Baking pans come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and capacities. Sometimes, making a recipe substitution is necessary when you don’t have the exact pan called for.

This handy chart will help you determine the volume capacity of your baking pans and determine which ones can substitute for others. It includes all shapes and sizes of round, rectangular and square pans.

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When comparing pan sizes, understanding the difference between “area” and “volume.” Area is measured across the pan’s surface (from edge to edge). On the other hand, volume is the pan’s total capacity, considering height, width, depth, and even the material used to construct the pan.

For example, a standard half-sheet pan has a volume of 10 in x 15 in (250 mm 380 mm). The most common dessert recipes that call for this size pan can easily be transferred to a full sheet pan using the following simple calculation:

Loaf pans are the most variable, with the standard around 9×5. However, recipes designed for a loaf pan can generally be substituted for one with a higher or lower volume by simply dividing the resulting number by the pan’s radius squared and multiplying it by pi. The same goes for cake tins—although swapping specialty pans for regular ones may not always be a good idea since many batters are specifically developed for their specialized shape.


The most important measurement for a pan is its volume rather than its surface area. This gives you a better idea of how much batter it can hold and whether a recipe will fit without issues.

To determine a pan’s volume, measure its height, width and depth (for rectangular pans). Determining the dimensions can be more difficult when dealing with round or oval pans with slanted sides. In these cases, you can use a simple solution like measuring the height and depth of your pans with liquid measuring cups to compare their volumes.

When converting from standard to larger sizes, remember that the size of the pan doesn’t just impact the number of ingredients used; it also influences baking time and temperature. For this reason, it’s best to use a pan substitution that will keep the batter depth the same.


Depending on the type of bakeware, some pans may weigh more than others. The weight of a baking pan can vary a lot between brands, so be sure to use a scale to consider your pans for an accurate comparison.

Round baking pans are popular for cakes and breads, but you can also make savory entrees and casseroles. Typically, they come with lids to prevent the food from drying out or falling over while cooking.

Converting from standard to larger sizes is simple if you know the volume capacity of each pan (multiply one side by the other for square and rectangular pans). For circular pans, you’ll need to figure out the area of the pan using a formula like pi times radius squared. Knowing the area of a pan is an essential part of baking, as it makes swapping one pan for another much easier.


Whether you’re a seasoned baker or just starting, adjusting recipes to fit pans of different shapes and sizes can be difficult. This in-depth guide and baking pan sizes chart covers everything you need to know about converting and substituting cake, loaf, and other pan types.

Baking pan size conversions are usually based on the area of the pan, not the volume. To calculate the area of a square or rectangular pan, multiply one side by the other (for example, 8″ x 8″ = 64 square inches).

For circular pans, you’ll need to determine their diameter and height (the volume is that of a cylinder). You can also use a calculator to find a baking pan’s volume capacity: for a rectangular pan, you’ll need to determine its length, width, and depth; for a round pan, it’s just the diameter and height. This makes it easy to decide how much batter a pan will hold.