Getting the best baking trays is one of the very first preparations for a successful baking batch. Believe us; you will never get uneven or burnt cookies !
Believe it or not, you can hardly make a good cake without having a suitable baking tray, say; you end up having uneven or over-cooked cookies. Thank gods, we save you from such a daunting situation by introducing here a list of 10 best baking trays, along with a complete buying guide and baking tips.
Don’t miss them!
- What Is A Baking Tray?
- 10 Best Baking Trays to Buy in The UK
- Samuel Groves Large Baking Trays – Best Budget-Friendly Tray
- KITCHENATICS Roasting & Baking Tray – Best Aluminum Tray
- HaWare Stainless Steel Baking Sheet – Best Stainless-steel Tray
- KitchenCraft MasterClass Smart – Best Ceramic Baking Tray
- Pyrex Baking Tray, Multi-Colour – Best Glass Tray
- WellBake Silicone Rectangle Traybake – Best Silicone Tray
- MasterClass Crusty Bake Perforated – Best Non-stick Tray
- Prestige Inspire Non Stick Baking Tray – Best Cookie Sheet
- Russell Hobbs CW20701AR 3-Pieces – Best Baking Pan Set
- MasterClass Smart Space 7 Piece Stackable – Best Baking Tray Bakeware Set
- How to Choose a Baking Tray for Your Kitchen?
- How to Take Care of Your Baking Trays?
- Last Verdict
What Is A Baking Tray?
If you are green to baking, you might have thought that choosing a tray is simple enough until you jump in a cake supplies shop, asking for a baking tray. You will then find out that the trays come in different types – with actually, different names for different purposes.
For that reason, you should have some knowledge base first before you go to choose any baking tray for your kitchen.
Most basically, a baking tray is a flat metal sheet used for baking cakes or roasting food over an oven.
In detail, they are divided into three types, including baking sheets, cookie sheets, and sheet pans.
The baking trays are often made of steel and aluminium while coated with a non-stick surfacing. Most sheets have four raised edges to prevent liquid from running out. This type of baking trays is used for baking thick and solid dough like cookies. Also, the edges improved the rigid structure so that sheets are more durable over time.
The difference between baking and cookie sheets is that there are no raised edges. It means you have more room for your cookies. Moreover, you can easily slide the cookies when they’re well-baked. It is also proved that sheets have better air circulation so that cookies are more evenly baked.
Sheet pans have rolled edges, which cannot be found in cookie trays. Those pans come in various shapes (rectangular, square, or round) available to cook bar cookies, shortbread, or brownies, or large cakes.
10 Best Baking Trays to Buy in The UK
Samuel Groves Large Baking Trays – Best Budget-Friendly Tray
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If you find yourself baking cakes or food occasionally, you will not need to break a bank to buy so many trays at a time. A set of two Samuel Groves baking trays is helpful enough.
At a glance, these trays are sturdy with a sturdy black covering. When looking further into the trays, we detect that they are made of quality aluminium, along with a non-stick coating. Thanks to this, we find it easy to cook with the trays. Even better, the tray is dishwasher-friendly so that you can save much time and effort to clean the trays when the baking is done.
The most exciting part is that the two trays come at a very affordable price, plus a lifetime warranty for not peeling as long as you take proper care of it.
In drawbacks, the manufacturer should improve the thickness. We found that the trays do buckle under an extreme temperature and take time to flat again.
KITCHENATICS Roasting & Baking Tray – Best Aluminum Tray
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Also made of aluminium, this Kitchenatics Roasting & Baking sheet is more sturdy than the earlier one.
Accordingly, the sheet is crafted with a thick aluminium, sturdy enough to handle heavy food without wobbling whether the temperature goes up to 300 degrees Celsius.
Along with the tray is a 304 stainless-steel rack where you can cool down the baking food before serving it, or you can use the rack above the tray for roasting BBQs. The grilling design allows excess oil to drop down onto the trays to keep boiling meats or to be used as a gravy or sauce later. The rack also helps optimize the airflow for even baking.
Such a combined structure adds versatility to the trays. Nonetheless, there are several things we wish the tray to be improved. The tray is a bit small, and it requires handwashing rather than in the dishwasher like the rack.
HaWare Stainless Steel Baking Sheet – Best Stainless-steel Tray
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Aluminium is affordable and durable over high heat, so it is common for making baking trays. However, some might still be concerned about the negative effect of this material. At that time, a complete stainless-steel tray is a good alternative.
Take the HaWare Steel Baking Sheet, for example.
This is a set of two quality stainless-steel trays, polished with a mirror design and deep rim all around. When you hold the trays in your hands, you can immediately feel how sturdy they are. Also, the trays are easier to clean, even in a dishwasher. You can expect the HaWare trays to last for years.
The size is another plus; trays are as large as 40 x 30 x 2.5 cm so they can fit most regular ovens for baking many cookies and vegetables at a time.
However, the trays warp a bit in the hot oven but come back to normal shape after being heated.
KitchenCraft MasterClass Smart – Best Ceramic Baking Tray
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KitchenCraft is one famous brand of kitchen products. Thus, you can find some helpful baking trays of theirs, for example, this KitchenCraft MasterClass Smart.
The baking tray has an aluminized-steel core which provides an even and quick heat distribution. Moreover, the tray is electroplated against succumbing to rust. The manufacturer gives a 25-year warranty for the product quality so you can totally rest assured, using the tray.
However, the most outstanding point is the two ceramic-reinforced coatings on the two sides of the tray, making it completely non-stick so that you can release food and clean the tray at ease. The golden brown colour adds an extra luxury touch to your kitchen, and you can even serve the trays directly on your dining table.
The only problem – or note, to be exact, is how you should hold the tray. It gets hot quickly, so you had better be careful while taking it out of the oven. Unfortunately, there is neither a handle nor a grip section. You will find yourself struggling to lift the tray off with regular gloves.
Pyrex Baking Tray, Multi-Colour – Best Glass Tray
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Other than ceramic, you can also try using glass baking trays offered by Pyrex.
This material picks up the heat more slowly than aluminium, stainless-steel, or ceramic, but once it is hot, the heat will stay much longer. The Pyrex baking tray can withstand up to 300 degrees Celsius. You can even use the tray in microwaves when you need quick heating.
The non-stick performance is also worth mentioning. Believe us; you just only need to bring the tray to the sink or dishwasher to clean it through. No scrubbing is required.
Just one thing, the tray is a bit heavy and fragile, so you must manage it carefully.
WellBake Silicone Rectangle Traybake – Best Silicone Tray
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Do you know that many baking trays today are made of silicone?
If not, then we would like to introduce you to the WellBake Silicone Rectangle Tray – convenient kitchenware. It has great heat conductivity. Moreover, the silicon material is virtually non-stick, pliable, and effortless to clean. The tray will not crack or rust overtime as well. We also appreciate that the silicone does not transfer mental flavours between bakes.
With the heat resistance up to 200 degrees Celsius, the tray is ideal for making cottage pie, lasagne, and macaroni cheese, and oven-roasted chicken. The silicone cools down easily so you can easily take it out of the oven when the baking is done.
However, like most silicone trays, the walls are bendy so you should always use a solid tray under this silicone tray.
MasterClass Crusty Bake Perforated – Best Non-stick Tray
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As said, MasterClass provides one of the most quality kitchenware in the UK. Thus, there is no surprise to see another MasterClass baking tray here. This time, it is Crusty Bake Perforated.
The tray is made of premium electroplated carbon steel rather than ceramic. For that reason, the heat capacity is lower, only 220 degrees Celsius. To make it up, the tray features a high-quality double Quantum coating that will keep heat longer; meanwhile, it creates a non-stick surface for quick release and cleaning.
Above it, the tray has a perforation design that lets heat and airflow distribute evenly under the baking surface so that your cookies will always crisp even after you cool down the tray out for a while.
One thing that is a bit disappointing for us is that the edge gets rusty quickly. Thus, you should clean the tray carefully and let it dry every time you’re done with baking.
Prestige Inspire Non Stick Baking Tray – Best Cookie Sheet
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You might already have figured out; this tray is different from baking trays above – as there is only one edge rather than four edges. This Prestige Inspire Non-Stick model is what we called – cookie sheet.
Like the MasterClass tray above, this sheet is crafted with heavy-duty carbon steel so you can believe in its long-lasting performance. However, the heat limit is improved to 240 degrees Celsius.
The selling point of this tray, however, is its ultra non-stick CushionSmart technology. There is a cushioned surface over the baking surface that is non-stick. Firstly, combined with a no-edges design, the tray allows releasing food effortlessly and saves a bunch of time when cleaning. Secondly, the surface enables airflow to distribute evenly around food so that your cookies will have a better browning.
The problem with this tray is that you cannot use it with juicy foods or cakes. Otherwise, they slide out of the tray right from the first place.
Russell Hobbs CW20701AR 3-Pieces – Best Baking Pan Set
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Baking pans are helpful enough. However, you might find their shallow edges hard to hold runny batters. At that time, you would love to use baking pans – like Russell Hobbs CW20701AR 3 Pieces.
The pans are much deeper, so they are ideal for making brownies or cakes, as well as savoury dishes like lasagnas, casseroles, or cobblers.
When you buy the Russell Hobbs set, you will get the trays in three different sizes (38 x 25 x 5cm; 36 x 26 x 5 cm; and 26 x 21 x 4 cm.) You can choose dimensions according to your true requirements instead of wasting ingredients.
Multiple trays also make it more convenient to prepare different foods at a time. For example, you can place beef in the largest tray and chop some vegetables or potatoes into the other trays. Roast everything for 1 hour and at 200 degrees Celsius.
Seems very convenient right?
Just do not like that the three trays cannot stack on each other, so they take more storage space in your cabinet.
MasterClass Smart Space 7 Piece Stackable – Best Baking Tray Bakeware Set
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The quality of MasterClass kitchenware is a no-brainer as far as you can see from the reviews above. Thus, you will be excited to know that the manufacturer offers a convenient set of 7 pieces, including different baking trays, roasting pan, cake tin, muffin tin, loaf pan, and a cooling rack. All come at less than £50.
Such a great deal for the money!
Being cheap does not mean low quality. In contrast, all trays and the roasting rack are crafted with heavy-gauge carbon steel and enhanced with non-stick layers. In addition, these pieces are fully stackable to save storage space in your kitchen.
So far, so good – except for the fact that the roasting pan is too big for standard ovens. Moreover, holes of the muffin tin also have an awkward size. Thus, you might find them a bit abundant.
How to Choose a Baking Tray for Your Kitchen?
This guide makes it easier to buy baking trays.
Baking trays vary as above. Thus, you find it hard to select suitable ones. Thankfully, you can refer to the following buying guide.
Select a suitable tray based on your cooking preferences
Of course, cookie sheets are ideal for baking cookies. Meanwhile, sheets are recommended for savoury dishes rather than sweet ones. Moreover, these workhorses are also helpful as bakeware for meat or vegetables. The sheet pans with a shallow rim around are as multi-functional as the sheets, and better at keeping juices and liquids from being lost.
Consider materials for heat conductivity & durability
Metal trays are the most common because of their durability, hardwearing, and resistance to scratch. They are generally either gauge steel or aluminium. Inside the tray is a non-stick coating to make it easy to remove the bakes/foods after cooking and cleaning afterwards.
Both heat conduction and durability of metal materials are impressive. At the same time, their prices are often affordable for beginners.
If the prices are not your main concern, but you want brilliant heat-conduction kitchenware, you can go for glass baking trays. They are often made of tempered glass which is supposed to absorb heat and speed up the baking process. Just take notes that those glasswares are prone to cracking if you quickly change between temperatures. Thus, you had better use a cooling rack when taking the glass trays from the oven.
Ceramics are famous for being hard wearing and durable. Thus, they can handle baking at significant temperatures and distribute heat evenly. To be better, ceramic trays are often coated and sealed in a porous-free glaze, making them healthier for baking food.
Interestingly enough, quality ceramic trays look good as you can straightly serve the cakes from the oven and on a heatproof mat!
Those trays are newcomers in the industry, but soon to be popular for lightweight, flexible, and colourful options. Silicon trays also feature extreme oven heats and significant temperature shifts from freezer to oven.
However, always keep an eye on the trays because they heat up really quickly. In addition, be careful with knives or sharp implements because silicone trays are more risk piercing and less rigid.
Understand the difference between insulated vs greasing trays
An insulated tray often features a bottom sheet under the baking surface to create an air layer underneath and help distribute the heat evenly. As a result, you can expect the tops of cookies to burn long prior to the browning bottoms. Nonetheless, the baking time is longer on insulated sheets, resulting in less crisp cookies.
Greasing trays allow cookies to spread out and get flattered in shape. Sometimes, you can use parchment paper or waxed paper to improve the grease of the trays.
Choose the right sizes of trays as well
You must take both internal size and overall measurements in mind. The whole size of chosen baking trays, first and foremost, must fit well in your oven and available storage room. On the other hand, the internal size helps determine the number of delicacies to prepare in one batch.
For example, a flat cookie sheet is around 2 cm sides all around, and a rectangular baking pan is often 25×39 cm.
Think of purchasing one piece or a bakeware set
Truth be told, we would recommend having different baking trays in your kitchen available to bake different cake types. That is why you can consider buying a bakeware set. It is much more expensive at first, but you turn out not having to buy individual pieces from time to time.
How to Take Care of Your Baking Trays?
The best baking trays are essential in any household chef’s armoury to help to prepare yummy cakes and roasted food. Nonetheless, without proper care and maintenance, you will find the trays to get grimy and greasy very quickly and become useless.
Luckily, the following cleaning hacks will be helpful to guarantee their squeaky clean at all time:
- Pour boiling water and let it be for some minutes.
- Sprinkle baking soda on the spots you desire to clean off the trays.
- Add coarse salt or table salt to the baking soda, as well.
- Next, prepare a bottle of white wine vinegar and spray it over the salt and baking soda mixture.
- Make use of steel wool or scourer to scrub the grease build up and heavy-duty stain.
- Finally, use soapy water to clean the tray.
Steps above work with most metal trays. Nonetheless, if you have ceramic, silicone, or glass trays, you might have to take extra care following the manufacturers’ maintenance guides.
You should have not one – but several trays in your kitchen, so consider all the best baking trays reviews and take some home. If you do not know what to choose, we recommend buying the MasterClass Smart Space 7 Pieces. This set has all needed to make as many yummy bakes and foods as possible. Buy one now, and you will not regret it!