What’s the Difference Between Gâteau, Cake, And Torte?

What’s the Difference Between Gâteau, Cake, And Torte?

Browsing through your recipe books, you may notice the words gâteau, cake, and torte used interchangeably. While all these treats are definitely sweet and popular desserts, there are differences that make each baked good stand on its own.

The reason many people use the terms interchangeably is because they all mean ‘cake’ in the native language – gâteau (gâteaux is plural) is French while torte is German. Some torte cakes also have Austrian roots.

Common Ingredients

Gâteaux, cakes, and tortes do contain many of the same ingredients, such as flour, eggs, and butter. A torte usually needs less flour than a cake or gâteau, sometimes calling for breadcrumbs or ground nuts to replace some of the flour.

One more similarity is that gâteau, cake, and torte can all be made in layers. However, this is where the desserts start to differentiate.


American Cake

Cakes are made with a variety of flavors, topped with a variety of icing types to complement the cake’s flavor. The centerpiece of the dessert is the cake itself, with the best cakes layered with minimal icing in between.

Most layered cakes are made up of just two layers, except for the special occasion cakes like wedding cakes that come in multiple tiers.

Generally, if kept properly stored, cake can stay fresh for a week or more.


French Gâteau

Gâteau describes a dessert that features a rich filling in between the layers of decadent sponge cake. Popular choices for the gâteau filling include thick cream, mousse, or ganache. Gâteau is often filled with lots of fresh fruit.

Because of the spoilage factor, gâteaux are generally created and eaten on the same day.


German Torte

Tortes are made up of multiple layers of very thin sponge cake and a variety of fillings, including fruit, jam, whipped cream, or mousse. Some tortes substitute some of the flour for finely ground hazelnuts for added flavor and a better texture. Almond torte cakes add crushed almonds to the sponge cake mix.

The goal of a torte is to create as many layers as possible, sometimes 10 or more, making the dessert very tall. Adding to the sweetness, tortes are usually covered in a chocolate torte cake glaze or firm-setting fondant, and decorated for added appeal. The topping extends the shelf life of a torte, even if the filling contains fruit.

Many tortes can become rather expensive to make and buy, depending on the type and quality of the ingredients that make up the layers.

Add Layers to Your Cake Business

If you’re an inspiring baker and want to add products to the menu the competition doesn’t have, you can focus on creating unique layered creations following the style of gâteau or torte. There are so many filling options to try, you can customize your layers to cater to your customer’s tastes.

When you need storage solutions for your gâteau, cake, or torte ingredients, including cake decorating bottles and glaze dispensers, contact the team at BottleStore.com or explore our extensive food-safe inventory of bottles, jars, and more.





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