Wow – so many of you made this honey cake last week – which makes me very happy!

honey cake

Even better? A bunch of you wrote and asked about the sugar-y looking coating around the top and sides.

honey cake

Which reminded me of a tip I’ve been using ever since I saw it in Cook’s Illustrated a while back.

honey cake with sugar coating

When making a bundt or tube cake, brush the sides and bottom with three tablespoons of vegetable oil. Then sprinkle with 1/3 cup granulated sugar.

Not only will the cake pop right out but it will now have a slightly sparkly, lightly crunchy coating that is quite yum.

To get the sugar evenly distributed, I find it’s easiest to first sprinkle it around the center “cone”, and then continue from there (I also use this method when flouring/buttering this type of pan).

So give this a try the next time you make a bundt or tube cake – it’s all about the little things, right?


  1. Sassy on October 22, 2014 at 9:36 am

    My Mom taught me this trick when teaching me to bake as a child. To make it even more special, she would use homemade flavoured sugars…such as vanilla sugar, cinnamon sugar,lavender sugar, citrus sugar, etc. For vanilla sugar, she would put the vanilla bean , empty pod in a jar of sugar after she’d scraped the seeds out for her baking. With citrus sugar, she’d zest the citrus of choice and add to a jar of sugar, leaving a few days before use, and shaking jar daily. With lavender sugar, she would use a pestle and mortar and grind down the dried lavender buds and add to a jar of sugar.

    • sherisilver on October 22, 2014 at 10:48 am

      I love all of these – especially the lavender sugar!

      • Rudy on February 2, 2016 at 10:59 pm

        I apologize if the answer is obvious, but I had to ask since, like Sassy,” I had planned on using a orange zest sugar. I could only get this work on pans that don’t have a nonstick finish. Am I doing something wrong?

        • sherisilver on February 3, 2016 at 6:43 pm

          Pans with a non-stick finish will not work as well as the surface is too slick for the sugar to adhere to. Non-non-stick pans (is that a thing?) work best with this tip!

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