Making Cookies — Without A Cookie Sheet

January 2, 2023
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Many Different Options When a Cookie Sheet isn’t Available

In the mood to whip up a batch of fresh baked chocolate chip cookies, peanut butter cookies, or sugar cookies? What happens when you are ready to put them in the oven only to discover you have no cookie sheet?

Thankfully, there are several ways you can still bake cookies without using a cookie sheet. Compiled below are some of the best methods that produce delicious homemade cookies.

Can You Make Cookies Without a Cookie Sheet?

Yes, you can make cookies without a cookie sheet! Use any dish, tray, or bakeware item that is oven-safe such as cake pans, glassware, porcelain, and even pizza stones. You only need to adjust your recipe’s bake time depending on which bakeware you use.

Resourcefulness is one of the best qualities a baker or cook can have. Understanding how to solve problems saves you from potential baking disappointments. Non-traditional kitchen tools will not stop you from baking cookies.

How to Make Cookies Without a Cookie Sheet

Continue reading to learn more about baking cookies without a cookie sheet. You will find some of the best cookie sheet substitutes alongside answers to commonly asked questions about aluminum foil and parchment paper.

While a cookie sheet is an ideal choice for baking cookies, it is not necessary. If you bake in a kitchen without this bakeware item, get creative by using one of these eight cookie sheet alternatives below.

But first–mix up your cookie dough! Be sure to include the key ingredients such as baking soda, baking powder, and brown sugar, as well as your additional fun ingredients like peanut butter or chocolate chips.

Delicious Cookies Can be Achieved Without a Cookie Sheet

Baking Tray

The best alternative to a cookie sheet is a baking sheet or tray because they are incredibly similar. In fact, they are so similar you may even assume the two trays are the same. However, a few key differences mean they are not as interchangeable as you might think.

Baking Tray vs. Cookie Sheet

Below are the similarities and differences between a baking tray versus a cookie sheet.

Baking Tray or Sheet

Baking sheets are one of the most versatile pans for the kitchen, coming in various sizes (full sheet, half sheet, and quarter sheet). You can distinguish a baking tray by its high rim spanning the entire edge of the pan. If you use this pan for a task other than baking cookies, the rim keeps all liquids contained. It also acts as a barrier for smaller foods like vegetables, ensuring they do not fall to the oven floor.

Cookie Tray or Sheet

A notable difference between a cookie and a baking sheet is that the cookie sheet does not have a rim around the edge. Some may have a small lip or handle on either side for easy transfer from oven rack to cooling rack. Since cookie sheets do not have rims, scooping up cookies with a spatula is easier since there is no barrier.

Without the rim, hot air circulates more efficiently throughout the cookies, resulting in an even and slightly faster bake. Though this difference in bake time is so slight, you likely will not notice.

Most cookie sheets are insulated, too. They have an extra layer of metal that protects the bottom of cookies from browning too much before the rest.

Baking Trays Are a Good Option When Making Cookies

Silicone Pan

Another excellent alternative to a cookie sheet is a silicone baking tray. Silicone pans come in many shapes and sizes for cakes and candy molds.

Many people do not know that silicone bakeware also comes in a cookie sheet variety. Silicone baking sheets work well for baking cookies because of their shape and silicone’s ability to withstand high temperatures. This tray will never melt in the oven.


The microwave is a great cookie sheet alternative if you want a single-serving cookie rather than several dozen and do not want to dirty many dishes. All you need is a microwave-safe plate and a piece of wax paper.

For microwave cookies, place a strip of wax paper over a plate. The wax paper ensures the cookie does not stick. Press a tablespoon or two of cookie dough onto the wax-paper-covered plate. Make sure the plate is wide enough to handle the cookie’s expansion.

Place it in the microwave and cook for about one minute and 30 seconds. Check the cookie and continue microwaving in 30-second intervals until it cooks thoroughly. Raw cookie dough might taste good, but it could contain harmful bacteria, making you sick.

Muffin Tin

Baking cookies in a muffin tin will not yield the classic cookie shape with a crisp edge. Besides that, the cookie tastes the same. Use a regular muffin tin or mini muffin tin for cute bite-sized cookies.

Prep the tray by greasing with butter or non-stick cooking spray. You could also use muffin liners instead of baking in the muffin tin directly. Many muffin tins contain non-stick materials. However, adding an extra layer of protection makes de-molding the cookies even easier.

Use less dough per cookie since muffin tins do not allow the dough to expand. Bake your cookies in a preheated oven according to the recipe’s recommended amount of time. Watch closely, as they may need longer to cook.


Instead of individual cookies, why not make one giant skillet cookie? There are two options for this alternative method — stainless steel or cast iron. If you choose a stainless steel skillet, ensure it is oven safe with a metal handle.

Use parchment paper, cooking spray, or butter and thoroughly coat the pan. Add your cookie dough to the skillet and bake in a preheated oven according to the recipe’s directions. Since this is one cookie instead of multiple, it might need longer to bake.

Once the cookie is fully baked and cooled, top it with vanilla ice cream and chocolate drizzle before cutting it into triangles or squares.

Waffle Maker

You can make almost any dessert in a waffle maker, including cookies. The waffle divots create a fun texture unique to a traditional cookie.

Preheat your waffle maker. Greasing with butter or a non-stick cooking spray is especially relevant here. The cookie dough might get stuck in one of the many waffle pockets.

Add about one to two tablespoons of cookie dough, then close the lid. The cookies should take no longer than five minutes to bake. If your waffle maker has a green light, watch for it to turn on.

If your waffle maker does not have a green light, check the cookies every few minutes, so they do not burn.

Pizza Stone

A pizza stone is another great alternative for baking cookies. It is flat with to outer rim, similar to a cookie sheet. This similarity means you can follow the recipe exactly with no alterations.

Manufacturers designed pizza stones for withstanding hot temperatures. It is perfectly oven-safe. Use stainless steel, wood, ceramic, or cast iron pizza stones for this substitution.

​​Glass Dish

Glass dishes are fine for baking cookies if it is all you have on hand. However, this is the least ideal option because glass can break under hot temperatures. Glassware also retains heat differently than ceramic or stainless steel baking trays. Glass dishes hold heat for long periods, so keep an eye on your cookies.

To counteract the extra heat retention, reduce your oven temperature by 25 degrees and bake for up to 10 minutes longer than the recipe states.

Glass dishes do not provide an even bake like other alternatives (baking tray or pizza stone). Only try this method if you have no other bakeware available.

Porcelain Dish

Porcelain dishes produce even bakes and withstand high temperatures, making this bakeware a better alternative to glass dishes. Keep an eye on the cookies while they bake, as they could take longer than the recipe calls.

Always check if your porcelain bakeware is oven-safe before using it for cookies. There should be an indicator at the bottom of the dish.

Can You Use Aluminum Foil Instead of a Cookie Sheet?

You can use aluminum foil for baking cookies instead of a cookie sheet. Make sure the foil is heavy-duty. This way, it supports the weight of the cookie dough. Aluminum foil works best when you use it with another baking dish if you do not have a baking sheet available.

On its own, aluminum foil is flimsy and affects the heat distribution in the oven as your cookies bake. Try using an aluminum baking dish instead. It is thicker and designed for independent oven use.

If you do not have an aluminum baking dish on hand and are in a pinch, try stacking multiple layers of foil instead. Combining many layers should make the aluminum sheets strong enough to support the weight of the cookies.

Can You Bake Cookies Without Parchment Paper?

Yes, you can bake cookies without parchment or baking paper. Parchment paper prevents the cookies from sticking to your baking dish or tray. Instead of parchment paper, try greasing your dish with a non-stick cooking spray, oil, or butter. The fat in these products helps your cookies glide off of the tray.

Even more parchment paper alternatives include:

  • Aluminum foil
  • Wax paper
  • Silicone baking mat

What about non-stick bakeware? Even if your baking dish claims it is non-stick material, using an extra barrier ensures your cookies slide off the tray with the help of a rubber spatula.

While Parchment Paper is Helpful When Making Cookies, You Can Use Oil Instead

Frank Salvatore

Hey there - I'm Frank Salvatore. I created this site as a comprehensive kitchen resource. You'll find everything you need to know about everything in your kitchen. From appliances to utensils and layout - it is covered on this site!

About Me
Frank Salvatore
I created this site as a comprehensive kitchen resource. You'll find everything you need to know about everything in your kitchen. From appliances to utensils and layout - it is covered on this site!
Learn More About Me
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