Dr. Oetker Stories

Baking pans for every occasion

Different cakes require different baking pans. Our expert explains when to use which pan among the multitude of options and shares tips for successful baking.

Baking pans for every occasion

19.10.2023 Products and Services

Classic design, fancy eye-catcher or historical treasure - The right baking pan is an essential part of making a delicious cake - but finding the right option among the many different forms and designs is not always easy. In order to help clear some of the confusion, we have prepared a short overview of the most essential baking pans. Our baking expert Gudrun Schondelmaier from the Dr. Oetker test kitchen will also explain the right way of handling a baking pan, share her knowledge and offer some important tips. 

The Classics

Loaf and springform pans are the true multi-talents of the baking pan family, which make them a must-have for beginners. Ideal for pound cakes, bread-shaped desserts and even cold dishes, they are a kitchen essential among many households.

Layered or non-bake cakes of different sizes and cheese or apple cakes require the right springform pan. The ring-shaped “Gugelhupf” or bundt pan is another classic and can be used for a variety of cakes such as marble or citrus cake.

Different Baking pans from Dr. Oetker

Special designs and unusual treasures for advanced bakers

Anybody who has mastered the classics may want to try their hand at some of the more elaborate designs offered by Dr. Oetker, such as donut and bagel shapes, bundt pans with floral or creative patterns and many more.

A History of Dr. Oetker baking pans

Vessels for the preparation of food belong to the oldest tools of mankind at all. This also includes containers in which baking could be done. Since the 17th century, cooking utensils such as pans, pots or even baking pans made of metals such as cast iron or copper have been widely used in Central Europe. Later, enamel and aluminum were also added. Due to the mass production of the 19th century, baking pans could soon be found in almost every household.

Dr. Oetker started producing their own cooking and baking tools in the 1930s. Among the first of those products were baking scales, dough cutters and, of course, pans for baking and pudding. In addition, Dr. Oetker founded the Bielefelder Backgeräte Gesellschaft (in short, BBG), which produced all things necessary for the optimal baking experience at home. In later years, the product range even included electronic devices such as mixers, stoves and small ovens. 

From the 1950s and onwards, synthetics became more and more commonly used after achieving enormous success in the US market. Consequently, Dr. Oetker started using the new material. Soon pudding and baking tools in colorful renditions were added to the market and decorated the shelves at competitive prices.

Over the years, Dr. Oetker kept presenting new and fancy baking dishes. The series "Bielefelder Backwaren" was completely in a gold-colored look, which was right on trend for the 1970s. Each baking pan was named after a different queen in European history, for example “Elizabeth“ or “Margarete“. Of course the fancy forms were always accompanied by a suitable recipe from the Dr. Oetker test kitchen, which at the time was headed by the legendary Marie-Louise Haase.

Even more elaborate baking pan designs were published under the series “Dekoramik“, or decoramics in English. The term is a fusion of decorative and ceramics and alluded to the dual usage of the product. If not currently in use for baking, the pans could be repurposed into a fancy piece of wall décor. As another addition to this concept, the „Elsass“ series of 1987 brought traditional pottery of the Elsass region into German households – as always, with a matching recipe.

In 1987 Dr. Oetker handed their until then self-managed business of baking pan production over to a market companion. Since then, Dr. Oetker baking pans and tools are manufactured under license by a third-party supplier, while maintaining the quality standards expected of a production ”Made in Germany“.

Bielefelder Backformen and the Elsass series

Tips on handling baking pans from the Dr. Oetker test kitchen

As a member of the Dr. Oetker test kitchen and with years of experience under her belt, Gudrun Schondelmaier is a real expert on the subject of baking pans. 

Gudrun Schondelmaier from the Dr. Oetker test kitchen

Dear Ms. Schondelmaier, what makes Dr. Oetker baking pans so special?

The baking pan experts from Zenker in Aichach, Bavaria, and the baking professionals from the Dr. Oetker test kitchen in Bielefeld together bring more than 250 years of expertise to the table. Since 2013, Zenker has been producing baking molds and kitchen aids that make the hearts of amateur bakers beat faster as part of a licensing agreement for Dr. Oetker. From Gugelhupf to springform or loaf pans - our baking pans, made in Germany, stand for the highest product quality. In close cooperation and with great attention to detail, a wide variety of baking and kitchen aids are created at the highest level of quality.

In fact, every Dr. Oetker baking pan and every kitchen gadget is tested in practical use. The baking and release behavior of a baking pan is tested in top and bottom heat as well as in hot air. Attention is also paid to cleaning, which should be as easy as possible. The best tip here is to soak the baking pan with a little water immediately after loosening the pastry. The suitability of all Dr. Oetker kitchen aids for the applications indicated on the packaging is tested and, if necessary, optimized in exchange with Zenker. For this quality assurance, a special logo was created for the packaging.

Was makes a good baking pan?

In terms of the product material: The uniform heat conduction of the material and good non-stick properties of the surface and heat resistance up to 230 °C. are among the most important features a good baking pan should possess. Other than that, the right care is essential for the longevity of the pan. Putting it in the dishwasher will affect the properties of a non-stick baking pan.  Enameled can be cleaned in the dishwasher but are easily breakable, similar to glass. Whatever the baking pan, its most important properties and care instructions can be found on its packaging as little icons, which make them easy to find and follow. For example, on the new cast aluminum baking pans.

The high quality standard of the materials is also reflected, for example, in the muffin paper baking cups and silicone baking molds. Dr. Oetker muffin molds leave no color residue in the finished baked goods and for the silicone baking molds we use food-safe platinum silicone.

Which baking pan is a must-have for any household?

That is not an easy question to answer because it depends on each person’s individual baking preferences. However, springform, loaf and muffin pans are a must-have in my opinion. Rectangular springform pans, often including a cover for easy transportation, are also a popular choice at the moment because they can easily be used to bring pastries to, for example, picnics or parties. 

In order for the cake to succeed, what needs to be taken into account when handling a baking pan?

For a great baking result, the correct preparation of the baking pan is one of the decisive factors. A common mistake is the conclusion that a non-stick coating means that greasing the pan is no longer necessary. Whether you only grease the pan or also spread it depends on the recipe and the baking pan. Strongly shaped molds require more care in preparation, but give a great look in the end. This is always taken into account in our recipes. If the customer follows the recipe instructions of the Dr. Oetker test kitchen, nothing can really go wrong. So I hope you enjoy discovering our wide range of products!