Non-stick tins are preferable to ordinary tins or silicone tins. While silicone tins are non-stick, they don’t distribute heat as evenly. A good non-stick tin will help you to remove cakes and any baked on cake mixture easily.
For cheesecakes, we recommend a springform tin. For cupcakes, a deep muffin tin is what we use for our recipes, rather than a fairy cake tin. We like big cupcakes and we cannot lie! You can invest in a special whoopie pie tin if you wish or simply scoop the mixture onto a flat tin with spaces between the scoops for the sponges to expand as we do.
Baking paper or non-stick baking spray
Lining your tins takes no time at all and will save your cake from sticking. Baking paper is great for lining square and round cake tins and it’s also great to have on hand for wrapping cookies and bars. Invest in some non-stick baking spray for novelty tins and your cakes will come out cleanly every time.
Always remember to level these off with a knife when measuring and don’t compact dry ingredients such as flour or icing sugar by stuffing them into the cup or you’ll increase the amounts.
One bit of kit we are obsessed with and will always recommend is an oven thermometer. Many ovens operate too hot or too cool and this handy device will ensure you bake at the correct temperature.
Digital scales are preferable to manual scales as they are incredibly accurate, which is very important in the science of baking.
Where would we be without our trusty spatula? A silicone-tipped spatula blade can clear out a mixing bowl in no time. A metal spatula, either straight or with a cranked handle (when the blade is bent away), are useful if you want to learn to frost cupcakes and cakes Hummingbird Bakery-style.
A flour dredger will remove lumps from your flour and add air. It’s also very useful for dredging flour out when rolling out pastry or icing sugar when rolling out fondant.
Food mixer or electric hand whisk
We use big mixers with paddle attachments in our bakeries, but at home a countertop version with a variety of attachments will work brilliantly to mix cake batter, fluff up meringues, make pastry and make frosting.
Hand-held electric whisks take a little more elbow grease but are space-saving and very effective at whisking up cake mixes and frosting.
A multi-purpose heatproof glass measuring jug is ideal as you can clearly see what you are measuring out. It can also be used to melt ingredients quickly in the microwave. Make sure you replace your measuring jug when the markings fade.
We use metal ones in our bakeries as they are easy to clean and light to carry, but you can use metal, ceramic, glass or plastic. It is nice to have a selection, so make sure you have a heatproof one and maybe a big and small bowl for mixing different quantities.
Reusable piping bags and nozzles are perfect for writing on and decorating cupcakes by creating icing designs and drawings. A good set will last for years.