You must be familiar with pastries, pies and cakes if you have a sweet craving. The desire for these delicious bakery products may make you wonder, which is better- cake versus pastry?

Both cakes and pastries are popular and loved foods that most of us consume on a regular basis. Here I will help you understand the difference and similarities between both these flavoursome foods.


| Important Benchmarks of Cake versus Pie |

Cake Versus Pastry Description: What Are the Main Contrasting Criterias?

Let’s understand difference in attributes of cool cake vs pastry briefly:


Flour, leaveners, sugar, salt, dairy


Flour, salt, water and butter


Creamy and sweet


Buttery, sweet or savoury


Lighter, airy


Flaky or crumbly










25-55 minutes


10-30 minutes





CALORIES (for 100g)

227-450 kcal*


291- 558 kcal*













* Source: as per USDA

What Is the Difference Between a Cake and Pastry Flour and Their Ingredients?

Cakes are prepared using flour (all purpose flour), leaveners like baking soda or baking powder, powdered sugar, a pinch of salt and dairy like butter, milk or eggs. The frosting and icing is sometimes done on top of it using cream and many other ingredients.

Pastries are prepared with a dough to make a thin crust. The dough is kneaded using only 3 main ingredients: flour, fat (butter), a dash of salt plus water. It is then baked and embellished with toppings and creamy fondant.

Cake flour has lower protein content than pastry flour. Cake flour is bleached that weakens the protein and hence has approx. 5% – 8% protein. On the contrary, pastry flour boasts 8% – 9% protein that provides flakiness to many pastries, tarts and pies.

Cakes Versus Pastries Taste Differences

Cakes have an edge over the pastry in flavours. They are pleasant, sweet and luscious desserts with a lot of mouth-watering seasonings. 

On the contrary, pastries are made from a stiff dough and are flavoured with either sweet or savoury fillings. 

Sweet pastries are served as a dessert and have a thin crust layer at the bottom decorated with icing on the top. Savoury pastries are salty pies that are served as meals or snacks and generally made from puff pastry.

Is Pastry Softer Than Cake- Examining Textural Variations

A cake’s texture is light, spongy and airy in case of angel food and sponge cake. The appearance of pastry is somewhat flaky and crumbly in nature due to the presence of fats.

Cakes are baked using a batter that is soft and has a flowy consistency. On the other hand, pastry is made from a stiff dough hence its crispy.

Discussing Cakes vs Pastries Size and Shape Variation

A cake is designed and prepared in different shapes like circular, heart, rectangular, triangular, square etc. Multiple layered cakes are commercially available, hence its size varies. The regular cake weighs 1 pound or more.

Pastries are also available in various shapes like triangular and rectangular. Size of the pastry is no doubt smaller than cakes as it’s usually single tier.

Now, people generally stay perplexed and raise a doubt, ‘is a pastry a cake?’ In India cake slices are usually served as pastries. So, you can say that all pastries are cakes, but all cakes are not pastries.

Studying Cakes Versus Pastries Colour Disparity

Colour of cakes varies and it depends upon colouring agent used or frosting done on the top like that of chocolate ganache or white cream.

Similarly, pastries of various hues and designs are available in the market.

What Is the Baking Time for Cakes Versus Pastries?

Cakes and pastries both can be baked using an OTG, microwave oven or simply in a cooker or kadhai on a gas stove. OTG or microwave takes less time to bake them than a gas stove.

The baking time of cakes and pastries varies based on the mode of baking, type of dessert to be baked, size of the pan and temperature. 

How Complex Is the Preparation of Cakes Versus Pastries?

Cakes are prepared using 5 or more basic ingredients and baking time is also high. Moreover, frosting for its decoration is also time- consuming.

On the other hand, pastries are prepared using only 3 main ingredients in less time. Hence, cake has a bit of a complicated baking procedure as compared to pastry but the hassle is no doubt worthy.

What Is the Cakes vs Pastries Calorific Difference?

When it comes to the nutrition of cake versus pastry, it differs with the type of the dessert used. Also, cakes with frosting have more calories than unfrosted cakes. Likewise, sweet pastries have more calories than savoury ones.

Different flavours of cakes and pastries have different calorific values. However, due to the addition of alot of ingredients, cakes are more nutritious as compared to pastries.

Which Is Better- Cake or Pastry for Vegans?

Many vegan healthy cake options are available. They are made by substituting eggs, butter, cream and dairy milk. Oat milk or soy milk can be used in baking cakes due to its similar protein and fat content as dairy milk. Substituting cream frosting with canned coconut milk and cream are the best options.

Similarly, butter and eggs are added to pastries for fluffiness. The best vegan options are sunflower oil and olive oil, margarine (made from vegetable oils) in place of butter, homemade or marketed vegan- friendly suet or vegetable fats.

Vegan egg alternatives like the liquid from chickpeas, vegan yogurt and organic sugar, cane or brown sugars are perfect in cakes for vegans. For pastries, mashed bananas or applesauce or egg- substitute products (made using potato or tapioca starch) are also accessible.

What Are the Types of Cakes and Pastries?

Cakes can be served with or without icing but pastries always have a creamy frosting or topped with cherries, cake crumbs, fruits or dry fruits.

Cakes have distinct types like strawberry cake, chocolate cake, cheesecake, fruit cakes, red velvet cake and many delicious versions.

Pastries are prepared from pastry dough that are mainly five types: shortcrust, flaky, puff, choux, filo. These are prepared using either sweet or savoury fillings.

Analysing Usage of Cakes and Pastries

Cakes are good to go for your special events like birthdays, weddings, office parties, baby showers and anniversaries. Traditionally, it has a limited usage as a dessert only on occasions.

When it comes to your craving in the evenings for snacks or single serving dessert, pastry works in your favour. They have a wide usage and can be served as a sweet dessert or savoury snack.

To summarise this blog, I would like to say that both these exotic desserts are quite different but worthy to savour once to have a heavenly experience.

I hope that you liked my article and it addressed your doubts and concerns. If you have any queries, then drop them in the comments section below.