If it’s Thanksgiving and you’re expecting several friends, you need more than turkey.
You can have an apple, sweet potato, or pecan, but pies must be there.
And the fact that several friends and family members would show up could mean one thing –plenty of pies!
That’s why you might explore the idea of preparing several of them in the oven at the same time.
But, Can You Bake Multiple Pies at Once?
The answer is “yes,” generally. Only one major issue might stand in the way – whether your multiple pies are made from 2 contrasting recipes.
How Many Types Of Pies Are There?
There are 4 main types of pies:
- and fruit (all pies have a crust though, and that’s what sets them apart from tarts).
Finer details about these types are beyond the scope of this post, but they are prepared from different recipes.
So, contrasting recipes can mean different cooking times and temperature requirements.
The way around this obstacle is to use a double or conventional oven (more on that later).
The Dual Oven Is The Best Bet
To bake multiple pies at the same time, stress-free, you need a double oven.
This type of oven is equipped with two separate cooking compartments that can be set to bake simultaneously at different temperatures.
With it, a difference in baking time or temperature requirements means nothing.
Even with a double oven or any other smart oven you may have, you still need to be attentive the entire baking period so that you don’t destroy the crust on your pies.
As such, don’t interfere with natural airflow in the compartment by, say, opening the lid unnecessarily during the baking process.
That’s why most baking recipes often ask you to keep your baking sheets reasonably far away from the walls of the oven.
What’s The Perfect Baking Temperature For Multiple Pies?
It can depend on the type of pies (ingredients used to make them).
However, it only makes sense that you leave your multiple pies in the oven 5 – 8 minutes longer than their recommended times to compensate for the heat lost along the way.
While you can place them on any rack (top, middle, or bottom) depending on whether you want to discriminate different recipes, the middle rack is more recommendable.
Keep The Number Of Pies Low
It is also important to note that multiple pies cause the temperature to drop in the oven.
Yes – remember each pie absorbs a certain amount of heat from the circulating air.
So, the more pies you have on the racks, the larger the drop.
That’s why we earlier recommended you let your pies stay in the oven 5 – 8 minutes longer than stipulated.
What’s The Best Way To Go About It?
Ask any experienced baker and they’d recommend an upside-down pan for multiple pies.
Get yourself one, cover it with a clean aluminum foil, and arrange your pies on it.
Here’s how to go about it:
- Choose a baking pan large enough to fit all your pies
- Flip the pan (we want an upside-down pan)
- Proceed to wrap the pan with a clean aluminum foil
- Neatly arrange your raw pies on the foil. Ensure they are evenly distributed.
- Now, preheat your oven for about a minute. Confirm with your recipe.
- Once you hit the prescribed temperature, place the pan at the center of the rack of your choice
- Shut the lid and start baking
- Watch over the pan to ensure they are baking as desired
- Be certain to not overcrowd the oven with pies. Also, leave sufficient space between the pan and the walls of the oven.
How Do You Stop Your Multiple Pies From Puffing?
As mentioned earlier, the presence of multiple pies in the oven causes the overall temperature to drop.
Also, conventional ovens are prone to temperature fluctuations. In such situations, your pies are likely to get puffy rather than develop a crust.
To get a quality crust on your multiple pies, get yourself a few pie weights.
What the heck is that!?
Not many bakers use them, but pie weights are tiny ceramic balls normally added in the crust of pies (before inserting them in the oven) to do one thing – eliminate puffing.
Get The Weight Right
Still, you need to get the weight right. For every 9” pie you bake, use about 2 lbs of pie weights. I’d recommend ROCKSHEAT 2.2 lbs Ceramic Pie Weights.
Convention VS. Convectional: Which Is Perfect For Baking Multiple Pies?
Let’s start by creating a distinction between these two types of ovens.
Convection ovens split their compartment into three – top, middle, and bottom racks.
These ovens are prone to temperature fluctuations which makes it difficult to bake multiple pies.
Conventional ovens, on another hand, are equipped with a tiny fan tasked with circulating hot air around the compartment during baking.
The perfect oven for the job, therefore, is conventional as it guarantees consistent temperatures.
Which Is The Best Rack For Multiple Pies?
You can use any rack you please (top, middle, or bottom), but the middle is more preferable.
Why? The crust starts to burn from below or the bottom rack.
Also, arrange your pies closer to the center but evenly distributed.
So what could go wrong? Here are a few concerns:
1. Leaking Taste
The ingredients will decide the taste of the pie. So, the main concern here should be the taste bleeding across different pies.
However, chances are slim owing to the great temperatures involved.
You can prevent it further by spacing them widely enough.
2. Incoherent Baking Times
Another thing that might go wrong is one kind of pie baking in a shorter time than the other.
You can’t prevent this beforehand because the recipe always has a bigger say in the temperature to be used.
The easiest way around this is to insert the short-timed pies midway or insert the two at the same time, remove the short-timed lot once done, and leave the longer-timed lot to stay in there to bake to completion.
3. Incoherent Temperatures
There’s one more thing you must get right, always – the temperature.
Ensure that your temperature setting in the oven matches what your recipe says.
If you are lucky to have multiple pies with the same temperature requirements, but all of them on a single rack. That way, you can be guaranteed of even baking.
A Few More Things You Should Know When Baking Multiple Pies Simultaneously:
There’s a common belief that increasing the baking temperature setting in the oven for every extra pie added in the compartment is somehow good for complete baking.
It’s as misleading as it sounds because temperature increments will certainly overbake them regardless of their number.
It’s the worst thing you could try on multiple pies with different temperature requirements.
More importantly, don’t mix your pies with other ‘bakables’ like cakes even if they have the same temperature requirements.
To summarize everything, yes, it’s possible and perfectly OK to bake multiple pies simultaneously.
Only one major issue might stand in the way – whether your multiple pies are made from 2 contrasting recipes.
Two contrasting recipes can mean different cooking times and temperature requirements, all of which might complicate the whole baking process.
However, you can skip these hurdles by adopting different approaches.