Number Cake Instructions!

Number Cake Instructions!
  •  Instructions for using a metal open-bottomed Number Cake Tin

Number cakes for a birthday or special occasion are a great idea.....but those number cake tins are surprisingly tricksy to use!

I have a whole collection of the metal open-bottomed ones, and people are always asking me how to use them, so here's my fail-safe guide to making a number cake! 

  1. Clean and dry the tin.
  2. Turn it the wrong way round (so that the flat bottom of the cooked cake will be the top when you turn it over – it’s much easier to decorate that way!) 
  3. Grease the inside of the tin with vegetable oil or non-stock baking spray.
  4. Place the tin on a sheet of baking parchment on top of a sheet of foil.
  5. Scrunch the foil up tightly around the sides to make a kind of base for the tin.
  6. Place the tin on a baking tray. 
  7. Make your cake mix, and fill the tin with more cake mix than you usually would (ie 3/4 full - because you’ll lose some through leakage!) 
  8. Bake according to the recipe instructions and leave it to cool completely in the tin before loosening the edges with a knife, placing a cooling rack over the cake and turning it upside down to release the cake. 
  9. Good luck!!

number cake tins

Basic Sponge Cake Recipe for a Number Cake Tin

This quantity of cake mix will be correct for most of the metal or silicone number cake tins that can be hired in lots of cook shops (please note for No.1 and No.7 leave out approximately 50g of the finished cake mix as these number tins do not hold quite as much volume).


200 grams soft butter or margarine

200 grams caster sugar

200 grams self raising flour (if making a chocolate sponge, replace 30 grams of self raising flour with 30 grams of cocoa flour)

3 medium eggs

1 ½ level teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius (fan) or equivalent.
  2. Grease all internal sides of the cake tin very well with oil or softened butter and sprinkle with caster sugar. Place the number cake tin flat on a baking tray which has been lined with non-stick baking parchment and foil (see instructions above).
  3. Measure the butter and sugar into a large mixing bowl and beat it with a spoon or electric mixer until it is lighter in colour and a creamy consistency.
  4. Break the eggs into a separate bowl (in case any shell gets in!) and then beat them, one at a time, with the vanilla, into the sugar and butter.
  5. Set the bowl back on the scales and measure in the flour and baking powder.
  6. Stir the dry ingredients into the other ingredients until they are combined and the mixture is smooth.
  7. Carefully spoon the mixture evenly into the cake tin and pop it in the oven straight away for 30-35 minutes. Please note that during the first 5 minutes of cooking some mixture will seep out underneath the cake tin. Don’t panic as there will still be enough mixture in the tin!
  8. After 30 minutes check whether the cake is done but sticking a cocktail stick into the centre of it. Return to the oven for another 5 minutes before checking again.
  9. Once out of the oven, allow the cake to cool slightly in the tin on a cooling rack. Carefully run a palette knife or thin spatula completely around all edges of the cake to release it from the tin and allow the cake to cool completely before decorating (a butter cream or thick chocolate ganache would work well!).