The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Baking Stones | What rack: Bottom or Next up from bottom

marc's picture

Baking Stones | What rack: Bottom or Next up from bottom

What rack does everyone place their baking stone on.

I have an electric oven and I usually place mine on the bottom rack. However, lately my Pain au Levain have been getting burned on the bottom. I'm doing 475 initial preheat then turning down to 450 after loading my loaves. 

ejm's picture

I don't think there is any hard and fast rule (except that there should be room for air circulation around the edges of the stone). You probably have to play with the placement.

Our electric oven is old and we put our stone on the middle shelf because of the problem of things burning on the bottom if the stone placed any lower.

And when baking any bread that has a significant amount of sugar in it (challah, cinnamon buns, etc. etc.) we always bake them on the TOP shelf.


Elagins's picture

when i bake pizza, the stone goes on the bottom shelf. i want that crust to cook fast at high heat, and the bottom shelf, just a couple of inches from the heating element, gives me that.

Stan Ginsberg

drhowarddrfine's picture

Same here. My bread burned on the bottom shelf but does well on the middle one.

Elagins's picture

i have a GE Monogram that goes up to 550 and I get best results when the stone is 2nd from bottom or middle shelf. actually, i have two stones, and generally keep one above, one below; also, preheat for at least an hour before, preferably two. the middle placement lets the stones get hot but cool significantly when the dough hits, while the upper placement concentrates heat on the crust, giving me much faster and deeper browning than when i put the baking surface stone closer to the bottom.

hope this helps.

Stan Ginsberg

ceo's picture

I used to keep my stone on the bottom deck of my cruddy old gas oven, which is great for pizza, and for breads turned out to be great for testing the smoke alarm. =:-O 1/4" of pure carbon on the bottom is not to my taste, so nowfor breads I put the stone in the upper-middle position. This also means I can put a heavy commercial half-sheet pan on the deck, which gives a nice blast of steam when I pour water into it. (The pan now looks like it's been run over by a truck, but is still serviceable.)