5 Good Cookie Baking Sheets for 2014
Cookie sheets are pretty basic, though there are a few features that can make your baking a bit easier. Honestly, there is quite a bit of difference when it comes to construction of them as well. I suggest having at least two baking sheets. If you cook a lot, you may want to consider having more, but for general family use, two seems to work well.
The most common sheets you can find are made with a single ply tin without a nonstick finish. These are often more cheap than others you can find. However, baking sheets that have multiple layers and heavier construction with an aluminum core often work better and give better heat distribution.
Nonstick finishes make clean up very fast and easy, but many people prefer to stay away from the materials that are made in making them nonstick since there is debate on toxicity. Insulated cookie sheets tend to give you softer colored cookies with soft centers, if that is your preference.
Another note about construction is that too thin sheets will tend to buckle in the oven more than those with a heavier duty construction. Don’t worry too much though; buying thick sheets will not cost you a whole lot more.
You will want to decide if you prefer a baking sheet that is mainly flat, or one that has sides. The height of the sides will also vary from brand to brand. For instance, I prefer one with high sides so I can cook stuffing in them without worrying about if it will fall off into my oven. However, flat sheets make it easy to transfer baked goods by simply sliding them off, or using a spatula.
You will also want to determine if you want one with handles or not. Handles make it easier to take the sheets out of the oven. Some even come with silicone inserts to keep the handles cool while you are working with them.
Tips on Cleaning Your Baking Sheets
The best thing I have found, that is also safer than using chemicals is baking soda and peroxide. You simply make a paste out of them both, let it sit for a couple of hours, and then scrub with steel wool. I prefer to use plain steel wool, not the kind with the blue soap on it.
Good Cook Set of Non-Stick Cookie Sheets
For the cook who needs more than just one sheet, check out the Good Cook Set of Non-Stick Cookie Sheets. These are medium weight sheets that are treated with a non-stick coating that will make your baked goods just slip right off. You get a small, a medium, and a large cookie sheet.
These are dishwasher safe as well for even more convenience. One thing I have noticed is that they tend to keep from warping better if you hand wash them, or if you dishwash them with no heat dry. It seems that exposing them to heat through both cooking and washing can eventually lead to them warping when you are cooking.
Airbake Ultra Sheets by T-fal
These Airbake Ultra Sheets by T-fal also make a good choice. These are great for pizzas or cookies that you want to slide off to cool. There is only one edge, so doing this is quite easy. They are made with 100% aluminum construction and are guaranteed not to rust. Make with Micro-Dome technology, they will not warp in your oven. They can be put into the dishwasher as well if you choose, however, I tend to recommend you hand wash them to extend their life.
Once they are put into the dishwasher, they can end up looking a bit tarnished. These insulated sheets will make your cookies come out a nice soft brown, and they seem to keep your goods from getting burned. If you are used to regular and non-insulated sheets, it will take a bit of getting used to with these. I suggest making a test batch so you can get the hang of it. Since the bottoms don’t get very dark, it can be hard to tell when they are actually done. I simply use the toothpick test - stick a toothpick in the middle of a cookie and if it comes out clean, the cookies are done!
Norpor Stainless Steel Cookie Sheets
For a less costly sheet, consider these Norpor Stainless Steel Cookie Sheets. You have a choice between 12 x 16 inches and 14 x 12 inches. They are made with high grade 18/0 quality stainless steel with a small rim on three sides. The other side is left open for easy sliding off of baked goods.
These are not even said to be dishwasher safe; the manufacturer recommends that you hand wash them only; good to know! Be advised that these are non-insulated sheets, nor do they have a nonstick finish. You should also use a nylon scrubber to clean them as well. I would say that these are not the heaviest made sheets that you cannot find, nor are they top of the line, but they work very well otherwise and would make a great addition to your kitchen; especially if you are starting out.
Rachael Ray Oven Lovin’ Sheet
If you prefer a baking sheet with sides and handles, consider this Rachael Ray Oven Lovin’ Sheet. This sheet is quite large at 11 inches by 17 inches. You can use it for all kinds of baking. In fact, you get a recipe for Herb and Cheese Oven Fries from Rachael’s own cookbook. Both the inside and the outside are made with nonstick coatings. Again, this is dishwasher safe, but again, I recommend you hand wash only.
It features wide handles with an ergonomic grip that are covered in silicone to keep your grip secure, even with oven mitts that can often be bulky. Something I appreciate about buying this sheet is that a portion of proceeds will be donated to Yum-o! which empowers kids and families to connect through cooking and food.
Norpro Stainless Steel Baking Pan
Those that want a jelly roll pan might like this Norpro Stainless Steel Baking Pan. This 10 x 15 x 1 inch pan is made with 18/0 gauge stainless steel and has raised edges all around for easier cooking of jelly rolls, fudge and candies. As a versatile piece of cookware, you can use it for virtually anything.
I have noticed that this device will scratch a bit more easily than some of the others we have discussed, so make sure you use plastic or wood utensils when getting your cookies, or other baked goods off of it. Hand washing gently with a nylon device will ensure that this will stay in good use for you.
Farberware Nonstick Bakeware Set
Another great set to buy is this Farberware Nonstick Bakeware Set. You get one 9 x 13 inch cookie pan, a 10 x 15 inch cookie pan, and an 11 x 17 inch cookie pan in this set. This makes it nice for nearly all sized jobs you would need them for. They feature a nonstick coating that makes cleanup a snap, and makes food easy to get off. These are good heavyweight pans that have lasted me many years.
These light colored pans keep your food from over browning so you get very light and golden cookies. They all feature raised edges so you can use them for many other things. For the money, these end up being great. Even if you find you need to replace them, you won’t be spending a lot.
Chicago Metallic Toaster Oven Set
If you want a more versatile set, check out this Chicago Metallic Toaster Oven Set. Your purchase includes one 9.5 x 6.25 inch cookie pan, a 10 x 7 inch roasting/cake pan with a 9.25 x 6 inch rack to go inside of it, and an 11.25 x 7.25 inch 6 cup muffin pan. These were designed to go straight into your toaster oven as well. They all feature a nonstick coating for easier clean up. I love that they are small enough to fit into the toaster oven since we live in a very hot area and aren’t always keen on turning our oven on in our home; it makes it very hot for sure.
If you want to ensure that the nonstick coating stays on these pans, make sure to you gently hand wash them only. The metal that these pans are made from seems very thick and sturdy. I have not experienced any warping with them at all. Some consumers have complained that these rust after a short time. I believe this happens when you let them sit out to dry, or put them in your dishwasher. If you hand wash and then hand dry, I think that is the trick to avoid the rusting issue. I’ve had mine for more than a year and there is not one speck of rust yet.
How many cookie sheets do you recommend for new bakers?
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© 2013 Bob Miller