Best bread pans--not nonstick

Hi everyone,

I’m so excited to have found you guys. I was a 16-year user of that other place!

Does anyone use bread pans that are not non-stick? I bake whole wheat and sourdough sandwich breads. I’m looking for something that will not leach anything harmful into food and also something that will brown loaves well.

I’ve always used metal pans, but I guess I would be open to exploring some other types. Thoughts??

I do use a nonstick Teflon bread pan, but mostly because I was lazy to look for the straight aluminum pan. In term of “leaching anything harmful”, you will get a lot of different opinions on what are actually harmful. Obviously, I won’t be using a nonstick Teflon bread pan if I think it is actually harmful, while there are many people who do. Now you will even have people who tell you that a straight aluminum bake bread pan is also harmful due to the aluminum. My advise is for you to first decide what is acceptable to you and go from there.

Metal based pan is the simplest way to go. Unlike glass or ceramic, metal based pans like aluminum or steel are less likely to break due to heat shock or physical force (e.g. you drop it). In addition, even when they do break, they rarely break into numerous sharp pieces.

However, this is not to say ceramic or glass bakeware are outright dangerous. It is just that metal based bakeware are usually cheaper, easier to find, lighter, less likely to break…etc.

Overall, why not start with an aluminum bake pan first? They are cheap, light…etc. Something like these:

Thanks! I’m definitely not interested in Teflon (have a little boy and don’t want to take chances). In the past I also had a bread pan whose Teflon lining peeled off --ugh!

Now that I think of it, I really need stacking pans due to space limitations–so I guess that means glass and ceramic are out!

I’ll check out those links, thanks!!

The darker the metal, the browner the crust. Of course, the best crusts are on shaped loaves baked on a baking stone or sheet pan, or in a Dutch oven, without a bread pan at all.

Yes, I like that kind of bread as well, but for our purposes (sandwiches for a 2-year-old’s lunch) the sandwich shape is more practical).

Is the only way to achieve dark metal via nonstick finishes?

The darker the metal the faster the metal will absorb heat. If you use a shiny metal surface, then you will need to increase the oven temperature a little or bake it a little longer. Basically, it can be done either way, but you will need to adjust. In addition, you can always paint your own pan in a dark color if you want.

Finally, if you like, you can get a cast iron bread pan, no Teflons surface, somewhat nonstick in nature, black as heck, cheap… however, it is very heavy and not the greatest heat conductor.

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold