Thursday, May 15, 2014

Gadgets: Paper Bakeware

Considering how many baking pans I own, paper bakeware was never really on my radar. But I thought it would be fun to test.

The paper bakeware from Welcome Home Brands comes in a huge variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, either in single sizes or in assortments ($24.99).

They're oven-safe to 400 degrees, and they're freezer safe, so they're great for that emergency dessert that you stuff into the freezer.

Some of the ones I tested had a brown cardboard-looking interior, while others were white inside, but in use I didn't notice any difference between them. The interiors are coated, so the pans didn't need to be greased. So far, all the baked goods I tried came out of the pan easily. Or, really, I peeled the pan off of the baked goods, like you'd remove the paper from a cupcake.

While these are sturdy enough to stand on their own (but not completely rigid), I put them on a baking sheet for easy transport into and out of the oven.

My first thought was that these would be nice for making baked goods as gifts since the pans colorful and relatively inexpensive. Size-wise, the pans range from small(ish), down to cute and tiny. The loaf pans in the photo are approximately 7x3, 5x3 and 4x2, so the smallest is about equal to a cupake, but in loaf form.

But then I realized that they're even more interesting because of the range of shapes and sizes, and many of those sizes aren't available in metal bakeware.

I'm particularly liking the round baking pan. It's about 4 1/2 inches in diameter, so it could be used make cute little pies or quiches, but it would also be a a lot of fun to use it to make miniature layer cakes.

The only downside - and it's not a big one - is that since you're working with pans that are a different size and shape than a normal cake or cupcake pan, it's likely you'll need to adjust the baking time to compensate.

Overall, I really like these pans. I'm not about to replace my metal baking pans, but I like having other options, and these don't take a whole lot of storage space.

The product was supplied for the purpose of a review on Serious Eats; this was previously published on Serious Eats.

Quick note, because I know someone's going to ask ... the cakes in the photos were baked from mixes. I didn't want to be testing a recipe at the same time I was testing the bakeware, and I figured that boxed mixes would be a good "standard" recipe.

The crumb cake is Krusteaz brand, and I have to say it's pretty darned good. I'd buy it again, for sure.