One of the best ways for frugal families to save money is to cook budget-friendly meals at home. Without the right tools, however, you'll be limited in the types and quality of the meals you put on the table. A good set of bakeware is one such essential tool for your kitchen. Check out these three tips for buying bakeware for your frugal family.
Invest in quality
While it can be tempting to buy cheaper bakeware, it is highly recommended that you resist the urge and save up for good quality bakeware. Because cheap bakeware needs to be replaced as the non-stick coating deteriorates or the tray buckles, you will save money by investing in high-quality bakeware. You may even find that cooking and clean-up is easier with good-quality bakeware. The results will also be better with good bakeware, as heavy-based baking dishes and cake tins distribute the heat evenly for superior cooking. Your frugal family will benefit from meals that rival expensive store-bought alternatives.
Buy essentials as you need
What is essential to your bakeware set will differ to another family's, so compile a set that suits your frugal family's baking needs. Rather than rushing out to buy a full set of expensive, high-quality bakeware, it is much more cost-effective and sensible to simply invest in bakeware pieces as a need arises. This way, you will ensure that the items in your bakeware collection are essential to your cooking requirements, and you'll avoid investing in pieces that you never use. Most frugal family kitchens will benefit from having good-quality baking sheets, a loaf pan, large rectangular baking pan, muffin tin, pie pan and a cooking rack. If you are a keen cake baker, you may want to also invest in a springform pan, bundt pan or even a soufflé dish.
Consider the materials and surfaces
Not all bakeware was created equal, and it is important to select the right materials for your bakeware needs. When purchasing baking sheets, cake pans and muffin tins, opting for light-coloured aluminium bakeware will ensure even browning and good heat conduction. Glass and ceramic are ideal materials for baking foods with low sugar content such as casseroles and other savoury dishes, and these pans double as attractive storage vessel. Silicone pans do not conduct heat very well, however they are the perfect non-stick solution for muffins that don't require much browning.
For assistance in selecting the right bakeware for your frugal family's kitchen, see your local bakeware suppliers for advice.