Homemade Pan Release Paste

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Achieve perfectly flipped out cakes every time with this easy-to-make pantry stored Homemade Pan Release Paste.

pan release paste in a jar

Many popular bakers have shared this recipe for Homemade Pan Release Paste as the end-all-be-all alternative to store-bought baking sprays. My experience with using the paste wasn’t initially successful. And having read some of the complaints about the paste on those websites revealed that wasn’t the only one. However, I am sharing it here right now because I was able to redeem the pan release recipe! For those of you how, like me, tried this recipe and it didn’t work out so well, I want to share with you how to use it the right way. And share why I think it’s one of the most effective and convenient methods for protecting your cakes IF USED PROPERLY.

Reasons cakes stick to pans

First let’s discuss why cakes stick in the first place. Cakes stick to pans for different reasons. Four of the main reasons, besides a bad recipe, that cake stick is due to small errors that are easily remedied.

  • Attempting to turn cakes out too soon whether pans are properly prepared or not will most likely break your cake. The hot proteins need time to congeal as it cools.
  • Allowing the cake to completely cool in the pan will create condensation causing the cake to “sweat” and stick to the bottom.
  • Using a high sugar recipe will cause the sugars to caramelize and form an outer crust that fuses to the pan. The recipe is not the problem, not preparing the pan properly is likely the culprit.
  • Not properly prepping the baking pan is the number one reason that cakes stick.

Methods to protect your cakes

There are a number of ways to keep cakes from sticking to the pan during baking. Some more effective than others and each with its pros and cons.
Parchment lining

  • Pros
    • Leaves very little mess
    • Relatively easy to do
  • Cons
    • May not always have it on hand
    • A little tasking
    • Cakes can stick to the paper

Baking sprays

  • Pros
    • Highly effective
  • Cons
    • Seeps into the batter if improperly applied
    • Add chemicals and fumes

Butter and flour method

  • Pros
    • Time tested method
    • Works wells
  • Cons
    • Cakes can still stick to the pan a little
    • Browns/darkens cakes

A case for homemade pan release

protected pan

Of all of the methods above, I would choose this pan release paste along with a dusting of flour over every other pan protecting method. Having tried this and every other method mentioned, I found that it was the most effective and appealing option with the most consistent results.

  • Pros
    • The pan release paste works on every type of pan regardless of the shape unlike parchment paper.
    • Cakes glide out of the pan as easily as they do with baking spray without the chemical residue.
    • Like butter and flour this method is consistent and natural but it is also:
      • Shelf-stable; easily stored in the pantry.
      • Applied easily with no extra steps of softening or melting.
      • Doesn’t burn off like butter leaving your cake darker as a result
  • Con
    • It doesn’t work well without a dusting of flour.

Tried and tested

butter and flour vs pan release and flour

It may seem as if using pan release with flour is just a unnecessary copy of the butter and flour method but I assure you that is false. Having tested and compared the two the methods in the images, using butter versus pan release, it’s clear that the pan release affords a cleaner release and more evenly browned product.



Shortening– I like the convenience of baking sticks. They are easily measured and stored in individual containers for future use.
Cooking oil– Any neutral cooking oil will do.
All-purpose flour– I usually measure my flour by weight so this will be about 30 grams of flour.

How to make, store, and use pan release the right way

making pan release paste

The recipe for pan release is equal parts shortening, cooking oil, and all-purpose flour. The ingredients are whisked or beaten until evenly combined.To use the paste, generously brush the creases and edges of the baking pan with pan release using a paper towel or pastry brush.

dusting a bundt pan with flour

Dust the greased pan with flour, shaking it to get the sides and bottom for even coverage. Tap the pan over the sink to remove extra flour.
Store in an airtight container in the coolest part of the pantry for up to 90 days. You may also refrigerate it for up to 6 months. Use this recipe on any cake pan recipe.

Try pan release with one of these great recipes

Sweet Potato Sour Cream Pound Cake
Brown Sugar Almond Crunch Pound Cake
Sour Cream Chocolate Cake
Cream Cheese Pound Cake


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brushing pan release paste in a bundt pan
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Homemade Pan Release Paste Recipe

Print Recipe
Achieve perfectly flipped out cakes every time with this easy-to-make pantry stored Homemade Pan Release Paste.
Prep Time:5 mins
Total Time:5 mins


  • 1/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 c shortening
  • 1/4 c canola oil


  • Use a hand mixer to beat together the ingredients.
  • Store in an airtight container in the coolest part of the pantry for up to 90 days. You may also refrigerate it for up to 6 months.
Course: Kitchen Tip
Keyword: kitchen tip, pan protection
Servings: 1 recipe
Author: Ty

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