Wax paper is environmentally unsustainable, and aluminum foil is under attack with controversial health claims, but a new trend seems very safe and loaded with perks. Silicone baking mats are flexible, lightweight, non-stick mats made of fiberglass cores embedded in silicon rather than chemical catalysts and resins. Of course if the silicon surface is damaged, throw it out to avoid harmful fiberglass exposure. So you can’t use the mats for cutting, but you can for kneading and rolling dough, baking and roasting without oil, freezing fruits and desserts etc. They work with conventional ovens, toaster ovens, microwave ovens, and freezers.
Artisan Silicone Baking Mat
This is a two pack of mats measuring 16.5 inches by 11 inches. They have red borders and are free from PFOA and BPA. You can also use them for biscuits, candy and freezing. It is cleaned by gentle cloths. You can put them away flat or rolled, but don’t bend them to avoid damage.
The non stick abilities of these mats are not for every sticky food you can think of. Some buyers have said once the mats are stained and foods start sticking, they’re basically cheap disposables. A number of customers have said they had smoke issues with their mats, which is thought to be a limitation on the types of ovens that can handle this design of mat. Another shopper claimed their mats were falling apart. Someone said theirs were still fine after three months, except for a tomato sauce stain. Consider costlier durable quality mats.
Kitzini Silicone Baking Mat Set
This high quality Chinese baking mat can withstand temperatures up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. You can’t use these mats on oven grills without a baking tray, because the heat from the grill will damage the mat. The mats are fiberglass covered in silicone. The size of these two mats is 420 millimeters by 295 millimeters. They’re thicker than common silicone baking mats at 0.75 millimeters. The mats have different colored borders: blue and red.
A lot of buyers were most thrilled about not needing to buy disposable waxed baking paper anymore. These aren’t stain proof, for example one shopper claimed one of their mats was stained when barbeque sauce baked on it. You can’t wash them in dishwashing machines, which seems normal with silicone mats. These mats do seem to help spread heat better for baking foods. They’re great for leavening because the dough won’t stick to the silicone mat.
Silipat Silicone Baking Mat
These are the mats that so many people draw comparisons with. No surprise because these high quality baking mats are the originals, from the inventors of silicone baking mats. At the bottom it proudly features the bold font words: “made in France,” which are words most of us rarely see. The price is practically the same as the other two products reviewed here.
Uses the finest grade of food qualify silicone. Helps spread heat evenly, and many have experienced “perfectly” baked biscuits rather than some excessively baked ones. It withstands hotter temperatures than the other two products reviewed here, by a difference of up to 82 degrees Fahrenheit. It can also freeze as low as -40 degrees Fahrenheit, like the others. Silicone mats eventually stain, but these can be used provided they’re not damaged. One person said they know someone with an almost black Silipat mat, over a decade old.
What to Look For
More heat resistance is especially important to avoid destroying the mats, and providing a safety margin for durability. Silipat exceeded the other two top products by up to 82 degrees Fahrenheit, for more heat resistance. You don’t want to be baking with any type of silicone, Silipat have stated that they use the highest quality of food grade silicone.
They all had colored borders with translucent areas of fiberglass embedded in silicone for the inner mat. Price differences were practically negligible unless you’re willing to sacrifice quality to save a few bucks; a little tip: it’s not worth it. Baking paper has never been perfect against sticking, and silicone mats aren’t perfect at it either, but these mats are far better at non sticking then baking paper ever was. For health’s sake you don’t need to use extra oil or butter to lubricate your baking trays thanks to these mats.Was this article helpful?