Homemade Heart Brownies baked in Red Silicone Mold

Flexible, heat-resistant, easy to wash and usable in the microwave, dishwasher, refrigerator and freezer make silicone pans the must-have bakeware item in any kitchen. While these versatile wonders claim to be nonstick, it's important to keep in mind that some recipes may require them to be greased.

To Grease or Not to Grease?

Nonstick is actually a misnomer for silicone pans. The best way to describe them is stick-resistant because if they're not greased there's no guarantee that sticking will not occur. So your best bet when using a silicone pan is to grease it lightly, and always grease when a recipe calls for doing so.

What Sticks?

Baked goods that are lower in fat content or lighter in weight tend to stick to silicone pans more than ones that are higher in fat and denser. So cookies are less likely to stick than cakes and muffins. Think of it this way: if it's more likely to crumble, it's also more likely to stick. Ridges in silicone bakeware, like those found in a bundt cake pan, also increase the chances of sticking, as bits and pieces get stuck in the grooves.

How to Grease

The best way to grease a silicone pan is to rub the interior lightly with vegetable oil or spray with a nonstick cooking spray. These options work better than butter because it's difficult to roll on to a silicone pan evenly. Be careful not to over-grease the pan as doing so may leave a sticky residue that won't come off when it's washed.