Getting Started

You've put on your apron, reviewed your recipe and you're ready to go. You can almost taste the delicious creation you're about to bake. Before you dive in, keep these things in mind:

Preparing for Baking

  • Grease baking pan or dish only if the recipe directs. Apply a thin layer of vegetable shortening with a paper towel or lightly coat with no-stick cooking spray.
  • Use the back of a large spoon or your fingers to press stiff batters or doughs into the baking pan or dish. Use a spatula to evenly spread moist batters.
  • Use your fingers to pat oatmeal or crumb crusts onto the bottom and sides of a baking pan or dish.

Baking and Testing for Doneness

  • Preheat oven 10-15 minutes before inserting the baking pan. Check oven temperature with an oven thermometer.
  • For more even baking, position oven rack in the center and bake only one baking pan at a time. If you must bake two pans, space racks so the oven is divided into thirds and switch pans top to bottom and back to front halfway through baking.
  • When testing for doneness, your best guides are time and appearance - be sure to follow the recipe instructions.