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Freezing Chocolate Chip Cupcake Batter

Asked by hensy. Answered on 30th March 2011

Full question

Can I freeze half the quantity of cupcake batter in a similar way that Nigella does for the chocolate cookies? She says its difficult to do half a recipe which contains one egg and I don't need the full quantity of cupcakes. Thank you so much. Hensy.

Our answer

Unfortunately we would not recommend freezing uncooked cupcake or cake batter. The reason for this is that cakes rise in the oven mainly from the chemical reaction of the raising agents in the mixture (baking powder and bicarbonate of soda/baking soda) with the liquid ingredients. This chemical reaction is finite, it will only last for a couple of hours or so, and so a cake batter that is frozen and then thawed before baking will not rise as well and will be heavy and dense. Cookie dough tends to contain only very small amounts of raising agent and the cookies do not need to rises as much as cakes so it if fine to freeze and then bake raw cookie dough.

If you do not need all of the cupcakes in one go then we would suggest freezing the baked cupcakes instead. Put them in an airtight container and seal tightly. If you need to stack the cupcakes in the container then put a piece of baking parchment (parchment paper) between each layer. They should freeze well for up to 3 months. Thaw the cupcakes at room temperature on a plate, they should only take a couple of hours to thaw completely. Cupcakes frosted with a butter-based icing should be fine to freeze with the frosting on (we would suggest not stacking this type in the container) but ones with a glace icing should be frozen without the icing on as glace icing does not freeze very well.

As with all frozen items, please do not re-freeze any cakes which have been previously frozen and thawed.

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