I recently did a post on Ribeye Steak vs Porterhouse Steak and I got so many great emails regarding the write-up that I thought I’d do a little write up on Silicone Baking Mats vs Parchment Paper.
What do you know about silicone baking mats? I remember years ago, before I went to culinary school, that silicone baking mats were the only way to go for me, the silicone baking mats were super easy to use, recyclable and my baked items turned out great every time. Once in the culinary world, I switched, only because of the volume of baking I was doing and not to mention the fact that it was super easy to bake and clean up. When I worked in the commercial kitchen, I primarily used the parchment paper, but we purchased parchment paper in volume so it was flat and I did not have to deal with the rolled stuff. We did use the silicone baking mats for certain cookies (like lace cookies) and a few more as the parchment just would not work as well for those kinds of cookies.
Here are a few key facts that I have found to be useful from Silicone to Parchment:
- They are super easy to wash
- Nothing sticks to them so you can ensure your cookies will all lift off super easy (we used to use silicone baking mats for our “lace” cookies as parchment paper would not work)
- They can withhold high heat
- They do not retain any odor
- You only buy them once and silicone mats are reusable
- They do not tend to roll up like parchment paper, and they are heavy weighted, so you do not have to worry about your dough lifting the mat, an example of this would be my Spritz Cookies, when doing piping, my dough would lift the parchment paper up
- The only thing I consider to be bad about the silicone mats…your one-time purchase cost. If you are an avid baker, it will pay for itself over time
- Super easy to clean up after baking, just throw the parchment paper way
- Bakes up your cookies evenly; usually, it retains more of the heat than the silicone baking mat so you may find your cookies brown up a little more
- Cookies do not stick to the parchment paper
- Since they are not reusable, you are using a clean sheet for every recipe, so there is no need to worry about odors
- The only thing I consider to be bad for the parchment paper is that you have to keep buying it, as they are not reusable. Also if you are buying the ones from the market, the parchment paper tends to roll up making. Also, the lifting of cookie dough is not ideal as well
I ended up making a batch of chocolate chip cookies, it was a new recipe for me, but I focused on keeping everything the same when it came to baking the chocolate chip cookies, except for the baking sheets. One one baking sheet I put the silicone baking mat and the other baking sheet I used parchment paper.
Here is how I got started…I put the silicone baking mat on one baking sheet and parchment on the other baking sheet
I then put the prepared dough on the silicone baking mat
As you can see they cooked up evenly, again the cookies were baked at the same temperature for the same amount of time. The only difference is, the silicone baking mat is a little lighter. When Kelsi came home with her friend, they found the one cooked on the silicone to be chewier and the one on parchment was a little crisp on the side with chewy on the inside.
So here is how it all stacked up…
I would advise you to purchase the silicone baking mat as it’s more versatile than the parchment paper. If you tend to bake often and you can afford to splurge on parchment paper, then I would tell you to purchase that. In conclusion, for me, it wasn’t that big of a difference to advise on one over the other, I think it is a matter of preference.
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Thank you again ~ Patty Limatola-Tanenbaum