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Baking

as a hobby

You don’t have to love cooking to cook, but you have to do more than love baking to bake. You have to bake out of love.

Tom Junod

Baking is a hobby that involves making delicious treats such as cakes, cookies, pies and breads. Baking can be fun, relaxing, rewarding and creative. Baking can also improve your mental health, enhance your skills and bring joy to yourself and others. To start baking, you need some basic tools, ingredients and recipes. You can choose a simple and easy recipe to try out, follow the instructions carefully and enjoy the process and the outcome. Baking is a hobby that anyone can learn and love.

Helpful content to start baking as a hobby

We aim to provide accurate information, but errors might be found. Always exercise judgment and discretion.

Videos

Short visual inspiration.

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YouTube Playlist | Baking School: Fundamentals
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YouTube | BASIC BAKING TERMINOLOGY | folding, proofing, ferment, scoring, and more…
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YouTube | 8 Best Baking Tips For Beginners
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YouTube | Claire Teaches You Cake Baking (Lesson 1) | Baking School | Bon Appétit

Podcasts

Play an episode while exploring the page.

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Spotify | Baking for Beginners
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Spotify | Baking Bread for Beginners
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Spotify | The Baking Podcast
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Spotify | Preheated Baking Podcast
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Spotify | The Crumb – Bake from Scratch
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Spotify | Flour Hour Baking Podcast

Baking is a science that involves chemistry, physics and biology. Baking requires precise measurements, temperatures and timings to achieve the desired results. Baking also involves chemical reactions, such as the Maillard reaction that causes browning and caramelization, the fermentation of yeast that produces carbon dioxide and alcohol, and the coagulation of proteins that creates structure and texture. Baking also relies on biological factors, such as the quality of ingredients, the humidity and altitude of the environment, and the microbiome of sourdough starters.

Terms

Basic lingo for orientation.

  • Batter – A mixture of flour, liquid, eggs and other ingredients that is thin enough to be poured or spooned.
  • Beat – To mix ingredients vigorously with a spoon, whisk, fork or electric mixer until well combined and smooth.
  • Blend – To mix two or more ingredients together gently with a spoon, spatula or electric mixer until well combined.
  • Cream – To beat butter and sugar together until light and fluffy, usually with an electric mixer. This helps to incorporate air and make the baked goods rise.
  • Cut in – To mix solid fat (such as butter or shortening) with flour using a pastry blender, fork or two knives until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. This is done to make pastry dough or biscuits.
  • Fold – To gently combine a light mixture (such as whipped cream or egg whites) with a heavier mixture (such as batter or custard) using a spatula or spoon. This is done to preserve the air bubbles and make the baked goods light and airy.
  • Glaze – To brush or spread a thin layer of liquid (such as egg wash, milk, syrup or icing) over the surface of baked goods to give them shine, color or flavor.
  • Grease – To coat the inside of a baking pan or dish with butter, oil or cooking spray to prevent sticking.
  • Knead – To work dough with the heels of your hands by pushing, folding and turning it repeatedly until it is smooth and elastic. This is done to develop gluten and make the dough rise.
  • Leaven – To make dough or batter rise by adding an ingredient that produces gas (such as yeast, baking powder or baking soda).
  • Preheat – To turn on the oven and let it reach the desired temperature before putting in the food to be baked.
  • Proof – To let yeast dough rise in a warm place until doubled in size. This is done to make the dough light and airy.
  • Sift – To pass dry ingredients (such as flour, sugar or cocoa) through a fine mesh sieve to remove lumps and incorporate air.
  • Whip – To beat cream, egg whites or other ingredients with a whisk or electric mixer until they form stiff peaks. This is done to incorporate air and make the mixture light and fluffy.

How to start baking as a hobby

First moves for getting acquainted and breaking the ice.

Buy a baking cookbook and some basic baking utensils – and start baking!

Books

Get read(y).

How-tos

Step-by-step tutorials.

Articles

Further reading.

Websites

Go-tos for information.

Baking is a therapeutic activity that can improve mental health and well-being. Baking can reduce stress, anxiety and depression by providing a sense of accomplishment, creativity and self-expression. Baking can also enhance mindfulness, focus and concentration by requiring attention to detail and coordination. Baking can also foster social connection, generosity and gratitude by sharing the baked goods with others. Baking can also stimulate the senses, memory and nostalgia by evoking pleasant aromas, flavors and emotions.

Movies

Nothing like a film for inspiration.

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YouTube | Welcome to the Best of Bake Off!

FAQS

Get a clue.

Is baking a hobby?

Yes, baking can indeed be considered a hobby. It’s a creative activity that people often do in their leisure time for enjoyment.

What are the types of baking?

Baking is a broad term that covers many types of foods made from flour or meal and cooked by dry heat, usually in an oven. Some of the types of baking are:
Biscuit: A small, round, flat bread that can be sweet or savory.
Bread: A staple food made from dough of flour and water, usually leavened.
Brownie: A dense, chewy, fudgy or cakey dessert made from chocolate or cocoa batter.
Cake: A sweet dessert made from a leavened batter and decorated with frosting or icing.
Cookie: A small, flat, sweet treat made from a leavened dough and flavored with various ingredients.
Cracker: A thin, crisp snack made from a dough of flour and water or other liquid.
Pastry: A dough of flour, water and fat that is rolled out and folded to create layers of fat and air. Pastry can be used to make pies, tarts, quiches, croissants and danishes.
Pie: A dish of a pastry crust filled with a sweet or savory filling.
Tart: A type of pie that has a shallow pastry crust and an open top filled with a sweet or savory filling.
Torte: A type of cake that has multiple layers and is filled and topped with cream, fruit, nuts or chocolate.
Twice-baked foods: Foods that are baked twice to achieve a certain texture or flavor. Twice-baked foods include biscotti, croissant, stollen, bagel and twice-baked potato.
Viennoiserie: A type of pastry that is made from a yeast-leavened dough enriched with butter, eggs and sugar. Viennoiserie includes croissant, pain au chocolat, danish pastry, brioche and kouign-amann.

What are the essential tools and equipment for baking?

Some of the basic tools and equipment that every baker should have are: measuring cups and spoons, mixing bowls, whisk, spatula, wooden spoon, rolling pin, baking pans, baking sheets, parchment paper, cooling rack, oven mitts and a kitchen timer. You can also invest in more advanced tools such as a stand mixer, a digital scale, a pastry blender, a piping bag and a candy thermometer as you progress in your baking skills.

What are the essential ingredients for baking?

Some of the staple ingredients that every baker should have in their pantry are: all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, powdered sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, vanilla extract, butter, eggs and milk. You can also stock up on other ingredients such as cocoa powder, chocolate chips, nuts, dried fruits, spices and flavorings depending on your preferences and recipes.

Apps

Smart assistance.

Products

Essentials to have.

Courses

Get smart.

Near You

Get together.

Baking is a versatile hobby that can suit different tastes, preferences and occasions. Baking can cater to various dietary needs, such as gluten-free, vegan, keto and paleo. Baking can also incorporate different cuisines, cultures and traditions, such as French pastries, Italian breads, Chinese mooncakes and Mexican tres leches cake. Baking can also celebrate different seasons, holidays and events, such as pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving, fruitcake for Christmas, hot cross buns for Easter and birthday cake for anniversaries.

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Tips

Additional advice for beginners.

  • Learn the basic techniques. Baking involves various techniques that can make a difference in the texture, flavor and appearance of your baked goods. Some of the basic techniques you should learn are: kneading dough, laminating dough, creaming butter and sugar, whipping cream and egg whites, folding ingredients, piping batter and frosting, tempering chocolate and glazing cakes. You can watch online videos or take online courses to learn from experts and get tips and tricks.