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Lasagna in a metal pan

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Will my lasagna turn out okay if it cooks in a metal baking dish? I understand that there are far better alternative, but it's either an undersized glass pan or a properly sized metal pan.

Thanks!

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  1. I use either aluminum or glass without a thought.
    No difference i can detect.
    Pan size is more important.
    dick

    1 Reply
    1. re: mr jig

      Glass to me works better ... however, my metal is a better size for one of my lasagnas, but my oversized cast iron is the best.

      I don't think you should worry, fine either or.

    2. jfood has made lasagne in various glass sized pans as well as a large roaster. the roaster was deeper and allowed for mor layers.

      other than that, not a problem with either pan.

      1. Heck yeah! More crispy bits on the sides in a metal pan.

        1. I've seen plenty of lasagnas made in metal roasting pans. How else are you gonna make a lasagna for 12 people??

          DT

          1 Reply
          1. re: Davwud

            I have a nice dish -- says "porcelain oven to table" on the bottom. No need to mention brand name....

          2. Sure! Those rectangular stainless steel pans with the noisy and HOT metal handles are called "lasagna pans", aren't they?

            Hmm, but I really don't understand why this one costs $120! (Maybe because the handles are not noisy, like mine.)
            http://www.crateandbarrel.com/family....

            1 Reply
            1. re: DeppityDawg

              I got a nice one (Pretty much the same) at Canadian Tire for $35. Same guage SS.

              DT

            2. Aluminum is a bad idea due to the tomato sauce. Stainless steel should be ok.

              24 Replies
              1. re: lgss

                I would agree with that but I can't help but think I've seen plenty of tomato based products cooked in the disposable aluminum roasters you get at the store. No??

                DT

                1. re: Davwud

                  Doesn't mean it's safe for consumption or that it won't contribute to health problems in the future...

                  1. re: lgss

                    It's pretty much impossible to prove that something won't cause you health problems in the future. Which means that you can always suggest ominously that it might turn out be dangerous, and you'll be right.

                    1. re: lgss

                      any basis other than fear for this statement?

                      1. re: jfood

                        Other than personal experience of metal toxicity?

                        1. re: lgss

                          i have noticed aluminum left on top of my cooked lasagne will be degraded in a couple of days in the fridge, where in contact with the saucy lasagne top. i don't cook tomato sauces in an aluminum stockpot i have.

                          query, frozen stouffer's lasagne: doesn't it use an aluminum tray? maybe trouble in the aluminum tomato connection is in the volume or concentration of the tomato's acid in contact with the aluminum?

                          lgss, i'm interested in your personal experience of metal toxicity, as i used to have a client which followed intensely all scientific studies regarding aluminum vis-á-vis food, as an ingredient, and as cookware. thus, the client's course of research became my interest, as well, out of necessity.
                          the client's product was an anticaking agent that is GRAS in FDA lingo -- "generally recognized as safe" for human consumption. it contained a form of aluminum -- in minute quantities of course. we found no studies that correlated aluminum cookware with alzheimer's, which was the topic "du jour" on the regulatory radar screen.

                          would you mind elaborating how the tomato in aluminum resulted in your getting ill?

                          1. re: alkapal

                            It was not tomato/aluminum that caused my metal toxicity. In my efforts at recovery I did a little research and published an article on toxic metals. I try to avoid sources of exposure to toxic metals (including aluminum). Others are free to do as they please, I just try to raise a little awareness from time to time. My mother had early-onset Alzheimer's, obvious at 52, died at 67. I suspect exposure to a combination of toxic metals played a significant role in her fate. I'd prefer a different outcome for myself and hope others don't have to go through what I did.

                            1. re: lgss

                              "We do not know for certain whether aluminum causes Alzheimer’s disease."
                              Department of Health and Human Services Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry website

                              I'm not willing to take that chance. FWIW I also use aluminum-free baking powder, avoid products with aluminum as an anti-caking agent, etc.

                              1. re: lgss

                                good luck to you in the future not to once again having to go through this nightmare. whatever works for every individual is what's important

                                peace.

                                1. re: jfood

                                  I just made mine in one of those paper aluminum oven proof dishes for fridge to oven from the grocery store. I was in a small cooler then to a site where I couldn't wash dishes and wasn't heading home so I did disposable ... for what it's worth, the lasagna was awesome. Why not.

                              2. re: lgss

                                lgss, i am sorry for your loss. i hope that you find your way to a long and healthy life, however you do it! ;-).

                                1. re: alkapal

                                  Thank you.

                        2. re: lgss

                          I figure I probably gonna eventually die from 1,000 other reasons that eating out of my aluminum pan. If that kills me then we are all pretty bad off. I agree with the philosophy. But there are so many other things to worry about. I just don't have time to worry about an aluminum pan I use with tomato sauce now and then.

                          1. re: kchurchill5

                            I've never had a problem with an aluminum catering pan but the trouble is when you put aluminum foil on top without saran wrap under it, the metal visibly leaches into the sauce.
                            Stainless steel pans I can't imagine worrying about, there is no discernable difference from glass. You can clearly taste metal when it gets into the sauce. My grandmother had Altzheimers and she cooked everything is aluminum pans, but there is no proof that that, or deodorant, etc, had anything to do with that, since my uncle just passed from the same thing, and I firmly believe it's hereditary. Based on my limited research of course.

                            1. re: coll

                              "when you put aluminum foil on top without saran wrap under it, the metal visibly leaches into the sauce."
                              ~~~~~~
                              coll, that is exactly what i've noticed! eeeuuuwwww! ;-O.

                              1. re: alkapal

                                Yeah that definitely grosses me out, seeing those little metal dots decorating the top of the food. Always bake with saran wrap on top, covered completely with tin foil, to eliminate this problem. Bakes better that way too, holds in the heat.

                                1. re: coll

                                  Never had little metal dots, not once.

                                  1. re: kchurchill5

                                    Me either - what are we doing 'wrong'?

                                    1. re: alwayscooking

                                      Unless foil has changed since I last did this, I think it was after letting it sit overnight. It reacted with the sauce. Maybe not if you put a lot of cheese on top, I top with sauce.
                                      Anyway the saran wrap is how all the caterers I know do it, so now I do it too. Works great, you should try it.

                                      1. re: coll

                                        My top layer is sauce and then a complete almost thick layer of cheese. Lots of parm in it too since parm bakes so well. I cook with aluminum foil and then, once cool, the pyrex has it's own lid which I use for storage. No need to worry.

                                        DT

                                  2. re: coll

                                    huh? Jfood has benver seen anything "leach" from the aluminum. And he would never use saran wrap inthe oven or MV.

                                    1. re: jfood

                                      No saran for me, but maybe I'm just to simple. If I die from aluminum foil I must be one of those mystery CSI cases, lol. But understand every one else and what they think is right. I just dont, but just me

                                    2. re: coll

                                      I tried to do this following a Suzanne Goin recipe, and when I took the foil off, the saran wrap had completely disappeared. Disgusting. I still ate it & didn't tell my guests.

                                      This also happened to the Amateur Gourmet too. So for me, I'll skip the saran wrap/foil sandwich & just use fresh Alum Foil that doesn't touch the food.

                                      I think caterers & professional kitchens use a cling film that is much stronger than what the home cook has.

                                      1. re: Snorkelvik

                                        I've done it at home and it worked.

                                        DT

                        3. I generally use corning ware but I think as long as it is not aluminum you're good to go!

                          1. I usually bake mine in a glass dish, but I've baked lasagna and baked ziti in an aluminum pan with no bad results. I also transfer leftovers to a disposable aluminum pan and it reheats well.

                            1. I got really tired of shallow glass pans with spilling lasagna so I broke down and bought an Emile Henry lasagna pan. Wow! Lots of layers, no spill.

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: mnosyne

                                i love emile henry. i use a smaller pan of theirs for so much, but don't have the lasagne pan. i use a big black speckled enameled pan (to serve "pharaoh's army", as my mom would say) http://images.google.com/imgres?imgur... -- in the shallower rectangle -- around 3-4" deep. or a smaller glass baking dish.

                                1. re: mnosyne

                                  I don't know if it is still being sold, but some years ago I bought a Martha Stewart glass baking dish with a pale-green plastic cover from her K-Mart line. Not as lovely as Emile Henry, but way less expensive. It's 7x9x3" deep and has proven to be my most-often-used baking dish. That 3" depth is enough to prevent boil-overs for casseroles and fruit crisps. I can bake a cake recipe that calls for an 8x8 pan in this one and frost it without the lid touching the frosting. Although I typically make extra portions to freeze or for leftovers, a standard 9x13 pan is a LOT of lasagna or casserole for one or two people.

                                  1. re: greygarious

                                    i agree, greygarious, a 9x13" pan of lasagne will last almost as long as dorothy parker's ham! http://www.foodreference.com/html/qha...

                                    1. re: alkapal

                                      We're only two people and when I make lasagna or baked ziti, I make 9x13 pan. My husband eats it for lunch the next two days. It just seems to disappear before I can get the leftovers into a smaller pan to freeze!!

                                      1. re: cheesecake17

                                        That's a good thing cheesecake.

                                        1. re: jfood

                                          I suppose it is.. but I always want leftovers to freeze for another night!!

                                2. Metal works just fine. I make lasagna in mini-loaf pans (enough to feed 2), stuff each with different fillings and freeze. They go from freezer to oven and are quickly done on a weeknight.

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: alwayscooking

                                    Even a regular loaf pan works (serves 2-4).

                                    1. re: Caralien

                                      2 Replies. First

                                      FYI, if you don't have a pan, I take individual noodles ... spread the ricotta mix, cheese, meat and roll, put the rolls put in a small baking dish with some sauce on the bottom, top with additional sauce and then top with cheese. Individuals. Same taste and great. I make them a lot when I have some left over cooked noodles and a little meat or left over spinach or some frozen spinach. Easy and takes 1/2 the time in the oven.

                                      Second:
                                      Off topic a bit ... I make a chicken loaf, ham loaf, meat loaf and lasagna, but lots of stacks and cook in a water bath for the first 20 minutes and then take out. Seems to work well. Did it several times in my first apt. Actually a spinach, mushroom, and sun dried tomato lasagna works well in this with a nice bechemel sauce.

                                  2. If you need the bigger pan for its size you can buy a bigger one - or you could simply line the current pan with parchment paper!

                                    1. I use disposable aluminum pans for two things - lasagna and roasted chicken. The lasagna tastes exactly as it should (and mine usually has little in the way of tomato). The chicken is on a rack and doesn't touch the aluminum; and clean up is way easier (no dishwasher). As to toxicity, I drink way too much and drive way too fast that I'll take my chances with the lasagna.

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                        Good boy Sam

                                        LOL

                                        DT

                                        1. re: Sam Fujisaka

                                          LOL! that is hilarious.

                                        2. Since you can bake foods covered with saran wrap, then tin foil, if metal is a concern you could line the pan with saran wrap before adding ingredients. By the way, if you store your plastic wrap in the fridge, it won't stick to itself and make a crumpled mess before you have time to get the sheet in place. Once it warms to room temp, all bets are off!

                                          1. I put a layer of parchment on the bottom of a metal pan and then build the lasagna on that. Then I cover with a parchment layer between the lasagna and alum foil.

                                            1. Yes. Grandma used an enamel coated aluminum pan for years. It was great.

                                              Just don't put tomato sauce on uncoated aluminum or iron.

                                              1. I cooked a lasagna in my 9x13 aluminum baking pan recently. I was more worried about the tomato pitting the pan more than the effect of the pan on the lasagna. I lined the pan with an oven roasting bag, then put a layer of non-stick foil on top of that. Worked really well. The lasagna didn't stick and I didn't have to clean lasagna crud out of the corner creases of the pan when I was done.

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: gmm

                                                  great idea on the oven roasting bag as liner. is it the same material and thickness as the slow cooker liners, also from reynolds? those things are fan-tastic.

                                                  1. re: alkapal

                                                    I've never tried the slow cooker liners, so I don't know. I just had the oven bag left over from a previous cooking project. Thicker would be better though. I also used the non-stick foil because wasn't sure how well the liner would stand up to knife slicing through the lasagna.