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Have you ever been perplexed as to why you can’t seem to bake the same loaf of bread twice? One day it’ll come out of the oven perfectly crisp and fluffy… And the next, totally deflated and sad.
While there can be many culprits in the making of a less-than-awesome loaf of bread, there’s one in particular that often goes unrecognized. Can you guess what it is?
Truth be told, your loaf pan can make all the difference between a successfully fluffy loaf of bread with a crisp and flaky crust, or a dense and chewy lump of cooked flour.
Baking is a demanding enough science without needing to obsess over every detail of your equipment, though — and that’s why we’ve gone to the trouble of sorting through the options of loaf pans out there today.
In this review, we’ll be covering how to choose the best loaf pan before giving you a complete rundown of 9 different styles of them, with pros and cons based on their materials and value for the price. So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started!
Here are the best loaf pans you can buy:
- Best Overall - USA Pan 1140LF Bakeware Aluminized Steel Loaf Pan
- Runner Up - AmazonBasics Nonstick Carbon Steel Baking Bread Pan
- Best Premium Loaf Pan - USA Pan 1140LF-SW-W Stoneware Loaf Baking Dish
- Best Mini Loaf Pan - Rachael Ray Bakeware Meatloaf/Nonstick Baking Loaf Pan
- Best Meatloaf Pan - Rachael Ray Bakeware Meatloaf/Nonstick Baking Loaf Pan
- Best Single Serving Loaf Pan - Wilton Perfect Results Non-Stick Mini Loaf Pan
- Best Silicone Loaf Pan - SILIVO Silicone Cake Pan
For the complete product list, please continue reading...
Top 9 Best Bread Loaf Pans Reviews
1. Best Overall - USA Pan 1140LF Bakeware Aluminized Steel Loaf Pan
8.5 x 4.5 x 2.75 inch measurements
1, 1.25, or 1.5 pound capacity
Corrugated surface for even baking and easy release
“Americoat” nonstick coating
Made of aluminized steel
With over 50 years of business in the bakeware field, USA Pan is the archetypal loaf pan. If you’ve ever been helping to clean out your parents’ or grandparents’ kitchen during the holidays, you’ve likely ran into one of their extremely long-lasting pans.
Available in 1, 1.25, or 1.5 pound sizes, the USA Pan can be chosen to fit your exact recipe needs. Their corrugated surface design helps to encourage airflow, making for evenly baked breads with a smooth, quick release; add a silicone coating to that, and you’ve got a fantastically nonstick pan.
Based out of Pittsburgh, PA, these loaf pans have a legendary reputation for good reason: They’re extremely well designed, and when properly cared for, will last forever. We love them in our own kitchen, and can strongly recommend them for yours.
2. Runner Up - AmazonBasics Nonstick Carbon Steel Baking Bread Pan
9.25 x 5 x 3 inch baking area
Carbon steel construction
AmazonBasics 1-year warranty
Set of 2
Ahh, leave it to everybody’s favorite online retail giant to make the most cost-effective loaf pan around! You’ll be well-equipped to bake big quantities of bread with this one, as they’re only sold in sets of two…
Carbon steel construction gives them very quick heating times, making for even browning across the sides and bottom of all your loaves. They’re smooth and simply designed, with a nonstick coating that’s absolutely excellent — unless you use them in an oven over 500 degrees, after which the non-stick will degrade quickly.
The tradeoff for the absolutely bargain-basement prices on these bake pans? You’ll need to hand wash them to keep their nonstick coating in good shape. With the AmazonBasics 1-year warranty, though, this doesn’t seem quite so bad after all.
3. Best Premium Loaf Pan - USA Pan 1140LF-SW-W Stoneware Loaf Baking Dish
Handcrafted from Tennessee clay
Non-stick silicone coating
Oven safe to 450 degrees
Okay, so — we love USA Pan. Their classic aluminium steel loaf pan has been our go-to for years, but their ceramic? Just as good… Maybe even better. In fact, it’s the only stoneware loaf pan that made our list.
Handcrafted from clay mined in Tennessee, the USA Pan stoneware takes a little bit more caution to use effectively: Don’t use it in ovens over 450 degrees, and be sure to never put it in the dishwasher.
If that sounds kind of high maintenance, that’s because it is. So why would we be such big fans of this loaf pan? Simple: It’s the most even-heating pan on our whole list, consistently producing perfectly golden-brown loaves of bread with perfect texture. It’s truly the Rolls Royce of loaf pans.
Oh, and to top it all off, it’s silicone-coated for complete nonstick capability. That and a 3-year warranty from USA Pan more than make up for the little bit of extra time you’ll need to put into using it well.
4. Best Mini Loaf Pan - Wilton Recipe Right Non-Stick Mini Loaf Pan Set
5.75 x 3 x 2.5 inches each
All steel construction
Baking one large loaf of bread is awesome — if you’re just cooking for yourself and your family, and if you’re only cooking with one flavor or recipe in mind. But if you’re looking to bake bread as gifts or try out a variety of recipes, having a series of smaller loaf pans can come in very handy, indeed.
Wilton’s set of 3 mini loaf pans conveniently equates to the size of one larger, standard-size pan… Meaning that you can simply divide one larger recipe into three pans, and have one loaf of bread to keep and two to share. While this may mean slightly less rise in each loaf, they’ll also bake quicker and brown more evenly than in a large pan.
They’re all dishwasher safe… But it’s still recommended to give them a soak and wash to get any residues off before finishing them in the dishwasher. Not bad, but not perfect for our purposes.
Solidly built from pure steel, all 3 pans are finished with a durable nonstick coating. Add a ridiculous 10-year warranty to that, and you’ve got a set of loaf pans that’s going to last you for a very, very long time!
5. Best Meatloaf Pan - Rachael Ray Bakeware Meatloaf/Nonstick Baking Loaf Pan
Two-piece design: Standard loaf pan and removable meatloaf insert
Non-stick coating safe to 450 degrees
It may not be immediately clear, but not all loaf pans are made for meatloaf. Materials like carbon steel and iron have a tendency to react poorly with the ingredients in most meatloaf recipes — both corroding the pan, and imparting a metallic flavor to the finished loaf.
So when we’re looking for a loaf pan specifically for meatloaf, it’s gotta be made out of a material like steel… And coated with a powerful non-stick lining.
The Rachael Ray Bakeware loaf pan has both of these things, but that’s not what makes it our best meatloaf pan. That honor goes to the removable insert, equipped with wide handles as well as drainage holes. It makes baking meatloaf a breeze, and is definitely worth getting if you’re a fan of this classic American dish.
6. Best Single Serving Loaf Pan - Wilton Perfect Results Non-Stick Mini Loaf Pan
3.8 x 2.5 inch loaf cavities (8 in total)
If you’re not from the South, you may not know what these curious little 8-loaf pans are really for: Cornbread! A perfect option for baking anything on the sweeter side, mini loaf pans like this can make a large enough batch of single-serving loaves for a whole family.
Now, don’t go thinking that you can bake just any bread recipe in this loaf pan. You’ll need to find a recipe specifically made to be baked this small, or else you’re more likely to end up with 8 little hockey pucks rather than bread loves.
Steel construction, a non-stick coating, and being dishwasher safe all put this pan from Wilton in our good graces… But its 10-year warranty definitely ups the ante. Is it perfect for everyone? No. But, for recipes that need smaller loaves, it’s the perfect choice.
7. Best Silicone Loaf Pan - SILIVO Silicone Cake Pan
2 piece set
8.9 x 3.7 x 2.5 inches
100% food grade silicone
Are you seriously annoyed by having to clean a loaf pan? Or perhaps a dedicated proponent of only using a dishwasher for everything? If so, there’s a loaf pan that might be just right for you… And it’s made of silicone.
Yes, the same material that’s applied as a coating to other well-rated loaf pans can be the entire dish, making for the absolute easiest cleanup possible. And in case you didn’t know, silicon is entirely odor free, making these loaf pans an excellent option for baking cakes and other sweet treats.
While things like cobbler and rice krispy treats really shine in these silicone loaf pans, you might want to think twice about baking a loaf of bread in them. While it will produce decent results, the lack of heat retention in the material just doesn’t produce the same quality of bread as a metal, glass, or ceramic loaf pan.
8. Best Glass Loaf Dish - Pyrex Bakeware 1-1/2-Quart Loaf Dish
8.5 x 4.5 x 2.5 inches baking space
Oven, microwave, dishwasher, and freezer safe
1.5 quart capacity
Made in the USA
While there are a lot of options for glass baking dishes available, only Pyrex has the name and reputation to really get our attention for a loaf pan. And really, there are a lot of benefits to a glass loaf pan — if you can get over their fragility in comparison to metal.
Yes, the only real reason this loaf pan isn’t our top pick is because of our own clumsiness. When you’re busily preparing dinner, the last thing you want to think about is whether you might bump a piece of your equipment too hard and break it…
Other than that, though, this dish is amazing: Safe for the microwave, oven, dishwasher, and freezer, it’s naturally non-stick by virtue of being made of glass. What’s more, the glass won’t leach any odd flavors or tastes into food — making it a perfect option for meatloaf where other metal pans might cause problems.
9. Best Cast Iron Loaf Pan - Camp Chef Home Seasoned Cast Iron Bread Pan
Heavy duty cast iron construction
Decorative molded cast iron handles
11 x 5.2 x 2.5 inch pan
Weighs 3 pounds
We’ve saved a particularly niche pick for last: How about baking bread loaves in the most old-timey way possible? For that, you’ll need the Camp Chef cast iron bread pan — a rather specific product, but one that we have to admit makes absolutely delicious bread!
Cooking in cast iron is definitely a “love it or hate it” affair. If you don’t mind babying your cookware, the constant seasoning of cooking will continue to add layers of flavor to everything you make. It’s important to note here, though, why this pan is only for bread: Cast iron will react badly with any sort of acidity, a common flavor found in many other baked recipes.
Thankfully, you can skip the lengthy seasoning process for your loaf pan with this product; it’s pre-seasoned and ready right out of the box. So, if you’re feeling adventurous — give it a try! We’re sure you’ll be impressed with the flavor of your first loaf of bread out of this pan.
There’s a loaf pan out there for every specific need and desire that you might have, but our top choice still goes to the USA Pan’s aluminum steel version. It’s classic Americana at its best: Rugged, durable, and highly functional. We strongly recommend picking one up for your kitchen — you won’t regret it!
Thanks for reading today, and we hope this review answered all of your loaf pan questions. Best of luck with all your baking adventures!
How to Choose the Best Loaf Pan
You can make baking bread loaves so much easier on yourself by picking the right baking pans and loaf pan for your kitchen. Consider each of these qualities when choosing your loaf pan:
Most loaf pans come in a size that accommodates a standard 1-pound bread recipe, with measurements around 9x5x3 inches. Stick with this size for all-purpose use, but consider small or mini loaf pans if you’re baking bread as a gift… Or a larger pan for meatloaf.
So what’s the risk in choosing the wrong size of pan? If you use a larger pan, your bread may take longer to bake than expected — and not turn out with the same amount of rise. For smaller pans, be sure to reduce your oven time; they’ll bake faster than a larger pan.
While aluminum has been the most widely used material for loaf pans for decades, it’s definitely not the only one out there. For maximum heat retention and crispier crusts, ceramic or cast iron may be a better choice. But if it’s complete non-stick that you’re looking for, a specially coated pan or one made of silicone will definitely work best.
Nonstick or No?
There’s nothing more disappointing than putting in the time and effort to make a beautiful loaf of bread… Only to have it get torn apart because of sticking to your pan. That’s why we always recommend pans with at least a non-stick coating — and to oil your pans before use, anyway. Doubling down on non-stick will ensure a successful loaf.