This is Part II to the continuing saga of deciding which kitchen items will make the cut to be placed on my (and perhaps your) wedding registry.
I’m hoping that YOU can take away some inspiration or get some ideas from this article to help you plan your registry list. To read part 1 (cookware) of this odyssey go here.
Although I cook more than I bake, there are few things I find more relaxing than spending a Sunday morning baking scones for brunch. I also love showing up to work with containers of cookies for all my coworkers; there’s no better way to say “Happy Monday!”
Not to mention, baking tools and ingredients are some of the most fun things to buy. More than once I’ve found myself walking out of a department store with funky things like a football-shaped cake pan or adorable printed mini-cupcake tin liners.
Before I attempt to tuck anything else like that into my little remaining storage space, I want to make sure my kitchen has got the baking basics. My registry is the perfect place to start!
A standard baking dish is a very basic but multi-purpose piece of bakeware. This will be what any recipe for brownies, bars, or crumbles calls for. You’ll also find it comes in handy for things like scalloped potatoes, dinner rolls, or just baking chicken drumsticks.
Tons of recipes call for these kinds of dishes, so make sure this is on your registry if you don’t have one already. In fact, it’s good to get these in a couple different sizes, and bonus points if you can find them with lids!
What to buy: If you want something that’s strictly practical, get the Pyrex Easy Grab 8-Piece Value Pack. They come with lids so you can transport or store food easily and are dishwasher safe.
However, I really love this Rachel Ray Stoneware Oval Bubble & Brown Baker Set! It comes in many different colors and serves all the purposes of standard baking dishes, but they’re pretty so you can serve right from them!
I’m thinking a set or two in my college’s colors would be fun for serving dips and nachos on game days.
Apple pie fresh from the oven with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream makes me oh so very happy inside. It’s even better served in a gorgeous, cheery pie dish. You can go with a standard glass pie dish, but a colorful one would be a lot more fun!
In fact, maybe I’ll get a few pretty ones and a couple of glass ones, so I’m prepared for all occasions. Thank you for walking through my decision-making process with me. Pie dishes also come in handy for breakfast dishes like clafoutis and german pancakes, so you can make the ultimate Sunday brunch at home!
What to buy: Fiesta 10 1/4-Inch Deep Dish Pie Baker. This falls in the pretty pie dish category. It’s a standard size and you could get a few in different colors. They’d even double as serving dishes for things like cookies, they’re so pretty!
Cake pans are an obvious kitchen staple. Right now I have a mismatch of different sizes found at garage sales, and it’d be nice to have a matching set so my layered cakes don’t look quite so funky.
Standard recipes for cakes usually for 8 or 9 inch cake pans, and since most cake recipes make two layers, it’d be nice to have two of each. I’m less concerned with these pieces being pretty, since no one will see them anyways.
I’m really looking for something functional that’ll produce evenly baked cakes and be easy to clean.
What to buy: I ended up choosing the Wilton Aluminum Performance Pans. Wilton is a great company to get baking products from. This Wilton Aluminum Performance set will give you great heat distribution so no need to worry about half the cake baking more quickly than the other half.
Another kitchen staple. Cupcakes are widely regarded as one of the most fun treats to bake. I mean, they’re mini cakes, they’re bound to be adorable!
Truly the perfect dessert for feeding a crowd, I’m even considering them for the dessert at our wedding. You can get creative with cupcake pans, too: think individual quiches, mini deep-dish pizzas, or cookie bowls to serve ice cream in!
Even if you’ve already got a cupcake pan, consider getting a jumbo muffin pan or mini cupcake pan for a little variety!
What to buy: Wilton managed to win me over again, so I added the Wilton Recipe Right Nonstick 12-Cup Regular Muffin Pan to my registry. Make sure to get a set of two so you can prep a pan while the other is baking. These Wilton Recipe Right Nonstick Muffin Pans are nonstick so they’re a bit easier to clean, extra important since it can be hard to get the crumbs out of the nooks and crannies.
Just in case you can’t get it all, though, it’s dishwasher safe! They come in several different sizes, including mini, because cupcakes can get even smaller.
Make sure your kitchen is stocked with at least two standard loaf pans. You’ll need them for zucchini bread and lots of other baked goods, and even things you wouldn’t have thought of, like meatloaf.
If you’ve already got a standard set, look at something a little more fun like extra long pans or a whole pan with mini loaf tins! Just like my cake tins, I’m looking for something that’ll distribute heat evenly and be easy to clean.
What to buy: Wilton Recipe Right Standard Loaf Pan. Make sure you get the two pack, it’ll make your baking a lot easier! These Wilton Recipe Right Loaf Pans are very well reviewed and described as being easy to clean. If you do want to go for something a little different, try this Baker’s Secret Nonstick Petite Loaf Pan. Perfect for baking lots of little loaves to give out as gifts!
Baking Sheets & Cooling Racks
I use rimmed baking sheets for so much more than baking cookies in my kitchen (although this happens a lot, too). They’re great for making sweet potato chips, roasting chicken thighs, and baking a lot of veggies at once. Have at least two good quality baking sheets in your kitchen and a few large cooling racks for those hot cookies and crispy chips.
What to buy: I’ve used and loved the Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Commercial Sheets before, and I can’t wait to have a few more. Aluminum is excellent for baking because it distributes heat so evenly and these commercial grade baking sheets will last a long time. I’m going to get two “big sheets” and a “half sheet” so I have a few different choices. Read our complete review of these superb Nordic Ware pans.
For your cooling racks, try these Baker’s Secret 10×16 Inch Nonstick Cooling Racks.
Although I’ve been known to use a glass to roll out my bread, a solid rolling pin is much safer and easier to use. They aren’t a tool that’s needed often, but you’ll appreciate having one on hand when you do get that late night craving for sugar cookies.
You may or may not know this, but there are lots of different options for rolling pins out there: marble, wooden French rolling pins, and just plastic. I love wooden French rolling pins for their simplicity and light weight. The marble rolling pins are great, but they’re difficult to use and even harder to store.
What to buy: JK Adams Maple French Rolling Pin. This rolling pin has a metal rod to give you a little more leverage when rolling out your doughs, but it still retains the light weight of a French rolling pin. The JK Adams Maple French Rolling Pin is also easy to clean, my favorite kitchen product attribute!
My fiancé and I love pizza. Like really, really love it. We would eat it every night if we could and not gain a hundred pounds. Dang pre-wedding diet. Although pizza makes a great meal for delivery on those lazy nights, I really like making my own every now and then and for that you really need a pizza stone.
Homemade pizza dough always tastes better (and is better for you!) and it’s fun to top it yourself. Using a pizza stone has changed my homemade pizza game.
Now there’s no question, my pizza is far superior than anything that comes in a cardboard box. The one I have was bought with a college student’s budget and is on it’s last leg, so I’m looking for a bit of an upgrade for my registry.
What to buy: Although traditional pizza stones are ceramic, my love of cast iron has me eyeing this Lodge Pro-Logic Cast Iron Pizza Pan. I know that the heat retention of cast iron would produce some perfect pizzas.
If you want to stick with traditional ceramic, try this Wilton Perfect Results Ceramic Pizza Stone.
When I was twelve years old, I had creme brûlée for dessert at a fancy restaurant my parents took me to for the first time. Ever since that magical moment, creme brûlée has been my favorite dessert. There’s nothing better than cracking the caramel topping to find creamy custard, even better with a berry compote.
Unfortunately, I don’t have any ramekins, so no creme brûlée has been torched in my kitchen. Yet. Ramekins are great for all kinds of custard, individual fritattas, our individual fruit crisps. These are definitely making it on to my registry!
What to buy: Norpro 6 Piece Porcelain Ramekin Set. A 6-piece set should be enough to serve a small dinner party, but if you usually throw bigger shindigs, buy two sets or get something a little bigger.
My fiancé’s favorite dessert is cheesecake. I’ve got to hand it to him, the rich creaminess of a good cheesecake definitely makes it a contender for a top five spot in my favorite desserts. Unfortunately, this isn’t something I’ve been able to properly make at home because I don’t have a set of springform pans.
A springform pan is a cake pan with removable sides, which most cheesecake recipes and several other cake recipes will call for. They’re great because they have much higher sides than traditional cake pans, so they’ll give you a bit more variety with your baking.
What to buy: Wilton Perfect Results 3-Piece Springform Set. I like this three piece set because it’ll allow me to make a small cheesecake for my fiancé and I or a larger cake to feed a crowd. The Wilton Perfect Results Springform Set is also super easy to clean and store because they stack in each other.
Have you ever had a madeleine? Madeleines are French spongey, buttery cookies shaped like shells, and they are absolutely delicious. You can make them in a variety of flavors and dip them in icing or melted chocolate. You can’t just bake them on a cookie sheet, though. They require a special mold, but I promise they’re well worth it!
What to buy: Freshware 18-Cavity Silicone Madeleine Pan. Silicone is super nonstick which is what these cookies need. It’s also dishwasher safe!
This is another piece of bakeware you won’t necessarily use often, but is good to have on hand when you come across that need-to-bake recipe. I don’t have one yet and am super excited to add this to my collection! Bundt cakes are some of the most beautiful cakes out there and make an even prettier presentation for parties, likes baby or bridal showers.
In fact, we have a delicious bundt cake recipe of our very own here at Foodal of lemon, rosemary, and goat cheese frosting. Check it out…it could be the perfect choice for a rustic-themed wedding!
What to buy: Nordic Ware Platinum Collection Heritage Bundt Pan. This pan comes in several different shapes and I have my eye on the spiral. Can you imagine the gorgeous cakes?!
Cake Decorating & Miscellaneous
Cake decorating supplies aren’t strictly “bakeware”, but if you’re going to invest in some of these pieces, you might as well make sure you’ve got the tools to make the most of them! These can be used for decorating cakes, cupcakes, dessert breads, cookies, and whatever else you feel like getting creative with.
Good quality pastry bags and tips that are easy to clean are handy to have around. If you don’t bake a lot, start with a simple set that you can add compatible tips to later on. You should also include an offset spatula for spreading frosting.
It’s nearly impossible to get a smooth cake (if that’s what you want) without one. If you’d like to experiment with making candy, which is fun and so much easier than you’d think, you’re also going to need a candy thermometer.
How great would that Upside Down Apple Cake be with some caramel drizzled over the top? These thermometers come in handy for a lot more than just candy making, though, so make sure your kitchen has one regardless
First published September 1st, 2014. Last updated March 9th, 2017
About Chelsea Miller
Chelsea Miller, born and raised in Portland, Oregon, graduated from the University of Oregon where she discovered both her love of football and cooking great food. She's the founder of the food blog "A Duck's Oven" and began writing for Foodal in 2014.