Diva Tasting: Sheet Pan Care and Recipes…

Sheet Pan Tips and Recipe Suggestions 101

Just in time for all those fall harvest veggies and dinners. If you are not using foil or parchment on your sheet pans here are a few suggestions I found. I also pop mine in the oven when I’m using the self cleaning application. Never put anything with plastic in the self clean-up option. Metal only.…

Learn the best ways to clean your sheet pans and remove stubborn stains.

If you’re like me, Sheet pans are probably some of your most well-loved and perpetually dirty kitchen items. No amount of scrubbing and soaking seems to get any of that burnt residue off. Sometimes it’s time to set soap and water aside and look for new methods of cleaning stubborn stains and residue. So before you toss those dirty pans, give these methods of cleaning sheet pans a try.

Try Baking Soda and Vinegar

This method uses items you’ll already have in your cupboard to help loosen the residue and keep your pans clean.

Fill a sink with hot water. Add equal parts baking soda and white vinegar (about half a cup of each).

Submerge your pans in the mixture and allow them to soak for between 30 minutes to an hour.

Use some elbow grease and give the pan a serious scrub, using the coarse side of a sponge. Scrub in a circular motion to avoid noticeable scratching (although some scratching may still occur).

Once you’ve scrubbed to your heart’s content, give the pan a good hand wash with soap and water to remove the vinegar smell, and dry immediately to avoid rust.

Try Dryer Sheets

Yes, you read that right. This laundry room staple works wonders on grimy sheet pans.

Leave your sheet pan in the sink or on the counter. Add one or two dryer sheets and dish soap, and fill the pan with warm water. Let it sit for 2 to 3 hours.

When you return, throw out the dryer sheets and dump the water out of the pan. Any caked-on food should lift easily with soap, water, and a sponge.

Try Peroxide and Baking Soda

Go scrounge up the hydrogen peroxide from your first aid supplies because this method makes cleaning dirty sheet pans a breeze. It should be noted that this method is likely too harsh for sheet pans with non-stick coatings.

Start by mixing baking soda and hydrogen peroxide into a paste.

Spread the mixture across the surface of the pan and allow it to sit for 2 to 3 hours.

Use a sponge to wipe away the paste. No harsh scrubbing should be needed!

How to Keep Your Sheet Pans Clean?

Now that your pan is free of grime and gunk, let’s keep it that way. The simplest way to keep your pans clean all the time is to use parchment paper or aluminum foil when cooking with them. And remember, scratches and stains are signs of your pans being put to good use, and that’s not such a bad thing.

How to Make the Best Sheet Pan Dinners

The genius behind this oven-baked spin on one-pot-cooking is that it’s supposed to make for simple prep, no-fuss cooking, and speedy clean-up. And all that’s true — as long as you keep these 6 simple tips in mind:

1. Use the Right Kind of Pan

The right baking sheet to use for sheet pan dinners is called a half-sheet pan. It’s made of heavy-gauge metal, measures 18 by 13 inches, and has a 1-inch rim all the way around. It’s sturdy enough to take high oven heat — and sometimes broiler heat if your recipe calls for it. The size allows for ingredients to be spread out so you don’t crowd the pan. (Crowded pans make for mushy meals because the ingredients steam instead of roast.) And the rim is low enough for heat to move across the ingredients to give them a crisp, brown, caramelized finish. Jellyroll pans may look the same, but they’re generally smaller and flimsier than half-sheet pans. The good news is half-sheet pans are not expensive and they’re the kind of multi-taskers that you’ll use again and again for a whole lot more than sheet pan dinners.

2. Line the Pan for Easy Clean-Up

You’ll see lots of blog photos of sheet pan dinners where the pan is all crusty with baked-on bits. (See the photo at top, for example.) But let’s get real. You’re not interested in scrubbing pans. The solution? Line the pan with heavy-duty foil or parchment paper (not waxed paper). You might have to do a little light washing later, but a well-lined pan cleans up in a jiffy.

3. Give Dense or Whole Vegetables a Head Start

Sturdy vegetables like potatoes and carrots take much longer to cook than softer vegetables like green beans, asparagus, and tomatoes. Depending on what else you’re adding to the pan, you should roast the denser vegetables for 30 minutes or more before adding the other vegetables to the pan. In this recipe for Greek Lemon Chicken and Potato Bake, small whole potatoes cook along with bone-in chicken leg quarters for 45 minutes, then the green beans are added 15 minutes before the pan comes out of the oven. If you cut the denser vegetables into small pieces, they’ll need a shorter head start.

4. Oil Up the Ingredients

To ensure that vegetables don’t dry out while they’re cooking, make sure you completely coat them with oil. The best way to do this is to put them into a large bowl and add the oil and any other seasonings in your recipe. Then stir with a spoon or with your hands to cover everything thoroughly. A smart move is to do the dense vegetables first and get them started in the oven (see tip #3), then use what’s in the bowl to coat the softer vegetables that will be added to the pan later.

5. Know When to Rack ‘Em

Most sheet pan dinners can be baked right on the pan with no rack needed. After all, that’s how you get those tasty caramelized surfaces. But, let’s say you want to bake breaded chicken or fish along with vegetables. To keep that crisp coating from getting soggy from the veg, use a wire rack to raise the breaded ingredients above the moisture in the pan. Use the same approach when you’re roasting a cut of beef or pork so the juices baste the ingredients while the meats gets gloriously browned. Everyone wins.

6. Add Flavor Boosters

Try seasoning blends: jerk seasoning, za’atar, Chinese five-spice powder, garam masala, or Italian seasoning.

Use spicy chiles: fresh jalapeños or serranos, canned chipotles, crushed red pepper, dried cayenne, or ancho powder.

Add sauces and drizzles: wasabi sour cream, herbed aioli, maple syrup, olive oil, or balsamic vinegar.

Toss in some nuts: pecans, almonds, cashews, peanuts, pine nuts, or walnuts.

Squeeze on or zest some citrus: lemon, grapefruit, lime, or orange.

Sprinkle on fresh aromatics: cilantro, parsley, oregano basil, green onion, or thyme before serving.

Recipes to Give it A Start

Greek Flank Steak/Sheet Pan

Ingredients

3 Pounds Flank Steak

6 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

¼ Cup Fresh Lemon Juice

2 Tablespoons Worcestershire Sauce

4 Cloves Garlic, Minced

2 Teaspoons Ground Oregano

1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

¼ Teaspoon Black Pepper

1 (15 Ounce) Can Chickpeas, Drained And Rinsed

1 ½ Cups Cherry Tomatoes, Halved

1 English Cucumber, Chopped

1 Red Onion, Chopped

8 Cups Chopped Romaine Lettuce

1 Cup Crumbled Feta Cheese

¼ Cup Chopped Fresh Parsley

Directions

Step 1 Put steak in a large resealable plastic bag. Whisk olive oil, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, garlic, oregano, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Reserve 1/2 cup marinade for vegetables; pour remainder over steak and turn to coat. Seal bag. Chill at least 2 hours or up to 12 hours.

Step 2 Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Place 1 rack in center position and another 4 inches from broiler. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray.

Step 3 Toss chickpeas, tomatoes, cucumber, and onion with reserved 1/2 cup marinade on the prepared baking sheet and spread in an even layer.

Step 4 Roast on center rack until vegetables begin to pucker and brown, 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 5 Remove baking sheet from oven and turn oven to broil. Push vegetables to the middle of the pan. Remove steak from marinade, allowing excess liquid to drip off, brush off garlic, and set on top of vegetables. Discard marinade.

Step 6 Broil steak on top rack, flipping once, until it begins to char and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part registers 125 degrees F for rare or 135 degrees F for medium-rare, 3 to 5 minutes per side.

Step 7 Cover loosely with foil and let rest 10 minutes before slicing steak thinly across the grain. Serve warm steak and vegetables with pan juices over romaine, sprinkled with feta cheese and parsley. Serve with Rice Pilaf, roasted Brussels Sprouts and rolls. Serves 6

Jerk Shrimp

Ingredients

2 Pounds Large Shrimp In Shells

1 (20 Ounce) Can Pineapple Slices Packed In 100% Juice, Drained, And Cut Into 2-Inch Pieces

2 Red Bell Peppers, Cut Into Thin Strips

1 Large Red Onion, Sliced

1 Jalapeno Pepper – Halved Lengthwise, Seeded, And Sliced

4 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Tablespoon Jamaican Jerk Seasoning

½ Cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro

2 Cups Hot Cooked Brown Rice

1 Lime, Cut Into Wedges

Directions

Step 1 Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Line two 10×15-inch baking pans with foil.

Step 2 Peel and devein shrimp, leaving tails intact if desired. Rinse shrimp and pat dry.

Step 3 Gently toss shrimp together with pineapple, bell peppers, red onion, jalapeno, oil, and jerk seasoning in a large bowl. Divide mixture between the prepared pans.

Step 4 Roast in the preheated oven until shrimp are opaque, about 15 minutes.

Step 5 Sprinkle with cilantro and serve with brown rice and lime wedges. Serves 4

Italian Sheet Pan Chicken Dinner

Ingredients

Cooking Spray

1 Pound Skinless, Boneless Chicken Breast, Cut Into Cubes

1 (10 Ounce) Package Frozen Broccoli

4 Potatoes, Diced

½ Cup Butter, Melted

1 (.7 Ounce) Package Italian Dressing Mix

Directions

Step 1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Spray a 13×9-inch baking dish or Sheet Pan with cooking spray. Step 2

Spread chicken pieces, broccoli, and potatoes into the prepared baking dish, respectively. Drizzle melted butter over ingredients in the dish and season with the Italian dressing mix.

Step 3 Bake in preheated oven until the chicken is cooked through and potatoes are tender, 45 to 60 minutes. Serve with Rice Pilaf, garlic crostini, and beverage. Serves 4

Oven Roasted Chicken and Sausage

Ingredients

¼ Cup Olive Oil

2 Pounds Bratwurst Links, Cut Into 1/2 Inch Slices

3 Pounds Chicken Pieces

1 Pinch Kosher Salt To Taste

2 Pounds Potatoes, Cut Into 1-Inch Chunks

3 Tablespoons Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

3 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary Leaves, Chopped

1 Teaspoon Red Wine Vinegar

Directions

Step 1 Preheat oven to 450 degrees F (230 degrees C). Prepare a large baking dish with cooking spray.

Step 2 Pour half of the olive oil into a large skillet over medium heat. Cook the bratwurst in the hot oil until browned on both sides, about 5 minutes; set aside. Add the remaining olive oil to the skillet and return to heat; brown the chicken pieces in the hot oil 7 to 10 minutes; season with salt while cooking; set aside and return the skillet to heat. Heat the potatoes in the skillet until lightly browned. Arrange potatoes, chicken, and bratwurst in the prepared baking dish; season with salt and drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil; sprinkle with about half of the chopped rosemary.

Step 3 Roast in the preheated oven 15 minutes. Turn each piece of chicken over and stir the potatoes and sausage. Sprinkle the remaining rosemary and the red wine vinegar over the dish; cook another 15 minutes. Serves 6

Sheet Pan Salmon

Ingredients

1 Pound Salmon Fillet, Halved

1 Small Tomato, Chopped

5 Green Onions, Chopped

¼ Teaspoon Kosher Salt

¼ Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper

Directions

Step 1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

Step 2 Place salmon on a lightly oiled sheet pan or in a shallow baking dish, folding under thin outer edges of fillets for even cooking. Top salmon with chopped tomatoes and green onions, and season with salt and pepper.

Step 3 Cook salmon in the preheated oven, uncovered, for approximately 20 minutes. Fish is done when easily flaked with a fork. Serves 2

Sheet Pan Vegetables

Ingredients

2 Cups Baby Potatoes

5 Tablespoons Olive Oil, Divided (Optional)

2 Cups Cherry Tomatoes

2 Cups 1-Inch Cut Fresh Green Beans

4 Cloves Garlic, Minced

2 Teaspoons Dried Basil

1 Teaspoon Flaked Sea Salt

1 (15 Ounce) Can Garbanzo Beans, Drained And Rinsed

2 Teaspoons Olive Oil, Or To Taste (Optional)

Salt And Ground Black Pepper To Taste

Directions

Step 1 Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Line a jelly roll pan with aluminum foil.

Step 2 Toss potatoes with 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium bowl. Pour into the prepared pan.

Step 3 Roast in the preheated oven until tender, about 30 minutes.

Step 4 Toss cherry tomatoes, green beans, garlic, basil, and sea salt with 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Step 5 Remove potatoes from the oven, push them to one side of the pan, and add the tomato and green bean mixture. Roast until tomatoes start to wilt, 15 to 20 minutes more.

Step 6 Remove from the oven and pour into a serving dish. Stir in garbanzo beans, add 3 teaspoons olive oil, and season with salt and pepper. Serves 4

Sausage and Pepper Sheet Pan

Ingredients

2 Teaspoons Olive Oil

2 Pounds Italian Sausage Links, Cut Into 2-Inch Pieces

¼ Cup Olive Oil

4 Large Potatoes, Large Chopped

2 Large Green Bell Peppers, Seeded And Cut Into Wedges

2 Large Red Bell Peppers, Seeded And Cut Into Wedges

3 Large Onions, Cut Into Chunks

½ Cup White Wine

½ Cup Chicken Stock

1 Tablespoon Italian Seasoning

Salt And Pepper To Taste

Directions

Step 1 Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C).

Step 2 Heat 2 teaspoons olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat, and cook and stir the sausage until browned. Transfer the cooked sausage to a large baking dish.

Step 3 Pour 1/4 cup of olive oil into the skillet, and cook the potatoes, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 10 minutes. Place the potatoes into the baking dish, leaving some oil in the skillet.

Step 4 Cook and stir the green and red peppers and onions in the hot skillet until they are beginning to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the vegetables to the baking dish.

Step 5 Pour wine and chicken stock over the vegetables and sausage, and sprinkle with Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper. Gently stir the sausage, potatoes, and vegetables together.

Step 6 Bake in the preheated oven until hot and bubbling, 20 to 25 minutes. Serve hot. Servings 6

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