I usually make a two layer cake, and I have a family favourite cake recipe which is fool-proof. I now want to start making one layer (thicker) cakes and i am using catering grade tins. I just finished baking my first one.

Because this cake was thicker, I lowered the temp from 180° C, to 170° C. The cake rose well, but the center was liquid till the very end; it also burned on top and I had to leave the cake in for much longer than I usually do (45 minutes instead of 35).

The length of time I baked it for isn't a problem, the cake rose very well too, but what should I change to stop the cake from burning at the top?

2 Answers 2


In a conventional oven, the majority of the heat is at the top.

You don't mention lowering the oven rack to compensate for the change in height. I'm fairly certain that would solve your problem.

Center rack is normally recommended - if you used a higher rack then that's definitely the reason it burned. But even if you used the center rack, you might need to lower it for a particularly tall cake. You might also need to extend the cooking time slightly to compensate for the lower effective temperature.

Note that this doesn't apply to convection ovens, which have a relatively constant temperature throughout.


The main reason why the top is being burnt while the middle is still uncooked is uneven temperature in your oven. Usually caterers/bakeries have higher grade, convection ovens which can accomadate the bigger cake tins because it can output an even temperature throughout the oven.

What you can do is:

  • Lower the temperature even more and bake for a longer period of time,
  • or order a pizza stone to even out the temperature of your oven.
  • Bake the cake at lowest rack (remove the upper racks if need be) and maybe even making a tin foil tent over the top to take from direct heat.

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