The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Pan Sizes-Confused!

frumgirl1's picture

Pan Sizes-Confused!

I have Peter Reinhart's Whole Grain Breads cookbook. He says to use a 4x8.5" loaf pan but that a 4.5x9" "will also do." He does not give a depth. I cannot actually find these sizes of loaf pans for sale at least not in the type of pan I want to buy). What is the best size to go with?

I would also like to get a pullman pan but I have no idea what size to get. Any ideas?

Is inches squared a good way to figure out pan substitution? Or pounds of dough? Cup capacity of the pan?

These are probably very basic questions but I am new to this. I apologize if the answer should be just isn't clear to me though. If I'm going to buy a regular loaf pan AND a pullman pan I would like them to be the correct size for the recipes in this cookbook.

mrfrost's picture

What are the dimensions of your pan(s)?

It also depends on the shape/profile of the loaf you are satisfied with. If you want an impressive mushroom shaped loaf, use the smaller pan. If you like a more squared type loaf profile, use the larger pan. Personally, I usually end up determining pan size by the weight of the dough. I usually go with the 4½ x 8½" with up to about 24 oz of dough. Over about 24 oz, I go with a 9 x 5" pan.


clazar123's picture

Kind of like a Chef's knives-they each have their own. Bake a few times with a pan you like and figure out what works out best-recipe and weight-wise for that pan.

As I settled into making daily bread-the bread we eat every day for sandwiches and toast, I started thinking about the profile I wanted it to have, just as mrfrost suggested. I hated the shouldered, mushroom shaped loaves and loved widepan. Looking in my cabinets, I found a rectangular corning ware casserole that has become my favorite shape for all my bread.

Experiment and have fun.