Back to basics: How to make the perfect chiffon cake

chocolate chiffon cakeDoes it seem too daunting to bake a chiffon cake? You may have experienced unpleasant failures while attempting chiffon cakes. I have my fair share of failures as well. After much experimenting, I have baked chiffon cakes of different flavours to perfection each and every single time.

This post will take you through a step-by-step guide on making the perfect chiffon cake.

What makes a perfect chiffon cake?

First, let’s examine what makes a perfect chiffon cake. A good chiffon cake rises to the top of the chiffon tin without it caving into itself. It is light, fluffy yet it still retains moisture. It should have a good flavour of whatever chiffon cake you are baking.

pandan-chifon-cake-3-copy

The science behind the chiffon cake

To simplify it, a chiffon cake is leavened naturally i.e. it gets its rise mainly from the meringue (whisked egg whites) and not from chemical leaveners such as baking soda and baking powder.

pandan-chiffon-cake-cover

Troubleshooting common chiffon cake problems

#1 It sinks/deflates after you take it out of the oven

Make sure you use the correct chiffon cake tin for this purpose. The best types are the aluminium ones with a removable base (pls do not use non-stick bakeware. it will not work.). Do not grease the mould as you would when baking other cakes. The chiffon cake is very delicate and need to cling on the sides and center of the tin for support as it rises or it will collapse.

You should also note that you need to invert the over a funnel while it cools on a cooling rack. This elevation helps air to circulate underneath the cake and will prevent condensation from forming on the cake. It is very important to cool the cake inverted so that it will not collapse on its own weight.

#2 It does not rise properly/the texture of the cake is very dense and heavy

There are a few possible reasons for this. This may be caused by the improper whisking of the egg whites. The egg whites might be under-whisked or over-whisked so the cake does not rise to its optimum height.

The meringue might not have been folded into the batter in the correct manner. If it is mixed in too roughly, too much air would be knocked out resulting in a poor rise. See below on how to whisk and fold your egg whites properly.

Another possible reason is that the oven temperature is too low and the cake does not rise to its optimum height.

#3 It rises properly then deflates in the centre while still in the oven

This is most likely caused by the sudden changes in temperature or unstable temperature of the oven. Firstly, use an oven thermometer (this is not the temperature that you set on your oven). If you haven’t already gotten one, you should really buy this inexpensive but really nifty kitchen gadget. You would realise that more often than not, your oven control/setting does not truly reflect the actual temperature of your oven. Your chiffon cakes will thank you for this!

Try not to open your oven to check on your chiffon cake in the first 20 minutes of the baking. Only start checking midway of baking (20-25 minutes). And try not to keep the oven door open for too long when checking, as you should attempt to keep the oven temperature as stable as possible.

#4 It is too brown/burnt at the top

This is an easy problem to fix. As soon as the cake is at the correct shade of brown that you want it, you can start to cover it with an aluminium foil over the top to prevent further browning.

#5 It has large pockets of bubbles in the middle/ white spots of meringue through the cake

The pockets of air bubble may form when you pour the chiffon cake batter into your chiffon cake tin. To reduce this possibility, pour your cake batter slowly and as low a height as possible. You can also gently tap the chiffon cake tin once or twice against the kitchen counter to get rid of large air bubbles trapped in the cake.

To prevent white spots/streaks of meringue through your cake, ensure that your meringue is folded through the batter as thoroughly as possible without knocking out too much air bubbles.

Step-by-step guide to baking a chiffon cake:

Let’s look at my chocolate chiffon cake recipe as an example. You can also check out my other chiffon cakes recipe: Pandan chiffon cake and Matcha (green tea) chiffon cake.

Chocolate chiffon cake2

Recipe: Chocolate chiffon cake
Makes a 23 cm (9.5″) chiffon cake

Ingredients:

Group A:
5 large egg yolks, room temperature
120g castor sugar
85ml corn oil (or any neutral flavour oil like canola and grapeseed)
130ml whole fresh milk,
30g Dutch-processed cocoa powder (I use Valrhona cocoa powder)
160g cake flour
3/4 tsp baking powder (optional, just to ensure the lift. but I have baked without the baking powder and it works just as fine.)
1/4 tsp salt

Group B:
5 large egg whites, room temperature
90g castor sugar

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees celcius. Have your chiffon cake tin mould ready. Do not grease it!

2. Let’s start with Group A ingredients. Separate the egg whites and the egg yolks. Ensure that there is no trace of yolk in the whites. Allow them to come to room temperature. This is especially important for the egg whites to be whisked to their peaks.

3. Start with the group A ingredients as we only want to whisk the egg whites when everything else is done. If not, the egg whites will start to deflate.

4. In the bowl containing the yolks, add in sugar and whisk until light and pale. This can be done with a hand whisk. We just need some aeration in the yolks. Add in the oil and whisk until incorporated.

5. Add the milk into the yolk mixture and whisk. Then, measure and sift your dry ingredients and whisk into the yolk mixture.

*Update 15/07/2014:  I have gotten a few people asking me regarding the type of flour to be used for a chiffon cake. The best flour to use is cake flour.

As we want to achieve a soft, tender crumb and fluffy cake, we want a flour that doesn’t develop too much gluten which makes cakes tough – i.e a flour with low protein content. The flour with the lowest protein content is cake flour (about 7-8%).  Sure, you can still make a chiffon cake with all-purpose flour(about 10-12% protein content). But the cake flour will give you a slightly tender, softer crumb.

If you don’t keep cake flour in your pantry, that’s fine because you can easily make your own cake flour. To make your own cake flour, start of with 1 cup of all-purpose flour, remove 2 tbsp of AP flour. Replace it with 2 tbsp of cornflour. Whisk the flour and sift twice to make sure that the cornflour is well distributed.

Whisking the egg whites

6. Next come the crucial step of whisking the egg whites. It is best to use room temperature egg whites because whites right out of the fridge will be too cold and will not whisk well. We are essentially whisking a meringue. Start with a stainless steel clean and grease-free bowl (I always rinse it with boiling water to rid of any remaining grease). Add in your room temperature egg whites and put it onto your mixer.

foamy stage egg whites

7. Begin whisking your egg whites at medium low speed till foamy. You can add a pinch of cream of tar tar (which increases the meringue stability) at this point if you like. This is optional and your meringues will still work even without it.

Soft peaks

Soft peaks

8. Turn your mixer speed to high and whisk whites until soft peaks. Soft peaks are reached when the peaks of the whites droop when the whisk is lifted. See picture below.

8. Start to pour in your caster sugar slowly, in a few additions, while the mixer is still running. The sugar, when added gradually, greatly stabilizes the meringue. But the sugar needs to be added slowly to give time for the sugar to dissolve and not weigh down the meringue. The meringue should be whisked to a glossy, firm peaks – just slightly short of stiff peaks. The whites should look glossy and when the whisk is lifted, the peaks will hold but the tip will fall back slightly onto itself. Just a note: stiff peaks mean that when you turn the whisk is lifted, the peaks will hold up straight without collapsing onto itself at all.

Firm peaks

Firm peaks

Underwhipped and overwhipped egg whites are unstable. Underwhipped whites will start to weep. Overwhipped egg whites will eventually collapse and start to separate. You should start over if this happens.

Folding the egg whites

Folding egg whites

9. Start by adding 1/4 of the meringue to mixture A (yolk mixture). Whisk lightly to combine until it is well incorporated. Do not be afraid to knock out air at this stage. We are lightening the yolk mixture so that it will be of a more similar consistency to the meringue which will help you fold the meringue through easily and more evenly.

folding meringue

10. Next, add in the remaining meringue to the mixture A (yolk mixture) in two additions, folding the meringue through. Fold gently using a rubber spatula drawing a line across the centre of the batter then going under the batter and lifting up when the spatula reaches the sides of the bowl. Turn the bowl as you do this. Do ensure that the egg whites are folded into the mixture thorougly so you won’t get egg white streaks after baking.

Transferring the batter to the baking tin

11. Gently pour the chiffon cake batter into the chiffon tin. Using a rubber spatula, level and smooth out the top of the cake batter and gently tap the chiffon cake tin against the kitchen counter twice to remove any large air bubbles.

chiffon cake in the oven

12. Bake in a preheated 180 degrees celcius (350 degrees F) for about 1 hr 5 minutes. The top of the cake should be lightly browned and springs back to touch when it is done. At about 25 minutes into the baking, check on your chiffon cake. If the top starts to get too brown or starts cracking too much, cover the chiffon cake with a sheet of lightly oiled aluminium foil (so it will not stick to the cake) before you continue with the baking. You can turn down the temperature slightly as well to about 170-175 degrees celcius.

Removing the chiffon cake

cooling the chiffon cake inverted

13. Remove the ready cake from the oven, place a funnel into the center hole of the tin and invert the cake to cool on a cooling rack. Only attempt to unmould the chiffon cake from its tin when it is cooled fully.

14. To remove the cake after it is cooled, run a palette knife against the sides of the cake tin. Turn it out gently onto a cake board. The base of the cake tin would now be on top. Run a palette knife in one swift motion against the base of the tin. Allow the chiffon cake to gently fall onto the cake board. Remember not to shake/yank out the chiffon cake – the crumb structure is very tender and you would only tear your cake if you do so.

Storing the chiffon cake

*I would normally keep my chiffon cake (like the chocolate, matcha and kinkako) at room temperature in an air tight container. It is best eaten within 3 days.

*For the pandan chiffon cake, I would store it in the fridge as it contains coconut milk and would go bad under warm weather conditions.

Matcha chiffon cake 2

 

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About jothetartqueen

My first love is eating. A very close second is my love for baking and cooking. I passionately believe that the best form of appreciation of something is almost always through the creation of it. This passion took me on a whirlwind, unforgettable ride through the patisserie diploma course at Le Cordon Bleu (Sydney). Join me on my discovery for the love of food – through the kitchen, through the markets, through experimenting, tasting and loving.
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128 Responses to Back to basics: How to make the perfect chiffon cake

  1. OMSE says:

    This is very useful it helps me a lot, thanks you. 😀

  2. I love that you’ve outlined the steps for a chiffon cake.. I’ve never tried one. Hopefully I’ll have a great reason to make one soon… or maybe I’ll just make one, lol! They’re so pretty! xx

  3. Great tips in this post. Thank you.

  4. How gorgeous and I always think of you as the chiffon cake queen Jo!! I’m going to retweet this 😀

  5. Very informative! The cakes look lovely as well!

  6. Great little tips and a fun read. Pandan chiffon Cake? Wow, what is your link to this recipe? Wishing you a super weekend. BAM

  7. Little Devil says:

    Very good post! I have a 17cm chiffon pan. Is it possible that you provide a reduced recipe for 17cm? Thank u!
    By the way, I had recently went to a chiffon baking class using only natural ingredients without chemicals. Ratio of egg whites is higher than yolks though. Moreover, the adding in of the dry ingredients into the meringue is by (to my surprise) machine whisk! No folding by hands!

    • Interesting to hear that you can just whisk in the dry ingredients into the meringue with the machine whisk! Have not heard of it being done this way.

      I have not tried making it in a 17cm mould but from my research, it seems that you would just need to reduce the no of eggs used. I think you can’t try 4 yolk and 4 whites instead or bake the extra batter in small chiffon tins/muffin tins.

      Yeah some recipes use a higher proportion of whites to yolks. Usually one more white to yolk. It all depends on the ratio of the other ingredients. But this 1:1 yolk and whites ratio works well for me. A

  8. Oh, the things I would give for a proper chiffon cake! I think I’ve only had one in my entire life, if that, and I still haven’t been able to make a decent eggless version. Seeing your indepth tutorial is really inspiring though, and makes me want to tackle this challenge all over again. You’ve spelled out the classic so clearly and perfectly, I have a great baseline to start from at least!

  9. Pingback: Chiffon Cake Recipe | Chiffon Cake

  10. Nikki says:

    Hi! Thank you so much for the great tips! I am planning on baking a chiffon cake ( a newbie at baking, btw) and I was wondering if it’s ok to use a 10 inch round cake pan and if it isn’t too much to ask , tips on how to cool and remove it from the pan. 🙂

    • Hi Nikki.

      You would need a chiffon cake tin to bake this cake. You won’t be able to do it in a round cake tin. The chiffon cake is a very delicate cake and it needs to get its support from the middle “cone” as it rises.

      You would need to cool it down by inverting the tin as shown in the blog post. Otherwise, the cake will collapse on its own weight. Hope this helps!

    • MTSranger says:

      I’ve baked chiffon cakes in 8″ cake tins before. Yes it will work and texture is light and fluffy, but it may not rise as much so you should make more batter.

  11. Pingback: Chocolate Chiffon Cake Recipe | Chocolate Chiffon Cake

  12. Loveshak says:

    I think I am the only one here who dont really understand with the instructions given. There are 2 groups…group A and Group B but I dont know where is the Group B part. Sorry. Can you help me?

  13. Neo says:

    Your cake looks really good. My own recipe uses 6 eggs with 120gm flour, 70 water and 70 gm oil and 120 gm sugar.

    Can I find out – with your proportions, does the batter get very dry? What should be considered an optimal consistency of the batter and after it is mixed with the meringue? Can I find out what is the purpose of splitting the sugar into the egg yolk and egg white mixture rather than mixing it into the egg white mixture as it stablises the meringue?

    Thank you again for sharing such a wonderful recipe!

  14. Fatima says:

    Firstly, I would like to say this is the most informative post I’ve come across on Chiffon cakes – thank you!
    I tried this recipe yesterday and followed it to the T, however, the cake came out very overcooked, and had a strong eggy taste, and it wasn’t chocolatey/sweet enough for me. The chocolate and sweetness was very subtle (however, i’m not sure if thats what the author was going for).
    I cooked the cake at 180 for the first 25 minutes, then covered it and dropped the temp down to 175degrees for a further 25 minutes (50 minutes in total) – when I checked the cake at this point it was already over cooked. Really disappointed with how dry and dense it came out! I have the correct baking tin, too, so I’m really confused as to why mine cooked so quickly!
    Along with reducing cooking time, I would also suggest perhaps using more cocoa or adding some vanilla extract to help with the flavours (and if adding more cocoa, probably think about adding a bit more milk too).
    I iced mine with some chocolate ganache and it’s still yum!

    🙂 Hope others have better luck with this recipe!

    • Adam says:

      Slm Fathima, I tried this recipe last night, covered tin with foil, even before putting it into oven, and lowered heat to 170, 30 mins into baking, worked magic, I do agree on the sweetness,

      • Thanks for your feedback, Adam.

        Glad that cake turn out well for you. 😉 yes like my reply to Fatima, I did reduce the level of sweetness but the flavour from the valrhona cocoa powder i use gives its enough chocolate flavour. That being said, you can always adjust the sweetness levels (slightly) to your preference.

    • Sorry for the late reply, Fatima. I’m sorry to hear that the cake didn’t turn out well.

      The chiffon cake is quite a tricky cake to bake (though it would be a breeze to bake once you’ve mastered it).

      I can’t really point out what went wrong exactly as I’m not personally there. But from yr description, it sounds like your oven might be too hot ( do you use a separate oven thermometer?). Because from my experience, many home ovens tend to overheat even though you might have set it at a certain temp.

      I have made this cake with this recipe many times and it works. As for the sweetness, I have to admit that I’ve reduced the sugar so it is less sweet. But because I use valrhona cocoa powder ( which has a more intense cocoa flavour) so I don’t find that it’s lacking in taste.

      Ill try a generic cocoa powder brand the next time I make this and report back.

      Hope this kinda helps. 😉

      • Bowie Tan says:

        May i ask if i can fold in chopped walnuts into the ingredients in Group A, i am using a 21cm bundt pan, how do i reduce the appropriate ingredients, as mine is a small home oven, so no space to make cupcakes with the leftover ingredients. Hope to hear from you soon.

        Regards,
        Bowie

      • Hi Bowie.

        You can add the walnuts (and/or chocolate chips) to the batter after you fold in the egg whites into group A ingredients – at the very last step before you pour he batter into the chiffon cake tin.

        Also. I don’t think you can use a bundt tin for a chiffon cake. Bundt tins are for different type of cake. Maybe u can get smaller chiffon cake tin to fit in your oven.

      • Bowie Tan says:

        Thanks. My bundt pan is actually angel pan like in your photos/blog. Sorry for confusion as pple call them differently. I’ll try to fold in the walnuts last and see how’s the results. May I know how do I adjust your recipe to make a 21cm cake using this chiffon (angel) tin.

        Appreciate your kind help.
        Warmest Regards,
        Bowie

  15. Ray Ivey says:

    Hi! Love love love the article. However, when I go shopping for a chiffon cake pan, all I find are pans described as “angel food cake” pans and they’re ALL non-stick. You’re pretty emphatic about a non-stick pan not working. Can you recommend a good chiffon cake pan for me to hunt down on the internet? THANKS!

  16. junmaycheng1104 says:

    Hi! Just like to ask, when you cool for like 2 hours, does your cake come out feeling moist? After I tried cooling for half a day, when I removed it from the tin, the bottom is kinda moist and the sides too. I am not sure if it’s supposed to be like that! Any idea? Oh! and do your cool your cake once it’s removed from the tin?

    • Hi there,

      the sides of the cake should not feel wet and moist. if so, it might be slightly underdone.

      It wouldn’t get any drier the longer you cool it. Usually I cool it until the chiffon cake tin feels cool to touch.

      Once I’ve removed the cake from the tin, it’s already cooled so I don’t have to cool it further. hope this helps!

      Jo

  17. silvana says:

    I had no idea this cake could not be made without baking powder! thank you for your tips!

  18. Anabel says:

    I like ur chiffon recipes, but im not really familiar with using grams in measuring… I used to like cups and tspn or tblspn… Make me confuse take time for me to calculate….

  19. BakeSense says:

    A true chiffon cake does actually use chemical leavening in addition to the lift provided by the meringue.

  20. Caffy says:

    Whoa! This is amazing and lovely. qudos to u, u really did a good and great work here, so explanatory and informative. I haven’t come across a recipe dat will explain something like dis. I can’t wait to try did.

  21. Chen Mee ling says:

    The side of my cake shrink a little when it cools down what is the problem.

    • Hi Mee Ling,

      What chiffon cake tin did you use? Also, did you cool the chiffon cake inverted?

      it is normal that the cake shrinks a little away from the sides of the tin but it should not collapse on itself.

      • Chen Mee ling says:

        I use the chiffon cake tin as suggested n I bake an orange chiffon. After inverted n cool down the side shrink n sink in the middle ( that means not flat as what you done to yr cake) but not collapse not so high only
        Thank you. Pls let me know what is my problem

      • ok if you have been using the right tin and cooling it down the right way, it may be because the chiffon cake is underbaked i.e, the cake can be in the oven for a while more.
        When chiffon cakes are underbaked, they tend to shrink and/or sink in the middle after you take it out.

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  24. vietcook says:

    How do I correct my chiffon baking problem? It’s great except that it rises higher on one side than the other. It bakes unevenly. My tube pan sits flat on a surface so it’s fine. What can I do to bake it evenly?
    Please help. Thanks Anna.

    • Hi Anna,

      It is indeed puzzling that one side rises higher than the other when yr tin is on a flat surface.

      one possible cause is the uneven heating of the oven. The oven may be hotter on one side than the other. This is pretty common, my oven has certain “hot spots” too.

      To correct this problem, you need to turn the cake tin midway through the baking, in this case, about 30 mins of the baking, and not any earlier. You don’t want to introduce to much cool air that may deflate the chiffon cake.

      See if this works for you?

  25. roxane says:

    Hi there, thank you for your Perfect blog 🙂
    I would love to make a Vanilla Chiffon Cake, can i just change the cacaopowder for vanilla extract, how much is needed?

    Thanx Roxane

  26. vietcook says:

    Hi Jo,
    Thanks for your tip. I was busy trying to solve this problem so I baked the chiffon another two times. So here are my results. The chiffon cake that baked unevenly + flopped was made with Cake flour.
    When I baked it again, it rose magically, this time using (Plain) – All Purpose flour. It baked evenly and rose almost to the brim of my tube tin. It didn’t shrink at all. It made ALL the difference. The Cake flour just doesn’t work for me!
    I’ve used Cake flour in various other cakes, but I always got dense + heavy cakes that never rose. Hope this has been of help to all out there.
    Regards, Anna.

    • thanks for the feedback.sorry i couldn’t be of help but am glad to hear that yr chiffon cake turned out well after replacing the cake flour with all-purpose flour.

      perhaps it is the difference in cake flour that we are using?am not so sure but cake flour supposedly gives a cake a more tender crumb because of its lower gluten content.

  27. Michelle says:

    Hi Jo, thanks for your tips. But I wasn’t sure why when after bake i took out and over turn the tin, after 5 mins the whole cake drop off. the cake it rose but after that shrink abit.
    And though the cake taste moist but it doesn’t taste fluffy when you eat it. Are you able to tell where i went wrong? is it my egg white or i took out too fast from the oven?

    Regards
    Michelle

    • Hi Michelle,

      Were you using a non stick tin? Cause the cake shouldn’t fall out when you overturn the tin. You would need to release the cake using a palette knife.

      The cake may not be fluffy possibly because the egg whites are not whipped to its full potential, or it may be because the whites are deflated too much when you are folding it through the batter.

      If the cake is fully baked through ( springs back to touch) when you take it out, it should mean that you did not take it out too early.

      Hope this helps. Let me know if you have more questions. I’ll try my best to help.

    • vietcook says:

      Hi Michelle,
      It previously happened to me before too. This means your oven temp is too low. Try raising it by 10 degrees C. I always bake my chiffon on 160 degrees C. Every oven is a little different. This will fix this problem.
      Anna.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Can I use natural cocoa instead of Dutched.

    • Sorry. I don’t think that you can make the substitution. the result may not be the same and I can’t comment on that since I have not tried making this with natural cocoa.

      My understanding is that natural cocoa and dutch-processed cocoa powder should really not be substituted esp in cakes.

  29. Kim says:

    Thanks so much for your tips. This is my father’s favourite cake (he likes the plain cake) that my gramma (my mother’s mom) used to make for him. She’s 92 and has been making it since it first showed up as a”new recipe.” Since my parents divorced I’ve tried making it for him so many times and each time has failed miserably. One was the horrible temperature in our home oven, it was 75 degrees off, and after moving I’ve tried three more times and had problems #1, 2 and 5 happen. I’m trying again tonight, and hopefully with your tips it’ll be a success.

    • Hi Kim,

      Hope that the tips help you with the cake and that your father will enjoy the cake that you bake.

      Yes..chiffon cakes are very temperamental and the slightest temp change may lead to unsuccessful attempts. I hope that you have gotten an external oven thermometer for this attempt!

      Good luck!

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  31. Evelyn Guslin says:

    If i want to cover the cake with aluminium foil,should i turn off the heat and let it still in the oven then take it out??

    • Hi Evelyn,

      If you want to cover the cake with aluminium foil, just have the foil ready in hand. Then, open the oven while you place the foil over the top of the cake swifty (and with gloves).

      You shouldn’t turn off the heat or take it out.. Too much cool air will cause the cake to collapse.

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  33. Cassandra says:

    Hi Jo, can you please let me know if I do not have double acting baking powder can I use normal baking powder? Thank you for your advise.

  34. Sue says:

    You have posted a very detailed recipe. I have been trying so many times to bake this chiffon cake but it hasn’t been perfect yet. I will try your recipe one day. The problem I have is the top of my cake becomes moist after cooling down. When I touch it when it is inverted it is not moist. I cannot figure out why. Does it have to be continuously fanned when inverted? Thanks

    • Hi Sue. Sorry for hr late reply. It does not need to be fanned when invented. I just leave it to cool completely at room temperature.

      Does your chiffon cake rise and maintain it’s height after cooling? It shouldn’t become wet after cooling it down. Other than that. Do u have any problems with the chiffon cake. Maybe you can describe it a little more so I can help.

      • Sue says:

        Hi Jo, thanks for your reply. It does rise and shrinks a little after cooling down. My recipe calls for baking at 180C for 10 mins then 170C for 30 mins. I tried it again at 180C for 15 mins and 170C until the top is dry. Maybe about 40 mins. When I touch the top it feels as though you are pressing down on the egg whites? It doesn’t spring back. Like pressing on paper sound, very hard to describe. Your recipe says bake for 1 hr 5 mins. Perhaps my time is too short.

      • Hi sue,

        I can’t really comment because I don’t know what recipe you are using. If the cake doesn’t spring back, it is not ready yet. A cake tester inserted should come out clean as well. Those two indicates that the chiffon cake is done. I hope this helps.

  35. cindy says:

    Wow! This is just so perfect for my chiffon recipe research! Thank you for sharing the secrets of making a perfect chiffon. Have you tried mocha chiffon cake yet? Hope you can share the recipe too. I think I need a temperature gadget too as my oven’s temp might not be accurate coz I always end up with overcooked breads or cakes when I am baking even if I followed the instruction in the required temperature. Cheers!

    • cindy says:

      Wow! This is just so perfect for my chiffon recipe research! Thank you for sharing the secrets of making a perfect chiffon. Have you tried mocha chiffon cake yet? Hope you can share the recipe too. I think I need a temperature gadget too as my oven’s temp might not be accurate coz I always end up with overcooked breads or cakes when I am baking even if I followed the instruction in the required temperature. By the way is it ok baking on fan bake or just bake setting? Cheers!

      • Hi Cindy,
        It’s better not to bake with a fan forced settings for cakes. It’s best for cookies and biscuits. In any case, if you need to use the fan forced setting for a chiffon cake, you will need to lower the temp by 25 degrees Celsius.

        I have not tried making a mocha chiffon cake. When I do, I’ll post up the recipe.

  36. Sherina says:

    Hi Jo, thanks for sharing the recipe. Some questions….appreciate your feedback 🙂
    1. Can we replace with normal 10″ cake tin (without a hole) and whether it will turn out nicely? Need to adjust the oven temperature?
    2. Macha & Chocolate recipe given here: in comparison, 75ml(Macha) vs 130ml(chocolate). Assuming eggs are 60gx5=300gm(already)
    Flour:Fluid ratio therefore=> 160gm/(300+75) vs 160gm/(300+130ml)
    .42 vs .37 := looks more watery for chocolate but should be quite balance. Is it because of fat content in Chocolate?

  37. may cano says:

    How about chiffon cupcakes?any tips 9n how to avoid it from shrinking?thanks a lot 😉

  38. Jacinta says:

    Can you please let me know if cake flour is the same As self raising flour?

    • Hi Jacinta,

      Cake flour is not the same as self-raising flour. Cake flour has low protein content which keeps the crumb more tender and soft which is desired in a chiffon cake.

      If you don’t have cake flour, you can make your own:

      Measure out a cup of all-purpose flour, remove 2 tbp of flour, then replace 2 tsbp of cornflour. Sift this mixture twice to distribute the cornflour evenly.

  39. Lynn says:

    Hi Jo,

    I would like to check with you what do you normally do when you first bought an aluminium chiffon cake pan? I tried coating a thin layer of oil on the pan and found grey shiny residue on the paper towel. Is it normal? Will it transfer to my cake? I’ve bought the chiffon cake pan just like yours from Phoon Huat. Thank you! 🙂

    • Hi Lynn,

      I just wash my tin with dishwashing liquid and then rinse it with warm water. I didn’t find any residue on it before or after washing.

      You don’t have to coat yr tin with oil to bake a chiffon cake.

      Jo

  40. 8tea says:

    Hi! Just reading through this recipe and notice it’s missing the instruction to incorporate the last 1/2 of the merengue – unless this is deliberate? 🙂

  41. Genevieve Parrilla says:

    hi jo!
    I tried to make a chiffon cake 3 to 5 times already,my first failure is I did not grease the pan,the time of release the cake stick to the bottom and side of the pan and all worn out.My second time is the other side has tear and other side is perfect after the release of pan.Now,I’m confused I read some advised to grease the pan,some said to ungrease.I really want to correct my failures.I’m despearate to make it perfect.Thank you.

    • Hi Genevieve,

      I don’t ever grease my chiffon cake tin. I use a stainless steel one with a removable base as seen in the pictures.

      It should release itself as you allow the cake to cool down entirely while it is inverted. I use a palette knife to run through the sides of the tin before releasing.

      What tin do you use to make your chiffon cake? and do you wait for your cake to cool down entirely (inverted) before you try to release it?

      Hope this helps!
      Jo

      • Genevieve Parrilla says:

        Ms. Jo,
        Thank you for the reply. I used the wilton chiffon tube pan.I made again today.I followed the advises like to turn after 30 mins for the hot spots of the oven,and when baked I inverted and let it cool but before cooling down I observed from the bottom that it releases by itself and can see the tear like excavated whole on the side of the cake.I really cannot figure out the problem.Maybe my folding of eggwhites…..still figuring out.Hope I can make a nice chiffon next chiffon.So sad I can’t make it right.Thank you so much.

  42. Pingback: Topic Chiffon 20th March 2015 - British Born Chinese Food

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  44. Bowie Tan says:

    May i ask if i can replace/adjust the recipe as follows as i would like to add chocolate chips and walnuts to a vanilla chiffon cake and i do not like it too sweet but want it to be soft and fluffy:

    Group A
    100 gm top flour – sifted with 1/8 tsp baking powder
    50 gm roasted walnuts – finely chopped
    20 gm – Chocolate chips
    1 1/2 tbsp castor sugar
    1/4 tsp salt
    4 egg yolks
    4 tbsp canola oil
    2 tsp Vanilla essence

    Group B
    4 egg whites
    1/4 tsp cream of tartar
    3 tbsp castor sugar

    Hope to hear from you soon.
    Warmest Regards,
    Bowie

    • Hi Bowie.

      I can’t comment on that because this is a totally different recipe from mine.

      You should check with the source you got it from.

      Jo

      • Bowie Tan says:

        Thanks Jo.
        Nay I ask if Bake King cocoa is ditched processed or natural as it doesn’t state it. Thanks. I’ve tried to put bake king cocoa powder into warm milk n become thick paste and cannot even add to egg yolk batter. Hope you can help. Thanks.

  45. daisy says:

    am I able to replace self raising flour for plain flour and just leave out the baking powder? Will the chiffon cake still come out?

  46. Lucia says:

    I couldn’t find a cake tin like you have above in my town. What if I don’t turn the tin upside down? what will happen?

    • Hmm it will sink back onto its own weight. because the sponge is a very delicate one. You can try getting an Angel cake food tin with a removable base?

      • michelle poh says:

        Hi, I was also wondering whether it will work w/o the traditional chiffon pan. So will it work with pans with removable base, not those non-stick kind…

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  48. selina says:

    Hi Jo thanks for the detailed recipe. I have a oven thermometer that is 20 degrees lower then my Bosch oven. So which one should I trust. Thanks

    • Hi Selina, you should trust your external oven thermometer. And adjust your oven temp accordingly. It is very common that the oven is slightly off from its indicated temp. My oven tends to be 20 deg higher than the set temperature.

  49. Regine says:

    Hi! I tried making chiffon cupcakes, but the end result was some cracks on the topmost surface. I tried lowering the temp down a bit thinking it was too hot, but it ended up worse. Help please?

  50. ycq says:

    Hello Jo thanks for this super detailed post! I’m just wondering, can I use top flour instead of cake flour, since both have low protein content?

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  53. cheryl says:

    Hi,

    May i know which oven do u use for baking chiffon? Top or bottom heat or with fan?

  54. Clarizel says:

    Hi, Jo
    Thank you so much for sharing your post, its been a great help for me knowing the do’s and dont’s in baking a chiffon cake. I dont have a tin pan that has a removable base or either a tube pan, I wonder if a normal round, square aluminum pans may do? Thank you so much for the reply I will truly appreciate it.

    • hi Clarizel,

      it’s not possible to bake this chiffon cake in a normal round or square pan. it needs the center tube to help support its structure as it bakes. Maybe you can buy a chiffon cake tin? they are generally inexpensive. Hope this helps.

  55. Alice says:

    Hi,

    My pandan chiffon cake shrink on a whole after i removed it out of the oven and let cool. Everything was ok, except that because it shrank, the brown crust was gone. May i ask what could be the cause?
    Thank you!

    • Hi Alice,

      sorry for the late reply.

      Just a few questions before I can help you.

      1. Did the cake rise to the top of the chiffon cake tin while in the oven?
      2. When you tested the cake before taking it out, did the cake spring back upon touch?
      3. After taking the cake out from the oven, did you cool the cake upside down?

      If you answered all yes to the above questions, there should not be a shrinking problem.

      Then maybe you can further describe how the cake is so I can help.

  56. Lean Ong says:

    Hi Jo, thnks for all your tips, this is te fist time to bake a cake, to try chifon cake in my first try will be challenging haha.. if i want to mke an orange chiffon cake, how much of orange juice i shld ut in? Take out te cocao powder, does the rest of the ingredints remain thr ssme amount ?

  57. Pingback: Earl Grey Chiffon Cake – EATING CANVAS

  58. so great and thanks a lot

  59. My says:

    The best chiffon cake recipe I have tested so far other blogs claim chiffon cake on regular pan which I did try but no !!! it is NOT chiffon cake at all turn out to be a sponge cake so I am sticking to this recipe in tube pan😊

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  61. yanni yang says:

    Great help!thanks!

  62. Pingback: Topic Chiffon 20th March 2015 | British Born Chinese Food

  63. Cindy says:

    what oven setting should i use?

  64. jenleeph says:

    Hi Jo,..tq for the recipe. Have been trying out a couple of chiffon recipes from the web & I have to honestly say that I think these bakers are holding back on a trick or two cos something somehow just doesn’t turn out right. I do hope I am wrong but the determination of trying to get it right (sometimes baking up to 2 chiffon cakes in a day!!) is driving me crazy. I know about the no-greasing the cake tin, I know about using a lower oven temperature with longer baking time, I know about the turning the cake upside down to cool for few hours, I know about the ‘fold in’ the meringue,… but I dont get why the different order of steps in the Ingredients A. eg. add yolks into flour and sugar as opposed to whisk yolks 1st to fluff up before adding in the flour,… does it matter? How come each baker’s chiffon recipe has different steps ( always cautioning that there is a science to it!!!) and must be adhered to… I am really confused. Part of my confusion was when I baked my chiffon cake ( based on a Michael Lim recipe), everything was going as planned uptil the time I inverted the cake tin to let it cool. After half an hour, the cake fell out from under the tin and I was horrified…After half an hour, the cake fell out from under the tin and I was horrified…and that is a NEW for me…any opinions on why it turned out a disaster?

    • vietcook says:

      Hi Jenleeph. I understand yr frustration as I’ve been there myself & nobody tells you anything. Yes you beat the yolks & sugar to a creamy consistency. Then beat in the liquids. Then gently fold in the flour etc. What I do differently to all recipes out there is I never open the oven door and I LET THE CAKE GO COLD in the oven. I never remove a chiffon cake while hot from the oven and turn it upside down. This is WHY it would flop. My chiffon is always high to the brim of the mould. It’s cake magic everytime. Try it & let me know how it went. Anna.—————————————

      • jenleeph says:

        Tq for the input Anna. Haven’t tried baking yet but I am gonna try your tip., but how long before you let it cool before turning it over?

      • vietcook says:

        Hi Jenleeph, When the cake goes cold in the oven, this eliminates the need to turn the cake upside-down. To remove the cake from the tin, just cut the cake loose around the sides with a long thin knife. No need at al to upend the cake. Anna.

  65. jenleeph says:

    oh..just saw your LET THE CAKE GO COLD…

    • vietcook says:

      Hi Jenleeph, Leave the cake in the oven a least 3 hours or so after switching the oven off. A good indication that the cake is cold is to touch the glass of the oven door. Feel the door & sides of the oven. It should feel cold. That is a sign it has cooled right down. Then it is safe to remove the cake & it will keep firm. To remove a cake from a hot oven guarantees it WILL collapse. Cake magic – try it. Anna.

  66. My chiffon doesn’t rise to the tops of the pan.
    The recipe I followed is slightly less (in quantity) as compared to yours, could that be the reason? Or the egg white beating and folding technique?
    Please help. Thanks.
    Also, may I know if baking for >1hr, wouldn’t it be too dry?

    • vietcook says:

      I would use a slightly smaller chiffon pan in diameter, just the next size down, but a bit taller in height so it will rise upwards instead of spreading outwards like in the larger tin. 50 mins in the oven should do it – check with a skewer. Good luck & tell me how it goes. Anna.

  67. SheeYuen says:

    Is the surface of the cake cracking? If not, then it is a perfect chiffon cake like the ones sold in cake bakeries.

  68. enn says:

    my cake shrunk in the middle this time.. i used parchment paper at the bottom and sides.. could this be the reason? 😦 help….

  69. Kara says:

    Hello, I am sure you wrote this some time ago… do you have a basic vanilla chiffon recipe?
    I definitely appreciate your explanations of the different stages of whisking the whites… I definitely over whisked mine… hence the no rise I am assuming… it was very stiff… and my oven temp was a lot lower… 15 min at 325°F and then dropped to 295°F… per following a different recipe. Looking forward to buying more eggs so I can give it another go!
    Thanks again!

  70. Sue Yuan says:

    I have failed with chiffon cakes (cake deflates towards the end of baking and when it is is taken out to about half its peak height!) but I am going to try again following your blog, your instructions look very clear to me. Fingers crossed!

  71. It¡¦s really a nice and useful piece of information. I am satisfied that you just shared this useful info with us. Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.

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