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How long does it take to cool a bundt cake?

How long does a cake take to cool? That depends on the type of cake, its size, and more. Learn everything you need to know about cooling homemade cake. Furthermore, learn how to chill it quicker.

I’ll never forget sitting in my friend’s kitchen as she prepared an afterschool snack for her children.

She baked a cake in a 9 X 13-inch pan and pulled it out of the oven minutes before the bus roared up to the bus stop. She got out the canned frosting and tried to ice the heated cake while looking at the time.

“Ow, ouch, ow,” she murmured as she attempted to ice the still-warm cake.

She not only burned her fingertips, but the icing also did not spread. Instead, her efforts resulted in a torn cake with clumps of frosting all over the place.

Of course, her children were unconcerned with the appearance of the cake. They scarfed it down because they were ravenous after a long day at school.

Sometimes how a cake looks doesn’t matter. Yet that does happen from time to time.

If you want to frost your cake or put it in a cake keeper overnight, it must be cool. The temperature in the room is chilly.

How long does it take for a cake to cool? It takes a 2- to 3-inch-thick cake between 2 and 3 hours to cool down to room temperature when left to cool on a cooling rack on your countertop. Thicker cakes will need more time to chill. Also, thick cakes need more time to chill than light cakes.

Cake cooling on a wire rack with the empty cake pan.

The length of time it takes for a cake to cool depends on its thickness, kind of cake, kitchen temperature, and whether it cools in or out of the pan.

Let’s get into the details. And don’t be concerned. If you are in a hurry to cool the cake, you will get some nifty tricks to speed up the process.

What is Room Temperature for a Cake?

There is considerable disagreement over what constitutes ambient room temperature and what constitutes room temperature for food. A room’s typical temperature is around 68°F (20°C). Room temperature for food, on the other hand, is estimated to be approximately 70°F (21°C).

To be exact, your cake should not be warmer than 68 to 70°F (20 to 21°C) before frosting.

However, you can safely cut your cake after it has cooled down for about 20 minutes. Nonetheless, there are several reasons to continue chilling a cake until it reaches room temperature.

  • It can be iced without crumbling and melting.
  • It may be kept in an airtight container without the cake becoming soggy due to heat condensation.

What Affects How Long it Takes for a Cake to Cool on the Counter?

A standard-sized cake (8-inch round, 2-inch thick) usually takes 2 to 3 hours to cool down when left on your countertop. If you want to frost the cake, let it to cool for a longer period of time.

Numerous factors influence how long a cake takes to cool on the counter.

Cake Size

Large cake next to a small cake with words "which cake will cool faster?"

Bigger cakes need more time to cool than smaller cakes. The cooling time will be affected by the size of the cake. It makes sense. The longer the chilling period, the thicker the cake.

Cakes baked in sheet pans (like Texas sheet cake) cool quicker than cakes baked in loaf pans (like pound cake). Smaller cakes cool faster than bigger cakes.

But before you get excited, the difference is not huge. Based on my experience, below are the cooling timelines:

  • 1-inch cakes can take less than 2 hours.
  • When it comes to cooling, 2-inch and 3-inch cakes will be closer to the 2-hour mark.
  • 4-inch-deep cakes will most likely take 3 hours.
  • Over 4-inches deep, plan at least 4 hours.

Cake depth is the simplest method to determine size. But, width is also important. Consider how much faster cupcakes cool than a 10-inch spherical dessert.

The Environment Outside and Inside Your Kitchen

Cakes cool faster in cold weather than in hot weather.

It makes a difference where you live. If you reside in a warm or humid climate, your cake will take a long time to cool. Don’t even get me started on summer in Arizona.

Warmer weather lengthens cooling time. As a general rule, add an extra hour to your timeline so the cake is completely cool.

A cake takes less time to cool down if you live in a colder environment or it’s the cool season. In Minnesota in the winter, the cake may be ready before you realize it.

Similarly, the temperature of your kitchen influences how fast cakes cool.

The temperature of a room might feel different to each of us. And let’s be honest. Most of us do not have a wall-mounted thermometer. People do, however, notice when their kitchen is too hot.

There may also be hot patches in the kitchen, such as beside the oven or near a window that receives direct afternoon sunlight. The best thing you can do to speed up (or at least not slow down) the cooling process is to find a cool place to set the cake.

A counter near the oven may not be the best place to cool the cake. Maybe the kitchen table is preferable.

Is the Cake Cooling Inside or Outside the Baking Pan?

Cake in pan cooling and cake out of pan cooling.

Cakes that are kept in their pans take longer to cool than cakes that are removed from their pans. Cakes that are cooled on a wire rack reach room temperature considerably faster than cakes that are left in their pans.

According to my mom, you’re crazy if you don’t use a cooling cake rack. Be prepared to add at least a half-hour to the cooling time.

The bottom and sides of the pan are both heated. Keeping a hot cake in a hot pan keeps the cake warm. As you remove the pan, part of the heat goes with it.

However, more crucially, if you don’t use a cooling rack, moisture might cause the bottom of the cake to get mushy.

How to Cool a Cake on a Cooling Rack (the right way)

Cooling a cake properly begins before you even pour the cake mixture into the cake pan. It starts with prepping your pan so the baked cake is easy to remove.

Prep the Pan

A container of Baker's Joy baking spray next to a bottle of Pam Baking spray made with flour.

Select a flour-based nonstick baking spray.

Prep the pan in one of three ways:

  • Coat it with nonstick cooking spray (containing flour)
  • Grease and flour the pan
  • Line the bottom of the pan with parchment paper

Parchment paper is one of the easiest ways to prevent a cake from sticking to the pan. Make use of precut parchment paper. You can get it here. (This is an affiliate link.)

But, you should still spray the parchment sheet and pan sides.

Certain cake pans, such as Bundt pans, cannot be lined with parchment paper. With these type of pans, thoroughly greasing the edges of the pan becomes even more critical.

For best results, use a pastry brush after spraying to get every nook and crevice. Otherwise, your cake may get stuck.

Keep the Cake in the Pan for a Few Minutes

How long should a cake cool before removing it from its pan? After taking a hot cake from the oven, cool the cake in the pan for 10 to 20 minutes so it can set. The cake should then be turned out onto a wire rack to cool completely.

If you try to remove the cake earlier, it can easily break. Farewell, flawless cake.

Pro Tip :

  • Keep the cake pan on a cooling rack for those 10 to 20 minutes. This allows the cake and pan to cool faster.

Cool the Cake on a Wire Rack

Showing how to flip a cake out of the pan with a cooling rack. Place the cooling rack on top of the cake pan and then flip the pan and cake over at the same time. Then remove the pan from the cake.

It’s simpler to flip the wire rack and pan together than it is to pull the cake out of the pan. If you are concerned about your cake sticking to the pan, run a butter knife around the sides of the baked cake. Then:

  • Place the cooling rack on top of the cake pan.
  • Hold onto the cooling rack and cake pan and turn the pan upside down. Remove the cake pan from the cake.
  • Cool the cake on a level surface using a wire rack. A cooling rack helps a cake to cool down quickly and evenly because air can circulate around the whole cake.

After the cake has reached room temperature, around 70°F (21°C), frost it. Or, if you prefer to decorate it later, store it following these guidelines:

  • Cover the chilled cake in plastic wrap completely. Double wrapping it is preferable.
  • Wrap the cake in plastic wrap and store it in an airtight container. Do not stack the cake layers, if possible.
  • Store the cake at room temperature. It will keep for a few of days.

How to Speed Up the Cooling Process

Are you pressed for time? Do you want to hasten the cooling process? Here are a few tips to get you started.

Cool the Cake in the Refrigerator

Placing your newly cooked cake in the refrigerator can allow it to cool quicker. How much quicker? In the refrigerator, a cake may be cooled in approximately one hour. Of course, the time depends on the size of the cake. Small shallow cakes cool in a short time compared to large or thick cakes.

Why do I advocate chilling cakes on the counter if it is quicker to cool them in the fridge?

One reason. The refrigerator can dry a cake out Especially an unfrosted cake. Especially if the cake is not in a cake box or another airtight container. This is exactly how a newly cooked cake would be chilled in the refrigerator.

  • A cake straight out of the oven is not frosted.
  • A hot cake should not be placed in a covered plastic container since it will get soggy.

Several bakers advise against storing cakes in the refrigerator. But, this is for cooling, not storage. And you’re pressed for time.

Here’s the best way to cool cakes in the fridge:

  • Take the cake from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool for 10 to 20 minutes. Don’t skip this step if you want your cake to hold its shape and come out of the pan easily.
  • Transfer the cake from the pan to the wire rack.
  • Put the wire rack in the refrigerator. You can line the refrigerator shelf with greaseproof paper or place the cooling rack on a sheet pan first.
  • Let the cake to cool for an hour, or until it reaches room temperature.

Tasty Tip : To reverse any cake drying, it is a good idea to brush the cool cake with a simple sugar syrup. A little amount of syrup helps restore moisture to the cake. Follow up with a thin layer of icing to secure the cake crumbs. Then proceed with the icing.

Cool the Cake in the Freezer

Sure, my eager friend, cakes can be chilled quickly in the freezer. The freezer, unlike the refrigerator, does not dry out an unprotected cake as much. As long as it isn’t left unprotected in there for too long.

How long does it take to chill a cake in the freezer? In the freezer, a cake may be brought to room temperature in approximately 30 minutes.

Slowly at room temperature is the best method to chill a cake. The refrigerator might cause the cake to dry out. Also, both the fridge and freezer might alter the texture of the cake.

However, if the birthday party guests are about to arrive, throw the cake into the freezer to cool it quickly. This is the most effective method:

  • Take the cake from the oven and place it on a wire rack to cool for 10 to 20 minutes. Sorry, but you still can’t skip this step if you want the cake to hold its shape.
  • Remove the cake from the pan and place it on a wire rack to cool. Then place the wire rack on a tray or plate to keep it stable in the freezer.
  • Freeze for at least 30 minutes.
  • Check to make sure the whole cake is cool, rather than just the top of the cake. Frost is typical.

Pro Tip #1:

Sometimes the outside of the cake feels cool to the touch but is still warm on the inside. The toothpick test is used by some, although a long thin knife is much more useful.

Simply insert the knife into the middle of your cake and leave it for a few seconds. Take it off and feel the blade. If the weather is warm, allow your cake to cool for a little longer.

Pro Tip #2:

If you just use the freezer to chill your cake, it will not acquire freezer burn. However, if you plan to freeze the cake for days, weeks, or months, the cake must be completely cool before you freeze it.

What Happens if You Cover a Warm Cake?

Kitchen towel partially covering a cooling cake.

Loosely cover a cake that is cooling overnight. Well, you’ve been here, haven’t you? It is late at night when your cake comes out of the oven. You just cannot wait for it to cool for hours before going to bed.

So, how do you prevent it from drying out overnight?

What happens if you cover a warm cake? A warm cake will get mushy if it is entirely wrapped in plastic wrap. If you cover a warm cake in an airtight container, it will also get soggy.

You may, however, lay a clean towel over a heated cake. Draping a clean kitchen towel over a warm cake prevents it from drying out. Also, there is sufficient air circulation to avoid condensation and sogginess.

How to Fix a Dry Cake That Cooled Overnight

Some individuals like to let their cake out overnight to cool before icing it.

I have left a cake to cool on the counter overnight more times than I can count. It’s cold in the morning, but it’s also a little dry. Particularly the edges.

Here is what I do.

  • Cover the cake in 2 layers of plastic wrap.
  • Place the wrapped cake in an airtight container.
  • Leave it for a couple of hours.

Often, the cake has returned to the soft state I hoped for. Brush it with a simple sugar syrup before icing it to moisten it even more.

Do Different Kinds of Cake Have Different Cooling Times?

Does the type of cake make a difference in how quickly it cools? The cooling time is affected by the kind of cake. A lighter sponge cake will cool much more quickly than a thicker fruit cake. Let’s look at the average cooling times for a few popular cakes.

Sponge cake 2 to 2½ hours
Bundt cake 3 to 3½ hours
Angel food cake 2½ to 3 hours
Loaf cake 3 to 3½ hours
Chiffon cake 2 to 2½ hours
Cake roll 1 to 1½ hours
Pound cake 3 to 4 hours
Fruitcake 3 to 4 hours
Cheesecake 3 to 3½ hours
Chocolate cake 2½ to 3 hours
Carrot cake 2½ to 3 hours
Cake for cake pops 2 to 2½ hours
9 X 13-inch cake 2½ to 3½ hours
8-inch round cake 2½ to 3 hours
9-inch round cake 2½ to 3 hours

How Long Does It Take Chocolate Cake to Cool?

Chocolate cake might be your favorite. It’s all mine. And the tastiest chocolate cake is freshly prepared.

How long does it take chocolate cake to cool? It will take 212 to 3 hours to chill a chocolate cake to room temperature. Cool the cake in the cake pan for 15 minutes before transferring the cake to the wire rack.

If you are looking for the fastest way to cool the cake, based on your urgent need to consume a slice, try the fridge or freezer. A chocolate cake may be refrigerated for 112 hours or frozen for 30 minutes.

How Long Does It Take Carrot Cake to Cool?

Do you like carrot cake in the same way that I do? With all those carrots, you might easily persuade yourself that it is nutritious. It implies a second piece is plainly beneficial.

How long does it take to cool a carrot cake? Cooling time for carrot cakes ranges from 212 to 3 hours. Keep the cake in the pan for a good 15 minutes before transferring it to a cooling rack to finish cooling.

It takes around an hour to chill in the fridge and about half an hour to cold in the freezer.

How Long Does It Take a 9 X 13-inch Cake to Cool?

Cooling a cake in a 9 X 13-inch cake pan.

9 X 13-inch cakes usually cool inside their pan. This will lengthen the cooling time. I grew up eating birthday cake out of a 9 X 13-inch Pyrex glass pan. Before I saw a circular cake pan, I was an adult. If the 9 X 13 pan is your preferred size, that’s fantastic.

How long does it take a 9 X 13-inch cake to cool? A 9 X 13-inch cake takes roughly 212 to 312 hours to cool to room temperature. Most cakes made in a 9 X 13-inch pan are left to cool in the pan. Nonetheless, the pan may be put on a cooling rack to assist circulate air.

Cakes in a pan should not be refrigerated or frozen, because the bottom of the cake will get mushy.

Remove the cake from the 9 X 13-inch pan to cool if you want it to cool faster. When the cake is room temperature, you can always return it to a clean 9 X 13-inch pan to frost and serve if you want.

How Long Does It Take Cake to Cool for Cake Pops?

Cake pops may be made using a variety of cake recipes. Use a large narrow depth pan to bake the cake in if you are baking a cake expressly for pops. A half or quarter sheet pan is ideal.

The cake bakes and cools faster when baked on a sheet pan.

How long does it take for a cake to cool before making cake pops? Cake cooked in a 1- or 2-inch-deep sheet pan may be ready in 1 hour. Cakes prepared in a circular cake pan cool in approximately 2 to 212 hours. You may, however, speed up the procedure.

Here’s how :

  • Cool the cake in the pan for 10 minutes.
  • Remove the cake from the oven and cool for another 15 minutes on a cooling rack.
  • Cut the cake into two or three layers horizontally (if it is a standard-sized cake). If it is a sheet cake, skip this step.
  • Cake layers (or sheet cake) should be cut into 4 to 8 smaller pieces.
  • Leave all the cake pieces in a single layer on the cooling rack. After another 15 to 20 minutes, the cake should be completely cool.

Refrigerate the cake pieces for 10 to 15 minutes or freeze them for 5 to 10 minutes if desired.

How Long Does It Take a Sponge Cake to Cool?

Because of their lightness, sponge cakes cool down quicker than fruit cakes. Leave your cakes in the baking tins for 10 minutes before placing them on the cooling rack.

How long does it take a sponge cake to cool? On a cooling rack on the counter, a sponge cake will take 2 to 212 hours to chill. It will take around an hour to cool in the fridge and approximately half an hour in the freezer.

Slicing a cake horizontally to make two cake layers.

To make layers, slice the cake horizontally. The layers will cool quicker than a whole cake. Do you want to shorten the cooling time? Here’s a little tip I use if I’m making layer cakes. The cake is safe to cut into layers after 30 minutes of cooling on a wire rack. Cut the cake in half horizontally using a sharp bread knife. Instead, if the cake is thick enough, cut it into three layers.

After that, set the cake layers on a wire rack to cool. They should not be stacked. This cuts the cooling time in half to around an hour and a half.

How Long Does It Take a Bundt Cake to Cool?

Who doesn’t like a good Bundt cake? Their beauty comes from the gorgeous shape of the pan, which has a hole in the center.

Smooth icing is seldom used on cakes. Instead, it is dusted with powdered sugar, drizzled with glaze, or piped with cream cheese frosting.

For the perfect Bundt cake, leave it in the Bundt pan for up to 15 min before transferring it to the cooling rack. This allows the cake to ‘hard up’ before removing it from the pan.

If you remove it too soon, your cake will most likely break. However, leaving it in the pan too long can also be problematic. Condensation may cause the bottom of the cake to get mushy. It may also be difficult to remove from the pan.

How long does it take a Bundt cake to cool? A Bundt cake will take close to 3 hours to cool completely. Bundt cakes are often deeper in depth than round or sheet cakes.

It will take more than an hour to chill in the fridge and 30 to 40 minutes to cold in the freezer.

Check out this quick chocolate chip Bundt cake using a box recipe.

How Long Does It Take Angel Food Cake to Cool?

Because of the beaten egg whites, angel food cakes are light and airy. These delicate cakes don’t have butter or oil that could weigh them down.

How long does it take to chill an angel food cake? It will take around 3 hours to chill an angel food cake to room temperature.

The trick with angel food is to cool the cake upside down. Your cake will crumble if you don’t do this.

In a tube pan, bake your angel food cake. A tube pan makes it easy to cool and remove the cake from the pan.

As soon as you take the cake out of the oven, place a cooling rack on top of the tube pan and flip the cake upside down. Cool angel food cakes in the pan, upside down.

It will take about an hour to chill in the refrigerator. This is an option, although it may dry out the cake too much. Also, because angel food cake is seldom frosted, I’m not convinced you need to rush the cooling process.

I don’t advocate freezing these cakes to cool.

How Long Does It Take Loaf Cake to Cool?

A loaf pan may be used to prepare several cake recipes. Loaf cakes are taller and denser than cakes baked in other cake pans.

How long does it take a loaf cake to cool? A loaf cake will take around 3 hours to cool to room temperature. Allow enough time for it to cool since thicker cakes take longer. The top of the cake may seem chilly at times, but the middle remains warm.

  • Cool a loaf cake in the loaf pan for 15 minutes.
  • The cake should then be transferred to a wire rack to cool completely.

How Long Does It Take Chiffon Cake to Cool?

Cooling chiffon cake upside down on top of a glass bottle and then removing it when it is cool.

o keep a chiffon cake from collapsing, cool it upside down in the pan. A chiffon cake is light like an angel food cake but has baking powder, oil, and whipped egg whites that contribute to it’s rise. In a tube pan, bake a chiffon.

A chiffon cake is best cooled upside down, with the tube hole fitting on top of a tall glass bottle with a thin neck, such as a bottle of wine, olive oil, or balsamic vinegar.

How long does it take a chiffon cake to cool? A chiffon cake takes 2 to 212 hours to cool to room temperature. Invert a chiffon pan for 30 minutes to cool. The cake should then be transferred to a wire rack to cool for approximately 2 hours.

It is not a good idea to cool a chiffon cake in the refrigerator or freezer.

How Long Does It Take a Cake Roll to Cool?

A cake roll is a sheet pan-baked thin cake. The cake is rolled into a tube shape when it is still warm. After it has cooled to room temperature, it is unrolled, filled with frosting, rerolled, and then chilled. All of this before to being served.

How long does it take a cake roll to cool? When a warm cake roll is rolled, it takes 1 to 1½ hours to cool to room temperature. A cake roll should be refrigerated for additional 2 hours after it has been unrolled, filled, and rerolled.

To speed up the process, you can chill the cake roll in the refrigerator for 30 to 45 minutes or in the freezer for 15 to 20 minutes. When the cake is unrolled after being chilled in the fridge or freezer, it may split.

How Long Does It Take Pound Cake to Cool?

A pound of flour, butter, sugar, and eggs. That’s what a pound cake is made of. Pound cakes are usually baked in a Bundt pan or a loaf pan. As a result, they bake taller than ordinary cakes.

How long does it take pound cake to cool? Depending on its height, a pound cake might take 3 to 4 hours to cool to room temperature. Let the cake to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. The cake should then be placed on a cooling rack to finish cooling.

To cool a pound cake quicker, chill it in the fridge for 1 to 1½ hours after removing it from the cake pan. Instead, freeze it for 30 to 45 minutes.

How Long Does It Take Fruitcake to Cool?

Fruitcakes bring back memories of Christmas and my mother’s fruit cake. She is very particular when it comes to her techniques. To begin, line the loaf pans with parchment paper. This helps prevent the cake from sticking during the long bake times.

Only remove the fruitcake when it is cool. The brown paper may then be peeled away.

How long do fruitcakes take to cool? Fruitcakes typically need 3 hours to cool completely. Fruitcakes need a bit longer to firm up, so cool them in the loaf pans on a wire rack.

Placing them in the fridge will reduce the cooling time by around an hour and a half. It might take 45 minutes to an hour to cool them in the freezer.

The precise time is determined on the cake density. With fruitcakes, it is best to check the coolness using the knife method to make 100% sure the cake is chilled.

How Long Does It Take Cheesecake to Cool?

A cheesecake cooling on a wire rack.

Cool a cheesecake on a wire rack until it reaches room temperature. Then chill for another 4 to 6 hours in the fridge. A springform pan is used to bake cheesecakes. They take a long time from start to first bite. It takes a long time to cool and then chill in the refrigerator.

How long does it take cheesecake to cool? It takes 3 to 312 hours for a cheesecake to cool to room temperature. Then it should be chilled in the refrigerator for at least another 4 to 6 hours before topping and serving it.

Throwing the cheesecake directly into the refrigerator can compromise its texture. For the same reason, putting a hot cheesecake in the freezer is not a good idea.


Should you leave the cake in the oven after it has been baked?

Do not leave a baked cake in the oven after it has finished baking. Even if you switch off the oven. When being switched off, ovens take 30 to 60 minutes or more to cool down. If a cake is left in the hot oven, it will continue to bake.

This can lead to a dry or burnt cake.

Should I cover a cake while cooling?

As a cake is cooling, it should not be covered. This may disrupt air flow and impede the cooling process. When a warm cake is covered in foil or plastic wrap, condensation forms, making the cake soggy.

The Perfect Frosting Scenario

Woman smoothing a crumb coat in a layered cake.

The simpler it is to put icing on a cool cake Room-temperature frosting on a cold cake is the ideal icing situation.

Spread a crumb coat on the cake and let it set for a few minutes before the serious business of frosting begins. A crumb coat is a very thin coating of icing that covers your whole cake and forms a seal around it.

This prevents crumbs from becoming entangled in the frosting. But if you see crumbs, just pretend you are going for a rustic look.

Cool your cake completely, regardless of the kind. Then it will turn out just right for decorating and storing.

But even if you wind up with a crumbly, melting mess, I have yet to meet a youngster who would refuse that cake.

Related Questions

  • Should you let a bundt cake cool before flipping it?

    Allow the Cake to Cool
    Let the bundt cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes after you take it from the oven. Then place a wire cooling rack over the base of the cake and invert the pan to release.

  • What’s the best way to cool a bundt cake?

    The best way to cool a bundt cake is by leaving it inside the pan for 20-25 mins. After that, turn the cake onto a cooling rack and remove the bundt pan. Let the cake to cool entirely at room temperature before serving. Do not let the cake cool completely in the pan because this will make it harder to release.

  • Can you cool a bundt cake in the fridge?

    Cooling your cake in the refrigerator is a quicker method, but you can also cool your cake on the countertop or in the oven. Transfer your cake to a wire rack to cool, or leave it in the pan to cool upside down.

  • How long should a bundt cake rest before taking it out of the pan?


    1. Allowing all Bundt cakes to rest in their pan for approximately 10 minutes before flipping the pan over onto a cooling rack is recommended.
    2. After removing the cake from the oven, slide an offset spatula over the sides of the pan, between pan and cake.