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Difference between Cake and Pastry

Cakes and pastries are baked desserts that are widely consumed throughout the world. They are commonly prepared in homes, bakeries and other food joints and come in different shapes and flavors and taste delicious. Both may look similar from the outside, but they have a significant number of differences. Let us see how these sweet foods differ from each other!


A cake is a baked dessert or sweet food widely consumed throughout the world on different occasions particularly on birthdays, anniversaries etc. It is a modification of bread. Today, it comes in various shapes and flavours and shares features with other desserts like pastries, custards, pies etc. The basic ingredients of a cake include flour, sugar, eggs, butter or oil and a leavening agent like baking soda, baking powder etc. A cake is a versatile dessert that can be prepared in a number of different ways, according it can have different shapes and flavours. The common shapes are rounded, rectangular, square and triangular. The common flavours include vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, chocolate, black forest etc.


A pastry is a baked product that is widely consumed throughout the world for breakfast and small celebrations. The making of pastries involves simple methods and few basic ingredients that include flour, water and butter. Pastries generally appear in oval, round and triangular shapes and generally have fewer flavors than cakes.

Common Types of Pastries:

  • Shortcrust: It is used for the base of a tart, quiche, pie etc. It lacks leavening agent so it does not puff up during baking.
  • Puff: It has the equal weights of fat and flour. It has air being trapped between the layers of dough to give a delicate, light and crisp finish.
  • Flaky pastry: It is also known as blitz pastry or rough puff. It is an unleavened pastry that is light and flaky.
  • Rough-puff crust: It shares some features with flaky pastry. In this pastry, the fat is incorporated in a different way.
  • Filo pastry: It is made using a very thin unleavened dough, so it looks like thin sheets and is used as a casing for various soft savory and sweet dishes.

Based on the above information, some of the key differences between Cake and Pastry are as follows:

Cake Pastry
It is a baked dessert that is generally larger than pastries. It is a baked dessert that is generally smaller than cakes.
Main ingredients are wheat flour, sugar, eggs, butter and oils. Main ingredients are wheat flour, water, sugar and butter.
Common shapes include round, rectangular, square, triangular etc. Common shapes include oval and triangular.
They are highly decorated and come in several flavors and colours. They are not highly decorated and come in limited flavors and colours as compared to cakes.
They contain proteins, vitamins and carbohydrates. They contain fatty acids and carbohydrates.
They are mostly used in ceremonial events particularly birthdays and anniversaries. They are mostly used for breakfasts and small celebrations.
Common types include carrot cake, black forest cake, spice cake and chocolate cake. Common types include shortcrust, puff, flaky pastry, and rough-puff crust.
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