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Lasagna in a metal pan

cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 01:09 AM

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.


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  1. mr jig RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 01:35 AM

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

    1 Reply
    1. re: mr jig
      kchurchill5 RE: mr jig Feb 21, 2009 10:41 AM

      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 RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 02:47 AM

      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. Boccone Dolce RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 03:04 AM

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

        1. Davwud RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 04:02 AM

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


          1 Reply
          1. re: Davwud
            neverlate RE: Davwud Feb 19, 2009 04:36 AM

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

          2. d
            DeppityDawg RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 04:06 AM

            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.)

            1 Reply
            1. re: DeppityDawg
              Davwud RE: DeppityDawg Feb 19, 2009 05:11 AM

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


            2. l
              lgss RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 04:21 AM

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

              24 Replies
              1. re: lgss
                Davwud RE: lgss Feb 19, 2009 05:08 AM

                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??


                1. re: Davwud
                  lgss RE: Davwud Feb 20, 2009 06:08 PM

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

                  1. re: lgss
                    DeppityDawg RE: lgss Feb 20, 2009 07:56 PM

                    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
                      jfood RE: lgss Feb 21, 2009 04:48 AM

                      any basis other than fear for this statement?

                      1. re: jfood
                        lgss RE: jfood Feb 21, 2009 05:03 AM

                        Other than personal experience of metal toxicity?

                        1. re: lgss
                          alkapal RE: lgss Feb 21, 2009 05:50 AM

                          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
                            lgss RE: alkapal Feb 21, 2009 10:38 AM

                            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
                              lgss RE: lgss Feb 21, 2009 10:51 AM

                              "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
                                jfood RE: lgss Feb 21, 2009 10:58 AM

                                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


                                1. re: jfood
                                  kchurchill5 RE: jfood Feb 21, 2009 11:38 AM

                                  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
                                alkapal RE: lgss Feb 21, 2009 04:20 PM

                                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
                                  lgss RE: alkapal Feb 21, 2009 04:54 PM

                                  Thank you.

                        2. re: lgss
                          kchurchill5 RE: lgss Feb 21, 2009 10:58 AM

                          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
                            coll RE: kchurchill5 Feb 21, 2009 12:00 PM

                            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
                              alkapal RE: coll Feb 21, 2009 04:22 PM

                              "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
                                coll RE: alkapal Feb 22, 2009 01:17 AM

                                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
                                  kchurchill5 RE: coll Feb 22, 2009 09:47 AM

                                  Never had little metal dots, not once.

                                  1. re: kchurchill5
                                    alwayscooking RE: kchurchill5 Feb 22, 2009 10:45 AM

                                    Me either - what are we doing 'wrong'?

                                    1. re: alwayscooking
                                      coll RE: alwayscooking Feb 22, 2009 11:46 AM

                                      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
                                        Davwud RE: coll Feb 22, 2009 12:00 PM

                                        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.


                                  2. re: coll
                                    jfood RE: coll Feb 22, 2009 10:53 AM

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

                                    1. re: jfood
                                      kchurchill5 RE: jfood Feb 22, 2009 10:57 AM

                                      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
                                      Snorkelvik RE: coll Mar 6, 2013 07:11 AM

                                      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
                                        Davwud RE: Snorkelvik Mar 6, 2013 08:30 AM

                                        I've done it at home and it worked.


                        3. n
                          NWKate RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 04:42 AM

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

                          1. c
                            cheesecake17 RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 05:18 AM

                            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. mnosyne RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 08:33 AM

                              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
                                alkapal RE: mnosyne Feb 21, 2009 05:59 AM

                                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
                                  greygarious RE: mnosyne Feb 21, 2009 06:10 AM

                                  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
                                    alkapal RE: greygarious Feb 21, 2009 04:24 PM

                                    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
                                      cheesecake17 RE: alkapal Feb 22, 2009 08:47 AM

                                      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
                                        jfood RE: cheesecake17 Feb 22, 2009 10:53 AM

                                        That's a good thing cheesecake.

                                        1. re: jfood
                                          cheesecake17 RE: jfood Feb 22, 2009 12:59 PM

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

                                2. alwayscooking RE: cblackwell44 Feb 19, 2009 11:28 AM

                                  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
                                    Caralien RE: alwayscooking Feb 21, 2009 11:41 AM

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

                                    1. re: Caralien
                                      kchurchill5 RE: Caralien Feb 21, 2009 11:49 AM

                                      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.

                                      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. Richard 16 RE: cblackwell44 Feb 21, 2009 04:46 PM

                                    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. Sam Fujisaka RE: cblackwell44 Feb 21, 2009 04:48 PM

                                      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
                                        Davwud RE: Sam Fujisaka Feb 22, 2009 04:56 AM

                                        Good boy Sam



                                        1. re: Sam Fujisaka
                                          chef chicklet RE: Sam Fujisaka Feb 22, 2009 08:48 AM

                                          LOL! that is hilarious.

                                        2. greygarious RE: cblackwell44 Feb 22, 2009 03:28 AM

                                          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. g
                                            GSM RE: cblackwell44 Feb 22, 2009 11:56 AM

                                            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. r
                                              RGC1982 RE: cblackwell44 Feb 22, 2009 12:31 PM

                                              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. gmm RE: cblackwell44 Mar 3, 2013 06:59 PM

                                                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
                                                  alkapal RE: gmm Mar 7, 2013 06:58 AM

                                                  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
                                                    gmm RE: alkapal Mar 7, 2013 01:07 PM

                                                    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.

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