Why Mini Chocolate Chips Work Way Better In Cake Batters

If you absolutely love chocolate, you're certainly not alone. Revered the world over, the ancient treat made from roasted and ground cacao beans (via History) has made people go ga-ga for centuries, reaching for the sweet in the form of a morning hot chocolate, an afternoon candy bar, an evening slice of cake, and so many more ways. Depending on where you live, all those satisfied cravings add up: In Switzerland, a large producer of high-quality chocolate, the average citizen gobbled nearly 20 pounds of the confection in 2017; Germany wasn't far behind with 17.4 pounds per person; And in Sweden, it was around 14 pounds per person that year, according to Statista.

Chocolate shows up in our dessert rotations in a variety of ways, from cocoa powder to chunks of chocolate to cocoa nibs. But one of the most common ways chocolate adds its delights to sweets is in the form of that old standby: The chocolate chip. These little drops of often-semi-sweet chocolate bring incomparable flavor and texture to cookies, brownies, bars, and more. But if you're going to stir them into cake, it's best to reach for a bag of mini chips instead of full-sized.

Regular chocolate chips tend to sink

Have you ever cut into a slice of a freshly baked loaf cake, bundt cake, or banana bread studded with chocolate chips – only to find they're not, in fact, dispersed throughout the cake, but have instead sunk down to the very bottom of it? Although such cakes are inevitably still tasty, they definitely lack the textural effect of the web of chocolate throughout.

How to address this problem? Reach for mini chocolate chips, not full-sized ones, the next time you plan to bake such a treat. As Bake or Break explains, regular chocolate chips are just too heavy to stay suspended in most batters, but mini chocolate chips are much more likely to do so. Another method you can employ, as recommended by Detroit Free Press, is pouring a bit of plain cake batter on the bottom of your greased pan before mixing the chips into the rest of the batter and pouring it on top, creating a layer of cake that will protect against sinking. 

As a bonus, this trick works with berry muffins and quick breads, as well.