All About Springform Pans
As far as kitchen tools go, a springform pan is a must-have for anyone who bakes or makes desserts. It's easy to use and easy to clean. It can be used for baking or freezing, the recipe comes out looking great, and best of all, it's easy to get the finished treat out of the pan without sticking.
If you've ever wanted to know about springforms pans then you have come to the right place. You'll find answers to the following questions:
- What is it?
- What do I use it for?
- How do I use it?
- Do I grease the pan?
- How do I line the pan?
- Will it leak?
- Can I use it instead of a cake pan?
- How do I clean it?
- What sizes does it come in?
- What can I use if I don't have one?
And if you have any questions that aren't answered here, then let me know in the Q & A section and I'll do my best to help out.
Have you ever used this type pan?
What is a springform pan?
A springform pan is a two piece baking pan. The outside rim, or collar, makes up the sides and has a latch on it which opens and closes and makes it easy to un-mold a baked cake or dessert without damaging the sides of it. The bottom is a flat circle which fits inside the rim snugly when the latch is closed.
The pan is deeper than regular cake pans which makes it more versatile for various recipes.
What is it used for?
This type of pan is primarily used for dishes that have higher sides and thicker doughs or crusts. Things that are traditionally made using a springform pan include the following:
Deep Dish Pizza
Ice Cream Cakes
Cakes with a thicker dough
Molded Pasta Dishes
How do you use it?
It's simple to use. Before adding the ingredients, make sure the pan is assembled correctly. If the base and sides are separated, put the base on a flat surface, put the ring around it, and latch it closed.
There is a small ridge at the bottom of the ring that the base fits into and when you latch it, the base automatically slips in.
Do a quick check by putting a little pressure on the base to make sure it's fitting correctly.
It's ready to use.
Do you need to grease the pan?
These types of pans should be greased when a recipe calls for it. They can also be lined with parchment paper, foil, or even plastic wrap, again depending on the recipe directions.
Some caution with this step though. Many springforms say they are non-stick, but that is not always the case. Ask anyone who's used one and they will tell you that there are many times when a cake sticks to the base, or part of a cake pulls away when the side is unlatched.
A good rule of thumb before opening the pan to get out the cake is to carefully run a thin knife around the perimeter of the pan and then slowly open it up, checking the sides while doing it.
Another useful trick, if it won't spoil a special recipe, is to spray a paper towel with a little bit of cooking spray and wipe it around the sides of the pan.
Will it leak?
Almost all springform pans will leak, some more than others. Many are sold saying they don't leak, but if a cheesecake is sitting in a water bath for an hour in the oven, chances are pretty good that a tiny bit of water will get in.
To avoid water getting in to the pan, loosely wrap a piece of foil around the base of the pan and make sure not to fill the water higher than the foil.
Also, if using a thin cake batter, it will probably leak through the bottom so avoid that.
Can you use a springform pan instead of a cake or pie pan pan?
These pans can be used instead of cake pans but with some important reminders. Thin doughs, like a boxed cake mix, will probably leak out of the bottom. Likewise, a pie with a runny filling can overflow and leak out of the bottom.
These types of pans are also deeper and the height may adversely affect the baking or browning.
Can you put it in the oven?
The beauty of a this pan is that it can be used in the oven, freezer or refrigerator.
How do you line the pan?
To line a springform pan, take the base out and lay a piece of parchment paper on top of it. Trace around the base, inside the little lip. Cut out the traced circle. Reassemble the pan and lay the cut out paper in the bottom.
To line the sides, measure the depth of the pan as well as the circumference and cut a strip of parchment paper to that size then wrap it around the inside of the pan. A little bit of cooking spray wiped on the inside will help the paper adhere to the sides.
Foil can also be used, but it is harder to cover up the sides of it. Cut a piece of foil that will be large enough to cover the bottom and bring up the sides. Fit it into the pan, trying to smooth it out as much as possible.
How do you clean it?
Follow the directions that came with it when cleaning. Normally the pan is washed using warm soapy water and then dried. Keep an eye out when cleaning the notch in base and latch as there are usually some crumbs that can be tough to clean out.
If crumbs are left in the notch in the bottom of the ring, the pan may not close properly the next time it is used.
What sizes do they come in?
Traditionally they come in 4", 6", 7", 8", 9" or 10" sizes. There are rounds ones, square ones, and even ones made out of silicone and they can be purchased individually or in sets.
What can you use if you don't have this type of pan?
Cake pans can be used if a springform pan is not available, but only for certain things.
Cakes, like the German Apple Cake pictured above, have a decorated top that could get ruined taking it out of a regular cake pan. Likewise, unless the plan is to serve a soft dessert, like cheesecake, directly from the pan, then a cake pan should not be used.
It's easier to use a substitute for a frozen dessert that is more solid because it will be easier to remove from the pan. Just keep the depth of the pan in mind.
Hopefully all of your questions have been answered. Springform pans really are an essential part of any kitchen. They open up a whole new way of cooking.