Ever since social distancing began, baking experts and novices alike have been coming out of the woodwork to show off their skills. After all, there’s nothing like the feeling of pride after baking a beautiful cake or a warm batch of cookies. If this feeling speaks to you, now is a great time to bake. Whether you’re looking to discover new treats, fine-tune your baking skills, or simply learn the ins and outs of baking as a beginner, we can help.          

Our cooking experts are always testing kitchen tools to find the best ones for everything, including baking delicious goods. From stand mixers to mixing bowls to pie dishes, these are the six tools we recommend to to take your culinary skills to the next level. For more excellent tools, head to Reviewed to see all of our top baking recommendations.

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1. The best stand & hand mixer

Quality stand and hand mixers can save you a whole lot of time and physical labor. The KitchenAid Artisan 5-Quart Stand Mixer has been a staple in homes for years and is loved by many (including Julia Child herself!) for not only its distinct look and vibrant colors, but because it’s the highest-performing stand mixer that money can buy. We proved this when we tested the KitchenAid against other popular stand mixers and it came out on top.

If you don’t want to spend the money on a KitchenAid, as they are quite pricey, a hand mixer is a great alternative. Our top pick that we tested is the Cuisinart Power Advantage Plus 9-Speed Hand Mixer with Storage Case

2. The best mixing bowls

Whether you’re throwing all of your ingredients together or mixing them thoroughly, you need a reliable bowl. When we tested mixing bowls, we found the Cuisinart Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls to be our top choice. They’re light enough to move around easily and with one hand, but they have enough weight to hold them in place when you require minimal movement. Not to mention, they come with very convenient air-tight plastic lids so each bowl doubles as a storage container. 

Get the Cuisinart Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls with Lids, Set of 3 from Walmart for $43.49

3. The best measuring cups & spoons

Baking is a science that requires the utmost precision. That’s why you need to use the best measuring tools. Unfortunately, the best measuring cups we tested are sold out (they are by Bellemain). However, our runner-up, the KitchenMade 6-Piece Stackable Measuring Cup Set, is almost identical to the Bellemain cups, and is still in stock. We love this set for its precision, convenient stacking feature, and the fact they come in half-sizes. For liquid measuring cups, we prefer the Pyrex Prepware 2-Cup Measuring Cup, and for measuring spoons, our favorite is the Cuisipro Stainless Steel Measuring Spoon Set.

4. The best pie dish

To make a great pie, you need a great pie dish. There’s nothing worse than pouring your heart and soul into a homemade pie, just to have the aesthetic ruined by an aluminum foil pie tin. The best pie dish we tested is the Emile Henry Modern Classics Pie Dish. We loved it because of its perfect depth that allows for heaping fillings, plus it’s beautiful. It comes in various colors and the ruffled top adds to its appeal.

Get the Emile Henry Modern Classics Pie Dish from Houzz for $38.38

5. The best loaf pan

Everyone seems to be making loafs of bread while quarantined. If you’re lucky enough to come across flour in these trying times, you need a good loaf pan to help you make some tasty banana bread (or whatever floats your boat!). Our pick for a loaf pan is the Rachael Ray Yum-o! Nonstick Oven Lovin’ Loaf Pan. It’s roomy, has silicone inserts that make gripping it easier, and the non-stick works time after time.

Get the Rachael Ray Yum-o! Oven Lovin’ Loaf Pan from Home Depot for $11.99

6. The best baking sheet

A good baking sheet is essential, whether you’re reheating fries or baking a fresh batch of cookies. You need a sheet that’s large, distributes heat evenly, and is easy to clean. That’s why we like the Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Half Sheet. It does all of those things, plus it’s lightweight and will last you for ages. 

Get the Nordic Ware Natural Aluminum Half Sheet from Sur La Table for $36.95

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Prices were accurate at the time this article was published but may change over time.

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