years of experience. If I’m being 100% honest, I’m a little obsessed with my air fryer. I use it once, if not two times a day. Of course, I had to try and bake a cake in my little air fryer – and I was delighted with the results.

Are you thinking about baking a cake in your air fryer? Then keep reading. Let’s “air fry” up a cake!

Can You Bake a Cake in An Air Fryer?

Some people might think that the air fryer is solely used for air frying things, whether “fried” chicken or ultra-crispy vegetables that taste more like your favorite bag of chips than a bucket of veggies.

But they can do so much more – including baking a cake.

That said, yes, an air fryer can bake a cake. It’s surprisingly not too different from baking a cake in your regular oven. The most significant difference is that you’ll need to adjust the cake pan size, ultimately affecting the temperature and bake time required.

Luckily, baking a cake in the air fryer is a cinch – and the best part is that you don’t have to wait seemingly endlessly for your oven to heat up. (Trust me, that’s my least favorite part about baking. What can I say? I’m a little impatient!)

How to Bake a Cake in the Air Fryer

Baking a cake in your air fryer is easier (and faster) than using your oven. That said, I highly recommend giving it a try. However, I will say that you might need to do it a couple of times before you get it “right.” It’s well worth the trial and error, though!

Here’s how to bake a cake in the air fryer:

1. Mix Your Batter

Like any other cake recipe, you’ll need to start by mixing the ingredients. You can use any cake recipe you want. Or, you can seek out an air fryer-specific cake recipe like this.

2. Pour the Cake Batter into a Small Cake Pan

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to use your regular nine-inch cake pan to make cake in your air fryer; it’s just not big enough to accommodate this pan size.

That said, ensure you have a high-quality six-inch pan in your back pocket. (Seven-inch cake pans can also work, but I use the six-inch option for my air fryer).

Then, grease and fill up the six-inch pan with your cake batter. If your cake pan is two inches or under in height, only fill it halfway. Otherwise, fill 2/3rds of the way full.

3. Air Fry at 320F for 20 Minutes

Finally, set your prepared six-inch cake pan onto the air fryer basket. Set the temperature to 320F. Most cakes will be done in about 20 minutes. However, you’ll want to check at the 15-minute mark to see how it’s doing. You may need to add or subtract up to five minutes from the 20-minute recommendation.

To check your cake for doneness, simply stick a toothpick (or another sharp object, like a fork) into the center. If the item comes out entirely clean, remove the cake from the air fryer and allow it to cool before removing, decorating, and serving.

Why Bake a Cake in the Air Fryer?

If you’re contemplating between using your oven and your air fryer, you might wonder what perks the air fryer provides. Well, there are a couple of things worth mentioning:

  • It won’t heat your kitchen.

OK, listen, everyone – I live in Southern California. It gets hot here, especially in the middle of July. Do you think I want to deal with a hot kitchen, too? No way! Well, one of the most significant advantages of baking a cake in the air fryer is it won’t leave your kitchen feeling like a sauna. Win.

  • It’s a lot quicker.

Do you enjoy waiting around for your oven to heat up? Me neither. I despise waiting for my oven to make the magical beep, beep, beep noise, indicating it’s ready for me to slide the pan inside. With an air fryer, you don’t have to wait. Not only that but the bake time is shortened – double win.

  • Uses less energy.

Lots of people are going green these days, myself included. Well, if you’re one of those people taking strides to help Mother Earth, you’ll be pleased to know that using the air fryer requires less energy than an oven.

  • Get more use out of your air fryer.

Did you have a cranky hubby wondering why you purchased an air fryer because you’re “never going to use it?” Yup, me too. Let this be an “aha!” moment for you. Tell him you made the cake in the air fryer so he can be in awe – and so happy you decided to buy it, even if it wasn’t on sale.

  • It makes delicious cakes!

OK, so this one works for ovens and air fryers, but I thought it was worth mentioning. Although it might shock you, an air-fried cake is delicious and not dry whatsoever. Give it a try!

FAQs

The results are in – the air fryer is the most versatile appliance you’ll ever know, so much so that it can bake cakes in as little as 20 minutes! While I’m sure you’re super excited to make an air fryer cake, check out these frequently asked questions first. You might learn a few new things!

Can you use any cake pan in an air fryer?

Remember how I said air fryers are incredibly multifaceted? I meant it. That said, yes, you can use any cake pan in the air fryer. Whether it’s metal, glass, or another type of material, you can use it. Just make sure that it’s small enough to fit inside!

Can you bake in an air fryer instead of an oven?

You can definitely use the air fryer instead of the oven to bake (and cook). Just ensure you have a pan that can fit inside the air fryer (when a pan is required, such as in the case of cakes). You may need to adjust the bake time, so keep an eye on your items!

What temperature do you air fry cake?

While you typically bake cakes at 350F, it’s a little different when using an air fryer. This is mainly because the pan you’re using is smaller, so it won’t require as high heat or a long baking time. That said, the general temperature for air-fried cake is 320F, although some recipes may use 300F. Always follow your recipe.

Air Fryer Cake is What’s For Dessert Tonight!

Who knew making a cake in the air fryer was so effortless? With a few ingredients and 20-30 minutes, you can make a cake that tastes right out of the bakery. All you’ll need is a smaller cake pan to fit in the air fryer. Lower the temp and wait about 20 minutes, and viola! A perfect cake that everyone will enjoy.

Have you ever made a cake in the air fryer? Do you have any tips you’d like to share with other readers and us?

About Michelle
I have been a lover of sweets since day one. This led me on a self-taught baking journey starting at the age of 13. It's been over 10 years since the start of my baking adventures, and I’ve learned a lot along the way. Now, people rave about my delectable treats, whether it’s a chocolate cake or a strawberry crepe.

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