Why do my cupcake cases peel?

Oh how I have googled this problem! Everyone has a theory, and I must admit there are a lot of different reasons but hopefully if you are reading this having searched for the answer then hopefully I can help you solve the problem.

There seems to be a few common problems with cake making that are universal, in that most people have come across them at some point or another (even the Great British Bake Off contestants have setbacks!).With cupcakes the one that comes up time and time again and plagued me too, was peeling cases. I must admit I am not sure exactly how I solved it but I took on board all of the information I gathered from sources around the web, and since then I haven’t had one peeler!

First thing to point out is I don’t think it has anything to do with the quality of wrapper, although I must admit when I had the problem some were worse than others. I don’t think this is the cause of the problem though.

1. Mixing/cooking problems

So one likely candidate is the cake mixing/cooking, overcooking and undercooking can cause the cases to pull away. I have changed the recipe I use for cupcakes, as I used to use a Victoria sponge mix and when the problem stopped I had changed the recipe to something a little lighter but firmer in texture (if you know what I mean?).

2. How long to leave in the tin?

What you do next appears to be another crucial element. Both taking them out the tin too early and leaving them seems to contribute, so I set a timer for 5 minutes and then take them out carefully (cakes are most brittle when hot, so handling any cake too much at this point can take its toll).

3. Storage

Lastly the key to most cake problems is with storage. This was news to me until I started baking regularly, so you could be forgiven in thinking this is not important. For the layman this probably seems like a trivial part of the process as everyone knows you keep cakes in an airtight container (like the shop instructions) right? WRONG! Cakes need to breathe and must be kept at room temperature, to keep at their best. Cakes in airtight containers sweat (weird I know), and this results some decorations altering or bleeding colour and also (you guessed it), peeling cases too. Plastic is not good for cakes, which is why professional cake boxes are cardboard.

You should also never keep cupcakes in the fridge, although they can be frozen but this can affect the wrappers and make them peel so be gentle with them.

4. Rescue

Lastly if this does happen, I have not tried it myself but I believe that a tiny drop of liquid glucose can glue the cake back to its wrapper again.

Good luck and happy baking!

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