Are you wondering whether or not you can put a cookie cooling rack in the oven, let me answer this quickly for you. The short answer is typically, yes!! Keep reading for more information.
Most cooling racks fit a sheet pan just right. It would make sense that you could use them in the oven too, right?
What cookie cooling racks can you use in the oven?
There are many types of racks, so the first thing I have to say is to be sure to check your cooling racks to ensure they are oven safe. Ensure that they are metal pans.
The racks I would be cautious of are non-stick racks. Typically they are coated with nonstick coatings that are not oven-safe.
Some of my favorite cooling racks to use are these stainless steel racks. You can even use tiered racks for a little more height to your rack.
Why use a cooling rack in the oven?
- Using cooling racks in the oven allows for air circulation around the food you are cooking. Rather than the food sitting on a flat surface, it is elevated and gives better circulation.
- The hot air will move easily around the food items when it is raised even a little.
- It will help keep excess fat out of your food as it drains down.
Cooking meat on a cooling rack in the oven
If you are baking meat dishes, especially juicy meats, this will allow the juices to drop off instead of the bottom of the meat sitting in it. Be sure you use a rimmed baking sheet so the juices don't spill over the edges.
As the fat renders and drains down. Keeping the meat off the bottom of the pan gives room for the fat to release and move down.
If you are baking breaded meats, cooking them on a stainless-steel rack on convection heat will create an environment similar to an air fryer.
Just as you use traditional roasting racks in your pan when you roast meats, the same process can be used with an oven-safe cooling rack. You can roast a whole bird (turkey, chicken, etc) this way.
Be sure to line your pan with aluminum foil for easy cleanup.
Cooking vegetables on a cooling rack in the oven
Cooking vegetables on a cooling rack works just like it does for meats. Asparagus is one of the best vegetables to cook on the racks. Be sure to cook it at high temperatures and it will roast perfectly!
The juices will drain down and keep the crisp veggies just as they should be. You could use this method for roasting vegetables for my roasted veggie sandwich post.
The best crispy bacon in the oven
I prefer baking my bacon instead of frying it in a frying pan. It is less messy and is a no-stress method.
The best way to get crispy bacon is to lay the bacon across cooling racks and set the racks on a cookie sheet. Be sure to line the pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Bake at 400 degrees until it is baked and crisp. Done!
Most bacon is fatty enough that it will come right off the racks.
Dehydrating fruits and vegetables
Another reason to use a cooling rack in the oven is when you are oven-dehydrating vegetables and fruits. This improved airflow around the produce will help them to dehydrate more quickly. Just check out this recipe for oven-dried tomatoes. Or how about dehydrated apple rings? It is the same concept.
It is the same concept as using a dehydrator, the shelves elevate the food.
Yes, you can use a wire rack for cooking in the oven. Just be sure you check whether it is oven-safe. Avoid any racks with non-stick coating.
Cooling racks can be the perfect tool for baking. Whether we are talking about meats, vegetables, or even dehydrating. Cooling racks deserve that place in your kitchen.
Next time you are wanting to bake some crispy chicken or other meats, consider the use of a cooling rack.