Baking the perfect cake can turn any bad day into a good one. Whether you are a novice baker or a veteran, you know that a lot goes into baking an excellent cake. And the one thing you need to invest in is getting a good quality cake pan.
Baking pans, like other baking accessories, have evolved greatly offering a lot of variety. Not only do they come in different shapes, but different materials as well.
They’ve been created to offer not only utility and durability, but also add some flair to your baking experience.
However, it is important to remember that not all baking pans are created equal. I mean, there is going to be a difference between high quality products and others that don’t hold up well to regular use.
In short, a good quality cake pan will yield a perfectly cooked and evenly browned cake every time without sticking to the pan.
Choosing good quality cake pans need not be difficult or confusing. We strongly believe so, so here we have compiled a list of the best professional cake pans that promise to deliver great results every time.
1 – USA Pan Bakeware, Round 9 Inch (Top Pick)
This is a sturdy round cake pan on Amazon that comes with a slightly corrugated base. The pan is made from heavy-gauge aluminized steel and comes with a non-stick Americoat coating.
The non-stick coating is BPA, PFOA, and PTFE free, making release of baked goods a cinch with minimal cleanup involved. The pan measures 9 inches in diameter and a deep 2.25 inches in height, making it one of the best options out there for making impressive layer cakes.
Plus, the sides are straight meaning that you won’t have to hassle over trimming your cake when putting it together.
- Fluted design on base improves non-stick properties
- Even heat distribution
- Easy to use and clean
- May trap water around rim/rolled edges that does not drain/dry quickly
- Logo on base may cause food to stick
- Limited lifetime warranty
2 – Cuisinart AMB Non Stick Round Cake Pan, Silver (Budget Pick)
If you purchase more than one, this 9 inch Cuisinart non-stick pan, also available on Amazon, may be your solution to making the ultimate layer cake.
Made with heavy-gauge aluminized steel and finished with durable non-stick coating on the inside and out, this pan makes sure that cakes and other baked goods are easily removed.
The professional grade steel construction makes sure that even heat gets distributed across the cake pan for optimal baking results every time. The rolled edges prevent warping even at high temperatures.
The pan is also dishwasher safe and scratch resistant, although it is always recommended to use only silicone or plastic utensils on non-stick bakeware.
The sides of the pan are straight and will give you a smooth-edged layer cake with no need for additional trimmings. You can use this pan to create single and double layer cakes for any occasion.
- High performance steel construction
- Durable non-stick coating
- Corrosion resistant metal
- Easy to clean
- May be too heavy for some users
- Coating may wear off after few uses
- Limited lifetime warranty
3 – Chicago Metallic Professional Non Stick Round Pan
This 9 inch round cake pan has been crafted from heavy-weight aluminized steel that promises to deliver even heat conduction for baking results every time.
The pan is a top of the line non-stick product that allows for easy release of baked goods and minimizes the clean up afterwards.
This product comes highly recommended for professional bakers as it not only offers sturdy construction but also longevity of performance. With this baking pan you can stop worrying about getting any others since it will last you a long time.
The pan is dishwasher safe, but could be hand washed instead to extend its life.
- High performance product
- Straight sides with 2 inch height ideal for making layer cakes
- Lifetime warranty
- Embossed name on base will show on the cake’s surface
- The same can also make loosening the cake out of the pan difficult
- Dark color may make sides set before the middle
4 – Elite Bakeware NonStick Pans Set with Silicone Handles
This is a three piece non-stick cake pan set with silicone grips for easy handling. These cake pans come with superior non-stick coating which allows for easy release when the pan is turned over.
This set of pans is made from heavy duty commercial grade steel that promises to deliver professional results every time. All pans are 9 inches in diameter and 1.5 inches deep.
These heavy duty pans can be used safely up to temperatures of 475 degrees Fahrenheit and will neither damage nor warp. And since the pans are tapered, they make for convenient storage, stacking into one another.
This set is basic enough for newbies to baking, as well as for ardent bakers who need a strong, durable cake pan for multiple baking tasks.
- Silicone handles for easy gripping
- Oven safe up to 475 degrees
- Commercial grade quality
- Lifetime guarantee
- Rust and warp poof
- Set of three pans
- Tapered pans may not be ideal for making a layer cake
- Tapered shape makes for 8 inch base instead of 9
- Coating may come off after few uses
5 – Nordic Ware Platinum Collection Heritage Bundt Pan
This popular Bundt cake pan is a sure shot way to add some style to your baking. This pan delivers a cake that is visually appealing and its swirl design makes an elegant piece whether you frost it or not.
If you want to dress up your cake without too much effort, a delicate touch of powdered sugar will do nicely too.
The pan is made from original cast aluminum that gives a good result and performance. It comes with a non-stick interior that allows the cake to be released easily and makes for a mess-free clean up.
One significant perk of this cake pan is its heat reflective exterior that ensures an even browning of the cake. The pan is large enough to yield a nice sized cake embellished with intricate detail.
Easy to clean and wash by hand, this Nordic Ware Bundt pan is USA made. All you need is a mild detergent for clean up to keep this pan performing well for a long time.
- Stylish design
- Easy to clean
- Good size
- Produces evenly browned cakes
- Limited time warranty
6 – Air Bake Natural Cake Pan with Cover
A useful product from T-FAL, this rectangular cake pan measures 13×9 inches and uses 100% aluminum construction.
The pan features heavy duty insulation as it is made from two aluminum sheets which trap air within. The trapped air lowers the pan’s temperature where it comes into contact with any cake batter in it.
The aluminum sheet at the bottom insulates by blocking the oven heat from below and the sheet at the top prevents the cake from becoming overheated.
This feature also reduces baking time by 15% compared to traditional insulated bakeware and yields a moister cake when baked. The pan also has a lid, making it usable as a storage container as well.
This is a good sized pan for making sheet cakes for graduations, birthdays, baby or bridal showers, anniversaries and any other occasion where you may want to inscribe a message onto the cake.
A word of caution to never soak the cake pan because water could enter between the aluminum sheets. Should this happen, place it upside down inside a 250 degree oven for approximately 30 minutes until the water is removed.
- Heavy duty insulated bakeware
- Comes with lid
- Rust proof
- 10 year warranty
- Non-stick coating may darken over time
- Recommended for use with only plastic utensils
7 – Cake Boss Professional Non-Stick Bakeware
This is a set of three round cake pans including pans in 6, 8 and 10 inches. The set features aluminized steel on the sides and rolled rims that make the pans stronger and more stable.
All pans come with a quilted surface that prevents wear and promotes equal heat distribution. The result is an evenly browned cake that does not stick to the pan.
The non-stick finish on the pans allow for easy removal of baked goods and make up for quick clean up. The pans are safe for use in high oven temperatures.
- Quilted surface for even browning
- Strong aluminized steel construction
- 3 different sizes suitable for tier cakes
- Rolled rims for easy, strong grip
- Logo printed on base shows up on delicate cakes
- Pans cook hotter than usual so baking temperature may need to be reduced
Before you buy
Since not all types of baking pans will match your needs, keep in mind what kind of cakes you plan on making and also how often you are going to use the pan.
Based on these considerations, here are a few quick pointers to help you make the right purchase:
Typically available in three types, cake pan materials include stainless steel, aluminum, and silicone, each offering its own set of perks.
- Stainless Steel: Cake pans made from this material are durable and resistant to staining. Good for regular bakers.
- Aluminum: These pans conduct heat well and produce an evenly baked cake. Also recommended for frequent baking jobs.
- Silicone: A relatively new contender compared to the other two, silicone bakeware has a fast growing fan base who find it easy to clean and store. Silicone pans are also freezer, fridge, oven and microwave safe, along with being rust and stain proof. The only concerns voiced are the stability of the pans given silicone’s flexibility, and perhaps that silicone does not brown cakes as evenly as aluminum.
There are an assortment of shapes available in cake pans and you can easily choose one that suits your baking needs.
For instance, round pans are great for making tier cakes. Rectangular cake pans work well for making sheet cakes. These are ideal for creating cakes with designs as the rectangular base provides a good flat, solid canvas to showcase your artsy skills.
Although square pans are a more popular option for making brownies, they can also work to make a layered cake which is not round.
Springform is another option, available in round, square and rectangular shapes. These pans come with removable side and are ideally used for making cheesecakes.
And then there are the specialty pans that come in different styles and shapes such as hearts , stars, trees and flowers, just to name a few.
They also come in different character shapes such as Dora the Explorer or Hello Kitty, among so many others. These cake pans are for bakers or caterers who have baking as their profession.
Looking for pans for layered cakes? Check out our guide to finding the best layered cake pan.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.