Essential Gear

Muffin tins come in many guises. Here’s what to keep an eye out for:

Silicon Muffin Cups

I highly recommend these and what I use for many of the recipes on Muffin Tin Mania. Silicon muffin trays or individual cups have the advantage of being microwave safe, very easy to clean, completely non-stick and flexible making food removal a breeze. Plus, their colors can brighten up a kitchen. Since they’re bendable, you’ll want to place silicon muffin trays on a baking sheet before sliding them in the oven. Look for these in the kitchenwear section of most department and hardware stores and some supermarkets.

Non-stick Muffin Tin

Muffin tins treated with a non-stick coating help food slide out easily with less need for greasing. Still, when working with stick-prone items such as eggs for mini quiches, you’ll want to make sure you lightly grease each cup to avoid a sticky mess. A caveat: There is concern that some of the non-stick materials used for muffin tins poses some health hazards.

Baking experts often prefer heavy-gauge steel, which provides an even-heating performance for perfectly browned baked goods.

Cast Iron

Cast iron muffin trays distribute the heat evenly for stellar baking results. If properly seasoned (many new versions come pre-seasoned), cast iron muffin trays are virtually non-stick. Cast iron muffin trays are also available in different shapes for special occasions.


Muffin tins come in three sizes: mini, medium, and jumbo. Mini tins that have 12 or 24 cups (holding about 2 tablespoons of batter each) are great for making bite-sized treats or tiny hors d'oeuvres. The medium-size tin comes with either 6 or 12 cups that hold about a half cup of filling each and works well for almost any recipe on this site. Jumbo versions have 6 cups each with a 1-cup capacity. Try them for the various versions of meatloaf or quick bread and corn bread recipes that make attractive gifts. A muffin-top cup is about 4 inches in diameter but are only 1/2-inch deep.Keep in mind that cooking times vary by the size of the muffin cup.