When it comes to baking and cooking, having the right size pans and dishes makes a big difference. If you’ve ever tried to bake a cake only to realize halfway through that it’s spilling over the edges of the pan, you know why having properly sized bakeware is important! One common size used for everything from casseroles to cakes is the one quart baking dish. But if you’re not familiar with quarts as a unit of measurement, you may be wondering, just how big is a one quart baking dish?
In this article, I will talk about what a one quart baking dish is, its typical dimensions, what you can cook in a one quart dish, and tips for buying the right sized pan for your needs.
What is a One Quart Baking Dish?
First, let’s clarify what a “one quart” baking dish is. Quarts are a unit of volume used in cooking, with one quart equal to two pints or four cups. A one quart baking dish is designed to hold one quart or four cups of food or liquid. The quart is a handy unit of measurement because it translates easily into cup measurements, with four cups equaling one quart. This makes it easy to adapt recipes for a one quart pan, since most recipe ingredients are measured in cups. The one quart baking dish got its name because it has a one quart capacity.
Typical Dimensions of a One Quart Baking Dish
When it comes to the size and dimensions of a one quart baking dish, there are some general guidelines but dimensions can vary slightly between brands. A typical one quart baking dish is a rectangular or square pan that is about 8 x 8 x 2 inches. Some are closer to 9 x 9 x 2 inches. A standard one quart baking dish that is round rather than square is usually around 8 inches in diameter and 2 inches deep.
No matter if it is round or rectangular, the depth is commonly around 2 inches. This shape and depth provides enough room to hold four cups or one quart of food or liquid when baking.
Here is a baking dish dimension table:
|8 x 8 x 2 inches 9 x 9 x 2 inches
|8 inch diameter x 2 inches deep
|9 x 13 x 2 inches
|9 inch diameter x 2 inches deep
|11 x 14 x 2 inches
|10 inch diameter x 2 inches deep
|12 x 15 x 2 inches
|12 inch diameter x 2 inches deep
|Nine by Thirteen
|9 x 13 x 2 inches
|8.5 x 4.5 x 2.5 inches
|9 inch diameter x 1.5 inches deep
What Fits in a One Quart Baking Dish?
Knowing the capacity and dimensions of a one quart baking dish gives you a good idea of what types of recipes it can hold. A one quart dish is great for baking smaller portions rather than giant pans of food. Here are some examples of recipes that would bake up nicely in a one quart pan:
- A casserole to serve 3-4 people. One quart fits 4 cups so there’s room for ingredients like noodles, cheese, meat and vegetables.
- A batch of brownies or blondies. One quart fits the right amount of batter for about 9-12 brownies or blondies.
- Macaroni and cheese for a small family. Elbow pasta, cheese sauce and a topping all fill a 1 quart dish.
- Baked ziti, lasagna or another pasta bake in a portion suitable for 4.
- A small meatloaf, sized for just 2-4 servings. The loaf pan shape also works well for meatballs.
- Roasted vegetables for 4 people, such as potatoes, Brussels sprouts, carrots or butternut squash.
So while you can’t fit a giant tray of lasagna or a cake to serve 20 people, a one quart dish is ideal for smaller batches of food.
Uses for a One Quart Baking Dish
In addition to the recipes mentioned already, here are some of the most common uses for a one quart baking dish:
- Baking casserole recipes, from breakfast casseroles to savory dinners like chicken pot pie or tuna noodle casserole. The 1 quart capacity provides enough room for a sauce and additional ingredients.
- Making baked pasta dishes and bakes like ziti, baked ravioli, manicotti or a spinach artichoke dip pasta bake.
- Baking quick breads and cakes that serve 9-12 people. Pound cakes, banana breads, and coffee cakes work well.
- Roasting vegetables either as a side dish or a full vegetarian meal. Squash, Brussels sprouts, carrots, potatoes, and beets all roast up nicely in a dish of this size.
- Baking chicken breasts, fish fillets, pork chops, and other proteins. Often one pound or less of meat fits perfectly in a 1 quart dish.
Buying a One Quart Baking Dish
If you’ve decided a one quart baking dish would be useful for your cooking needs, here are some tips for purchasing one:
They are made from a variety of materials including glass, ceramic, metal, silicone or stoneware. Glass and ceramic retain heat well for evenly cooked dishes. Be sure to check the dimensions rather than relying on product names alone. An 8 x 8 pan may not always be one quart. Measure dimensions to ensure a 1 quart capacity.
Reputable brands like Pyrex, Chicago Metallic, Oxo, Rachael Ray and Anchor Hocking all make quality quart-sized baking dishes. Metal pans with a nonstick coating allow for easy release of baked goods. Uncoated metal can require more greasing so food does not stick. Handles make removing hot dishes from the oven easier. Some have handles, some require hot pads for safe removal.
Substitutes and Equivalents
If you don’t have a one quart baking dish available, there are some substitutions you can make:
- 9 x 9 inch baking pan – This common pan size has very similar dimensions to a one quart dish. Recipes can typically be used interchangeably.
- 8 x 8 inch baking pan – Slightly smaller than a quart dish, you may need to use a bit less batter or filling. Watch closely to avoid overflow.
- Round cake pan – An 8 or 9 inch round pan will substitute nicely. Again, watch filling levels.
- Four individual ramekins – Use four 1-cup ramekins instead of one larger dish. Great for making individual pot pies or casseroles.
- Loaf pan – A smaller meatloaf or loaf of quick bread can bake in a standard loaf pan.
- Four custard cups – Each custard cup holds about 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup, so four equals one quart. Good for baking custards.
- Four single serve oven-safe bowls – Use individual oven-safe bowls for baked oatmeal or other dishes.
While glass and ceramic pans work best for even heating, in a pinch you can use an oven-safe stainless steel bowl of similar size. Just watch closely for hotspots. With some creative thinking, you can find a good substitute for a one quart baking dish!
From casseroles to cakes, a one quart baking dish opens up possibilities for easily baking smaller portioned entrees, sides and treats. Now that you know a one quart dish holds four cups, and the typical pan size is around 8 x 8 x 2 inches, you can seek out a quart-sized baking dish for your kitchen. With a handy one quart pan, you’ll be able to perfectly bake up recipes sized for 3-4 servings.
FAQs for You
Here are some frequently asked questions about one quart baking dishes:
What is the difference between a 1 quart and a 1 liter baking dish?
A quart and a liter are different units of measurement. 1 quart is equal to 0.95 liters. So a 1 liter baking dish would be slightly larger than a 1 quart size.
I have a glass baking dish that says it’s 1.5 quarts. Can I still use one quart recipes?
That dish would be too large for a typical one quart recipe. You may end up with a thinner, drier baked good if using just 1 quart of batter or ingredients. Refer to the recipe’s pan size recommendations.
Are metal baking dishes ok to use?
Yes, stainless steel and nonstick metal pans conduct heat well. Just watch for potential hot spots with metal vs. ceramic or glass.
Should I grease or spray a one quart baking dish before using?
Yes, it’s best to grease or use nonstick spray unless the recipe specifies not to. This prevents sticking, especially with metal pans.
What size chicken or piece of meat fits in a 1 quart dish?
Generally one chicken breast or two small ones, 1 pound of ground meat, or 1 pork chop fits well. Roast vegetables alone also fill a 1 quart dish.
Can I use a one quart baking dish on the stovetop?
Only if the dish specifies it is oven safe up to a particular temperature and stove top safe. Not all are designed for direct stovetop heat.
How do I clean a one quart baking dish?
Wash gently with soap and water, avoid abrasives. Dishwasher safe ones can be cleaned in the dishwasher. Avoid temperature extremes in cleaning.