Baking is part science and part art form. Even if you’re following a recipe completely, you can still get unexpected results from your oven. If you want to perfect your baking skills, you may need to rearrange your oven racks or shelves. Most types of electric oven have a heating coil in the bottom to generate heat. This means that placing your racks too close can cause uneven baking and you could end up with sunken cakes and burned pastries. So, here are some tips to help you get your oven shelving placement correct for perfect baking results.

Consider What You’re Baking

Generally, the middle of your oven is the best place for baking. This provides the ideal position for air circulation and more even results. Remember that heat rises, so top and low rack positions can be very hot, as a result, your baked goods may get burned. Try to position your shelf in the middle rack position for the best results, unless you need a browned bottom on your dish. For example, while you may want an even bake on a cake, a fruit pie can be prone to a soggy bottom. So, while a cake is better in the middle of the oven, a lower shelf position is better for a pie. Just be sure to keep an eye on it to avoid it becoming overbaked.

Plan for Multiple Bakes

If you need to bake several items simultaneously, you will need to plan in advance. Don’t just place your pans and cookie sheets where they will fit. You’ll need to reorganize the shelves for the best results before you start to preheat the oven. If you are baking two cakes, ideally, both pans should be on the middle shelf. If you want to bake trays of cookies, bake one at the top and one at the bottom, but keep a close watch on them to avoid burning. Items such as meringues can benefit from being placed at the top of your oven, as the hot position allows the meringue to color quickly without the filling heating up.

Check for Hotspots

All ovens are different, and some may be prone to hotspots. This can create uneven baking results if you are unaware where the hotspots are. You can easily check for hotspots using a cookie sheet and some slices of bread. Lay the bread on the sheet and bake until the slices start to brown. The browning pattern will indicate the hotter and cooler areas of your oven.

Watch and Rotate

Even if you have the ideal oven shelf placement, you can’t simply put your baking in the oven and forget about it. For perfect results, you’ll need to watch it and be prepared to rotate your cake pans, pie dishes or cookie sheets. If you’re baking an item for 30 minutes, set your timer for 10 or 15 minutes so you can rotate midway through baking. This will allow a more even browned finish and delicious results.

Repositioning your oven racks can improve the quality of your baking, for more even browning and avoiding scorching. With the correct rack placement, you can ensure that the recipe you follow creates picture-perfect results.

If you want to enhance your baking, you need to ensure that you have the right oven. By choosing an appliance that offers great flexibility, you can adjust your oven racks correctly for the best results

If you’re looking for a new oven, you can explore the options with this online collection of ovens, stoves, and cooktops or speak to a home appliance experts for a specialized service.