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Beginner’s Guide to: Bakeware

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Now that we’ve covered the basics of pots and pans, it’s time to take on bakeware. Have you been struggling to figure out what kind of baking sheets and pans you will need in your kitchen? Here’s our guide to help you choose what baking essentials to register for.

What is it? 
These are food preparation tools, such as tins, sheets, and trays that are used to bake a variety of sweets in the oven.

I need this if?
We highly recommend that every home is stocked with a series of bakeware. It is a must-have for a fully functional kitchen. Plus, there’s nothing that makes a home more welcoming than having fresh sweets and treats warming in the oven, so you should always be prepared to bake.

How many do I need?
There are pans, dishes, sheets, and ramekins. We suggest every couple have at least two standard baking sheets, two cake pans, and two ramekin’s. From there, you can start with one of each style listed below and add as needed.

What material is right for me?
For bakeware, material matters quite a bit. You want something that conducts heat well, is easy to clean, and durable. Aluminum is a good, less expensive option for all of your pans and sheets. It’s a good head conductor, typically dishwasher safe, but tends to not be as durable as other options. Stoneware and ceramic materials are more durable, expensive and great heat conductors, yet tough to clean. They are also touted for being non-toxic and non-reactive options. Glass is great if it’s tempered glass. It will never absorb odors or flavors, is easy to clean, yet the downfall is if you drop it, it can easily break. And finally there’s steel. Steel is much like aluminum except it does not react with food as much and is more durable since it’s harder to scratch, stain, or chip surfaces.

What styles are right for me? 

1. Baking Sheets
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This is the most simple piece of bakeware that everyone should own. Rimless baking sheets are perfect for making cookies or baking scones (check out Nordic Ware’s Prism Insulated Baking / Cookie Sheet), while sheets with raised edges are more versatile and can even be used for roasting vegetables (see Nordic Ware’s Naturals Big Sheet Baking Pan). As we mentioned above, every couple should have at least two.

2. Loaf Pans
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Ever tried to make homemade bread? While this might not be an everyday item in your kitchen, it’s worth having around for when you want it. We love this HR Collection Bread Loaf Baker from Emile Henry and Nordic Ware’s Naturals Nonstick Loaf Pan.

3. Baking Dishes
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Baking dishes are a multipurpose kitchen essential. You will use them for your apple crisps, brownies, peach cobblers, and more. For a simple yet elegant rectangle, see Revol France’s Belle Cuisine Roasting Dish. For a square baking dish, try Berghoff’s Eclipse Square Baking Dish.

4. Muffin Pans
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These are another typical baking dish that everyone has in their home. There’s no other way to make muffins or cupcakes, so you’ll want to have these on the ready when you go to bake bite sized cakes for your loved one’s birthday. These pans can also be used for tarts, mini pizzas, and other treats. We recommend Nordic Ware’s Natural Muffin Pan, or their Naturals Petit Muffin Pan for mini treats.

5. Cake Pans
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There are a series of different cake pans that come in all different shapes from rectangular to square to round. There are layer cake pans, bundt cake pans (we love Nordic Ware’s Heritage Bundt Cake Pan), and springform cake pans. You get the point… there are a lot to choose from. While size and shape of the pan is entirely up to you, we suggest at minimum registering for two layer cake pans or springform pans (these have a clamp release that allows you to remove baked good with ease.) For a standard circular version of these easy to remove pans, register for Kaiser’s La Forme Round Springform Pan.

6. Pie Dish 
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Pie dishes are a variation on a cake pan. They tends to be made of thicker material and have a wavy edge. If you’re into making blueberry pies at home, these will quickly become one of your favorite items. We are big fans of both Emily Henry’s Modern Classics Pie Dish and Juliska’s Berry & Thread Pie/Quiche Dish.

7. Ramekins 
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These are petit pots that are ideal for making individual portions. We recommend using these for making creme brûlée, puddings, cobblers, and sufflés. Check out Sparq Home’s Ramekin, Set of 2 and Le Creuset’s Stackable Ramekin, Set of 4.

Check out all of our bakewhere here.

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