Does adding ice water to a hot pan warp it over time?

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Joined Dec 1, 2015
As most people do not have steam-injected ovens at home, there is the common practice of dumping ice or water into a pan that was heated up with the oven before putting the bread in to bake.

The myth is that it can warp a metal pan with time.  I have not found this to be true.  Anyone else?
 
5,509
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Joined Oct 10, 2005
The question is, why ice, or cold water?

Think about it, the intention is to create steam. It takes more energy to create steam from cold water than hot water, and a lot more energy to convert ice to steam.

It would take the lest amount of energy, and the quickest time to make steam with near boiling water, right?
 
856
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Joined May 14, 2014
Yes, pans can warp if they are cooled to quickly, too often, i.e. by dunking in water. Putting a little bit in a hot pan doesn't seem like it would cool it down enough to warp it.
 

pete

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They will warp over time, some will take longer than others, depending on its make up, size, etc., but they will all eventually warp.  Not a big deal though.  Just pick up an old pie pan at a garage sale and just use it for creating your steam.  If that's all its used for, who cares if it is warped.
 
155
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Joined Nov 22, 2015
I agree with Pete and Foodpump on this one, I'd use an old 2" full or half pan and hit it with hot water from a squirt bottle.
 
615
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Joined Dec 1, 2015
Thanks for the replies.

I guess to be clear, my question is not "should I do it" but rather "I do this and have not found it to warp pans, even though people out there warn against it.  Has anyone found it warping their pans?"

Thanks
 

pete

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Joined Oct 7, 2001
How often do you bake?  Again, it really isn't a matter of if it will happen but when it will happen.  A cookie tray, because it's thin, has a large surface area and small, thin edges that don't provide structure will warp after only a few times.  A pie pan on the other hand, may take dozens of times before it starts to warp.  Yes, it is still made of relatively thin metal but it has a much smaller surface area, and its sides provide significant structural support.  A sauté pan may last a few hundred times before warping, but it too will eventually warp.  Just ask anyone in the business how easy it is to find a completely level sheet pan or sauté pan in their kitchen.  Unless they have one heck of a budget most cooks and chefs will tell you that the majority of their pans are warped to some degree.
 

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