Baking is both a science and an art – just as every ingredient has a purpose in a recipe, so does the type of pan you use. This guide will break down the various bakeware materials, so you can find the best baking pan material for every creation.
Silicone baking molds are naturally non-stick and flexible, making them ideal for foods that don't easily release, such as muffins, cakes, and breads. This material is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
Stainless steel baking sheets and pans are best used for searing meats to achieve crispy, caramelized crusts, or for when baking with acidic ingredients. This material is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
Aluminum baking sheets and pans are best used for food that’s cooked at high heat for short amounts of time, such as cookies, biscuits, muffins. This is because they heat up quickly and promote even browning. To maintain aluminum baking pans, we suggest hand washing or using metal-safe dish detergents.
Glass baking dishes are best used for casseroles, braised dishes, and other foods where a consistent, constant temperature is needed, as well as when cooking with acidic foods. This material is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
Clay / stone baking dishes are non-reactive and are quality heat-holders, making them ideal for baked pasta dishes, casseroles, gratins, bread puddings, and pies. Plus, a clay baking dish doubles as an attractive serving dishes once the baking is complete. This material is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
A staple in many restaurant kitchens, carbon steel is pressed from raw, heavy-gauge steel, making it a stronger, more durable option than aluminum. Carbon steel baking pans are ideal for casseroles, cakes, breads, pies, and other desserts. To maintain carbon steel pans, scrub the interior with hot water and a soft-bristle brush; avoid using soap. It is important to note that carbon steel pans require regular seasoning and maintenance.
Aluminized steel is steel that has been hot-dip coated with aluminum-silicon alloy. Aluminized steel baking sheets are best used for roasting and low / moderate heat applications. As long as it is cared for properly, aluminized steel bakeware is safe to use. To maintain, we suggest hand washing or using metal-safe dish detergents as well as only using non-metal utensils on the pan's surface.
Tin-plated steel is sheets of steel that have been covered with a thin coat of tin. Tin-plated steel baking pans are ideal for cakes and deep dish pizzas. To maintain tin-plated baking pans, we suggest hand washing with warm soapy water, being careful not to use metal scouring pads or abrasive materials. Place in a warm oven to dry completely. It is important to note that tin-plated steel pans require regular seasoning and maintenance.
Cast aluminum is aluminum that has gone through one of the several casting processes. Because of its superior heat distribution, cast aluminum baking pans are ideal for roasting and oven-to-table service. To maintain, we suggest hand washing or using metal-safe dish detergents.
Anodized aluminum is aluminum that undergoes an electro-chemical process to harden its outer layer and thicken its surface. Its non-reactive characteristics make it especially great for cakes with acidic batters, as well as pastries and other delicate dessert recipes. To maintain anodized aluminum baking pans, we suggest hand washing or using metal-safe dish detergents. It is important to note that anodized aluminum pans require regular seasoning.
Proprietary to Matfer Bourgeat, Exoglass® is a non-porous, natural non-stick composite. It is ideal for cakes, breads, tarts, quiches, and other delicate pastries. This material is dishwasher safe for easy cleaning.
Proprietary to Matfer Bourgeat, Exopan® is a fine steel with a nonstick coating inside and protective enamel. It is ideal for cakes, breads, tarts, quiches, and other delicate pastries. To maintain Exopan® baking dishes, wipe the pan inside and out by hand with hot water, a degreasing product, and a soft cloth.
PolyTetraFluoroEthylene (PTFE) coatings offer a durable, heat-resistant finish and nearly complete chemical inertness. They are designed to last through 3000+ uses.
Proprietary to Chicago Metallic, this coating offers a durable, heat-resistant finish and is also certified free of potentially harmful perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). It is designed to last through 3000+ uses.
AMERICOAT® ePlus Coating
Proprietary to Chicago Metallic, this leading silicone release technology provides up to 30% more release than other competing silicone glazes for longer-lasting performance. It is PFOA free, and reduces pan oil usage up to 50% helps as well as staining.
Lighter colored pans are ideal for baking food where minimal browning on the bottom is desired, such as cookies and cakes, because they absorb less heat.
Darker colored pans absorb and spread heat more quickly and promote browning, so they are ideal for using when crispness is desired, such as for pizzas and cornbread.
Designated for allergen-free cooking, purple pans provide easy identification for staff to effectively reduce cross contamination in your kitchen.
How to Adjust Bake Times for Pan Colors
How to Adjust Bake Times for Pan Size