Cake Lifters

Published June 1, 2011. From Cook's Country.

Handling cakes can be tricky. Can one of these cake lifters make it easier?

Overview:

Handling cakes can be tricky, whether you're stacking fragile, split layers as you frost them or moving an iced cake to a serving platter. In the past, we've pressed other kitchen gear into service, such as rimless cookie sheets, the bottoms of tart pans, or pizza peels. Now bakeware companies have created cake lifters—large spatula-like devices designed to slip under and support cakes, preventing breakage. We put six lifters, priced from $9.99 to $29, to the test.

Moving the two un-iced layers of Strawberry Dream Cake posed no problem for any cake lifter. But as we transferred each of the thin, fragile, split layers to assemble a four-layer lemon cake, we were grateful for the extra support. Large lifters got in the way as we tried to line up the layers' edges. Smaller lifters let us see what we were doing. The greater challenge, however, was moving cakes after they were assembled and frosted. Thin cake lifters, though easy to slide under cakes, flexed and bounced under the weight. Lifters that were too large or unbalanced felt… read more

Handling cakes can be tricky, whether you're stacking fragile, split layers as you frost them or moving an iced cake to a serving platter. In the past, we've pressed other kitchen gear into service, such as rimless cookie sheets, the bottoms of tart pans, or pizza peels. Now bakeware companies have created cake lifters—large spatula-like devices designed to slip under and support cakes, preventing breakage. We put six lifters, priced from $9.99 to $29, to the test.

Moving the two un-iced layers of Strawberry Dream Cake posed no problem for any cake lifter. But as we transferred each of the thin, fragile, split layers to assemble a four-layer lemon cake, we were grateful for the extra support. Large lifters got in the way as we tried to line up the layers' edges. Smaller lifters let us see what we were doing. The greater challenge, however, was moving cakes after they were assembled and frosted. Thin cake lifters, though easy to slide under cakes, flexed and bounced under the weight. Lifters that were too large or unbalanced felt awkward and heavy, straining our wrists. Poorly designed handles provided no leverage.

One lifter fell right in the middle. It's slightly flexible, small enough to maneuver for stacking cake layers, and sturdy enough to let us hoist finished cakes with confidence. Plus, we like the comfortable offset handle. Do you need a cake lifter? Not really, but it's a nice addition to the avid baker's bag of tricks.

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  • Product Tested

    Results Key:

    Good ★ ★ ★ Fair ★ ★ Poor
  • Prices are subject to change.
  • Highly Recommended - Winner

    Fat Daddio's Cake Lifter

    A little heavier than other models, this square-shaped cake lifter felt very sturdy for its small size, particularly when we moved a finished cake. Plus, it sported a comfortable offset handle. Its rounded edges let us see just enough of the edge of a cake layer as we stacked it, while still supporting the thin, delicate layers.

    • Lifting ★★★
    • Assembling ★★★

    $11.88

    BUY NOW Amazon
  • Recommended

    Wilton Cake Lifter

    Its compact size works well for assembling a cake layer by layer, while its sturdy construction made it possible for us to move a decorated cake with ease. An ergonomic silicone handle gave us plenty of control with each task. Our only quibble was its square edges, which obstructed our view slightly when we lined up layers.

    • Lifting ★★★
    • Assembling ★★

    $9.99

    BUY NOW Amazon
  • Recommended with Reservations

    Nordic Ware Cake Lifter

    This brand was sturdy and compact and had a comfortable handle. That strong construction stood it in good stead for moving decorated cakes, but most testers found it too stiff and too thick as they tried to slip it between layers to assemble a cake.

    • Lifting ★★★
    • Assembling

    $13.00

  • Recommended with Reservations

    Fox Run Large Cookie Spatula

    The manufacturer says that the Cookie Spatula doubles as a cake lifter. Sure enough, its compact design and weight made it perfect for assembling layers. But the small size proved problematic for moving iced cakes. The weight dragged the tip of the spatula down and made the whole cake a beast to control.

    • Lifting
    • Assembling ★★★

    $9.99

  • Not Recommended

    R.S.V.P. Endurance Oven Spatula

    This lifter is big enough to double as a pizza peel; unfortunately, the size makes it less suited to cakes. The small handle felt awkward as the cake bounced on the tip of the roomy spatula. It’s also too large for accurately lining up layers of cake.

    • Lifting ★★
    • Assembling

    $17.95

  • Not Recommended

    Paderno World Cuisine Stainless Steel Cake Lifter

    At nearly double the price of the other cake lifters, this model was the least successful. The pointed tip makes it easy to maneuver cake layers for assembly, but the lifter is so flexible that it buckled and bounced under the weight of a whole decorated cake.

    • Lifting
    • Assembling ★★

    $29.00

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