Baking and cooking make for a fun and satisfying hobby. Who doesn’t love enjoying a home-cooked meal, after all?
For both hobbyists and dedicated chefs, there are some baking pans that you should have on hand.
These pans are used in many recipes that you’ll find.
The Standard Baking Pans
Over time, baking pans have been made to suit different needs in the kitchen.
The number of portions, the dish you make, and the physical needs of the dish inform your baking pan choice.
So, to make sure that you can whip up any tasty treat that catches your eye, these are the eight baking pans you’ll want to have in your cupboards:
- 9×13 inches
- 8×8 inches
- 9×9 inches
- 9 inches round
- 9- or 10-inch pie pans
- 9×5 inch loaf pans
- 10×3 inch Bundt pans
With these pans on hand, you will be equipped to make the majority of recipes out there.
Let’s look at what each of these pans is specifically used for in baking.
This pan is the standard baking sheet for all sorts of desserts. Cakes and brownies are the most common desserts folks will make in these pans, though.
This size pan is also versatile since it can be used to roast vegetables and entrees if you’re so inclined.
The type of material you get for your baking pan will depend on what you want the pan to be used for.
Metal tends to work best for desserts, whereas glass and ceramic are better for roasting.
Whichever material you get for your baking pans, these pans can be used for various dishes.
At half the size of the 9×13 inch baking pan, these baking pans are great for making a smaller batch of the same desserts you’d make in a 913 pan.
Cakes, brownies, and crumbles all do well in an 8×8 inch pan.
Cornbreads and casseroles do well in these smaller pans as well. An 8×8 makes enough for four to six people when making a casserole.
The smaller pan size also allows the cornbread to cook evenly.
You’ll have the same choices of materials to decide from for this size of this baking pan, just like the previous size.
They have the same pros and cons here as the 9×13 baking pans, too.
9×9 Inches (Square)
The other standard size for square pans, 9 x 9 baking pans, are used for the same kinds of bakes as the 8×8 baking pans.
Mostly, these are used to scale up recipes from the smaller size.
A 9×9 inch baking pan has about 20% more volume than the 8×8 inch pan, making it an excellent pan to scale up recipes for big events or larger families.
Entrees in particular benefit from this extra space.
The extra room to roast chicken or vegetables means you can make enough food to feed the family.
9 Inches Round
The first of the circular sizes on the list, 9-inch round baking pans, are mostly used for cakes.
Some breads are made in these pans, such as biscuits or sweet rolls.
Having multiple of these pans means that you can build multi-layer cakes.
Just divide the batter between your two or more layers, let them cool for a bit after baking, and assemble once you can handle them.
Springform bottoms can help get your cakes out from the pan.
These removable bottoms let you have another way to get to the cake in the pan without tearing or trimming too much.
10 Inches Round
The other standard circular size, the 10 inch round baking pan, is where you scale up your cake and bread recipes.
Larger cakes can feed more people and are fun to make, too!
10 inch round pans are about 25% larger than 9-inch pans of the same depth.
This makes them great for entrees, thanks to this extra room.
This pan also comes with springform bottoms, just like the 9-inch size. Cheesecake recipes featuring a blind-bake crust would benefit from this feature.
9- and 10-Inch Pie Pans
Regardless of which size you get, these pans are needed to make pies at home.
Some pans have the characteristic textured ridge molded into the pan’s rim. Others just have a plain edge.
Quiches do well in pie pans, as well.
The crust for quiche browns nicely in a pie pan, and the depth for most pies is shallow enough for the eggs to cook all the way through.
While metallic pie tins exist, glass and ceramic pie pans tend to work best.
These materials heat evenly in the oven, keeping your pie from having any overcooked spots from hotspots in the pan.
9×5 Inch Loaf Pans
These deep baking pans are what you want when you want to make fresh bread for your home.
The depth of these pans gives the bread plenty of room to rise while it is baking in the oven.
Meatloaf and banana bread do well in these pans as well.
While these don’t rise while they are cooking, the pan helps keep the shape of the dish while it firms up through cooking.
Heavier pans are the preferred choice here. You want something that will support the structure of your loaves while they bake, and a thicker pan has an easier time doing that than a thin one.
10×3 Inch Bundt Pan
While not as commonly called for as the other pans, Bundt pans allow you to make cakes of a unique shape and texture.
This is because of their design.
The hollow center of the pan lets heat move through the center of the cake, ensuring it cooks evenly. Also, more of the cake is exposed to the pan, creating more crust than a normal cake.
Bundt pans are used for coffee cakes and different kinds of sweet cakes. The extra crust made by the pan means that these cakes can hold a glaze without letting it soak in as much.
Other sweet treats, like monkey bread and pull-away cakes, do well in a Bundt pan, too.
Metal and ceramic are your two material choices for Bundt pans. A glass pan with the iconic stem would be too fragile for most kitchens.
Adjusting to Different Baking Pan Sizes
As you can see, baking pans come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes.
The main idea for this is to give bakers options when creating their tasty treats. But, what if you’re missing one of these sizes?
The good news is that you can adjust your recipes to fit the volume of batter or food you’d put into any of these pans.
Once you know the volume of the pan, you’re good to start the conversion.
To figure out the volume, you’ll need to know the pan’s length, width, and depth if it’s a square or rectangular pan.
If it’s circular, you just need to know how wide across the pan is and its depth.
Figuring Out Your Pan’s Volume
For a rectangular pan, multiply all three numbers together and convert that number into cups.
For example, a 9x13x2-inch baking pan is 234 cubic inches or about 16 cups.
For circular pans, the equation is a little harder. Since circular pans are cylinders by shape, using a calculator is the easiest thing to do.
The radius is half the width of the pan, so 4.5 inches for a 9-inch pan or 4 inches for an 8-inch pan. The height is how deep the pan is, usually one or two inches.
A 9-inch circular pan with a two-inch depth is 127 cubic inches or about ten cups.
Changing Between Pans
Once you have that number for your pans, just compare the numbers and see how much you have to cut back on a recipe.
For example, if a recipe makes eight cups of batter and your pan holds six cups, cut everything back by 25%.
When you scale up or down, you’ll want to adjust your temperature and baking time, too. This is especially true if you change how deep your baking pan is.
Going to a smaller size means reducing the baking time and temperature while going up in size means a longer bake time and higher temperature.
Make sure you keep an eye on things while baking!
With these baking pans on hand, you’ll be able to make almost any sweet treat or oven-baked entree you could ask for. Many recipes use these pans as their default choice.
If you’re looking to expand your pan collection, take a look at some of these baking pans the next time you can. You might find your next favorite pan for making desserts!
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