The 5 Best Pyrex Baking and Casserole Dishes

Published on 12/15/2023 · 9 min readExplore our expert guide to find the most recommended Pyrex dishes for your kitchen! From classic baking to hearty casseroles, Pyrex has you covered.
Jane M., Kitchen Expert
By Kitchen Expert Jane M.

Photo by Valmedia

Since it’s been around for decades, it’s fair to say that Pyrex is a household name. This classic American brand for glass cookware is similar to “Kleenex,” which is synonymous with tissues.

Originating from Corning Glass Works, the brand is now owned by Instant Brands and is manufactured in Charleroi, Pennsylvania. What makes Pyrex so popular is its versatility, durability, and affordability: It’s ideal for baking, cooking, and storing food.

There are plenty of other popular glassware products from a wide variety of manufacturers, such as OXO and Anchor Hocking, but Pyrex has been around for more than 100 years. It can have a nostalgic feel, bringing up memories of a favorite holiday casserole dish or family dessert that gets passed down through the generations. Some home cooks even like to collect it (the home where I’m staying, for example, has at least 10 Pyrex dishes of various sizes). Some people like to scout out vintage Pyrex in antique stores and at tag sales.

Pyrex dishes have become a staple in most cooks’ kitchens. Let’s take a quick look at what distinguishes Pyrex and which dishes are essential for any well-equipped kitchen.

What is Pyrex?

Photo by Anastasia Kopa

This innovative, temperature-resistant glass was launched in 1915. It’s mainly borosilicate glass, which contains boron trioxide. That’s what makes Pyrex heat-resistant.

Borosilicate glass is known for its ability to withstand thermal shock, so it can handle changes in temperature without shattering. It’s why Pyrex can be used in the oven, microwave, and freezer. Another plus for Pyrex is that it’s nonreactive, ensuring that it doesn’t interact with the food it contains or alter its taste, making it a safe and reliable choice for both cooking and food storage.

Pyrex Features to Consider

Pyrex products offer the following benefits, as Pyrex notes on its website:

  • Durable, high-quality tempered glass for even heating
  • Easy-grab handles for a comfortable, sure grip
  • Dishwasher, freezer, microwave, and preheated-oven safe
  • Resists stains and does not absorb food odors or flavors
  • Two-year limited warranty

In addition to cooking, another benefit of Pyrex glassware is using it for storage, marinating, assembling, and leftovers. Dishes can go from the oven to the table, and some older models also feature colored glass for a visually appealing presentation.

A few other important considerations include the following:

Visibility

One reason home cooks like glass baking and casserole dishes compared to ceramic, stoneware, and metal options is that glass is transparent, making it easy to see how the cooking and baking is progressing. Also, for some dishes, the transparency is part of the presentation.

Photo by Jane M.

Durability

When it comes to comparing Pyrex to other brands of glassware that are made from soda-lime glass, the heat-resistant technology of borosilicate glass has been time-tested and is typically rated as exceptional. Soda-lime glass can be cheaper than borosilicate glass, but these dishes can’t withstand quick temperature fluctuations and may warp or crack if you move them from a cold fridge to a preheated oven. The borosilicate glass composition makes Pyrex dishes resistant to thermal shock, so you can safely transfer Pyrex dishes from the freezer to the oven or vice versa.

Some glassware brands may not be considered as durable or resilient as Pyrex. Reviewing customer comments on the Pyrex website, it’s common to find people reporting that they had their bakeware for 10 years or more before any cracking or breaking. I’ve had my Pyrex dishes for 30 years, and they’ve held up despite regular use.

Nonreactivity

Compared to some metal options, the nonreactive nature of glass ensures the integrity and flavor of food, especially when storing and reheating. Also, the glass doesn’t get discolored from certain foods, which isn’t always the case with dishes made from other materials.

Price

Compared to other options made out of ceramic or metal, you can’t beat the price of Pyrex. Individual dishes may cost less than $10 and entire sets less than $75, while ceramic and metal options are more expensive. Pyrex's range of shapes and capacities is also a bonus, making it easy for home cooks and bakers to have a well-rounded collection of dishes on hand to meet a wide range of recipes.

The Five Best Pyrex Dishes to Have in Any Home Kitchen

The following selection is geared to a wide variety of home cooks, from those just starting out to busy parents and professionals. Since Pyrex is inexpensive, it’s easy to acquire this collection without breaking the bank. This is also a small number of items that can accommodate almost limitless possibilities. The best thing is that you don’t need tons of cabinet space for storage. For example, I was easily able to keep these five items tucked away in a small galley kitchen.

1. The Pyrex Easy Grab 4-Piece Rectangular Glass Bakeware Set with Red Lids

This Pyrex rectangular set consistently turns up on roundups of best bakeware, particularly because people love the handles. One consumer review on the Pyrex website says “Don’t wait, buy these.” These are “two pieces everyone should have in their kitchen.

These 2-quart and 3-quart glass dishes are perfect for many different casseroles and can accommodate a group. The lids make it easy for on-the-go meals to bring to potlucks and parties (no more trying to clamp down foil or plastic wrap).

The recipe ideas are basically endless here: chicken and pasta bakes, roasted vegetables and sausages, eggplant parmigiana, lasagna, and desserts ranging from crisps and crumbles to sheet cakes.

Be aware: Lids are made out of BPA-free plastic. They aren’t designed to go into a conventional or convection oven.

2. Pyrex Deep 9” x13” 2-in-1 Glass Baking Dish with Glass Lid

I’ve had a 9x13-inch dish for decades that I love to use primarily for roasting potatoes and vegetables. The lid in this set can also be used as a shallow baking dish. When storing these, the two can stack together for a more compact fit.

The deeper dish, with a capacity of five quarts, is great for accommodating large, layered dishes such as lasagna, without running the risk of overflowing. It’s also deep enough to work for a whole chicken or other larger cuts of meat. The shallow dish can be used for desserts like lemon bars, tarts, and brownies, or it works as a lid that can go into the oven to ensure that the casserole top doesn’t get burned.

When you need a size that’s just a bit larger than your other rectangular Pyrex dishes, this will fit the bill.

3. Pyrex 8-Inch Square Baking Dish

8-inch Pyrex square dish. Photo by Jane M.

I primarily use my Pyrex square dish for a selection of regular desserts that I make on repeat. My favorites are blondies, nutmeg crumb cake, blueberry cornbread, and different types of shortbread, all of which come together easily and turn out consistently.

I also like to use this smaller size when I’m cooking things for myself, such as roasting acorn squash or veggies like broccoli and cauliflower florets. One query on Pyrex’s site asked whether the corners are square (which can trap food). The company noted that the corners start rounding at half an inch above the bottom of the pan. That’s good to note, as it helps with food release and with cleaning.

4. Pyrex Deep & Easy Grab 1.5-Quart Glass Loaf Pan

I love making sweet quick breads, like banana walnut, pumpkin, and zucchini. The Pyrex loaf pan, like all Pyrex glassware, makes it easy to check that the bottom isn’t getting burned while the center may still be gooey. You may like to have other types of loaf pans on hand, but at least one glass option should be in the mix.

Cooks love the design of this pan’s handles for a comfortable grip and easy transfer in and out of the oven. And some folks also like to use a loaf pan for meatloaf (I tend to make them free-form in a metal baking pan, which I prefer for capturing the grease).

One criticism noted by a customer is that the loaf pan’s sloped sides mean more of the loaf rises out of the pan, and the size isn’t a true 9x5-inch loaf pan. Also, the sloped sides don’t allow pans to be nested for storage.

5. Pyrex 2-Piece Easy Grab Glass Pie Plate Set

Every kitchen needs a pie plate, whether you regularly make pies or not. These two options offer the perfect sizes for a deep dish and regular pie, or they work well for dishes such as quiche and savory casseroles, like a chicken nacho pie. According to Pyrex, the regular pie plate’s “large, fluted edge enhances your grip for easier lifting, and doubles as a guide for beautiful, fluted crusts.” The other dish is non-fluted and is 60% deeper, which is ideal for dishes requiring more layers.

Customers unanimously applaud these dishes for even and dependable cooking, easy handling, and convenient cleaning.

Cleaning and Care

Photo by Olya Detry

Each product on the Pyrex website provides “Care and Use” recommendations that are worth reading.

In general, Pyrex glassware and plastic lids are dishwasher-safe. Pyrex recommends keeping “both plastic lids and glassware away from direct heat elements in the dishwasher.”

The fact that glassware can go in the dishwasher is one reason people choose this material over other types of baking dishes or pans, such as cast iron, that require hand washing. Pyrex dishes can be left to soak, too.

As with porcelain and stoneware dishes, avoid abrasive scouring pads and cleaners to eliminate the risk of scratching the glass.

Pyrex recommends standard safety guidelines to ensure best practices when using dishes in the oven and microwave and to prevent shattering or breakage.

The Best Pyrex for Your Kitchen

Blue Pyrex loaf pan and baking ingredients. Photo by Jane M.

You may already have a foundation set of Pyrex dishes and are simply in the market to replace or upgrade some of your existing pieces. Or, perhaps you want to round out your options with additional styles and sizes, such as an 8-12-inch divided dish or a taller, glass-lidded dish designed specifically for casseroles.

If you have questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to a Curated Kitchen Expert. They have the culinary insights to provide personalized recommendations tailored to your specific needs. And get ready to enjoy cooking and baking!

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