Last updated: August 10, 2021

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Spending time with your loved ones is made extra special with homemade food and baked goods. Whether it’s baking biscuits in the run-up to Christmas or a relaxing afternoon with homemade cake, the baking tray is the best choice.

But to let the baking fun run free, you need the right kind of tray to suit you and your loved ones. Baking trays do not come in a standard size and are available in many different versions, which is why we have compared different models for our product comparison and worked out the most important aspects.

The most important

  • Baking trays are available in different materials, such as stainless steel, steel, aluminium or glass. The choice of material depends not only on your baking project, but it should also match your oven.
  • The dimensions of oven trays are not standardised, so it is important to make sure you buy the right size. There are also trays that fit a variety of oven sizes because they are extendable.
  • Depending on the material you choose, good baking trays are already in a lower price range if they fit your individual wishes. The price varies depending on the material and coating.

The Best Baking Tray: Our Picks

In the following section, we have listed our favourites for you. This should help you to find the right baking tray for you and your needs and make your purchase decision as easy as possible.

Buying and evaluation criteria for baking trays

In the following section, you will learn what you should look for when buying a baking tray and how to find the most suitable baking tray for you.

The buying criteria you can use to compare the different baking trays include:

  • Material
  • Coating
  • Size
  • Heat resistance
  • Functionality
  • Dishwasher safe

Material

Baking trays can be made of stainless steel, steel, aluminium or glass, which are either enamelled or non-stick coated. Which material is best for you depends on your needs. Baking trays made of steel are usually very cheap, but aluminium baking trays are much lighter. Light materials are a good choice for beginners or children.

Products made of stainless steel often have a high-quality enamel coating, but are also a little more expensive. However, if you want to create a great look, glass trays may be an alternative for you. They are good for serving and look great at the table, but the food doesn’t heat up as quickly as it does with baking trays made of other materials.

Coating

The coating of the tray is also important. A non-stick coating is perfect for working without baking paper, the food comes off easily and cleaning doesn’t take much time. However, susceptibility to scratches can be a disadvantage. Scratch-resistant coating can be found in enamelled baking trays.

Size

On the one hand, the size of the baking tray depends on the size of your oven, on the other hand, there are unfortunately no standard sizes for baking trays. You have to measure your oven individually. Common standard sizes are 42 x 37, 44 x 37 or 45 x 37 cm, as many ovens are between 35 and 50 cm wide.

However, extendable products are a good alternative. There is no need to measure the oven and they can still be used when a new oven is purchased.

Heat resistance

The heat resistance of the baking tray also depends on whether it is right for your oven. There are some that are suitable for temperatures up to 250 degrees Celsius, but other models can remain resistant even at 450 degrees Celsius.

Functionality

All in all, it’s the functionality of the baking tray that counts, the whole package, so to speak. How you find the best baking tray for you depends on the individual functionality of each baking tray, such as the right coating, the intensity of care, the size or whether it is individually adjustable.

Dishwasher resistance

Last but not least, the dishwasher resistance should not be ignored. Above all, the coating, but also the size, is decisive when it comes to cleaning in the dishwasher. While coated baking trays can be cleaned in the dishwasher without any problems, universal trays made of aluminium can become discoloured.

Guide: Frequently asked questions about baking trays answered in detail

In the following section, we would like to answer the most frequently asked questions about baking trays and give you a deeper insight into the subject.

What is a baking tray and who is it suitable for?

A baking tray is a versatile kitchen utensil that is part of the basic equipment of a modern kitchen. You can use it to prepare all kinds of dishes – from pizza to cake – and it is therefore suitable for anyone who has an oven and likes to cook or bake well with little effort.

A baking tray is usually rectangular in shape and it is placed on the rails located in the oven and can also be positioned at different heights. (Image source: Pixabay / AmnaS)

What types of baking trays are there?

Basically, baking trays can be divided into two types:

  • Enamelled baking tray
  • Baking tray with non-stick coating

We would like to help you with the following table to find out which type of coating is best for you.

Coating Advantages Disadvantages
Enamelled baking tray Heat-resistant, durable, rustproof, dishwasher-safe More expensive than other trays
Baking tray with non-stick coating Easy to clean, non-stick effect, therefore no baking paper necessary, rustproof Susceptible to scratches and heat-sensitive

In addition, the baking trays are either extendable or non-extendable. Extendable baking trays are suitable as universal baking trays and can be used for many different types of cookers. One disadvantage, however, is that they are not leak-proof. This can be remedied with a silicone mat or baking paper.

Non-extendable baking trays are only suitable for a certain size of oven, but you don’t have to worry about anything leaking out.

Why do baking trays warp?

Baking trays need to be matched to the type of oven. If your baking tray is warping, it may be because you’ve chosen the wrong material for your oven. They should be able to withstand at least 250 degrees, and it is even better if they are heat resistant up to 450 degrees. For gas ovens, in addition to heat resistance, it’s a good idea to buy a durable and long-lasting baking tray.

How do I clean a baking tray?

An important tip is to clean the tray regularly. After it has cooled down, rinse the baking tray a little and remove any residue with a sponge. Baking spray can help with burnt-on food, but care should be taken not to let anything burn in often, as this will damage the coating badly in the long run. You should also avoid using steel wool and scouring pads, as these also attack the coating.

Another tip is to use cleaning agents, which we will discuss in more detail here. For example, you can clean your baking tray with salt, baking soda or baking powder.

Salt

Particularly burnt areas should be sprinkled with salt, but make sure that the baking tray has cooled down. Then put it in the oven for about 30 to 60 minutes and when you see that the salt is turning brown, you can take it out again and shake off the salt. Afterwards, you should be able to remove the crust simply by rinsing it with warm water.

Baking soda

Fill the tray with enough water to cover the dirt and spread about 50 grams of baking soda on the tray. Heat the baking tray at 100 degrees for about 20 minutes until the water has evaporated. Then you can rinse the tray and remove the dirt.

Baking soda

Soak the dirt with warm water and then sprinkle a packet of baking powder over it. After about 3 to 5 minutes, the dirt can be wiped off with a sponge.

Conclusion

The baking tray is an indispensable helper in the modern kitchen and household. Whether for cakes or desserts or hearty dishes, a baking tray is always the basis for cooking and baking in the oven.

Thanks to the different designs such as extendable trays, trays made of different materials or with enamel or non-stick coating. There is a suitable product for everyone, both amateur and professional bakers. You should just make sure that the baking tray fits into the oven and is best suited to your individual needs.

Picture: 123rf.com/ 53651485

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