Have you ever been perplexed as to why you can’t seem to bake the same loaf of bread twice? One day it’ll come out of the oven perfectly crisp and fluffy… .
….And the next, totally deflated and sad.
While there can be many culprits in the making of a less-than-awesome loaf of bread, there’s one in particular that often goes unrecognized. Can you guess what it is?
Truth be told, your loaf pan can make all the difference between a successfully fluffy loaf of bread with a crisp and flaky crust, or a dense and chewy lump of cooked flour.
Baking is a demanding enough science without needing to obsess over every detail of your equipment, though —
— and that’s why we’ve gone to the trouble of sorting through the options of loaf pans out there today.
In this review, we’ll be covering how to choose the best loaf pan before giving you a complete rundown of 9 different styles of them, with pros and cons based on their materials and value for the price.
So what are you waiting for?
Let’s get started!
Cake Pans and Bake Ware for Every Cook
This is the place to find the best Cake Pans and Bake Ware for all of your baking needs. You will find a few of the dozens of creative ‘cake’ pans shaped like a book, giant cupcake, and more.
You’ll find the best variety of construction choices for cupcake pans, bunt cake, muffin tin, cake pan, cookie sheets, loaf pans, and more.
Find the most popular and the best you can buy all in one place to find the best cake pan and bake ware for you or a gift. We found some great baking recipes as well.
Best Overall – USA Pan 1140LF Bakeware Aluminized Steel Loaf Pan
With over 50 years of business in the bakeware field, USA Pan is the archetypal loaf pan.
If you’ve ever been helping to clean out your parents’ or grandparents’ kitchen during the holidays, you’ve likely ran into one of their extremely long-lasting pans.
Available in 1, 1.25, or 1.5 pound sizes, the USA Pan can be chosen to fit your exact recipe needs.
Their corrugated surface design helps to encourage airflow, making for evenly baked breads with a smooth, quick release; add a silicone coating to that, and you’ve got a fantastically nonstick pan.
Based out of Pittsburgh, PA, these loaf pans have a legendary reputation for good reason: They’re extremely well designed, and when properly cared for, will last forever.
We love them in our own kitchen, and can strongly recommend them for yours.
- Variety of sizes to fit your recipe needs
- Available with handles
- Extremely durable construction
- Perfectly even cooking
- Effective non-stick abilities
- Your grandma already has one
- Your mom already has one too
- Don’t try to give them as a gift to your parents
Runner Up – AmazonBasics Nonstick Carbon Steel Baking Bread Pan
Ahh, leave it to everybody’s favorite online retail giant to make the most cost-effective loaf pan around!
You’ll be well-equipped to bake big quantities of bread with this one, as they’re only sold in sets of two…
Carbon steel construction gives them very quick heating times, making for even browning across the sides and bottom of all your loaves.
They’re smooth and simply designed, with a nonstick coating that’s absolutely excellent — unless you use them in an oven over 500 degrees, after which the non-stick will degrade quickly.
The tradeoff for the absolutely bargain-basement prices on these bake pans? You’ll need to hand wash them to keep their nonstick coating in good shape.
With the AmazonBasics 1-year warranty, though, this doesn’t seem quite so bad after all.
- Best value for the price of any loaf pan on our list
- Durable construction
- 1-year warranty
- Excellent nonstick coating
- Hand wash only
- Not suitable for meatloaf; pan may corrode
- Non-stick coating not rated for over 500 degrees
Best Premium Loaf Pan – USA Pan 1140LF-SW-W Stoneware Loaf Baking Dish
Okay, so — we love USA Pan. Their classic aluminium steel loaf pan has been our go-to for years, but their ceramic?
Just as good… Maybe even better.
In fact, it’s the only stoneware loaf pan that made our list.
Handcrafted from clay mined in Tennessee, the USA Pan stoneware takes a little bit more caution to use effectively: Don’t use it in ovens over 450 degrees, and be sure to never put it in the dishwasher.
If that sounds kind of high maintenance, that’s because it is. So why would we be such big fans of this loaf pan?
Simple: It’s the most even-heating pan on our whole list, consistently producing perfectly golden-brown loaves of bread with perfect texture. It’s truly the Rolls Royce of loaf pans.
Oh, and to top it all off, it’s silicone-coated for complete nonstick capability.
That and a 3-year warranty from USA Pan more than make up for the little bit of extra time you’ll need to put into using it well.
- Bakes amazingly consistent, perfect loaves of bread
- Excellent nonstick coating
- 3-year warranty
- Handsome design
- Hand wash only
- Not to be used over 450 degrees
- Pricier than other options on our list
Best Mini Loaf Pan – Wilton Recipe Right Non-Stick Mini Loaf Pan Set
Baking one large loaf of bread is awesome — if you’re just cooking for yourself and your family, and if you’re only cooking with one flavor or recipe in mind.
But if you’re looking to bake bread as gifts or try out a variety of recipes, having a series of smaller loaf pans can come in very handy, indeed.
Wilton’s set of 3 mini loaf pans conveniently equates to the size of one larger, standard-size pan…
…… Meaning that you can simply divide one larger recipe into three pans, and have one loaf of bread to keep and two to share.
While this may mean slightly less rise in each loaf, they’ll also bake quicker and brown more evenly than in a large pan.
They’re all dishwasher safe…
…… But it’s still recommended to give them a soak and wash to get any residues off before finishing them in the dishwasher. Not bad, but not perfect for our purposes.
Solidly built from pure steel, all 3 pans are finished with a durable nonstick coating.
Add a ridiculous 10-year warranty to that, and you’ve got a set of loaf pans that’s going to last you for a very, very long time!
- Multiple loaf pans = versatile options for baking
- Durable steel construction and long warranty mean they’ll last for life
- Dishwasher safe and nonstick for easy cleanup
- Still recommended to soak and rinse them before going in the dishwasher
- You’ll need to adjust most recipes to get them just right in a smaller pan
Best Meatloaf Pan – Rachael Ray Bakeware Meatloaf/Nonstick Baking Loaf Pan
It may not be immediately clear, but not all loaf pans are made for meatloaf. Materials like carbon steel and iron have a tendency to react poorly with the ingredients in most meatloaf recipes — both corroding the pan, and imparting a metallic flavor to the finished loaf.
So when we’re looking for a loaf pan specifically for meatloaf, it’s gotta be made out of a material like steel… And coated with a powerful non-stick lining.
The Rachael Ray Bakeware loaf pan has both of these things, but that’s not what makes it our best meatloaf pan.
That honor goes to the removable insert, equipped with wide handles as well as drainage holes.
It makes baking meatloaf a breeze, and is definitely worth getting if you’re a fan of this classic American dish.
- The ideal combo for meatloaf: stellar design and long lasting non-stick coating
- Dishwasher safe
- Durable construction
- Wide handles for easy gripping, even with oven mitts or potholders
- Non-stick coating only oven safe to 450 degrees
- Specialized for meatloaf; not as good for bread
Baking is Fun and Easy
There is nothing difficult about baking, and it becomes even more enjoyable if you are using the best cake pans and bakeware. Choose from aluminum, silicon or other materials, as well as choosing from a huge array of sizes, colors, and shapes.
Getting creative in the kitchen is always fun, which is why taking the time to select the best cake pans is worthwhile. Modern cake pans and bakeware will help ensure your baked goods always come out light and delicious.
Bakeware is something every home cook needs, and you will find you use it for many different recipes. Using good quality bakeware is a real pleasure, and the good kind is made to last, no matter how often it is used. Having a range of different pans means you can make various types of foods and desserts in there, and know that it can be washed easily enough for the next time you are in the mood for baking. A good cake pan will help you to bake good cakes, and you can get these pans in all kinds of shapes, sizes, and colors. Cake pans are also excellent gifts for keen home cooks.
Photo Credit: All product images are credited to Amazon or eBay
Buy a Cake Pan Today! See Some of the Best Selling Cake Pans
Wilton 2105-5038 Giant Cupcake Pan
This is a best selling cake pan, or should I say “cupcake pan” because it is shaped like a cup cake but large as a cake. You are going to enjoy this one, and anyone who receives this cake is also going to enjoy it.
Many customers have shared pictures of the giant cupcake for you to have examples to spark your imagination.
Which Bakeware Material is Best?
A lot of home cooks manage to accumulate a lot of bakeware but which is the best type and which cake pan should you choose if you want your cake to come out fabulously? One very important factor to consider, in fact, one of the most important of all, is the material your bakeware is made from.
Regardless of whether your cake pan happens to be made from light metal, dark metal, silicon or glass, it will do its job, but knowing which to choose is useful, as is understanding that different materials are suited to different recipes.
A metal pan, for example, is usually made from aluminum because of how well it conducts heat. Bake food in a metal pan and it will cook quickly and brown on top. This is good for bread but not so much for cakes which you do not want to burn on top before they are cooked.
Metal heats up fast and cools down fast too, which is good when baking but not good when broiling.
Glass does not conduct heat as well as metal, but it insulates, meaning it retains the heat. This means foods will absorb heat and bake quickly so that you may use glass for bread and pies.
You can also view the food through the glass because it is transparent. If you are baking something with tomatoes, citrus or another acidic ingredient then choose glass because it will not react.
Ceramic is similar to glass in the way it performs, in that it is good at retaining heat.
Silicone is nonreactive, nonstick, flexible and shatterproof, which is why it is one of the most popular choices for home bakers these days.
The only problem with it is that it does not conduct heat which means your baked goods with not brown, so use them for delicate cakes or cookies only or anything that does not need to brown.
Rachael Ray Oven Lovin’ Non-Stick 5-Piece Bakeware Set, Orange
Rachael Ray is a brand synonymous with cooking, and this is a good bakeware set. You get a 13 x 9-inch tray, a 10 x 15-inch sheet, a pair or 9-inch rounds, and a 9 x 5-inch pan.
The handles are wide, so they are easy to grip, and this bakeware is oven-safe right up to 500 degrees F. The pans are made from carbon steel, and the handles are made from silicon.
This set is fully non-stick too, which makes cleanup easy, and reviewers consistently give these high ratings.
Whether you use these for savory or sweet recipes, you will love how they do not bend in the heat, how they are nonstick, and how easy they are to clean afterward. This is an excellent set for your kitchen or as a gift.
Simply Calphalon Nonstick 6-Piece Bakeware Set
If you are thinking about investing in a sturdy set of bakeware, you might like to consider this Simply Calphalon set.
You get a 15 x 10-inch cookie sheet, a 13 x 9-inch cake pan, a pair of 8 inch round cake pans, a muffin pan, and also a loaf pan.
The bakeware is made from carbon steel which promotes even heating and is durable.
The pans have rolled edges to prevent warming, and everything is nonstick.
This set is oven-safe up to 450 degrees F, and you can wash it in the dishwasher. The company offers a 10-year warranty on this set as well.
USA Pans 6-Piece Bakeware Set
With almost every reviewer giving this set a full 5 out of 5, they are certainly worth considering.
Made by American Pan in Pittsburg, this set of 6 pans offers a large cookie sheet as well as a half-sheet, a loaf pan, a muffin pan, an 8-inch square pan, and a jellyroll pan too.
The pieces are made from aluminized steel, and they have a nonstick silicon-based coating.
Resistant to baking temperatures up to 450 degrees F, you will find these pans to be versatile, and there are plenty of recipes you can make in them.
Just wipe these clean after use.
You can put them in the dishwasher but that might destroy the nonstick coating over time, so it is better just to rinse and wipe them instead.
Madeleine Pans Baking Shell Mould Madeleine Cake Pan 12-cup Non-Stick Gold Bakeware
Moving to this best quality madeleine pan. It is quite prettier than other madeleine pans because of its gold color.
There is 12 cup bakeware.
This one is non-stick and easy to clean after baking with only water. More importantly, the designer made it from carbon steel.
You can use it for a long time and it is also durable with the heat.
This elegant shell is just perfect for baking or any decoration when having a party at home.
The size of the item is 13.1×10.4×1.6 inches and its weight is 1.8 pounds.
Fox Run 44925 Non-Stick Madeleine Pan, Carbon Steel, 12-Cup
If you are looking for the best quality madeleine pan, here it is. This comes with 12 cups of madeleine pan. It is made from Carbon steel. You can always wash it with soap and dry easily after using it.
The look of this shell is pretty awesome. It will not stick with the pan after baking.
The weight is light at 13.6 ounces and the product dimension is 8×15.8×0.8 inches.
More importantly, you can always choose it for making your dessert time more joyful.
Chicago Metallic Professional 12-Cup Non-Stick Madeleine Pan
Introducing the best quality madeleine pan that allows you to bake with 12 cups of the madeleine.
It is non-stick with the pan so you can release it from the pan easily and beautifully.
You can always clean it with your hands or dishwasher.
It is made from carbon steel that you can use it last long. It is still good with the high temperature. It is quite heavy at 14.4 ounces.
The product dimension is 15.8 x 7.8 x 0.9 inches. The manufacturer is Chicago Metallic. You can always rub a bit of melted butter for a better used.
Freshware CB-119RD 15-Cavity Christmas Silicone Mold
I would like to suggest you the best quality madeleine pan. This is so pretty with its pink color. Plus, the shape is all about Christmas.
You can freely use it with oven, microwave, refrigerator, or steamer from -40 to 440 F. Also, you can wash it with dishwasher and the quality is still the same.
It is made from silicone so it is flexible. It does not stick that is best for making chocolate, cookies, and candy. It will pop out easily after baking.
Norpro New Non-Stick Mini 18 Madeleine Pan Sponge Cake Shells Best For Chocolate
Next., this best quality madeleine pan comes with 18 mini cups. Its shape is like a shell.
It is best for chocolate and cookie.
The color is black. Its size is 15inches. You can wash it with your hand better than a dishwasher.
It can release easily after baking.
The heat distributed nicely that madeleine comes out beautifully, without sticking with the pan.
Its weight is 6.4 ounces and the size is 15 x 9 x 0.5 inches.
CorningWare 1083955 French 14-Piece Bakeware Set, White
This durable stoneware set may be used in the oven, refrigerator, freezer or microwave, and the material is resistant to cracking or chipping.
You get a 2½ quart round dish, a 1½ quart round with, 4 ramekins, and a 1½ quart oval dish, all with their covers.
The stoneware will not absorb flavors, odors or stains, and the plastic and glass lids mean you can store leftover food in the dish itself instead of having to transfer it to another container.
This white bakeware is elegant enough to have on the dinner table, so you can carry the dish from the oven to the table, instead of having to find a serving dish. If you are looking for traditional bakeware, this set is really good.
Classics Stoneware Fluted Bundt Cake Baking Pan
This fluted cake pan is sturdy and durable. It draws moisture away from the surface and distributes heat well, so your cake will come out perfectly.
The material is not porous, so it will not retain flavors, odors or oils. It is safe to use in the microwave or freezer, as well as in convection and conventional ovens.
Able to hold 11 cups of cake mixture, this cake baking pan is ideal for making all kinds of tasty cakes.
It comes with a nylon tool you can use to help remove the cake, and the pan itself measures 9½ x 3 inches.
Use this to make dense cakes, because the fluted edges help to shape the outside of the cake, giving it an attractive shape once finished.
Pampered Chef Family Heritage Stoneware Rectangular Baker #1430
Pampered Chef bakeware has such a good reputation, and because this piece is no longer in production, you might want to grab one of them now.
This 13 x 9-inch stoneware rectangular baker is the heavy weight which means it is heavy duty.
You will find the more this is used and seasoned, the better it gets. Stoneware needs to preheat, so just add your food and pop it in the oven.
The heat is retained and absorbed so that you can expect golden crusts and even baking.
Use this 14-cup capacity baker to make cakes, lasagnas, casseroles or desserts.
Unless you drop it on a hard tile floor, you can expect this pan to last for many years.
6002 Stone Bakeware 9″ Round Pie Baker Plate (Rada Cutlery)
This beautiful piece of stoneware is worth every cent, and it comes with a 4-year warranty because the manufacturers know you will love it.
Handmade in the USA, this pan maintains an even baking temperature, and it is naturally nonstick which means you do not have to pre season it.
The even heating means golden brown, flaky crusts, and not a soggy crust in sight.
Measuring 9 inches, this round baking pan is dishwasher safe, and it is versatile. Use it for roasts, cakes, pies and more.
The surface is textured making it ideal for cookies, biscuits and even crispy pizza-type crusts.
This is one of the highest-rated baking pans on Amazon, which is why it is one worth considering.
How to Care for Your Bakeware
Good quality bakeware is an asset any home cook or baker will appreciate, but as well as knowing which pan to choose for which recipe, and what to buy in the first place, you should also learn how to care for your pans, so they will last for many years. Before using it for the first time, wash it in warm soapy water and then rinse it well. If there is a label, you will need to peel that off, as well as scrubbing off any adhesive it has left behind. Some home cooks like to spray nonstick spray inside their baking pan each time they use it, even if it is a nonstick type. This is optional, and perhaps good insurance against accidental sticking.
Do not use sharp knives or other sharp utensils with nonstick baking pans or you will scratch off the nonstick coating, or at least make visible scratches in it. Parchment paper is always a good idea when baking batches of cookies, so you can simply remove the paper and replace it between batches, cutting down on cleanup time. Do not let your baked food sit in the pan for too long; else they might stick. Once your cookies are cool, you can remove them. Wash the pans as soon as you have removed the food, if possible.
Although some people put all their bakeware in the dishwasher, aluminum can discolor in there. Silicon muffin pans and cake pans are usually fine in the dishwasher but read the bakeware instructions first to make sure. Stack all your bakeware in the kitchen to save space. This works really if you have a square or round pans in different sizes because they will fit inside one another. If you are stacking items on top of one another, you might like to put a piece of parchment paper or a paper plate between each item. Take care of your bakeware in this way, and it should last you for many years.