Nothing smells better than the scent of freshly baked goods from a kitchen oven. Paired with berries, cream, or by itself, angel food cake surpasses other cakes as a light and fluffy dessert loved by many. While it may be tempting to use substitutions more common to a kitchen pantry, the finished product will be altered. Angel food cake requires cake flour, and our research shows substitutions can ruin your delicate delight.

Angel food cake is a timeless classic that requires cake flour. Cake flour contains a lower percentage of gluten and is made from a softer wheat than all-purpose flour. This variation of milled wheat creates a difference in texture in cupcakes and cakes, like angel food cake. Using cake flour creates a concoction that is airy and moist. 

While cooking is a science, baking is an art. Many variables create happy memories for everyone when the ratios and relationships correspond well with each other. Continue reading for more tips on creating the perfect angel food cake.

Angel food cake with lemon curd and frozen berries (raspberry and blackberry) on a plate, blue concrete background, What Flour To Use For Angel Food Cake?

Can you use all-purpose flour instead of cake flour for angel food cake?


Consider the taste of your confectionary. Cakes made with all-purpose flour can be more closely associated with bread. While this may be acceptable for some heavier and denser cakes, angel food cake and bread-making do not compare to each other. Cake flour supersedes other flours and substitutions to keep balance with the other light and airy ingredients in this recipe.


Using all-purpose flour instead of cake flour changes the consistency of the dessert. Cake flour gives cakes a fluffy and light texture attributed to angel food cake. The make-up of cake flour contains a lower protein, or gluten, content. When mixing the dough, this low-gluten percentage keeps the dough more crumbly and airy.

Not all wheat is the same in its composition or the creations baked from it. All-purpose flour and cake flour are two different types. Variations of wheat depend on harvest time and guide use. All-purpose flour milled from a hard wheat consists of higher gluten, or protein, count and frequently used in recipes with yeast. This is ideal for dough that needs to be more pliable or flexible.


On a package of flour, the label includes whether the product is bleached or unbleached. Bleaching or chlorinating, milled wheat dissolves more of the gluten bonds within the wheat product. This process also changes the abilities of starch within the wheat. It makes the starch able to sponge or soak the wet ingredients and sugar with greater effectiveness which, in turn, creates a moist dessert.

How can I make angel food cake mix better?

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Making a better angel food cake involves both the process and the ingredients. Make sure to use cake flour instead of other types. This is not the place to worry about whole grains. Instead, chose a milled flour that will provide a light and airy cake. Use this article to help determine the best flour brand for all of your baked goods' needs. 

Click here to see Swans Down Cake Flour at Amazon. 

Click here to see Premium Bleached Cake Flour at Amazon.


While it does require some materials, a little less commonplace in the kitchen, the payoff is worth it for this delectable fluff of air. There are detriments to keeping around flours not used regularly. Specialty flours stored well last a long time. Find the best containers to store flour in this post.

Egg Whites

Egg whites really matter in this cake. This cake does not use baking soda or baking powder. Instead, the egg white takes on a completely different role than in most recipes. An important factor when preparing ingredients includes separating egg whites from egg yolks.

A handy kitchen utensil for this process may be an egg separator or divider. Ensure the egg whites are room temperature before whipping. When working with the egg whites, they should reach a soft peak before blending wet and dry ingredients.

Click here to see Egg Dividers at Amazon.


While there are many pan options in size and type, aluminum heats evenly and while affordable. Other options include non-stick or silicone pans that prevent the cake from sticking to the sides. When baking, regardless of the vessel, buttering or oiling the sides of the pan helps the cake release once cooled.

Air Bubbles

When the cake mix has been put into the baking pan, run a butter knife through the batter. This gives the batter a release of any air bubbles that may be hiding inside of it.

Cool Down

After the cake comes out of the oven and begins to cool, leave it upside-down in the pan. It can be set on a wire rack to increase the cooling at the bottom of the pan. This may seem counter-intuitive based on other cake baking processes, but keeping the fluff and preventing the cake from falling is very important.

How much does angel food cake rise?

Angel food cake rises significantly. This is a primary reason angel food cake needs to be baked in a tube pan or bundt pan. It should have high sides. These cake pans often come with the choice of one or two pieces. While a one-piece cake pan works, a two-piece cake pan will have a removable bottom that makes it easier to release the cake once baked.

The combination of the cake flour with egg whites will rise substantially as the cake mixture can scale the sides of the cake pan. It will be important to let the cake sit and cool on a wire rack to increase airflow before trying to dislodge it.

How do I make my angel food cake more dense?

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Egg whites are a key ingredient in angel food cake and act as the part that makes the cake rise. Egg whites are whipped until they form soft peaks that meld back with the rest of your ingredients upon mixing. However, if a denser angel food cake is the goal, whip the egg whites longer until they form the hard peaks of cream.

Another process to change in the recipe to attain a more dense cake involves adding dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Often, a recipe will require this to be a slow process, adding a little at a time and then mixing. However, when increasing the density of the cake, add the dry ingredients all at one time.

What makes Angel Food Cake different?

Angel food cake is a popular sponge cake. It uses eggs, sugar, and flour as its main ingredients. There is no butter or oil needed to be mixed into the batter for its light texture. It rises naturally, taller and lighter than other cakes. This low-fat and low-in-gluten cake gives every reason to celebrate.

Need it in a hurry? There are many boxed mixes to speed up the process if needed.

Click here to see Duncan Hines Perfectly Moist Angel Food Cake Mix at Amazon. 

Click here to see Kinnikinnick Gluten Free Angel Food Cake Mix at Amazon. 

Click here to see Betty Crocker Angel Food Cake Mix at Amazon.

In Closing

Angel food cake with lemon curd and frozen berries (raspberry and blackberry) on a plate, blue concrete background, What Flour To Use For Angel Food Cake?

We hope you found all the information you needed about flour and angel food cake. Best of luck as you bake up a storm and enjoy your cake!

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