Ceramic vs. Glass Bakeware: Which one is Better?

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When it comes to bakeware, the common perception is that ceramic is the preferred choice. Unravel some of the most widely accepted myths to find out if ceramic bakeware is truly better than glass.

Myth: Only Ceramic Bakeware Will Work For Certain Foods

Actually, the baking properties of these two materials are strikingly similar, making either choice ideal for:

  • Casseroles
  • Bread puddings
  • Pies
  • Cobblers
  • Savory dishes.

Some chefs even prefer glass when it comes to making pies!

Ceramic does have a slight edge when it comes to baking, as it heats more evenly than glass, which may get some hot spots. All in all, however, you can get great results with either material.

Myth: Ceramics Are More Versatile Than Glass

Quality ceramic and glass bakeware are both extremely versatile choices. Both are:

  • Multi-use: In addition to baking in them, you can use glass or ceramic bakeware for serving foods and storing them in the refrigerator or freezer.
  • Non-reactive: Ceramic and glass won’t react with acids in your foods. (Reactive materials such as some metal bakeware can leave an unpleasant taste in your food when used for storage.)
  • Microwave-safe: Reheat leftovers or steam vegetables in the microwave with either of these materials.
  • Dishwasher-safe: Toss either glass or non-porous ceramic bakeware in the dishwasher for easy, sanitary cleanup. (Porous ceramics still need to be hand-washed.)

While both of these materials have the potential to withstand a variety of temperatures and environments, always be sure to check the manufacturer’s instructions on your specific bakeware before putting in the freezer, dishwasher or microwave.

Myth: Ceramic Bakeware Is Safer Than Glass

This myth may contain a bit of truth:

  • Even though good quality glass bakeware is very durable, it still may chip or break if you drop it on a hard surface, producing sharp shards.
  • To be able to go from oven to fridge without breaking, you’ll need to buy oven-tempered glass bakeware. As an extra precaution, allow it to come close to room temperature before exposing it to extreme heat or cold.
  • Glass bakeware can shatter under rare conditions so you’ll always need to carefully follow manufacturer’s recommendations for use.

When it comes to lead exposure dangers, both ceramics and glass are equally potentially risky materials! To protect yourself:

  • Buy only glass and ceramic bakeware that has been tested and approved for cooking.
  • Look for a “lead-free” label.
  • Don’t store or cook food in glazed ceramics from other countries.
  • Wash new glass or ceramic cookware in soapy water before using.

Myth: Ceramics Are More Durable Than Glass

This is only partially true. Pyrex glass is pretty difficult to break; however it’s still more breakable than most ceramic bakeware. Glass does score high points for durability when it comes to appearance as it doesn’t generally scratch or discolor over time when cared for properly.

Myth: Ceramic Bakeware Is More Attractive Than Glass

This was certainly true many years ago when only plain, clear glass bakeware was available as opposed to the multitude of beautiful colors and patterns offered in ceramics. These days though, glass bakeware comes in lots of great colors to match any décor, including:

  • Cobalt blue
  • Cranberry pink
  • Rustic orange
  • Earthy brown.

Additionally, glass bakeware doesn’t even have to be transparent! You can even opt for a translucent glass or an opaque finish that looks very much like ceramic. If you’re style is more modern chic than traditional, chances are that a sleek glass pan will feel more at home in your kitchen than a ceramic piece anyway.

Ultimately, whether to buy ceramic or glass bakeware is just a personal choice. While glass on average is the less expensive option, prices are really relatively comparable. Remember when buying either material to only buy safety-tested, good quality bakeware that will safely bake your favorite recipes for decades, or perhaps even generations.




Last Updated: February 15, 2013
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About Roberta Pescow Roberta Pescow holds a bachelor's degree in communications from City University of New York, Queens College and is a freelance writer and editor in the NJ area. The author of "A Life In The Service" and "A Monster's Tears," she enjoys writing informative articles, personal essays, fiction and music.  Roberta is a proud mother of two. Her other interests include fitness, photography, sculpture and meditation. She is a voracious reader and holds a 2nd degree black belt in Tae Kwan Do. Roberta enjoys decorating her hectic, but happy home and garden in original and affordable ways.  

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