The Baking Trick You Need To Try Before Tossing Butter Wrappers

It's safe to say that most bakers know the importance of greasing the pan when making a variety of baked treats, from pumpkin bread to strawberry shortcake. But did you know there's an easy (and resourceful) way to grease your next baking pan? The trick lies in reusing your butter wrappers to get the job done.


Instead of wadding up a paper towel sheet to spread oil or butter on a tin — or using your fingers or a pastry brush to deposit the grease — you can simply make use of what you already have on hand (and probably are used to throwing right in the bin). When you remove a stick of softened butter from the wrapper before throwing it into the electric mixer to cream with sugar, you'll notice the ample amount of grease on the liner, as well as some remnants or little chunks of butter residue. The seemingly "waste" wrapper is perfect for setting aside and using to lather up your pan with grease, so your baked goods don't stick.

How to make the most of your butter wrappers

Using (or reusing) butter wrappers to grease your baking pans couldn't be easier, and you'll probably wish you knew this trick sooner. If you're using a stick of butter in your recipe, just save the wrapper on the counter until you're ready to grease your pan. Use the greasy inside of the wrapper to coat all surfaces and corners of your baking tin until a nice even layer of butter covers it. If you need extra butter, you can always cut off a pat from another stick and use the butter liner to spread it along the pan. From there, you can proceed with any additional provisions to ensure your cake or muffins don't stick, such as a sheet of parchment paper to line a pan for cookie bars or a light dusting of flour over the butter to prepare to bake a bundt cake.


The good news with this simple trick is that you don't necessarily need to be baking with butter (or use the whole stick) to use the butter wrapper to grease your pan. You can easily fold butter wrappers in half and save them in a plastic bag in the fridge if you know you'll use them relatively soon. 

This waste-reducing baking tip is nothing new

Though the internet seems to be full of hacks to make your baking and cooking endeavors more efficient, using a butter wrapper to grease a cake pan is tried and true. Our elders have been doing it for years, and showing us how. In a zero-waste subreddit, one Reddit user wrote regarding the kitchen tip, "Old school. My Grandmother would put the butter wrappers in the freezer and use them whenever she needed to butter a pan."


Indeed, saving your butter wrappers for the greasy task is both wise and resourceful. While there are some butter brands that make recyclable or biodegradable wrappers, many butter wrappers on the market are not recyclable since they are lined with silicon to help the butter release easily from the packaging. So, if you're going to have to throw them out eventually, why not make use of their handy pan-greasing capacity first, without the need to waste extra napkins, butter, or other forms of grease?