Stock Your Kitchen with These 8 Baking Pans

Here’s a set of 8 must-have baking pans that every baker needs. Updated in 2019.

collage of 8 baking pans that every baker needs

As a sequel to my 14 kitchen tools every baker needs page, today I’m sharing a list of the exact baking pans that I use in my kitchen. These are baking pans that I find most useful, most versatile, and best quality for their price. I use these 8 baking pans more than anything else in the kitchen and highly recommend them to any and all bakers– both beginner and advanced.

My goal is to encourage you to bake with the most reliable tools available. Recipes are only as successful as the tools you use to create them, so don’t overlook this list! I own a few different brands so I can happily provide options at different price points.

Overall, my favorite lines are Nordic Ware, Calphalon, Wilton, Fat Daddio, and USA Pan. You can’t go wrong with any baking pans from these 5 lines. I bake in my glass Pyrex pans as well, but that’s mostly for casseroles and savory dishes. Why? Glass takes longer to heat than metal, but when things do get hot– they get really hot.


What I own and love: Calphalon Classic Rimmed Baking Sheets and USA Pan Bakeware Half Sheet Pan.

Both excellent quality. I find the USA Pan pans don’t warp as easily, which is great. I use half sheet pans for baking cookies, scones, vegetables, potatoes, fish, meat, croissants, pastries, breads, pouring out toffee or chocolate bark, and so much more. The 12×17 inch size is perfect for holding a dozen cookies and the rimmed edges prevent any sauces/syrups from dripping off the sheet. Traveling with a sheet cake or cookies? Or want to just keep things fresh? Get the half sheet pan with a lid! (Nordic Ware is also an excellent brand.) Quantity recommended: at least 2

2 rimmed baking sheets

2. 9×13 INCH PAN

What I own and love: USA Pan Bakeware Quarter Sheet Pan. For glass, I highly recommend Pyrex Basics 3 Quart Glass Oblong Baking Dish

One of the most useful pans in a baker’s kitchen is the 9×13 inch rectangular baking pan, also known as a quarter sheet pan. This holds about 3 quarts and can be used for everything from brownies and lasagna to casseroles and rice krispie treats. This pan can be made of glass, metal, or ceramic, but metal seems to be the most basic option. Quantity recommended: 1


What I own and love: Wilton Recipe Right Square 9 Inch Covered Pan, Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Commercial Square Cake Pan with Lid, and USA Pan Bakeware Square Cake Pan.

I use this size pan ALL the time for things like brownies, cookie bars, fudge, caramels, small cakes, etc. Since they’re so versatile, I recommend having 2. I like these pans to have lids because I usually use them for dessert bars– I travel a lot with bar treats. The 8×8 square bake pan size also works for most recipes, but if swapping one size for the other, the bake time may change. Quantity recommended: 2

2 square baking pans


What I own and love: Fat Daddio’s 9 Inch Cake Pan.

Fat Daddio’s is the common preferred brand for cake bakers. I began using these pans in 2018 and immediately fell in love. Great quality for the price! I recommend owning 3. If you own fewer, you’re limited to how much batter you can bake at once. It’s best to bake cake batter all at once and if you only own 2 round cake pans, you have to wait to bake that final layer. Purchase 2-inch deep cake pans or those labeled “deep dish” style– meaning that you are not limited to the height of cake. Some round pans are only 1.5 inches high and if your recipe calls for a 9×2 inch round cake pan (most of mine do!), you can’t use it. Quantity recommended: 3

Fat Daddio's round 9-inch cake pan


What I own and love: USA Pan Bakeware Cupcake & Muffin Pan and Lucentee® Large Muffin Pan

I recommend owning two standard 12-count muffin pans because many muffin or cupcake recipes yield more than 12. And if you like baking muffins or cupcakes often (of course you do!) owning two of these is essential. The silicone muffin pan is SUPER non-stick– everything slides right out and it’s dishwasher safe. The listing says “jumbo” but it’s for standard size muffins and cupcakes. Bonus: it’s a gorgeous blue color. Quantity recommended: 2

12 count muffin pans


What I own and love: Wilton Perfect Results Premium Mini Muffin Pan.

This pan is for all the mini muffins and cupcakes you make. I’ve had this Wilton mini muffin pan for years and besides a few scratches, it still gets the job done. Fantastic quality for its price. Quantity recommended: 1

24 count mini muffin pan


What I own and love: Too many to list! I collect pie dishes. A great place to start is this Pyrex Bakeware Glass Pie Dish.

Though I own ceramic, metal, and glass, my preferred choice is glassware for pie, quiche, & pot pie baking. Glass heats slowly and this gradual heat is perfect to evenly cook pie including the bottom of the crust, the filling, and the edges. You can also SEE the bottom of the crust browning, which is helpful for dishes with long bake times. This Pyrex pie dish has fluted rims, allowing you to crimp the edges of your crust with ease. It has thick glass and has never warped– even through my hundreds of pies! I also love my Emile Henry ceramic ruffled pie dish because the pies are consistently gorgeous and so is the pie dish! Ceramic pie dishes are similar to glass in that they heat slowly and evenly. Again, this gradual heat is fantastic for pies. Quantity recommended: 1

glass pie dish and ceramic pie dish


What I own and love: Farberware Nonstick Bakeware 9 x 5-Inch Loaf Pan.

You can cook everything from banana bread and zucchini bread to pound cake and yeast bread. This Farberware pan is incredible quality– durable, sturdy, and warp-resistant. 9×5 inch is the standard size recipes call for. I own and love the 8.5 x 4.5 inch USA Pan loaf pan too. It works just fine for most bread recipes that call for a 9×5 inch loaf pan too.

Quantity recommended: 1

loaf pan

5 Useful Extras

If you’d like to extend your bakeware collection beyond the basics, I recommend these pans as well:

  1. 9-inch springform pan for cheesecakes and tarts. I use and recommend this Calphalon springform pan because it’s heavy-duty and leakproof.
  2. 12-cup bundt pan for beautiful bundt cakes. I own several and my favorite is this Anolon fluted pan. It’s top quality, has lasted through all my bundt cake baking, and its design makes the prettiest cakes. Nordic Ware is another popular choice for bundt cakes.
  3. 6-count donut pan for donuts. I recommend the same pan year after year– inexpensive and top quality Wilton Nonstick Doughnut Pan.
  4. 9-inch tart pan for tarts. Make sure you get one with a removable bottom for easy cutting and serving. I recommend this Wilton nonstick tart pan because it’s great quality for the price.
  5. 6-count jumbo muffin pan for giant bakery-style muffins. I recommend the Wilton brand (make sure you click “jumbo”). I love extra large muffins. You can take any regular muffin recipe and bake them in a larger size in about 25-28 minutes.

More Baking Basics Posts

I am not working with any of these brands, though some of these links are affiliate links. These baking pans are brands I trust and encourage you to use in the kitchen as well!


  1. I absolutely love this site, and all the awesome recipes, science info, and just great stuff to know! Wondering if you have an opinion on aluminum vs steel cookie sheets (since you recommend both – Nordic Ware and Calphalon)… have you seen a difference between the two? Thanks!

    1. I actually haven’t noticed a difference. At all. I love both. Both produce fantastic cookies and other items– baked evenly.

  2. Carmen Kua says:

    Hi sally!! I love this site so much but I am wondering can i use a 10inch round pan instead of 9? I had read other comments about needing a longer time to bake but does it apply to all the cakes? 

  3. Hi Sally! I love the Emile Henry ceramic dish but they are bigger than the standard 9 inch pie dish. Can I use a recipe made for a 9 inch dish and adjust the baking time or should I look for recipes that are specifically for 10 inch dishes? Thank you!

    1. Hi Vicky! No need to search for certain recipes. Simply use pie recipes formulated for 9-inch pie dishes (the standard) and reduce the time slightly because the pie will be thinner in a very slightly larger pan 🙂

  4. Hi Sally,

    Have you tried USA Pan? They make some of the best bakeware I have ever used. I am slowly dumping all my previous bakeware and replacing it with the USA Pan equivalent. I know you can buy them from Amazon and I think Bed Bath and & Beyond has them. I encourage to buy one half sheet pan to try it out and see what you think. I believe King Arthur Flour’s KAF line of bakeware is manufactured for them by USA Pan.

    1. I believe I have, but don’t have any USA Pan products in my current collection. I appreciate your glowing review and feel like I should probably check it out!

      1. I have a few pieces by USA Pan and they are awesome. They are made to last, very sturdy. I love the pieces I have and would highly recommend them. 😉

      2. Hi Sally,
        I have stopped by several times to check out the site and read some of the new recipes you have created. Very enjoyable. Many thanks! I see from your updated recommended bakeware you have indeed tried the USA Pans and were quite pleased. Glad you like them!

      3. Wish I tried them out sooner! They’re fantastic!

    2. Donna Brooks says:

      USA Pan is my favorite as well. I don’t even use parchment for my cookies like I used to have to do. My daughter-in-law got me my first one and now I have slowly added to my collection.

      1. I am a USA Pan gal all the way! They make amazing products and often have sales around holidays and offer free shipping. Can’t beat them in my opinion! Sally, love your blog and trying your recipes. Thank you!

    3. I AGREE the best pans on the market!!! You don’t need to use non stick spray because everything glides out even sticky carmel bars. I too have switched my pans out for these pans.

      1. I couldn’t agree more that USA Pan makes the very best baking pans! I’ve bought them from the USA Pan website, King Arthur Flour, Amazon and Bed Bath & Beyond. I’ve replaced all of my old pans gradually, and I couldn’t be happier. By the way, the USA round cake layer pans are also a full 2” deep, so they bake layer cakes beautifully. I also have their donut pan, and it is soooooo much better than the lightweight one made by Wilton! Add to all of that the fact that these pans are made in the USA, and it just doesn’t get any better. Nordic Ware pans are also made in the USA, and their bunds pans work beautifully.

      2. Well made pans and heavy gauge, it is well worth the investment, and I also get them for all new brides or house warming gifts!!!

  5. Hi Sally! I’m a longtime reader and longtime fan of your blog! You have taught us all so much, and for that I will always be grateful.

    I was wondering if you could consider a Baking Basics post regarding storage of all the different baking ingredients! What is the best way to store butter, sugar, etc. – in the freezer or in the pantry, what kind of containers do you use, and more. I’m very curious as to what is the right way of storing all my baking ingredients to keep them fresh and to keep pantry pests out!

    Any advice you could give on that would be highly appreciated. Thank you!

    1. This is a wonderful suggestion! Thanks so much Melody. In the meantime, I use these AMAZING storage containers for my sugar, brown sugar, and flour. I just got them. They’re incredible.

      1. Thank you, Sally! I’ve just bought a few of them; thank you so much! Happy holidays and wishing you a great new year ahead – can’t wait for Sally’s Cookie Addiction to come out!

      2. Those are nice containers but they don’t address the problem when you are a costco buyer and have 25 lb bags of flour and sugar etc.

  6. Could you tell me which pan to buy for a pretty pound cake. I’ve tried everything. Mine all stick. Thanks!

  7. Beth Marcelle says:

    Hi Sally!
    I was re-reading this post today to get some new baking supplies. I noticed that some of the links to amazon have expired or the product is no longer posted. I wasn’t sure if you were aware/wanted to update the links for easy shopping.

    1. Thanks so much for letting me know, Beth! I’ll look into updating them.

  8. Hi Sally! 

    I am just starting to get into baking, so I searched online for what supplies I need to get started and I came across your blog and I am in love!!!

     I can’t wait to start trying all of your recipes and I’m getting your cookbook too! So, I put everything on my shoppping list from your post on the top 14 things you need and your list on baking pans.

    What other supplies will I need to get started? I’ve added a few others just by looking at some of your recipes and what supplies you used (love that you do that by the way !). I was just wanting to get everything together that I need so I can get started on this new hobby that I’m really interested in and excited about! 

    And what kind of cookie cutters do you recommend? Plastic or metal? And which shapes will I for sure need? 

    18 months ago, after we had our second daughter, my husband got a second job so I could stay at home full time and not work anymore. I just had our 3rd daughter the end of December and so now I’m a busy/crazy stay at home Mommy, and I’d really love to start doing something fun for me and something that I could share with our girls.

    So that’s why I’m starting this journey of baking and I’m so excited that I found your blog so that I could follow along and learn from you and your love of baking! So thank you for sharing your passion with us all!

    1. Hi Megan, I love that you are starting this baking journey and have found your way here! Congrats on your 3rd daughter! Most of my cookie cutters are metal and I’d suggest a few basic shapes likes a circle, star, heart and whatever else you think you will use. The most important thing is to HAVE FUN!

  9. Sally, I found your videos why doing chemo for breast cancer. For 7 months (omg can’t beluebe it’s been this long ) I’ve watched every baker and chef from USA and England I could find. I promised myself when this journey was over I was finding another hobby. So, baking and cooking fabulous main meals is it. I love all your bakeware and storage suggestions. Kitchenaide mixers, etc. I have all-clad cookware (love the even cooking). I trust your advice (maybe it’s the dogs). I’m trying to decide between a kitchen aide food processor or just a regular mandolin. I’m not good at slicing and dicing. I’ve asked chefs but they never answer post. I see you do. And I’m sure you have a preference. You can get sweets 24/7. Ok maybe you can. Lol Any recommendation is greatly appreciated. I’ve already baked some of your recipes and given to neighbors. My taste buds aren’t 100% back yet. I bought the canisters and the WS gold touch 15 piece. I’m grateful for your videos and your site. And I’m in love with your kitchen. My new home has the light cabinets and crema bordeaux granite counter top from brazil. I can wait to move on and start baking. I’ll meet my new neighbors via their stomachs. So is it mandolin or kitchen aide food processor? Reply back and I’ll send you a dog cookie recipe. Thank you, Joli

    1. Hi there Joli! Thank you so much for the sweet comment– if slicing and dicing all you’re after then I suggest a mandoline slicer.

  10. It’s so hard to figure out what tool to use for what. Processor may be better for mixing biscuit and cookie dough. Or Artisan mixer may be better or bought equally as good. Maybe I should just get it anyway. Sally, you should open your cabinets and give up a photo of your small appliances, cookware, knives, spatulas, etc. Open the pantry and another photo of your cannister organization. Let us be Sally Copycats! That’s what we want to be. You know what they say … the greatest compliment is when someone wants to be you … cook like you, pretty like you, dress like you, dogs like you, sweet personality like you. Ok, i cant look like Sally because I donated my 3′ long hair to “locks of love” when I was diagnoised with cancer.
    But, I can try and copy your cooking tools and I’ll get your recipe books. Maybe autographed copy to keep on display in my shelved nook I had built in kitchen. Well, time for another video and a nap. The gentleman from “One yard Revolution” has beautiful organic gardens for over 20 years is teaching me to grow fruit trees and vegetables. I have had a garden since I was a wee one in diapers. No reason my Sally Fruit dessets can’t be organic too. Thank you Sally. ***Maybe you can photograph your appliances and pantry for us*** Just put them on your lovely granite counter top and go for it. Your a great photographer, too. Great cook, Great Blogger, great photographer, Spoils her dogs. If you were a game hero avatar you’d be “Super Sally”. Omg that’s cute. I play a warrior in an online game. Maybe I’ll create a Super Sally. Instead of a sword to fight with, I’ll give her a skillet in one hand and a rolling pin in another. Lol. I’ll look for future photos and links to your small appliances. I want to give you credit for recommendations. Amazon, Willian Sonoma, etc has everything. Again, Thank you so much.

  11. Is it necessary to grease and flour WS goldtouch pans?

    1. I always do just in case.

  12. Is the any one brand that is good for all my baking pan needs like loaf and pie and cake ??

    1. Lately I’ve been loving my USA Pan brand pans.

      1. Thank you for your fast response ..

        I am trying to decide between USA Pan and Nordic Ware .. I am leaning toward the Nordic Ware as they have a smooth bottom and do not have the folded corners that can leak .. I also think they might be easier to clean than the USA Pan .. I read Nordic Ware baking sheets are the best .. I am staying away from all none stick to keep it simple .. I am having to buy everything new and am still undecided ..

      2. I understand USA Pan is Steel and Nordic Ware is Aluminum .. I do not know which one is better ..

  13. Hi Sally, Merry Christmas! I plan to buy new 18″ x 13″ cookie sheets and was wondering if you have a preference between USA Pans, Williams-Sonoma, and Nordic Ware. I currently have the USA Pan half-sheet and jelly roll pans, which I love. So I’m leaning towards that, simply because that’s what I know. But if one of the others produces more consistent results, I’ll go with that. Just looking for the perfect pan that doesn’t bake the bottoms too much or cause spreading or flattening. Thanks!

    1. I currently use and love USA Pan pans! They’re all I’ve been baking cookies on for the past year.

      1. Best endorsement I could ask for, thanks! Just ordered 2 from BB&B 🙂

  14. Please tell me if you still recommend USA pan bakeware. I just bought the half sheet pan based on your recommendation but now I don’t see it as a recommendation in this post. Not sure which post came first.
    Please let he know.

    Thanks. Jackie

    1. Hi Jackie! Yes, I recommend USA Pan brand bakeware. This post was published before I discovered USA Pan. I should update it with my current favorites!

  15. Is the Anlon bundt pan you mention in this post the one you used for the chocolate gingerbread bundt cake? The recipe says 9″ bundt pan. I used the pan I have but it must be bigger than that because the cake came out about 3 inches tall. It tasted great though! I’d like to make another but I can’t seem to find a pan that size.

    1. Yes, it’s the same pan I used for the chocolate gingerbread bundt cake. It’s actually 9.5 inches, but it works for that chocolate gingerbread recipe.

  16. several of your favorite items are “unavailable” currently following your links…

  17. Thank you for this!
    I just picked up two 9inch cake pans by Nordic Ware. I actually looked at the Fat Daddio’s, but hadn’t heard of that brand before and went with that I knew.
    Looks like I need to add one more to the collection.

    1. Gary Fuller says:

      I thoroughly enjoy your writings, recipes, plus. I enjoy trying your recipes and techniques.
      I have discovered stainless steel 1/4 sheet pans and find them exceptional. They clean up easily and well and do not need baking sheets to keep cookie bottoms from burning. It seems that our kitchen is near cast iron and stainless steel cooking vessels.
      Thanks and God Bless, g
      Gary Fuller

  18. Sally-once again you hit the target!!! I have learned so much and have a new sense of baking adventure since I started following your site!! You are THE BEST!!!!! Thank you!

  19. Your advice on the 9″ fat daddio pans helped me to find my new 6″ pans and I just ordered 3 of them. (Good price, too.) All smiles here.

  20. Linda Wysocki says:

    I have the old cornflower blue CorningWare pie pan, 9×13 baking dish and 9×5 loaf pan, etc and they have been my go to pans for almost 45 years. Clean up is easy and they look OK for serving from on the table. I made the mistake of purchasing Bakers Secret brand of metal pans…waste of money as they soon rusted. Wilton and Farberware have worked well for me.

  21. Robert Hale says:

    I’ve got all those pans. I’ve used your recipes for a while now and they all give me the chance to add a new pan. The only exception are the bread pans I use for my cracked wheat bread but they are glass. I’ll be sure to keep an eye out for your recommendations. I now use a 24 cup plus two 12’s cupcake pans. My church demands your cupcake recipes

    1. I’m so happy you enjoy my recipes, Robert! Thanks for trusting my website 🙂

  22. great ideas

  23. Hello, interesting discussion of bakeware used over the years from 2016 to 2019!! I’ve used the Wilton pans for years, course I baby all my bakeware tho. I’ve used Padero in most baking including bottom-out tart pans per Alton Brown and Wms Sonoma Gold.
    I hope you’ll post your response.. it’s been over 7 months since your lost one on this blog post. I’d love to read your take–!! You rock♡

    1. Wilton pans are excellent quality for their price!

  24. I adore your site and agree with you on all of the pans. I do not have your bread pan suggestion…just have a glass Pyrex. It rocks!

    1. Love pyrex!

  25. Do you use the half sheet for your slab pie recipes?

    1. Yes, for some slab pies I use the 12×17 inch half sheet pan.

  26. Hi Sally!
    Thank you for the great post! I have a question about the silicon muffin tray. I have baked my muffins in silicon tray. I feel like those muffins were not baked evenly, compared to the one baked in my favorite USA pan. Is this my imagination? When you use the silicon tray, do you have special technique?

    1. It could be oven temperature, it could be the recipe, it could be the pan! A variety of factors could be the issue, but I usually prefer my USA pan muffin pan. Always consistent results!

  27. I love this site. The information you give us so needed. Do you have a book, since I’m old school it is sometimes much easier to find what I need?

  28. Hi Sally, I love your site–thank you so much! I just got the Fat Daddio 5-inch cake pans, and I was wondering if there’s a good way to figure out measurements and what the appropriate bake time is for a 5-in pan. Can I use the 6-in recipes you have on this site and reduce the cook time a tad? Any way to figure out measurements/cook time for other recipes that call for an 8 or 9-in pan?

    Thank you!!!

    1. Hi Erin! You can use the 6 inch cake recipes for your 5 inch pans. Fill the pans only halfway. Bake time will be about the same.

  29. Patsy Hutchins says:

    A Holiday Cake recipe from 1974 states, “Bake in a stem pan.” WHAT IS A STEM PAN, a handled skillet??? I cannot find any reference for that item.

  30. Why do my cupcakes come out lopsided! Baked in a muffin size tin with muffin liners. Miserable to frost!!
    How can I stiffen buttercream frosting without more added sugar?
    What is your best buttercream “not so sweet” frosting recipe?

1 2 3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

With kitchen-tested quality recipes and step-by-step tutorials, my goal is to give you the confidence to bake and cook from scratch.

Sally's signature

Recipes You’ll Love



Join the community on the 1st of every month as we tackle a new challenge recipe. Review Sally's Baking Challenge FAQ page if you have any questions.

View More

A tradition since 2013, every December we countdown to Christmas with 10 new cookie recipes in a row!

View More

The first week of every November is all about Thanksgiving Pies.

View More

My Cookbooks

Sally's Cookbooks

About Sally

Welcome to my Kitchen!

I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally