I received the America’s Test Kitchen Family Baking Book for Christmas this year, and while leafing through it, I came across the “10 Baking Gadgets You Don’t Need.” First on the list was “silicone bakeware.”

What? Are you kidding? Nothing sticks to it! And … well ok, I’ll bite. Why not? “In our testing, we found that plastic doesn’t conduct heat very well and muffins and cakes did not brown properly.” I thought I’d try a test of my own, so this morning I made up a batch of banana chocolate chip muffins and made one half in my silicone bakeware and the other half in my trusty ol’ metal muffin pan.

 

muffins

The bottoms aren’t shown here, but the bottom of the muffin baked in the metal pan was nicely browned, while the bottom of the muffin baked in the silicone pan looked as pale and anemic as its top did. The sides of the silicone-pan muffin seemed almost burnt as well. That’s enough to convince me.

One thing I have found the silicone muffin pans good for, though, is freezing portions of chicken stock in pucks for easy storage. Other than that? I think I’m done with silicone.

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