A few months ago, I polled some of my baker pals to get their best tips for freezing leftover cake. My friend Claire Porter, an uber-talented home cake baker, recommended what she calls “the scrappies method.” Instead of wrapping individual slices, she tosses unused cake scraps into plastic takeout containers and sticks them in the freezer. Fast forward to yesterday, when our brilliant friends at Eater recommended using cake scraps as an ice cream topping. Now, I’d like to recommend a few more uses for your orphan cake chunks.
The scrappies method is all about using up extra bits and bobs from the baking process, like the lopsided tops trimmed off your layer cakes. You know what else involves a bunch of bits and bobs? Granola. If you’re feeling like a nasty little freak (I always am), go ahead and crumble some cake scraps atop your morning bowl of yogurt. It’s like granola, but cake. Throw some strawberries in there and you’ve got a strawberry shortcake yogurt bowl. Divine!
Speaking of pleasure-crazed behavior, let’s discuss cake shakes. If you’ve got a container of cake scraps burning a hole in your freezer, you legally must consider throwing them into a blender alongside a few scoops of ice cream and a hard pour of milk. Blend ’em up, serve with a spoon or a thick straw, and behold your cake scraps ascend to something holy. Hell, throw some liqueur in there, too.
Trifle looks fancy, but it is literally the easiest summertime dessert in the history of summertime desserts. It involves layers of cake, pudding, fruit, and whipped cream, lending itself beautifully to leftover white or yellow cake. Overbaked your cake? No worries—just mash it up and stick it in a trifle. The layers will soften the cake scraps, leaving your guests none the wiser. (That is not to say that you need to have guests over to make a trifle. You deserve a trifle of your very own.)
One of the only good things about adulthood is the fact that you can eat whatever you want for dinner without (much) consequence. I’ve enjoyed more than my fair share of cake scrap dinners, plastic container balanced on my chest in front of the television as I scoop its contents directly into my mouth.
As for this latter usage, Porter does provide one caveat: “I like to layer cake and icing and pour a little extra syrup/milk/cream/jam/whatever liquidy sweetener I was using for the cake over each cake layer so it’s not dry when I thaw it out,” she says. Keep this in mind the next time you go through a breakup.