The world of mixing refined clay with water and placing that in a kiln is vast. Pottery has been around for tens of thousands of years and is still highly prevalent in today’s society, whether it’s used as art, used on your table, or used to bake. Many different materials can be used to make bakeware, whether that’s stoneware clay, earthenware clay, ceramic clay, or porcelain clay. These pottery materials have similarities, yet have unique components that make them either less or more superior to each other. While commonly talked about with regards to a dinnerware set, we’ll be examining these materials through a bakeware and baking dish lens. In this blog post, we’ll focus on stoneware versus porcelain, which is better, which is more durable, do they chip easily, and finally, which is ultimately better for baking? Continue reading to figure out what material you should be buying for bakeware and all of the benefits and negatives of each material.
Is stoneware or porcelain better?
What is a baking dish material you can trust? Believe us when we say porcelain is better than stoneware. Porcelain is the highest-quality bakeware material possible due to these attributes: thermal-shock resistance, their look and design, being microwave and dishwasher safe, even and gentle heating, and being entirely non-porous.
Stoneware is not thermal-shock resistant, resulting in cooking that has to be interrupted by waiting for your dish to come to room temperature to serve it. It also limits your cooking flow, as you can’t make dishes ahead of time. This also prevents you from being able to put your stoneware baking dish in the fridge and then right into the oven.
Another distinguishing feature between the two is the color and design. Porcelain is identifiable as a bright white color, that can only be achieved with true porcelain. Stoneware and ceramic baking dishes can be colored, and will often feature a full-bleed design. If you see color on porcelain bakeware, it is hand-painted or hand-designed, both features that make porcelain stand out.
If you have porcelain that is microwave and dishwasher safe, your life after you made your dish is much easier. The best bakeware material is microwave safe, allowing you to place your baking dish with the leftovers directly in the fridge at the end of the night and then simply reheat your baking dish in the microwave. This eliminates unnecessary dirty dishes and even allows you to serve your leftovers in a beautiful piece. And obviously, since doing the dishes is what people look forward to least at the end of the night, having a baking dish you can just toss in the dishwasher is extremely handy. But if you do choose to wash by hand, then you’ll be delighted to hear that porcelain baking dishes are naturally non stick thanks to their enameled surface.
Even and gentle heating should never be glanced over. Porcelain is oven safe up to 650F and heats extremely well. Stoneware is only able to take heat up to 450F. Porcelain’s heating characteristics allow your food to fully cook in one even layer, meaning that one part of your baking dish won’t heat quicker than the other. Porcelain bakeware means no burnt overcooked edges and no cold, undercooked centers.
And lastly, we have bakeware that is non-porous. Non-porous bakeware leads to safe baking and durability, as no water, bacteria, or food can break through the surface and leech itself into the body. Porcelain bakeware is entirely non-porous.
What is the most durable bakeware material?
The most durable bakeware material is porcelain. Made In’s Bakeware is made from a unique and proprietary blend of kaolin and silicate. This combination produces the highest-quality porcelain clay and is used only for high-performing bakeware made in France. The manufacturing process for our bakeware has been unchanged since its conception. All raw materials are sourced locally, and all of the molds are made in-house. The first firing of our bakeware pieces occurs at 1796F for anywhere between 15 and 18 hours. They then get put into an enamel bath and then baked again at a firing temperature of 2552F for 33-35 hours. All pieces then get sorted and go through a series of checks. They check to make sure the dimensions are right and that there is both thermic and mechanical resistance. If the pieces have a rim or need a design, it goes to actual people who hand-paint each piece. Once painted, it gets fired a third time at 2246F for 1 hour and 45 minutes. It gets put through dishwasher tests after that, which is one of the many quality-assurance checkpoints our bakeware goes through.
Having bakeware that is durable is one of the most important characteristics. Baking dishes should be able to withstand high temperatures, long exposure to heat, and thermal shock. That means being able to place your baking dish straight from the freezer or fridge into your oven or vice versa. This is essential for make-ahead dishes, like a crab and artichoke dip, brownies, or even for storing leftovers (plus you dirty one less dish!).
Another way to measure stoneware vs porcelain durability is to see how porous baking dishes are. If something is porous, it means that water, food, or bacteria can insert itself into the baking dish, causing it to either stain or absorb liquid, leaving it way more fragile and prone to breaking. Porcelain bakeware is entirely non-porous, making it the most durable option on the market.
Do stoneware baking dishes chip easily?
Both stoneware and porcelain baking dishes do not chip easily due to their high-firing temperature points. However, what sets porcelain apart from stoneware clay is that it is non-porous, making it the strongest bakeware material. Porcelain won’t chip easily, as it is fired twice, once at 1796F for anywhere between 15 and 18 hours, and then it’s fired again at 2552F for anywhere between 33 and 35 hours. Yes, that means that Made In’s porcelain bakeware is baked for over two days.
What’s better for baking, stoneware or porcelain?
Finally, when it comes to baking, there is a clear and obvious answer for which is better —porcelain bakeware.
Porcelain bakeware heats more evenly and is able to handle thermal shock, unlike stoneware. This even heating means that the center of your sweet dishes like cakes and brownies, and your savory dishes like roasts and gratins will be cooked evenly throughout. Say goodbye to burnt edges and cold centers. Porcelain bakeware is also one of the most beautiful pieces of bakeware you’ll ever come across, so it should be used as a serving piece.
In the end, when it comes to which material is best for bakeware, porcelain reigns supreme. It has the highest-performing attributes and is the most beautiful. Made In’s inaugural line of bakeware consists of a rectangular baking dish, square baking dish, and oval baking dish. It also features a hyper limited-edition Nancy Silverton Collection that features a navy floral design, which was created by her friend and 2X Grammy-nominated artist, Coco Shinomiya. When it comes to bakeware, buy pieces that will last for generations and are made in the heart of France. And don’t forget to preheat your oven.