When I had wanted a baking stone, and it was rather expensive, so, I thought about using red clay saucers, like red clay pots can bake bread in them, and I knew that pots and saucers can be fairly large. I was told to get red clay pots and saucers that are not painted or coated, just plain red clay.
I basically coated oil all over the saucer like I would with cast iron, and I baked them low for at least 4 hours. Whenever I saw that the saucer looked dry looking, I spread some more oil on it, until it stopped leaving dry spots. Make sure that you use a potholder when reapplying oil, the saucer is hot. I also spread the oil inside and outside, completely covered with the oil.
I really like and use it now for baking, and for many different things, they clean off easily, most of the time, with just a cloth or paper towel, or dampen anything stuck with a little water, and it quickly wipes out clean, and give it another wipe with fresh oil, and I store it in the still warm oven that is turned off.
The pizza crusts are amazingly perfect, like bought pizzas, rolls, round loaves of homemade bread, chips and cheese. I also have two smaller saucers, for personal pizzas, chips and cheese, crustless quiche pies, small pies or tarts, many things can be baked in them. For the smaller ones, they fit right on to a plate, and it keeps the food warmer longer while eating. Saucers come in many different sizes, so look for sizes that will fit anyone's needs.
Source: I believe I got the idea of Martha Stewarts clay pots for baking.
By kas2 from Rockford, MI
I would only used unglazed terra cotta, as the glazes are generally what contain lead. I have seen recommendations to bake it first in a self cleaning oven to sanitize it.
I have used ceramic tile and it is ok--the terra cotta pots are a go-to
We have owned a Pampered Chef baking stone for years and have loved cooking with it. We have always cared for it per the instructions, but have recently noticed that food items no longer slide off like they used to. When we cook a frozen pizza, it sticks all the way around the edges and has to be loosed before it will slide off. What caused this to happen and what can we do to remedy the situation? Thanks!
By Randy from Sioux City, IA
If you have a self-cleaning oven, just put the stone in when you clean your oven and it comes out like new.
Try not to use soap on a stone, but you can use baking soda. What I do is, make a paste of baking soda and water, then I spread it on the stone and let it sit in a low heat oven setting, say 150 to 200 til the paste becomes dry, then I take it out and scrap with the scraper. If your stone has a "lip" around the sides, you can add a little more water to the mixture. Continue to do this til all the baked on oil is scraped off. To prevent access oil from building up, add a little salt to your everyday cleaning of the stone.
The food is sticking to the oil that has built up. I scrub mine with a green pot scrubber pad and lots of soap everytime I wash it. Nothing sticks to it ever. Give it a shot!
I don't know much about a pampered chef stone but sprinkling corn meal on my pizza stone keeps food from sticking.
Pikka, thank you for that tip. I did not know you could do that!
If you read the instructions for your stone, you will see that you should not ever wash your stone with soap. The stones are porous and the soap will get into the pores. When you cook, it comes out and your food will taste like soap.
If the food isn't sliding off, all I do is pour olive oil all over the stone and put it into the oven on 250 for 20 minutes or so. It always helps me.
Do you need to heat the baking stone before baking cookies on it, or just use it like you would a normal pan?
M.D. from Bozeman, MT
I got my stone from Williams Sonoma and it said to preheat the stone, however, I never do it as it could break if a frozen pizza is placed on it. I know several girls who have had their Pampered Chefs stone break on them by doing this. As one other poster said, for cookies its usually recommended to use a cooled sheet.
I've never used my stone for cookies. I did use my pyrex 9x13 pan the other day because my cookie sheet had been used by a grandson and it was a mess. I used the glass dish with a light buttering, cold, and baked cookies 8 minutes with little cooling in between, second batch 7 minutes. They were soft, and not crunchy on bottom. Family said the best ever.
I use my pizza stone cold, for pizza or bread, or rolls or homemade hamburger buns. I use a plain milk bread recipe for hamburger buns, divide into 6 or 8 pieces depending on big hamburgers, or medium. I always use quick rise yeast, sometimes let it rise twice , but if in a hurry, shape and let rise once on pizza stone which is lightly sprinkled with corn meal.I shape by making little round balls, with scraggly part tucked under, then I press it flet, with inner part flatter than outer, using fingers to press. I leave a tiny bit of space between each bun, let rise and bake about 12 minutes or more, depending on oven. My family says they are the best hamburger buns and are very filling with home made patties, also made with dip in middle, since they puff up when frying or baking.
For bread, I make my own healthy bread, usually adding seeds for fiber, however, cooking any recipe on a cold stone, just making a nice round ball, letting it rise on stone with a bowl or cloth over it, produces the nicest loaf of bread.
Heat oven, and put in cold stone with loaf on it.Bake as usual, time wise.
You do not need to preheat your stoneware! It is a wonderful tool to use in your oven and, if it fits, microwave and toaster oven. I actually have 3 flat ones of various shapes and sizes that I use when I bake cookies so that the first one is cooled by the time the 3rd one comes out of the oven. Do not put the thick frozen chicken or other meats on it - defrost these first. But you can cook frozen fishsticks, frozen meatballs, chicken nuggets, etc. Do let it cool completely before cleaning.
The only time that I preheat my stone is when I have take-and-bake pizza and I will let it heat with the oven then put the pizza on top and the bottom will get so nice and brown - not soggy in the middle!
Thanks! All your information has been helpful. I did not preheat the stone, and the cookies turned out great. It has been packed away for several years, and the instructions were lost, although I still have the original box. I've used it for sausage balls, biscuits, rolls, etc.
I do not preheat my pizza stone. I brought mine at Wal-Mart for doing pizzas cause they fit real good however when I do cookies I use my cookie sheets and parchment paper the paper is great no spraying or anything.
It depends on what you're using it for. Yes if you are baking bread or pizza from a scratch dough, or any non frozen item. You'll get the best crust by heating the stone. Absolutely do not put anything cold or frozen on it, just as you wouldn't with pyrex or any other tempered glass.
I also bake my cookies on a baking sheet with parchment or silicone paper, and cool the sheets in between batches. However since I have 30 cookie sheets (I used to have a bakery) this never really seemed to be a problem.
For a very inexpensive baking stone I buy Unglazed clay tile at a local tile store 8x8 inches each for under 2 dollars each. This also allows me to determine how big of an area I want create in the oven.
I've always preheated my stone simply because it is always in the oven. I don't use it for cookies, though. It's wonderful for bread and pizza crust.
Which is better parchment paper or silicone for baking cookies. I always have a problem with sticking even when I use a spray. Thanks, Carla
Parchment paper is easier than silicone and can be used and reused.
Do I need to preheat my baking stone before I bake pizza? Thanks!
Daphne P from Jacksonville, FL
I washed my stone with soap and water I didn't have the directions because I bought it from a private party. What can I do now?
If you are using a baking stone to bake something frozen like a pizza, put the frozen item on the stone and place it in the oven first. If you place a stone in the oven with a frozen pizza on it, and the oven is hot, there is more of a chance that it will crack. It may never crack, but if it does 5 years down the line, you may not get it replaced. There is a time limit on warranties, even with Pampered Chef. Plus it's not that hard to put it in when you turn on the oven. Heck, it keeps you from getting up again to put the pizza on the stone when the oven is ready. I usually set the timer for the time on the box and check it when it goes off.
The number one rule with stoneware baking pans is: Never wash them with soap! The stoneware is extremely porous, so if you wash it with soap, it will flavor anything you cook on it after that with soap. Just run hot water over it and scrape food residue off with a pot brush or plastic scraper. And always remember to allow the stone to cool completely before washing so it doesn't crack. You do not not necessarily need to pre heat the stone when you cook with it, in fact that would do bad things to the outcomes of some recipes. Also, the first few times you cook on it, remember to either cook things with very high fat content or grease liberally, no matter what you are cooking. This will aid the stone in becoming a non- stick surface; over time, you won't ever need to grease it. I highly recommend checking out http://www.pamperedchef.com The Pampered Chef not only makes the best stone cookware, they also sell great recipe books using the stoneware. (05/25/2005)
Actually, I put a non-preheated baking stone into a pre-heated oven and it cracked within a few minutes. I had been told to always preheat, and was negligent that time. I definitely recommend preheating the stone! (05/25/2005)
Chickpea, if the stone that cracked was Pampered Chef they will replace it.I think when my daughter cracked mine she preheated the stone and put a frozen pizza on it. I personally never preheat my stone,but I use it mostly for biscuits or a taco ring so there's no guarantee that someday it won't. If you have as much as a piece of it you've kept they will replace it.I had my two pieces and got a brand new stone.They sell little brown plastic scrapers for about $1,to get off the cheese,etc,and I just rinse it off. I really do love their products. (05/25/2005)
Actually, what I had said was that you do not (i)necessarily(/i) have to preheat a stone.
Sometimes it is necessary, most times it is not. Especially if you are going to be putting food that is cold to start with on it. Basically you want to avoid extreme temperature changes to avoid cracking, just like with glass bakeware.
Maybe when you didn't preheat your stone, it had been stored in an exceptionally cool cabinet (I know that the cupboard under my sink is almost like a fridge in the winter.)? At any rate, I almost never preheat my stoneware from The Pampered Chef and I have never had one crack on me. And Sharon is right, The Pampered Chef will replace a broken stone, even if it is your fault it broke, even if you (shudder) wash it with soap and ruin it. (Did I mention I love their products? ;) ) (05/26/2005)
I would not recommend making cookies on a stone. With cookies, you're usually cooking several batches and so you've got to pull the stone out of the oven, get the cookies off, and put it back in. The stone stays hot for a long time, so when you pull the first batch out, the cookies won't cool! You'll probably have quite a time getting the hot gooey cookies off the hot stone. Then when you start putting the next batch of dough on, you'll notice the cookies starting to melt before it's even back in the oven! That's because the stone is still so hot, and that will make your cookies flatter. I cook my cookies on an aluminum or steel cookie sheet, sometimes with parchment paper. In between batches I rinse off the sheet to cool it. See http://www.well.com/~vard/cookies.html for some good cookie tips.
And about the greasy substance, make sure you're not using soap. Read the other posts about that. (01/04/2007)
Before first using a stone, do you soak in cold water for 45 minutes? (06/19/2007)