Buying Guides Best Kitchen Items

One Simply Terrific Thing: Precut Parchment Paper

It's a small thing, but it makes a big difference. Precut parchment paper for sheet and cake pans is a time-saving, annoyance-busting product that is worth having in the kitchen.

I have a confession: I get inordinately annoyed every time I have to use a roll of parchment paper.

The problems:

  • The roll never tears cleanly.
  • I always over- or under-estimate the amount needed to cover a sheet pan.
  • The roll wants to win at all costs. You want the paper to lie flat on the pan? Good luck with that.
  • The trace-and-cut method for cake pans leaves scraps that aren't sized for anything useful, so I have to throw them away.
  • Speaking of which, it's just a hassle to measure and cut parchment paper! And I always think I do a poor job of it, too.

Anyone else feel this way?!

The answer to this frustration is simple: precut parchment paper.

You can get them sized for half sheet pans and 8" or 9" cake pans. For the sheet pan size, I love the precut parchment from King Arthur ($24.99 for 100 sheets). They're more expensive than other brands on Amazon, but they're made in the USA and each sheet can be used three or four times (great for back-to-back cookie baking sessions!).

I've also tried and like these precut parchment sheets from Baker's Signature ($13.95 for 100 sheets). They are thinner than the King Arthur parchment sheets, so better suited for single use baking, but otherwise they're a great value.

For cake pan parchment rounds, I've used both these 9-inch cake pan rounds from Zenology ($7.99 for 50 sheets) and the 9-inch cake pan rounds with tabs from Baker's Signature ($9 for 120 sheets).

Both pulled cleanly away from cakes when I made them, but the Zenology round fit perfectly into my 9-inch USA Pan cake pan, while the Baker's Signature round was a tad big and didn't sit flat in the bottom of the pan. It didn't affect how my cake turned out, but if you're buying pre-cut parchment, a perfect fit is part of what you're looking for. But the pull tab is a nice feature.

All told, I don't see myself going back to parchment rolls anytime soon.