Our Favorite Baking Supplies – All our baking essentials, plus some fun extras and gadgets for baking in the kitchen!
We’re already into the second half of the month, and I’ve already started working on fall recipe testing and mapping out some ideas for the holidays. (Spoiler: I’m REALLY excited about what’s coming!).
I thought today would be the perfect time to do a different kind of faves post. It’s ALLLL about baking! I’m sharing our favorite baking essentials, kitchen gear, and some nice-to-have gadgets that’ll stock your kitchen with everything you need to do some baking!
Let’s jump in!
BAKING SUPPLIES: THE BASICS
A GOOD SET OF MIXING BOWLS. There are few baking supplies you’ll use more than a good set of mixing bowls! I like glass or metal over plastic because they’re non-porous and don’t trap odors or bacteria. Plus, it’s nice when an inexpensive set is so pretty (and dishwasher safe!).
SPATULAS. Silicone is your best bet, especially if you can find all-silicone (like this) vs. wood + silicone end). Silicone is nonporous and can’t trap bacteria. Many 2-piece spatulas can trap bacteria (even after going through the dishwasher!).
MINI SPATULAS. These mini spatulas might almost seem silly at first, but I use mine almost every single day. They’re the perfect size for scraping the last bit of peanut butter or pasta sauce out of the jar or getting honey or coconut oil out of measuring cups. I’m on the hunt for a good sturdy (inflexible!) all-silicone version, but these are our fave for now!
MEASURING CUPS. A good, reliable set will get you through anything! We love this set of measuring cups, which has more sizes than most sets–1/4 cup, 1/3 cup, 1/2 cup, 2/3 cup, 3/4 cup, and 1 cup. I own two sets, which I use every single day that I cook.
MEASURING SPOONS. Made by the same company, this set of measuring spoons has lots of sizes and hold up well after lots and lots of use.
LIQUID MEASURING CUPS. You’ll get a more accurate measure of liquid ingredients in a liquid measuring cup. I like these, which have a great spout at the end.
A MINI WHISK. Again, it sounds silly, but we use our mini whisk all the time! It’s the perfect size for kids, or for whisking just a couple of eggs or a small batch of salad dressing in a jar. I even love this ultra-mini whisk for frothing a cup of cocoa or extra small mixing jobs.
BAKING PANS & TRAYS
SHEET PANS. A baking essential!!! Honestly, the more industrial the better because they’re built to LAST. This is a great brand, and we have several of them that have lasted ages.
SQUARE BAKING DISH. You’re looking for 8×8 or 9×9″ pans (2-quart capacity). My favorite is this one. I use it for cakes, brownies, casseroles, homemade (healthy!) jello, and more. So versatile. I love that mine is pretty + high quality with a Target price tag.
RECTANGLE BAKING DISH. A 9×13″ pan (or 3-quart capacity) is another really common size. My rectangular dish is simply the larger size of my favorite square one, and it’s perfect for lasagna, double batches of brownies, sheet cakes, Rice Krispies treats, or Thanksgiving side dishes!
SILICONE MUFFIN PANS. I love (LOVE!!!) these silicone muffin pans because, after the first 1-2 uses, they’re 100% nonstick. You don’t need to spray them or even need muffin cup liners. They cook things like mini quiche a bit more gently (less browning on the sides), and they’re even dishwasher safe, so WIN-WIN-WIN! They also come in a mini-size, which is perfect for packing in school lunches like these or these.
PS – I grease mine with spray oil or a little butter/coconut oil on the first 1-2 uses. After that, it’ll be nonstick!
METAL MUFFIN PAN. Sometimes you do want a crispier finish, so a metal muffin pan is nice. I like this one for my French Toast Cups. It provides a nice golden finish but DOES need to be greased or lined with parchment liners so the muffins don’t stick.
ROUND CAKE PANS. A set of round cake pans will help you make layer cakes or single-layer round cakes, like my Gluten-Free Lemon Cake. You can also line them with parchment to make Flourless Chocolate Cake. I prefer lighter colored metal pans (like these) to dark ones because they tend to brown and conduct heat more evenly and gently than dark pans.
COOLING RACKS. A cooling rack helps cool your baked goods faster (more air circulation!) and prevents things from steaming as they cool. I own a few sizes–this round one and this rectangle one get the job done!
BAKING FAVORITES: SMALL APPLIANCES
A GREAT FOOD PROCESSOR. My food processor is under $100, has lasted me ELEVEN years, and still hasn’t quit. I use it for everything! We never owned a food processor growing up, so I thought it was a fancy thing that fancy people used to be fancy. Turns out, it’s my kitchen best friend. I use ours EVERY single week for savory and sweet applications. It’s a kitchen WORKHORSE! It can:
- Pulse to Mix energy bites, or banana nice cream
- Grind chicken breast for Chicken Zucchini Poppers or Chicken Lettuce Wraps
- Grate zucchini for Chocolate Zucchini Cake
- Shred cabbage for Thai Chopped Salad or Egg Roll Bowls
- Blend cookie dough or muffin batter
A HAND MIXER. A good hand mixer can save you a lot of space and money vs. a stand mixer. I love that they’re more affordable, take up a lot less space, and really can do many of the same jobs–mixing cookie dough & cake batter, whipping egg whites, etc. I love this one. It’s ultra-quiet (great with little kids around!) and it’s been going strong for a few years now.
A STAND MIXER. Lastly, if you’re ready to really upgrade, it can be so nice to have a good stand mixer! I consider a stand mixer more of a baking extra than a baking essential, as many jobs can be taken care of by a bowl + hand mixer or your food processor. If you’re tight on space or have a tight budget, you can get by without one.
BUT. Especially if you often double recipes, bake bread, or love to cook with kids, a stand mixer can be a great addition to the kitchen. We love this one. Its powerful motor can tackle big jobs hands-free (double batches of cookie dough, whipping lots of egg whites at a time, etc.). I’ve been really, really happy with it, and there are lots of attachment options.
As for attachments, you can get fancy with spiralizers, food processors, ice cream churning, and more. I’ve been happy with the standard whisk and dough hook attachments. The only extra attachment I’ve bought is this scraper batter paddle that’s great at scraping down the sides as it goes. I use it for everything but whipping egg whites.
FUN EXTRAS + GADGETS I LOVE.
These just might be my favorite baking supplies–the fun extras! None of these is a baking *essential,* but can really add a lot if you love to bake or cook often.
COOKIE SCOOPS. I use my cookie scoops for EVERYTHING–scooping muffin batter into muffin cups, forming perfectly-sized cookie dough balls, sizing energy bites, measuring out meatballs, etc. LOVE them. I own the small (~1 Tbsp) and medium (~1.5 Tbsp) sizes.
ICING SPATULA. These offset icing spatulas help me get a super smooth icing finish on cakes or cupcakes, and can also help you make pretty swirls. (See mine in action on this pretty frosting.) It’s a totally different ballgame than using a traditional spatula!
PIPING BAG + TIPS. I love having a piping bag and piping tips for birthday cakes or making pretty deviled eggs. I like that this one comes with a silicone piping bag (reusable + washable!) so you don’t have to keep buying extra plastic piping bags.
PASTRY BLENDER. A pastry blender is a great tool for mixing cold butter or shortening into a dry mixture. Super handy if you make your own pie crust. I love this tool! (Also: How to Make Gluten-Free Pie Crust + Regular Pie Crust)
PARCHMENT PAPER. Okay, it isn’t officially a “tool,” but parchment paper is one of the most versatile items in the kitchen. I use it to line all my baking pans (round, square, rectangle, bread, etc.). I almost never have trouble with sticking when I use parchment paper! One trick is to cut it so there’s a bit of overhang. That way, you can use the excess as “handles” to lift baked goods out of the pan. (PS – This is the one I use day-to-day (aka when I’m not shooting a video). It’s compostable and unbleached.)
SILICONE MAT. A silicone baking mat (sometimes called a Sil-pat or Silpat) is basically a reusable nonstick silicone mat you can use in place of parchment paper on a cookie sheet. I like using them when I want to control the spread of my baked goods (cookies don’t spread quite as much on a silicone baking mat as they do on parchment) and use it regularly for no-bake items (like my Healthy No Bake Cookies). Basically, I use it everywhere that parchment isn’t absolutely necessary!