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Thread: What is the difference between a tube pan and a bundt pan?

  1. #1
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    What is the difference between a tube pan and a bundt pan?

    I have a poundcake recipe that I want to make tonight, and it calls for a 10 inch tube pan. I went to buy one today since I've seen several other recipes that call for one lately, but when I got to the store, they looked absolutely identical to the bundt cake pans. Is there a difference? I ended up not buying one since I have a bundt pan at home, and figured I could just use that instead of buying another pan just like it. Just wondering if I'm missing something. The tube pan at the store was called a "fluted tube pan", so the only thing I can think is that maybe they normally have a flatter surface?

  2. #2
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    Tube pans are traditionally used for sponge and angel food cakes. Mine has a bottom that comes out. The sides and middle support the rising of these types of cakes.

    I would assume you could make a pound cake type batter in a tube pan but the bundt pan is prettier.

  3. #3
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    When I think of a tube pan, I think of the kind of pan that an angel food cake is made in. It does have flat sides, and some actually have two pieces (although not all of them do). The one my mom used did have two pieces. One piece consisted of the sides with a slight rim on the bottom. The second piece was the bottom with the center "tube". The bottom sat on the rim of the first piece. Does that make sense?

    I think it was/is easier to remove the cake from the pan in one piece if you used the two piece pan, because you could slide a knife around the sides of the cake and take the round side piece off, then you could slide a knife under the bottom and around the tube, and remove that piece.

    I have seen recipes that call for one pan, but then say the other can be subbed, so I don't think it matters unless you prefer one look over the other. (Flat sides over fluted or vice versa.)
    kathyb


    Less rhetoric, more cowbell!

  4. #4
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    The store also had what was labeled as an "Angel Food Cake" pan. Would that be the same thing as a regular tube pan then? I'm still trying to figure out if I really need to buy one of these, or if I can always just use my bundt cake pan.

  5. #5
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    I think they're all technically "tube" pans, because the tube refers to the tube in the middle. But I think when they use the term "tube" pan they mean the one with the flat bottom and sides. Bundt pans, while they have a tube in the middle, are rounded and usually have a design. I think they are pretty much interchangeable except for baking an Angel Food cake, which needs the flat sides to rise properly, otherwise, I highly doubt it matters, especially for a pound cake.

  6. #6
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    It was always my understanding that a tube pan is a two-piece deal (with the flat sides) and used for angel food cake. I always use a bundt pan in recipes that call for a tube pan. It's non-stick and I give it a little spray with Pam and it works out fine. Maybe Emily can tell us?

  7. #7
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    As I was reading this I thought oh yes Grace is right and then I read what Canice said and agreed with her!
    Anyway, I do think the only think a tube pan is crucial for his Angel Food Cake. I have never made AF Cake because they are so cheap to buy....nice to see you here Canice!

  8. #8
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    Hiya, Maureen! Grace and I were posting at the same time. I said it differently, but I was thinking what she said!

  9. #9
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    Thanks everyone... I think I'll just stick with the bundt pan unless I ever end up making an Angel Food cake, which I'm not planning on doing any time soon. I haven't made the pound cake yet since I couldn't decide which pan to use, but I will definitely make it today. It sounds really good though.. Milk Chocolate Poundcake - yum!

  10. #10
    I once made and angel food cake in a bundt pan and it was flat, flat. So, the next one I made was in a tube pan (the kitchen store was very specific about the difference) and my cake was a success. So, it you make angel food cake, definitely use a tube pan.

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by kima
    I have never made AF Cake because they are so cheap to buy
    Homemade angel food cake is SO much better than the ones you can buy, unless it comes from a top-notch bakery. And, sponge/angel food cakes are even easier to make than butter cakes.

  12. #12

    All about bundt pans

    A tube pan refers to any cake pan with a hollow center column. A bundt pan is a trademarked name for a specific type of tube pan introduced by NordicWare in 1950. Bundt pans have fluted/decorated sides, as opposed to the straight sides of the regular tube pan. No doubt it's because of the trademark that the pan you saw was labelled a "flute tube pan" (assuming it wasn't NordicWare brand).

    Straight-sided tube pans almost always have a removable bottom and a center tube that is taller than the sides, which facilitates baking angelfood cakes. They are often simply referred to as angelfood cake pans. Same-size straight-sided tube pans can be substituted for bundt pans--as long as you're not using it for something very thin that could leak from a tube pan with a removable base.

    In many--but not all--cases bundt pans can be substituted for straight-sided tube pans. The primary exception is angelfood cakes. The batter on these needs to "climb" ungreased/uncoated straight sides as it bakes. Generally, if the recipe tells you to grease up a tube pan, it can be done in a same-size bundt pan. Go ahead and use whichever you have for pound cake.

  13. #13
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    Re: All about bundt pans

    Originally posted by danathom
    A tube pan refers to any cake pan with a hollow center column. A bundt pan is a trademarked name for a specific type of tube pan introduced by NordicWare in 1950. Bundt pans have fluted/decorated sides, as opposed to the straight sides of the regular tube pan. No doubt it's because of the trademark that the pan you saw was labelled a "flute tube pan" (assuming it wasn't NordicWare brand).
    Interesting information. Thanks for posting!

  14. #14
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    Very interesting, indeed. Now I am craving cake…

    Because I am a total geek I did a quick search and found out that the word Bundt is no longer a live trademark, so any company can use the word. However, the stylized word Bundt

    is trademarked. Not sure what that get's themm (having rights only to the logo and not the word). Apparently, they abandoned their trademark in the mid-80's. [It could be that they lost their trademark rights because the trademark became generic (i.e., was commonly used to refer to tube pans and the like).]

    More useless trivia care of the CL board

  15. #15
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    Originally posted by catharine
    Very interesting, indeed. Now I am craving cake…

    Because I am a total geek I did a quick search and found out that the word Bundt is no longer a live trademark, so any company can use the word. However, the stylized word Bundt

    is trademarked. Not sure what that get's them (having rights only to the logo and not the word). Apparently, they abandoned their trademark in the mid-80's. [It could be that they lost their trademark rights because the trademark became generic (i.e., was commonly used to refer to tube pans and the like).]

    More useless trivia care of the CL board

  16. #16
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    I've always baked my sponge cakes in my 2-piece angle food cake pan - never thought about doing them in the bundt pan. The bundt pan would definitely make a more interesting shape but would it rise as much? I make both European and American type sponge cakes so some have leaving and some don't. Has anyone tried the bundt pan for unleavened sponge cakes?
    Anne

  17. #17
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    The Bundt style pan wouldn't work (or so I've read) because you need the straight tube in the middle and sides for a proper rise.

    Typicall Bundt cakes are heavier pound cake batters with lots of butter and generally either sour cream or buttermilk plus double acting baking powder to help the rise. Also (and it could just be my experience), Bundt tube cakes don't reach the lofty heights that angel and sponge cakes typically do -- my Bundt cakes are squatter creatures.

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