Baking can be a fun, exciting, and delicious activity provided we have the recipe, ingredients, and the necessary equipment. However, I’m sure we’ve all experienced a time when we didn’t have the exact tools the recipe required. In this instance, we’ve probably found ourselves asking a question similar to, “can I double a recipe for an 8×8 pan?”
When it comes to baking anything, it’s very important to try and get the measurements as precise as possible. One slight error can unfortunately ruin even the tastiest of recipes. The image of a delicious cake in the oven is suddenly replaced by the picture of a disastrous attempt.
Fortunately, there’s something we can do about this particular issue. We know how tricky recipes can be, but we also know that baking is a matter of measurement. It just takes a little math to tweak any recipe to bake your favorite dish.
What Is Double An 8×8 Pan?
An 8×8 pan is a square cake pan that’s not commonly used. However, when we ask what is double an 8×8 pan, the answer isn’t a 16×16 pan. Before you think this is too confusing, let’s break this down a little more for clarification.
When we ask if we can double a recipe for an 8×8 pan, what we’re really trying to figure out is whether or not the mixture can fit a standard-sized cake pan. In most American households, a 9×13 pan is considered the standard size and what most people use. So for recipes that require an 8×8 pan, there’s still a way to bake that recipe even with a 9×13 pan.
With the 8×8 pan being a square and the 9×13 pan being a rectangle, there is a slight potential to ruin your dish if the measurements are not precise when swapping out one pan for the other. Which updates our original question to, will a double an 8×8 pan’s recipe work for a 9×13 pan? The answer is, yes.
8×8 Pan Doubled
Let’s take a closer look at the similarities between an 8×8 pan and a 9×13 pan. An 8×8 cake pan has a surface area of 64 inches, while a 9×13 cake pan has a surface area of 117 inches. As you can see, there is a difference of 53 inches which translates to a margin of error if you were to swap pans and bake the recipe. However, if you were to double the recipe of the 8×8 pan, then that would equal a surface area of 128 inches in total. Now, the difference between both pans is 11 inches which means it would be possible to cook this doubled recipe in a 9×13 cake pan.
While you are able to get a similar final result after you double the 8×8 recipe, there are two important factors to consider in the changes you’ve just made.
- Thickness: While the doubled mixture will turn out to be slightly thicker when you bake it in a 9×13 pan, this shouldn’t be a problem. If anything, it may need a few minutes added or subtracted depending on the temperature you bake it at.
- Timing: With a thicker batter, time will most likely need to be adjusted. As the batter spreads to fit the pan, it’s most common to increase the baking time by about five minutes.
With any adjustment, it’s always best to keep an eye on the oven and check frequently to ensure that the dish doesn’t under or overbake.
How to Convert a Recipe From 9×13 to 8×8?
Now that we know it’s possible to double an 8×8 recipe to fit a 9×13 pan, let’s see if the reverse is also true. If you find yourself with an 8×8 pan and a 9×13 recipe, how do you convert the recipe to fit these new dimensions? The answer is simple. Just cut the recipe by half. Let’s take another look at those calculations we started with earlier.
A 9×13 pan has an area of 117 inches. When you divide this by 2, you get 58.5 inches.
A nice 8×8 pan has an area of 64 inches. The difference is just 5.5 inches.
Is an 8×8 pan half the size of a 9×13, then? Not quite, but pretty close. An 8×8 pan is almost half the size of a 9×13 pan, so cutting the recipe in half is the easiest way to achieve the same result. Aside from halving the recipe, not much else is needed. However, it’s a good rule of thumb to always monitor the time, and temperature, with any changes you make to a recipe.
What About Eggs?
One aspect we rarely consider is the ingredients that are easy to adjust and those that are not so easy. When the recipe calls for an even number of eggs, it’s easy to half or double the count. However, what if the recipe requires an odd number of eggs? An easy way to measure out eggs is to separate the yolk and the whites and measure each part individually. Then, use a measuring tool to portion each part equally as the recipe requires.
9×9 Pan vs. 8×8 Pan
Let’s deal with a slightly trickier calculation now. What is the difference between an 8×8 pan and a 9×9 pan? They look similar so maybe you can just use the same recipe, right?
Unfortunately, the difference between an 8×8 pan and a 9×9 pan is a lot more than what meets the eye. So let’s run the numbers to get a better idea.
- The surface area of an 8×8 pan is 64 inches.
- The surface area of a 9×9 pan is 81 inches.
The difference between both is 17 inches. This can easily ruin a dish if you were to follow the same measurements for both. So how do you change the recipe?
To Use a 9×9 Pan Recipe for An 8×8 Pan:
Since the 9×9 pan is 17 inches bigger, you will have to reduce the measurements when using the same recipe for an 8×8 pan. The closest to 17 is 16.2. So, you would have to reduce the measurements of the individual ingredients by 20% to use the recipe for an 8×8 pan.
- 81*20%= 16.2
- 81*25%= 20.25
To Use an 8×8 Pan Recipe for a 9×9 Pan:
In this case, you would have to increase the measurements when using an 8×8 recipe for a 9×9 pan. The closest is again 16, hence, you would increase the measurements by 25%. In short, the 9×9 pan is 25% bigger than the 8×8 cake pan.
- 64*25% = 16
- 64*30%= 19.2
Square Vs. Round
When considering the shape of a pan, a crucial point to remember is the difference between a square and a round pan. The surface area of a round pan is calculated using the formula πr2.
r= radius (half of the diameter)
So, the measurements of an 8-inch round pan would be π(4)2 = 3.14*4*4 = 50.2 inches.
A 9-inch round pan has a surface area of π(4.5)2 = 3.14*4.5*4.5 = 63.5 inches.
In order to use an 8×8 square pan recipe for a 9-inch round pan, you would need to increase the measurements by 20%. To substitute an 8-inch round pan with a 8×8 square pan, you would need to increase the recipe by 25%.
So, if you’re still asking yourself, “can I double a recipe for an 8×8 pan,” the answer is without a doubt yes. Adjusting recipes for any pan size, and vice versa requires you to consider the variables that change as the size is modified. All that’s really needed is some quick math to ensure that the ingredients are scaled to proportional ratios. Now, you can make your favorite dishes and desserts by altering recipes to suit your baking pan needs.
Whether you make small or large changes, it’s important to keep your recipes updated. Using software like Morsel, makes it easy to keep track and note the necessary details when pan sizes or recipes change. Cook like a pro and keep track of your recipes for all pan sizes.
Aida Solomon is a digital marketing specialist who’s passionate about bringing her creative ideas to life. As an avid homecook, Aida loves to explore the way food has the power of bridging the world together. When she’s offline, she loves to travel through new recipes, and run long distances — paying homage to her Ethiopian roots.