Storing cake correctly is a big part of ensuring that it lasts well, so if you’ve got some delicious cake leftovers, make sure you refrigerate them as soon as possible. It’s important to keep an eye on any cake that is being kept in the fridge, and check how long it will be okay to eat for.
How long does cake last in the fridge? Many cakes will last up to a week, but those with fresh cream will need to be used up more quickly, or the cream will turn sour. Fruit cakes will last much longer, possibly up to three months if they don’t contain any fresh ingredients. In most cases, how long cake will last in the fridge depends on the toppings and ingredients.
How Long Will Cakes with Fresh Fillings Last in the Fridge?
If your cake contains fresh fruit, cream, cream cheese, or custard, it will not last for long, even if it is stored in the fridge. In general, you should be trying to use this kind of cake up within a couple of days of storing it, or the filling will go off.
Make sure that this sort of cake is refrigerated promptly, regardless of what the other ingredients are. It should not be left at room temperature for longer than necessary.
If the filling ingredients are very fresh, they will last for longer than if the cake was made a day or two in advance, but overall, you don’t want to store cakes with fresh fruit or dairy fillings for more than a few days at the most.
How Long Will Cakes with Buttercream or Ganache Last in the Fridge?
Many cakes with either a buttercream topping or ganache will last for three or four days in the fridge, or a little longer. Butter can keep well in the fridge, but ganache contains cream, and may not last very well.
These kinds of cakes should be chilled, and not kept on the counter or at room temperature. The high sugar content should help them to last longer, but the toppings may make the cake soggy, and it will eventually go bad. Don’t keep it for longer than about five days in the fridge at the most.
How Long Will Marzipan or Iced Cakes Last in the Fridge?
If your cake is completely encased in marzipan or icing, it will keep much better because the sponge won’t dry out, and marzipan and icing are both long-lasting toppings. Depending on the kind of cake, you should be able to store these for up to a couple of weeks in the fridge.
These cakes will also last well at room temperature, although they should be kept cool. Icing will harden and marzipan will dry out if left exposed to the air for too long, so make sure you cover the cake to preserve its texture.
How Long Do Homemade Cakes Last in the Fridge?
As a general rule of thumb, homemade cakes will only last for four or five days in the fridge, and the above rules about toppings still apply. Homemade cakes do not contain the preservatives that are in store-bought cakes, and therefore they go off more quickly.
Don’t try to store a homemade cake in the fridge or the cupboard for weeks, as it will turn dry and unpleasant, and may start to mold. This is particularly true if it contains any fresh fillings, or if it is left in a warm place or exposed to sunlight.
A homemade cake will often last better in the fridge than on the counter, but it depends on what the cake is made of and what fillings have been used.
How Long Do Store-Bought Cakes Last in the Fridge?
Store-bought cakes should keep a little better, and may last between one and two weeks in the fridge. However, if they contain fresh fillings/toppings, they will need to be used up more quickly, as these will not keep noticeably better than on homemade cakes.
Store-bought cakes tend to last better because they contain more preservatives. However, they will still dry out and go off if they are kept for too long, so minimize the storage time as much as possible.
Can You Freeze Cakes?
Yes, cakes are often frozen so that they can be made in advance of special occasions. Cakes freeze well, and can be stored for around four months in the freezer on average. In general, cakes are frozen without toppings or icing, and then iced/topped when they are defrosted.
If you want to put a cake in your freezer, it’s best to wrap it well, as this preserves the texture and prevents the cake from drying out. You can wrap each layer of sponge in plastic wrap, or place them in an airtight container if you have one that is large enough.
You can also freeze many cake toppings, such as buttercream icing, and defrost them when you are ready to use them. Toppings like fresh fruit should not be frozen, as this will ruin the texture.
Thaw cakes and toppings in the fridge or on the counter. Large cakes may take hours to defrost, so it’s best to take them out a day before they are needed, especially if you need time to decorate them.
How Can You Tell If Cake Has Gone Bad?
A cake that has gone bad will usually show visible signs of mold. Blue, green, or white flecks, particularly on the underside of the cake, will appear. It may also dry out, and if the filling was moist, it might turn mushy.
It can be tricky to tell when a cake has gone bad because it won’t usually develop much scent, and its texture may not notably change. Look for mold spots, and avoid eating any cake that has been in the fridge or on the counter for longer than seems safe.
Be particularly wary of cakes that contain fresh, short shelf-life fillings like cream.
The storage time for cakes will vary enormously according to the type of cake, the fillings and toppings, and whether it was store-bought or homemade. It is often hard to tell when a cake has gone bad, but it does generally last well due to its high sugar content, so you should be able to keep many kinds of cakes for a week or more.