The length of time an iced cake stays fresh depends on the type of frosting, the type of cake, weather conditions, storage method and whether it has been cut into. A cake covered in buttercream or fondant lasts for three to four days under a cake cover on the counter. Cakes with cream-cheese or whipped-cream frosting can only be left out for four hours.
Cakes iced with cream cheese or whipped cream can be kept in a refrigerator for up to three days. Uncut cakes last longer than sliced cakes. In most cases a wrapped, frosted cake stays fresh in the refrigerator up to a week if it is not stored near anything aromatic such as garlic. Frozen, frosted cakes are safe to eat for up to 12 months. However, the texture and consistency change after four months.
The type of cake being stored affects its storage life. Cheesecakes and angel-food cakes are only safe to eat when frozen for up to three to four months. Cakes made or decorated with fresh ingredients, such as fruit or cream-based frosting, should not be stored on counters for more than the time they are being served. To tell if a cake has gone bad, check for mold or a hard and dry texture.