The Best Bakeware Sets:
- Top Pick: Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Bakeware 4-Piece Set
- Runner-Up: Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set, 6-Pieces
- Budget Pick: Chicago Metallic 8044 Non-Stick Toaster Oven Bakeware Set, 4-Piece, Carbon Steel
When it comes to comfort food, there’s nothing like a pristine pound cake, inflected with lemon zest and topped with an airy sprinkle of confectioner’s sugar. Bakers everywhere know that the right bakeware is key to getting the best results in your cakes and muffins, with top sets costing hundreds of dollars. But how can you choose the best bakeware for you?
When it comes to selecting top-quality bakeware for your baking efforts, there are several things you need to be aware of. The best bakeware allows for a number of innovations, including:
- Allowing you to bake both sweet and savory dishes without burning the edges
- Creating a pretty finished product that releases easily from the pan
- Leaving no residue on the pan, allowing for easy clean-up
The best bakeware won’t warp, dent or rust over time, allowing you to continue to crank out superior baked goods year after year without worrying about your cakes burning or collapsing. With the right bakeware, you won’t have to deal with uneven sheet cakes or layer cakes that lean to one side. Its durability will ensure that you create the perfect product for years to come.
Which Type Of Bakeware Is Best?
But how do you choose the bakeware set that is right for you? When selecting a bakeware set, you have several options:
- Glass bakeware
- Stone bakeware
- Ceramic/cast iron bakeware
- Stainless steel bakeware
- Silicone bakeware
- Aluminum bakeware
- Non-stick bakeware
In addition to the innovations described above, the best bakeware is safe and non-toxic, allowing you to bake delicious sweet or savory goods without having to worry about the bakeware leaching chemicals into them. As far as other qualities are concerned, different bakeware materials have varying pluses and minuses. These can be more or less helpful to you, depending on your needs.
For example, glass bakeware is useful for some people because it is unusually non-reactive, making for baked goods that are pristinely free of all chemicals associated with industrially-produced products. This is good for people who are sensitive to household chemicals for health reasons.
However, glassware doesn’t function well when transferred from cold to hot environments. In fact, it’s been known to explode, causing damage to property and person alike. It also fails to conduct heat as well as metal bakeware, so you may need to consistently adjust your baking times. This is an added inconvenience that many bakers can do without.
Stone bakeware has a couple of benefits that make it very useful to bakers. Like glass bakeware, it’s non-reactive by nature, making it beneficial for people with chemical sensitivities. It offers a finely-calibrated baking surface, making it difficult to burn the rims and bottoms of cookies and cakes. However, it’s very expensive, and the fact that you can’t use soap to clean the bakeware when finished makes it inconvenient for some.
Ceramic and cast iron bakeware are useful for some bakers who are looking for a natural surface upon which to prepare their baked goods. However, ceramic bakeware can leach cadmium or lead into your goods, and cast iron can have problems with leaching iron (although this is known to be helpful on a nutritional level). For best results, ensure that you are working with new, state-of-the-art ceramic bakeware.
The main benefit to using stainless steel bakeware is apparently that it incorporates the non-reactivity of more natural materials with the even heat conductivity of metal bakeware. It’s very popular among the alternative wellness demographic for its purity of use, allowing those with chemical sensitivities to enjoy baked goods without having to worry about minerals or chemicals leached into them. Copper is also useful for this purpose.
Silicone bakeware is useful to many bakers because it allows for an even crust surface. However, it doesn’t brown the crust like metal bakeware does, resulting in baked goods without the caramelized, crispy brown crusts that so many prize in their cakes and quick breads. In addition, silicone bakeware is unusually difficult to handle when full of cake or cookie batter, making it easy to have accidents.
For the best overall results, you can’t beat a good metal bakeware set for convenience and quality. Metal bakeware is perfect for both home and industrial bakers because it conducts heat efficiently, allowing for consistent baking times and an evenly-baked product. Metal is less likely to sustain dents or warps, which adds to the consistency of your finished goods. Also, the best sets are made from high-quality materials, lessening the risk of chemical contamination.
For several reasons, aluminum and non-stick bakeware sets are fantastic for preparing sweet or savory baked goods. Aluminum bakeware pans are among the top most efficient conductors of heat, making for an excellent finished product. Their durability also contributes to elegant-looking baked goods. However, some aluminum pans can have problems with leaching, so make sure you check that your bakeware was recently-made by a reputable manufacturer.
Non-stick bakeware sets take top honors in convenience and ease of use. With non-stick bakeware, you can slide cakes, muffins, cookies and breads out of the pan quickly and without fuss. Your baked goods will have delicious caramelized crusts on them without the mess and hassle of needing to scrub burned-on residue from your pans when you’re done. Leaching can be a problem with lower-end sets, so make sure your bakeware is recent and was made by a reputable manufacturer.
When choosing a metal bakeware set, you may want to consider whether a dark-colored or pale-colored set is better for your needs. The color of a bakeware set is important because it contributes to the color and texture of the crust in your finished product. For a cake with a dark brown caramelized crust, go with a dark-hued bakeware set; for a lighter product, choose a paler-colored pan.
You may also wonder about getting the perfect frosted surface for your cakes and muffins. For the best effect, you may consider bakeware which has sides that are parallel to each other, as opposed to flared bakeware with sides that expand as they get closer to the top. The former allows for much more evenly-contoured goods, which makes for easier frosting and decorating.
5 Best Bakeware Sets In 2019: Detailed Reviews
So which bakeware sets are right for you? Check out this quick guide to five of the most convenient and affordably-priced bakeware sets on the market.
In this guide, we’ll outline the features of each set, discuss their benefits and drawbacks, and decide which set takes the cake as the best of the bunch. Read on for more information about which bakeware set might work for you.
This affordably-priced bakeware set takes the prize as one of the better-designed sets you can get for your money. It’s a 6-piece bakeware set consisting of a 9×5-inch bread pan, two round 9-inch cake pans, a 12-cup muffin tin, a 13×9-inch roast pan, and a 13×9-inch cookie sheet.
This bakeware set is constructed of heavyweight carbon steel, which is a strong, durable material. Like many heavyweight metal bakeware sets, its strength means that you don’t have to worry about the pans warping or denting. Its exceptional heat conductivity means that you don’t need to concern yourself with adjusting baking times or scraping burned portions off your finished cakes and breads. Instead, your baked goods will cook evenly throughout, creating a delectable caramelized crust.
In addition, the AmazonBasics 6-Piece Nonstick Bakeware Set has a convenient non-stick surface that allows you to skip using excess butter or oil to grease your pans. With this helpful feature, pumpkin muffins and pound cakes slide out of their tins smoothly and leave no baked-on residue behind, making clean-up a cinch. In addition, you won’t have to worry about birthday cakes crumbling or collapsing as you try to flip them onto a cooling rack.
The AmazonBasics 6-Piece Nonstick Bakeware Set is oven-safe to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, making it useful for preparing everything from crispy frittatas to dense whole-wheat quick breads. It is not recommended for dishwasher use, instead needing to be washed by hand. However, its non-stick feature means that clean-up will be quick and easy. In general, the AmazonBasics 6-Piece Nonstick Bakeware Set is a solid bakeware set for the price, offering several features that may be useful to the home baker.
This four-piece non-stick bakeware set from Rachael Ray Cucina is a strong contender for affordable bakeware set of the year. Consisting of a 10×15-inch cookie sheet, 6-cup muffin tin, and two 9-inch round cake pans, this set is durable and efficient with a stylish flair.
Chic and attractive, this bakeware set’s high-yellow latte brown color glows with a bronzy flush. The light hue allows for a paler, sweeter-tasting caramelized crust on your baked goods, giving you that delectable crunch without the smokier taste of a darker crust. For variety, you may want to invest in both this set and another, darker set for a range of tastes and textures.
One of this set’s most innovative features are the silicone grips on the handles of each pan. Azure-colored and slip-resistant, they allow you to easily handle your baked goods when traveling in or out of the oven, even with potholders. These classy and convenient grips will make your baking efforts that much easier and more comfortable.
With a convenient non-stick surface, you can easily slide your baked goods in and out of your pans with no fuss. Your breads or cakes won’t crumble due to baked-on burnt residue in the pan, making for impeccable baked goods that look like they came from a bakery. With no mess left behind, clean-up is limited to a few swipes of the sponge that will make your bakeware look like new.
Like the AmazonBasics set, the Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Bakeware 4-Piece Set is made of carbon steel, with rolled-rim edges that make the set sturdier and more solid to handle. Your goods will bake evenly and quickly, with no tilting or collapsing. In addition, your pans will last over the long term, offering high-quality baking capacity at an affordable price.
The Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Bakeware 4-Piece Set is oven-safe to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, making it useful for a wide range of savory and sweet baked goods. It includes essential pans for roasting and baking. As part of the complete Rachael Ray Cucina collection, it is quality-assurance-guaranteed and complements the collection in both style and functionality.
The Chicago Metallic 8044 Non-Stick Toaster Oven Bakeware Set is designed for toaster and countertop ovens, which have smaller dimensions than stove ovens and are intended for use on kitchen countertops. The bakeware set is perfect for single-serving baked goods and includes a 9.5×6.25-inch baking pan, 9.25×6-inch cooling rack, 10×7-inch roast/cake pan and 11.5×7.3-inch, 6-cup muffin tin.
Each bakeware pan is made from heavyweight carbon steel that allows for exceptional heat conductivity and prolonged durability. With these pans, you can reheat leftovers, roast single chicken breasts, or create single-serving sizes of your favorite cakes and buns, without having to worry about repeatedly replacing tins or containers. Your food will bake evenly and quickly with no fuss.
The Chicago Metallic 8044 Non-Stick Toaster Oven Bakeware Set features an innovative silicon-based non-stick coating that is a vast improvement over the Teflon-based coatings of the past. With this new silicon-based coating, the goods you bake will be free of minerals and chemicals and will glide easily out of the pan and onto a cooling rack or plate. You won’t need to worry about clean-up; baked-on residue is a thing of the past with this new technology.
This set is heat-safe up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, making it useful for a wide variety of applications. It is also dishwasher-safe; however, hand-washing extends the life of the set and is recommended over dishwasher use. Cook casseroles, roasts, pizzas or baked goods with this convenient bakeware set and enjoy premium-quality foods at a reasonable price!
The Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set is one of the better-constructed sets on our list, with solid design and innovative features that add to its appeal. It includes two 8-inch round cake pans, one 9×13-inch cake pan, one medium-sized loaf pan, a 12-cup muffin tin, and a 10×15-inch cookie sheet.
Made of heavy-gauge carbon steel, the Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set is distinguished by its heavy-gauge steel core. This core, which lies beneath the exterior of each bakeware piece, creates an added layer of insurance against uneven cooking and ensures that your baked goods come out of the oven without burnt spots or underdone areas. Such even heating is an added convenience for the home baker.
The interior of each piece is also distinguished by interlocking non-stick layers that keep your baked goods from sticking to the bottom of each pan. When combined with the Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set’s durable non-stick exterior, removing your cookies or breads from the pan will be easy and stress-free. This new technology ensures that the Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set is up to 2x better at releasing goods cleanly from the pan than Calphalon Classic Bakeware.
The Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set is dishwasher-safe, oven-safe to 450 degrees Fahrenheit and protected by a full 10-year warranty. Its reinforced rolled edges prevent the warping of the pans and add to their durability. With state-of-the-art construction and brand-new technology, the Calphalon Nonstick Bakeware Set is a great bet for your next bakeware set.
Bringing up the rear of the pack, the Copper Chef 12 Piece Bakeware Set is a pretty good option for those who value non-stick functionality over other features in bakeware sets. Its 12-piece set includes a 12.5×17.5×1-inch cookie sheet, a 10.5x14x1.25 12-cup muffin tin, a 9.5×5.5×3-inch loaf pan, a 9.5×9.5×2-inch square pan, and an 8-piece silicon ramekin set for creme brulees and the like.
The Copper Chef 12 Piece Bakeware Set is distinguished by its PTFE/PFOA-free Cerami-Tech non-stick coating and impressive heat conductivity capacity. This bakeware set is designed to provide ease and efficiency in baking, allowing for baked goods to bake evenly and quickly and slide out of the pans with no effort. For the price, the Copper Chef 12 Piece Bakeware Set offers decent functionality and a reasonable option for home bakers.
Which Bakeware Set Won The Challenge?
For overall quality, affordability and ease of use, the Rachael Ray Cucina Nonstick Bakeware 4-Piece Set seems to be the best bakeware set out of all five.
Like the others, it uses state-of-the-art carbon steel, with innovations that other brands haven’t incorporated yet. It also wins on design and aesthetic appeal, with features that add to its functionality while also giving it a chic look.
Hope you enjoyed this quick guide to some of the better affordable bakeware sets on the market. Check them out today if you’re looking to trade up on your current model!