Making Cupcakes or Muffins with Mason Jar Rings: Does It Really Work?

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The Internet is rife with ideas for using Mason jars, but I rarely encounter new ways to repurpose the metal rings or bands. So I was instantly intrigued by a photo that has been making the rounds on Facebook and Pinterest, involving the use of Mason jar rings to make muffins or cupcakes. Would this really work? 

First I traced the photo back to the blog Lessons Line Upon Line, where this trick was used to make banana muffins — and then I had to try it for myself. I arranged regular-mouth Mason jar rings on a cookie sheet, fit paper cup liners into the holes, filled the liners with gluten-free strawberry cupcake batter, and popped the tray in the oven. Here's what happened: 

• Pros: Overall, the Mason jar rings worked well, holding the paper liners and batter in place while baking. I think this is a great improvisation for those times when you're making multiple batches of cupcakes yet have only one pan, or for people who want to save space by doing away with specialized pans. You can also fit a lot more muffins or cupcakes on a baking sheet than in a standard 12-cup muffin pan. 

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These two cupcakes were the worst of the bunch. 

• Cons: Were these the prettiest cupcakes I've ever made? Not quite. Though they were mostly fine, several of them turned out slightly wonky because the ring doesn't provide the same structure as a muffin pan. 

• Final verdict: I'd use this technique again, but only for cupcakes, as I usually bake muffins without paper liners, and it would end up being more wasteful. 

Have you tried this, or do you have any other interesting uses for Mason jar bands? 

See the original post: Banana Muffins at Lessons Line Upon Line 

(Images: Emily Ho)

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Emily Ho is a Los Angeles-based writer, recipe developer, and educator on topics such as food preservation, wild food, and herbalism. She is a Master Food Preserver and founder of LA Food Swap and Food Swap Network. Learn more at Roots & Marvel

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