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The Best Cake Pan

Last updated on May 21, 2020

We looked at the top 11 Cake Pans and dug through the reviews from 21 of the most popular review sites including Kitchenaholic, The Best Guider, Red Copper Pan Reviews, Unlimited Recipes, Small Sweet Home, Best1Review and more. The result is a ranking of the best Cake Pans.

Best Cake Pan

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Our Picks For The Top Cake Pans

Show Contents
Our Take
  Best Overall

Wilton Performance Aluminum Round Cake Pans, 8-Inch, 2-Set

Wilton

Performance 8-Inch Round Cake Pan Set

Overall Take

Deep, Even HeatingThese deep pans apply even heat to any dish.

  Runner Up

Nordic Ware Classic Aluminum Covered Cake Pan, 9×13-Inch

Nordic Ware

Classic Covered Cake Pan, 9x13-Inch

Overall Take

Durable, Versatile CookwareThis aluminum pan is equally effective whether baking brownies or storing them.

  Best Set

Chicago Metallic Professional Non-Stick Round Cake Pans, 3-Piece

Chicago Metallic

Professional Non-Stick Round Cake Pan Set

Overall Take

Deep and SturdyBake pizza or cake with these temperature-resistant pans.

  Best for Transporting

Rachael Ray Rectangle Nonstick Pan With Grips And Lid, 9 x 13-Inch

Rachael Ray

Rectangle Nonstick Pan With Grips And Lid, 9 x 13-Inch

Overall Take

Easy to CleanCook, clean and store easily with this combo.

  We Also Like

Cuisinart AMB-9TCP Chef’s Classic Nonstick Bakeware, 9-Inch, 2-Piece

Cuisinart

AMB-9TCP Chef's Classic Nonstick Bakeware, 9-Inch, 2-Piece

Overall Take

Nonstick, No FussBaked goods roll out easily from the nonstick coating on this pan.

Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, Simplemost analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
18

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the cake pans available to purchase.
11

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

21

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources.

38,411

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including Amazon, Walmart, Target, Home Depot, Bed Bath & Beyond, QVC and 5 others.

The Best Overall

Wilton Performance Aluminum Round Cake Pans, 8-Inch, 2-Set

Our Expert Score
9.7
Our Take

The premium aluminum construction of these pans allows them to heat evenly throughout the cooking process. If you're making tall cakes, the high sides can accommodate plenty of rising dough. Apply your coating of choice before baking: The material is nontoxic but not non-stick.


The Best Bang For Your Buck

Chicago Metallic Professional Non-Stick Round Cake Pans, 3-Piece

Our Expert Score
9.7
Our Take

These pans are equally well suited to cakes or pizza, thanks to the high temperature resistance of the silicone-based surface. It's also non-stick and covers a core of aluminized steel for even heating. All materials are BPA-free and the nested configuration makes storage easy.

Our Cake Pan Findings

Wilton Performance Aluminum Round Cake Pans, 8-Inch, 2-Set

What We Liked: The premium aluminum construction of these pans allows them to heat evenly throughout the cooking process. If you’re making tall cakes, the high sides can accommodate plenty of rising dough. Apply your coating of choice before baking: The material is nontoxic but not non-stick.

Nordic Ware Classic Aluminum Covered Cake Pan, 9×13-Inch

What We Liked: There are many advantages to the aluminum material on this cake pan. Not only is it durable and resistant to warping, it will heat more evenly than other metals. Comes with a lid that is perfect for storing foods after baking.

Chicago Metallic Professional Non-Stick Round Cake Pans, 3-Piece

What We Liked: These pans are equally well suited to cakes or pizza, thanks to the high temperature resistance of the silicone-based surface. It’s also non-stick and covers a core of aluminized steel for even heating. All materials are BPA-free and the nested configuration makes storage easy.

Rachael Ray Rectangle Nonstick Pan With Grips And Lid, 9 x 13-Inch

What We Liked: The lid and pan fit together snugly on this cooking / storage combo, and both are fully machine washable. The pan is oven safe and comes with a long-lasting nonstick coating. The product is warp-resistant and suitable for a range of dishes.

Cuisinart AMB-9TCP Chef’s Classic Nonstick Bakeware, 9-Inch, 2-Piece

What We Liked: Both the interior and exterior coating on this cookware is nonstick, making each baking project a breeze. Rolled edges ensure an quick release. The entire item is dishwasher safe for easy care.

Our Cake Pan Buying Guide

You wouldn’t know it from the drama and flair that surrounds shows like “Cupcake Wars” and “The Great British Bake-Off,” but baking is a lot more science than art. You can measure your ingredients and set your timers perfectly every time, but there’s still one variable many bakers forget to factor in: The bakeware.

A good cake pan isn’t just a handy receptacle for holding that yummy batter. It’s an element that can radically change the taste and look of your dish if the material, size, and even the color aren’t just right. So what’s the best one to buy?

As with most kitchenware, it depends on what you’re baking. Let’s start with the material. Most cake pans are made of metal and there’s a reason for that. Overall, they heat up as quickly as they cool down.

Mind you, not just any metal will do. Stainless steel’s durability and resistance to rust makes it a great material for skillets and sheet pans. But it conducts heat slowly relative to other metals, making it a cheaper choice for cake pans.

Aluminum, on the hand, heats up perfectly — which may balance out the fact that it’s not as durable as a pure metal. It may also impart a funny taste to acidic foods like tomatoes or citrus. To mitigate that, look for higher-gauge aluminum pans or those made with anodized aluminum. This is aluminum that’s been subjected to an electrolytic process that hardens the outer layer. Without getting into the science, it also makes it non-stick and non-reactive with acidic foods.

Less common but definitely findable are glass bake pans and newer ones made with heat-resistant silicone. These pans get points for storage versatility and presentation, but you’ll definitely need to adjust your cooking times since they won’t heat as evenly.

Speaking of cooking times, consider the size and depth of your cake pan. Nice, tall cakes are visually impressive but there’s a reason people make them in layers. Fill up a deep pan with too much batter and the top will toast up before the middle gets done. Eight-inch deep pans are the standard but you can get away with nine inches or more depending on the material of the pan and the dish you’re baking.

Here’s one more, often overlooked selling point for a good cake pan: The color. Assuming it’s aluminum or some other kind of steel, any non-stick coating might darken the hue. Just keep in mind that darker pans conduct heat a little faster, and that can lead to a crustier bottom layer than you might like. Account for the difference or go for a lighter shaded pan if you want to stick to the recipe.

Simplemost Fun Fact

Before you bring your perfectly baked German chocolate cake to that Oktoberfest party, double-check your baking history. Strange as it may seem, the dessert didn’t actually originate in Germany. The name comes from Samuel German, a confectioner working for the very American Baker’s Chocolate Company. He developed a brand of dark baking chocolate that was later used in a cake that was named in his honor.

The Cake Pan Tips and Advice

  • If you’re baking traditional cakes, you want a pan with a little edge. And we’re not talking edge as in “attitude.” Flared or tapered tops might be fine if you’re baking bread or muffin-type dishes that meant to rise and puff out, but it’s not much good for cakes or anything you need to decorate around the sides. Most bakers prefer straight sides that come up at a right angle.
  • Most kitchens will have more than one cake pan.  If storage is tight, look for sets of pans that can “nest” one inside the other, making it easier to save space.

About The Author

Avatar
Tod Caviness 

Tod Caviness is a professional writer and journalist for the past 20 years. Tod's years of experience writing a nightlife column for the Orlando Sentinel have cursed him with an affinity for cocktails he can't afford. He makes up for it with his cheap yet killer slow cooker cuisine. At least, his wife hasn't kicked him out for them yet.