If you wonder how to fix dry cake or how to moisten a dry cake (or soften a hard cake), most importantly, you can use cake strips for even baking of cakes which will ensure even baking of the cakes (for the cakes you are making in the future) and also prevent the edges from drying out.
You can read more about the cake strips as you scroll down.
You can read here many tips that I have used myself to soften cakes that have turned hard or dry simply by adding more moisture to it.
Once I baked a very soft cake (Ok, it was supposed to be very soft as I followed the recipe correctly), however I had to go out and so I left the cake in the oven for hours after baking.
This was a big mistake, as the cake hardened in those few hours that I left it in the oven.
Homemade cakes (in fact all homemade desserts) are always better for health even though we use sugar and they are desserts, but if you really think about the ingredients that can go into a store bought cake, you will appreciate your homemade desserts which can be enjoyed occasionally as part of a pretty healthy diet.
They do have sugar, but you really know what you add in your homemade desserts and that does matter.
The best thing about homemade desserts like homemade cakes is that they are free of all chemicals and preservatives which are usually found in store bought desserts and so you are definitely better off with learning to make simple desserts at home.
However, baking is really a science, and things can go wrong if you end up following a wrong recipe or if you don't follow all directions in the recipe or if you make some silly mistakes like I do sometimes.
For example, I left one of my homemade cakes in the oven for too long, which turned its soft texture to pretty hard in few hours, so let us see the reasons a cake turns hard or dry in the first place.
Why cakes turn hard or dry?
Tips to prevent baking a dry, hard cake
If you are making a moist and dense cake, if you over bake it, or if you leave it in the oven after baking, it will turn out hard mostly.
If you are baking a light soft cake and if you over bake or leave it in the oven for much time after baking, chances are that it will end up dry.
In both cases, the cake has lost its moisture.
Almost always prevention is better than cure.
So my first tip is to follow the recipe exactly especially if you are looking for a soft textured cake.
Generally, it is the oil or the melted butter in the recipe which helps to make moist cakes.
Some soft cake recipes do deliver soft cakes which are really wonderful in texture, but only if you follow the instructions in the recipe.
In that case, the cake tends to rise in the middle where it is very soft and moist (but also dense, it is not a light cake), but the edges bake too fast so you need to use cake strips to avoid the crusty edges and promote even baking of the cake.
There are different kinds of cake strips, you just need to select the right one for your cake pan.
And the next tip is to never over bake the cake.
Once the baking is done, you should take the cake out of the oven and if you are worried about hardening, covering the cake with aluminium foil or a plastic wrap can help retain the moisture.
So anyway, if the cake is dry and hard, let us see how to fix the dry cake or moisten a dry cake by adding moisture to the already baked and hardened or dry cake.
How To Fix Dry Cake - Read The Tips Below To Fix Dry Cake
Important Tips To Moisten/Soften Hardened Cake
You can use a sugar syrup to add the moisture back to the cake.
This is what I have done to soften the dry/hardened cake. And it worked for me.
What you have to do is boil equal parts of water and sugar and let the mixture cool.
Then brush off the syrup in the cake, after piercing in multiple sots of the cake using a fork.
After applying the sugar syrup you should cover the cake with an aluminium foil or plastic wrap and let the moisture soften up the cake.
You may also use fruit juice instead of sugar syrup, but only if the juice doesn't alter the flavor of the cake.
If you are planning to frost the cake, you can carefully and gently cutoff the top and edges of the cake and then apply the sugar syrup as mentioned above, which will help to moisten the dry cake further.
You can use a cake leveler to easily cut off the top of the cake evenly, which is also used to slice the single cake into different layers.
If you are slicing the cake using a cake leveler, you have more options to add moisture to the cake.
You can apply the sugar syrup on each of the sliced layers and apply the frosting in between the layers (after the moisture from the sugar syrup is absorbed by keeping the cake covered for a while) which will add more moisture to the help soften it.
Hope you found this post on how to fix dry cake - moisten/soften hard dry cake helpful!