Baker's Shortcut: 5 Reasons to Use Parchment Paper

If you don't have parchment paper at home (and I'm guessing many of you don't), you've likely seen it lining the trays at your favorite bakery. Moisture-resistant and grease-resistant, it really shouldn't be relegated to professional kitchens any longer. Home cooks and bakers need the stuff, too, for many reasons. Let's discuss why, shall we?

Joy the Baker just wrote about parchment paper and why to use it on her blog last week, and it got me thinking about all of the reasons I use it to bake with — at home and for my larger-scale granola business Marge.

1. Clean-up is a breeze: You can cut your parchment to fit your baking sheet or buy pre-cut and pre-sized pieces to make life a breeze. Because grease won't penetrate onto your pan, you simply remove the parchment after you're finished baking and pan's clean!

2. Baked goods won't stick: This is really the main reason I use parchment in the kitchen. I don't have to fuss with cooking sprays or use additional butter or oil. Cookies, bars, and scones slide off the tray without any hassle.

3. It preserve the life of your baking sheets: No burned bits on those trays means your nice baking sheets are going to last longer and longer.

4. Transporting baked goods is a cinch: This is another main reason I use parchment paper, too. You can literally lift the entire sheet of parchment, holding it taut, and transport baked goods to counters or platters. Brownies
are lifted out of their pan with ease as are pizzas.

5. Baking and beyond: Once you start using parchment in the kitchen to bake with, you'll discover seemingly endless ues for it. Making butter rolls? Check. Making decorating cones for cakes? Check. Snack server? Sure thing.

Joy the Baker warned that parchment shouldn't come near a broiler as it's not meant for super high temperatures. I'd add that it's also not interchangeable with wax paper in recipes. Keep them seperate and you're good to go.

Related: Quick Tip: Use Parchment Paper as Muffin Cup Liners

(Image: Faith Durand)