Which baking sheet set is best?
Baking sheets are an essential part of any home kitchen. They provide a versatile flat surface for everyday baking and cooking. Beyond desserts, they offer an easy way to reheat and cook many types of foods.
When you buy baking sheets in a set, you can often get more pans or varying sizes for less than buying them one at a time. If you’re looking for the best quality baking sheet set at a reasonable price, the Nucu Artisan Professional Classic Aluminum Baking Sheet Pan Set is the top choice.
What to know before you buy a baking sheet set
The most important thing to consider when choosing between baking sheet sets is the material of the pans and whether they fit in your home oven.
Stainless steel is commonly used for small appliances and cookware, but other materials conduct heat better, so baking sheets are not ideal. However, it is corrosion-resistant and dishwasher-safe.
Aluminum is a cheap option and conducts heat very well, making it a great choice for an affordable baking sheet set. It’s also resistant to rust. Since aluminum is reactive, it can change the flavor of acidic foods and those foods that may also discolor the sheet. Remember that you cannot wash aluminum sheets in the dishwasher because strong detergents leave a chalky residue.
If you’re looking for the pros of an aluminum sheet but want something more durable, anodized aluminum may be the right choice. Anodizing bulks up the thickness of the sheet’s natural oxide layer through electrochemical processing. These sheets are stronger and are less prone to scratching than regular aluminum sheets. Since the treated metal is much darker than other baking sheets, keep an eye on baked goods to prevent them from browning.
Carbon steel sheets are darker and generally feature a protective coating of oil or wax. They can withstand higher temperatures and acclimate to temperature changes for different baking needs. Avoid soaking them in water, and know that they’re not dishwasher safe.
Aluminized steel combines the strength of steel with the heat conductivity of aluminum. These sheets bake evenly and resist corrosion. As is the case with aluminum coatings, they may oxidize if you cook or bake with acidic foods. Avoid the dishwasher to help them last longer.
Most home bakers and cooks are familiar with half sheets, quarter sheets and jelly roll baking sheets. They may also have smaller eighth sheets for smaller bakes. Full baking sheets aren’t meant for home cooks since they’re built to fit in commercial kitchens. Measure the inside of your oven to know what size sheet fits best. Consider leaving enough room between the oven wall and the sides of the pan so air can flow around it for an even bake.
What to look for in a quality baking sheet set
When deciding between baking sheet sets, consider what you bake and cook to help determine which features work best for your kitchen needs.
There are baking sheets with and without rims. If you’re baking or cooking anything runny, gooey or brushed with oil, buy baking sheets with rims to contain the overspill. Thick, reinforced rims perform better under high temperatures since thin rims can bend and twist in the oven, leaving your pan unlevel.
Rimless baking sheets make it easy for air to flow around the baked goods so they brown more quickly. The flat edging also makes it easier to slide your goods onto a cooling rack. Most rimless sheets have one side with a rim to grip.
Some baking sheets have a treated or textured surface to prevent sticking and improve cooking outcomes.
Textured surfaces help remove food by reducing the surface area that touches the pan. They also help airflow around the food, baking food faster.
Oil and wax coatings on carbon steel pans prevent sticking and get thicker over time. Other nonstick pans can use ceramic, silicone or chemical-based finishes. These pans tend to produce flatter cookies and bake more quickly with darker finishes.
Insulated baking sheets work the same way an insulated tumbler or mug works. They use air pockets inside the pan to help distribute heat evenly. However, because air needs to flow across and around more areas, they tend to increase the baking time.
How much you can expect to spend on a baking sheet set
Baking sheet sets can cost between $15-$60, depending on the material and quantity.
Baking sheet set FAQ
Can I use my metal baking sheet in the broiler?
A. Possibly. The broiler uses higher heat than recipes that use the oven. It often gets up to 550 degrees in the broiler. Metal expands when it’s exposed to high temperatures, but the bottom of the sheet will expand at a different rate than the rims since it’s in direct contact with the metal bars. Thin sheets will warp or bend and twist with repeated use. If they warp too much, they can crack. Thicker sheets with reinforced rims will hold up better in the broiler.
What size baking sheet do I need?
A. A half sheet works best for most ovens, measuring 18 inches by 13 inches. These are the typical baking sheets you’ll use to roast vegetables, bake cookies and reheat frozen goods. Having multiple half sheets on hand is convenient if you want to bake or reheat multiple types of food at once.
Should I bake with parchment paper or silicone liners?
A. Possibly. They can help protect your baking sheets from discoloration and oxidation. However, baked goods may bake more slowly and turn out less browned if they don’t contact the metal surface of the pan. If you opt for parchment paper, look for compostable paper that doesn’t contain Teflon for an eco-friendly alternative.
What’s the best baking sheet set to buy?
Top baking sheet set
Nucu Artisan Professional Classic Aluminum Baking Sheet Pan Set
What you need to know: These baking sheets are great for baking and cooking multiple batches since they heat and cool quickly.
What you’ll love: The baking set includes the traditional half sheet, quarter sheet and a large baking sheet measuring 21 inches by 15 inches. Unfinished commercial-grade aluminum offers a durable and even baking surface with rolled edges to resist warping.
What you should consider: The pans are not non-stick and must be hand-washed.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top baking sheet set for the money
Nordic Ware 3-Piece Baker’s Delight Set
What you need to know: This set offers the most popular sizes of baking sheets in uncoated aluminum at an affordable price.
What you’ll love: It includes a half sheet, quarter sheet and 15-inch by 10 1/2-inch pan. The smooth aluminum pans conduct heat well and are lightweight for easy storing. The corners and rims are steel to lend extra strength and prevent warping.
What you should consider: These are hand-wash-only baking sheets. The brand’s logo is embossed on the baking surface, making it difficult to clean off residue.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
Chicago Metallic Nonstick Cookie/Jelly-Roll Pan Set with Cooling Rack
What you need to know: These aluminized steel pans come with a cooling rack and are great for beginner bakers.
What you’ll love: The pans are a pair of heavyweight aluminized steel measuring 17 inches by 12 1/4 inches. They offer even baking with an aluminum finish and a silicone-based nonstick coating. Wire rod-reinforced rims help prevent warping in high temperatures. These baking sheets are dishwasher safe.
What you should consider: Hand-wash to maintain the nonstick coating for as long as possible.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Katy Palmer writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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