This is fun. This is witty. Food in a jar! I am one of the those jar nuts. I have at least 50 mason jars sitting in my pantry. They hold nuts, grains, popcorn, juniper berries, raisins, beans, rice, brown sugar, salt, cocoa and much more.
I do not can, nor do I think I will can any time in the future, but that doesn’t stop me from having a love affair with jars. These are not intended to be canned cakes in jars that can last for months. Some people have claimed to do that successfully. That’s not me. I’m doing good to bake them, jar them, and freeze them.
I had to do a little research to make sure it was safe to bake in a jar. Some put the jars right in the oven as I did, and some use a water bath. Just make sure you do not bake them with the lid on. I know I probably don’t have to tell you that, but I want to make sure you do this safely.
Some cakes rise a lot, some a little. You may have to experiment with this. If you use cooking spray, the cakes should pop out fairly easily if you need to trim from the bottom. (I did that with some spice cake in a jar I recently made and I saved those discs I cut off and froze them to make something with at another time.)
Cook the cake completely before you pipe in the frosting. The lid goes on and they are stored in a fridge for a few days. Some will go into the freezer. Yes, you can freeze jars. I do it all the time. Just make sure you leave an inch of space between the food and the lid. This is my genius discovery of 2012.
You can be as creative as you like. My next jar challenge will be ice cream cake in jars. I can’t wait to try that one. The recipe for red velvet cake is found here.. You can use a box cake, but please don’t use store bought frosting. I have a great recipe for cream cheese frosting (my number one post on this blog). It does make a difference.
As far as size of the jar, I used wide mouth, half-pint size jars found at True Value Hardware. I poured 1/4 cup of batter into each jar. I love the half-pint size, which gives a perfect individual portion which is not over the top. You eat out of the jar with a spoon, and everyone loves it. If you only want to eat half, just put your lid on and save it. So convenient. So adorable. Just sit out for a few hours to defrost.
This is also an entry in the Red to Remember, raising awareness for World AIDS Day.
- Heat oven to 350
- wash jars well
- spray jars well
- pour ¼ to ⅓ batter into jars. (you might do a test ahead to see how high your cake rises)
- You will probably have batter left over that you can make cupcakes with.
- Bake for 20 minutes - Check at 15 minutes to see how done cake is.
- Test with a toothpick or cake tester.
- Cool completely.
- Pipe an inch of icing into jar.
- Top with a lid. Refrigerate up to 3 days. Or freeze.
- If you freeze, leave an inch at the top.
- Take out. Defrost an hour before serving.