Are you learning how to bake? If so, I would encourage you to invest in the best cake pan. In my experience using a good cake pan is one of the more critical factors in baking. It is as important as other baking tips that bakers may share with you such as ensuring that measurements are precise and using room temperature ingredients.
Just like most bakers, I didn’t give enough emphasis on investing in high-quality bakeware. I remember that I just bought the first cake pans I saw in a big box store. I was foolish enough to think that a cake pan is just a pan—nothing more, nothing less. But I eventually realized that a good baking pan could make such a huge difference in the baking process.
If you are a keen observer, you will notice that most baking recipes suggest the size and shape of the pans. It’s because a cake can easily increase in volume during the baking process. If you use a pan that is too small, then I wouldn’t be surprised if the batter overflows. Even the color of pans is usually indicated in most recipes because dark pans require a lower temperature compared to silver-colored counterparts.
**Below, you'll find our more detailed reviews, but you can also click the links above to see current prices or read customer reviews on Amazon.
Three things to know before buying a cake pan
1. Cake pans are usually made of four common materials.
Perhaps the most durable material is stainless steel. Just like in bread knifes, stainless steel can make a cake pan ultra-durable. Cake pans made of this material are also dishwasher-safe. However, stainless steel isn’t the best when it comes to heat conduction meaning you can’t expect an evenly baked cake when you use stainless steel cake pan.
If you’re looking for the best in heat conduction, go for cake pans made of aluminum. Similar to omelet pans, cake pans made of aluminum are very good at controlling heat. The only problem you would have with this kind of cake pan is the clean-up. Aluminum cake pans are notorious for not being dishwasher-safe.
Silicon is also another material that’s often used in cake pans. It is durable and easy to clean. It can also be safe for use in the oven and freezer. The problem with this material is that it is flexible that you could break your cake when you take it out of the oven.
There are also cake pans made of paper. These are basically disposable types of cake pans.
2. Cake pans are available in different styles.
You will likely be overwhelmed with the different styles and sizes that cake pans come in. There are round, rectangular, and square shaped cake pans. There are even specialty pans for baking bundt cakes and angel food cakes.
Round pans are measured in diameter while rectangular and squared ones are measured by length or width. So how would you choose a pan? It depends on the recipe you are following!
3. Nonstick coating not only makes clean-up easy
Having a cake pan with a nonstick coating will not only make cleaning of the pan easy. It can also allow the cake to be released from the pan a lot easier.
However, be wary of pans with nonstick coating especially if you intend to wash them in the dishwasher. Repeated trips to the dishwasher can affect the non-stick surface.
Top 5 Best Cake Pans Available On The Market Today
#1. Fat Daddio's Anodized Aluminum Round Cake Pan
Measuring 6 inches by 2 inches, this cake pan is made of anodized aluminum without metals or chemical coatings. This has been getting a lot of rave reviews online because it can heat fast and cool quickly. Those traits make it such a great pan because it can cause cakes to soften quickly and get cooked evenly.
I’ve had the opportunity to use this pan several times in the past, and from experience, the aluminum from which it is made of gave my cakes a very light golden outer edge.
I like that this cake pan is very light in weight but not in quality. It’s not flimsy, unlike other cake pans. The sturdy construction assurances you that this pan will last for a long time. It’s not dishwasher safe but cleaning it under running water is easy and simple to do.
- Made of anodized aluminum that is durable
- It can heat fast and cool down quickly
- It is lightweight but very sturdy
- Small enough to be washed by hand
- Not dishwasher safe
- It’s difficult to remove the glue that attaches the label to the pan
#2. USA Pan Bakeware Round Cake Pan, 9 inch, Nonstick & Quick Release Coating
This is another top rated cake pan that is 9 inches in diameter and about 2.25 inches deep. It comes from the Pennsylvania-based company that has been in the business for more than 50 years.
Its non-stick feature makes the release of the cake from the pan very quick and hassle-free. While it is not dishwasher-safe, the pan is still easy to clean. You can do so by washing by hand in the warm and soapy water.
This pan is made of high quality aluminized steel. You’ll love its fluted surface design which can promote enough air circulation although some people point out that it can make cleaning a bit difficult at times. It also improves the strength of the pan and prevents warping. This pan comes with a limited lifetime warranty.
- It comes from a reputable brand with more than 50 years of experience
- Its non-stick feature causes hassle-free release of cake
- Its fluted surface design improves pan strength
- Comes with a limited lifetime warranty
- It is not dishwasher safe
- The folds can make cleaning a pain sometimes
#3. OvenStuff Non-Stick Round Cake Pan 2 Piece Set
Similar to the item preceding it, this round cake pan from OvenStuff has a nine-inch diameter. It is coated with a non-stick coating that not only makes clean-up a breeze but also facilitates quick and hassle-free release of cake from the pan.
This cake pan also benefits from its sturdy construction as it can facilitate even heating. The sturdy design and construction are very evident the first time you see or use this cake pan. It feels solid in hand.
What separates this cake pan from the two items I’ve mentioned earlier is that this is dishwasher-safe. It thus appeals to the busy baker as one can throw it right in the dishwasher without worrying about the unit getting any scratches or damage.
- With a non-stick coating that allows quick release of cake from the pan
- Very sturdy design and feels solidly built
- Facilitates even heating
- It is dishwasher-safe
- Not ideal for baking layered cakes due to slight angle at the sides
- Some durability issues reported as the pan is prone to rusting after several washes
#4. Wilton Recipe Right 2 Piece Round Pan Set, 9-Inch
This set comes with a couple of 9-inch round pans that you can use in baking the perfect cake. Both pans are made of heavy duty steel that allows quick and even heating. It also boasts of a non-stick coating that would make clean-up easier. Of course, you can expect the cake to be easily released due to the non-stick coating of these cake pans.
Both pans weigh about 1.5 pounds. While I find that quite light weight, some users online say that the pans are actually heavier in real life. However, others believe that the weight of the pans attests to the superior construction of these products.
- Made of heavy duty steel for quick and even heating
- Non-stick coating that allows release of cake fast
- Easy to clean
- A bit heavy at 1.5 pounds
- Like the OvenStuff cake pan, its sides are slanted which means this isn’t ideal for baking layered cakes
#5. Baker's Secret 98339 2-Piece Twin Pack Round Cake Pan
As you can deduce from the name, this is a package of two round cake pans. Both pans made of silicon measure 8.5 inches by 9.6 inches by 1.6 inches and weigh about 0.6 pounds.
Baker’s Secret may not ring a bell to the casual baker, but experienced bakers know the brand as being a trusted maker of bakeware. The brand is known to produce long lasting pans, just like this item.
These pans are dishwasher-safe. Many reviewers online say that they have been washing it in a dishwasher and this has not affected the performance of the pans. It is also safe to use a spatula in these pans.
- Can be cleaned in a dishwasher
- With small lips on the sides designed to handle it safely
- Made of durable and non-stick silicon material
- Lightweight at 0.6 pounds
- Difficult to stack because the pans are wider at the top than the bottom
- Tends to run after some time.
Make no mistake about it--- these are all excellent cake pans that can serve you well the next time you try a cake recipe. If you ask me what is the best for me on this list, I would say that it’s the USA Pan Bakeware 9 inch cake pan. It is made of high quality aluminized steel that facilitates quick and even cooking. It is durable and easy to clean. Plus it comes from a very reputable brand.
How about you? Which of these cake pans is your favorite? Sound off in the comments section below! I would love to hear it from you!