Customer Reviews: Vollrath 5314 Wear-Ever Sheet Pan, 18 x 13 x 1-inch, Half Size
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon April 9, 2010
After looking through customer reviews on Amazon for the "Lincoln Foodservice Half-Size Heavy Duty Sheet Pan," I came away with more questions than answers. I wanted the sheet pan that Cook's Illustrated/America's Test Kitchen named their winner, but there were so many conflicting reviews about whether this pan was/was not the winning model. So I set out on a quest, and this is what I learned:
In 2007 Cook's Illustrated/America's Test Kitchen published the results of their baking sheet (jelly roll pan) equipment review. The winning sheet pan rated "highly recommended" was the 13-gauge aluminum Lincoln Foodservice Half-Size Heavy Duty sheet pan. Cook's listed Superior Products as a source for this pan, and MISTAKENLY listed the model number as 806188, and this is where the confusion starts.

806188 is Superior Product's ITEM number for this sheet pan sold on their website. If you visit the site you can see for yourself. This is a Superior Products number, and it IS NOT THE MODEL NUMBER of the pan. I phoned Superior Products and they confirmed this. ====> MAY/2010 UPDATE: I notified Cook's of their mistaken model number, and am happy to report they corrected it on their website.

The trademark name for a line of Lincoln Foodservice "smallwares" is WEAR-EVER®. The Cook's-recommended sheet pan is part of this line of smallwares (pots, pans, bakeware, trays and other kitchen utensils). In late 2009 the Vollrath Company acquired the Lincoln Smallwares division. . . .BUT the Lincoln WEAR-EVER name goes on, and nothing has changed with this sheet pan. I phoned Vollrath and they confirmed this.

If you are looking for Cook's winning sheet pan, THIS IS IT. The bottom of the pan should look exactly like the picture I added to the "customer images." Neither "Lincoln Foodservice" nor "Vollrath" are stamped anywhere on the pan; however, the pan might have a Lincoln Foodservice barcode sticker on it. This model is made of 13-gauge aluminum and the heaviest of three similar Lincoln WEAR-EVER half-sheet pans - the higher the gauge number, the thinner the aluminum.

=> Model 9303 - is the 19-gauge/closed bead pan called ECONOMY. Vollrath 18" x 13" Economy Half Size Sheet Pan (12-0420) Category: Cake and Muffin Pans
=> Model 5303 - is the 18-gauge/closed bead pan called STANDARD DUTY (Lincoln Wear-Ever® Standard Duty Half-Size Sheet Pan)
=> Model 5314 - is the 13-gauge/open bead pan called HEAVY DUTY.

The heavy duty model 5314 is the one tested by Cook's Illustrated/America's Test Kitchen and chosen the winner. I have no idea what is stamped on the back of the two other pans, but I suspect the model numbers would be on the pan somewhere.

"Open bead" means the side rims roll over, but not completely, which some cooks like because it's easier to clean and is considered more sanitary. "Closed bead" means the side rims roll over completely forming something of a tube. Some cooks feel this makes for difficult cleaning and a place for gunk to collect and become foul. Others feel the closed bead adds to the overall strength of the pan.

Clearly some folks have received the wrong pan, one or more citing they'd received EKCO brand pans. But others here who have received the WEAR-EVER 5314 pan thought it was wrong because it didn't say "Lincoln Foodservice" or "Vollrath" on the pan - but this IS NOT SO. If it is stamped on the bottom like the picture I posted, then it IS the right pan.

====> DECEMBER/2010 UPDATE (thanks to J. Kendall): new-production pans are now being stamped "Vollrath by Wearever/5314." Read his/her comment for further information, and see his/her picture of the stamp of the new-production pan in "customer images." Nothing has changed, it's still the same pan, only the stamp on the bottom has changed.

Numerous people have complained that the pan warps, and that Cook's claimed it wouldn't. Cook's DID NOT MAKE THIS CLAIM. The following copy/paste comes from their published review:

Cook's says ====> While we experienced varying levels of warping with our pans during testing, warping can happen with any sheet pan, even a heavy-duty one, under certain conditions. Abrupt temperature changes are likely to result in warping, for example, if an empty, cold baking sheet goes into a hot oven. Similarly, having only a few scattered pieces of food on a baking sheet creates different temperature zones on the metal, with some spots where the pan is shielded from heat under the food, and others where it is fully exposed to heat. Different temperature zones contract or expand at different rates as they are heated, which causes warping.

Slight warping does not affect the pan's cooking performance, however, to help prevent warping in your baking sheet, cover the pan's entire surface with food as uniformly as possible, and heat the pan gradually rather than abruptly. Using a wire grid cooling rack inside the sheet pan can help distribute heat better than cooking meats directly on the pan surface. We found a few brands of cooling racks that fit well inside our winning baking sheet. <====

Finally, if you want Cook's winning cooling rack that fits inside this sheet pan, this is it: CIA Masters Collection 12 Inch x 17 Inch Wire Cooling Rack, Chrome Plate Steel .
At last my review - short and sweet. I got my pan for a song somewhere else on a special sale, but have had it now for several months. I agree with the Cook's Illustrated description - it's solid as a rock. The "open bead" rim is not remotely sharp. Following CI's advice, I've not experienced any warping, and am abundantly pleased.
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on February 18, 2008
I also chose this pan because of the recommendation on America's Test Kitchen. I preheated this pan at 475 and baked honey drizzled sweet potatoes on it. It didn't stick, was easy to clean..and most definitely didn't warp. I noticed the picture someone posted of their pan that warped. The bottom of mine looks different. It says No. 5303, Lincoln-Wearever. Fort Wayne, In. Made in USA 2007-4. I wondered if maybe they had received a different pan. This pan was everything America's Test Kitchen said it would be. I have no regrets at's as close to perfect as a 1/2 sheet pan can be!
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on January 25, 2009
I purchased four of these a year or so ago after reading a recommendation for them in Cook's Illustrated. They are beautiful - smooth, sturdy, no flaws in design at all, and priced reasonably. I ordered an additional one recently, same brand, same model, and the rims are rolled under and open instead of rolled under completely. The edges of the rolled rims on the new pan are sharp. Food and oils can collect under the rims and it would take a very small brush or pipe cleaner to keep clean. The pan feels cheaper. I returned it. The first four were made in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The recent one was made in China.
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on October 28, 2007
This pan warps! The 13 gauge from Amazon did not fare well. I got mine in yesterday and tried it in a 500 degree oven to find it warped badly! I was doing the roasted pear recipe from Cook's Illustrated which calls for you to preheat the baking sheet prior to placing the pears tossed with butter and sugar. It warped after the first use! I was very disappointed as I bought this pan after Cook's Illustrated rated it as its top recommended pan. Cook's Illustrated said the "search was over" and that this pan does not warp. Well mine warped after the first use! I posted pictures of the pan in the customer images for all to see. The picture of my warped pan says it all.
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on August 8, 2008
WEAR-EVER #5314 = 17¾" x 12-7/8" 1" [NSF rated] Natural (shiny) Finish, 13-gauge AA3004 Aluminum, with an OPEN BEAD surround (i.e., there is a lip but not a "rolled" edge bead surround).

The WEAR-EVER Part Number is stamped into the metal on the underside of every pan.

Take care not to confuse this item with the quite similar: WEAR-EVER #5303 = 17¾" x 12-7/8" 1" Natural (shiny) Finish, 18-gauge AA3003 Aluminum, with CLOSED BEAD surround (i.e., a "rolled edge" with a galvanized steel wire-bead insert)... #5303 is a fine pan, itself, but somewhat lighter in weight (and with the rolled bead, arguably more ergonomic). The type #5303 is a Half-Sheet Pan which usually sells for a few dollars less than the heavier, NSF-rated WEAR-EVER #5314.

WEAR-EVER also make a #S5303 variant (with a Wear-Guard coating), costing almost twice as much; as well as a #5303P variant (perforated); and they also make a MUCH lighter-weight, 19-gauge #9303 "economy" variant, which costs only half as much as the Half-Sheet Pan pictured here.

The "Cooking Rack - CIA Masters Collection" is an ideal accessory for these pans, as is the "Silpat 11-5/8-by-16-1/2-Inch Nonstick Silicone Baking Mat", or equivalent, sold separately here on AMAZON, and elsewhere.

fwiw... Baking Pans are usually bought, and often used in pairs; regardless of Part Number / variant they are all stackable, one inside another; and personally, in my modest home kitchen I found one #5314 Heavy-Duty and one #5303 Standard Pan, along with one nice cooking/cooling rack and a silicone mat accessory to be the ideal set solution.
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on January 16, 2009
The item description states that the product is "Constructed from 3003 and 3004 aluminum alloys for durability". This is not the case. It can't be both. If it is the 13-gauge (the items states that it is) it is 3004 aluminum alloy. The 3003 is the thinner 18-gauge aluminum alloy. This is directly from Lincolns website (lincolnsmallwares (dot) com/Prod_Detail2.cfm?id=74)

The product number for the 3004 aluminum alloy is 5314. The 5314 is the only one that is NSF certified and is the one that Cooks Illustrated tested. If you do not receive the 5314 from this seller you should return and demand a full refund.

(I gave this item 4 stars as that was what it was rated when I posted).
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on August 9, 2013
I purchased 2 of these pans several years ago based on the Cook's Illustrated review and they have served me well. My son is moving into an apartment and I ordered 2 for him which arrived today. They are going to be promptly returned Not only do the surfaces of both have large scratches on them, but the rolled edges are uneven and have v-shaped notches in multiple places on both pans.I can't believe that these pans passed any kind of quality inspection, and as I own earlier versions I know that the pans are not supposed to be finished in this way (or at least they didn't used to be finished this way). The edges are so rough you could easily snag something on them. I was pleased to be able to purchase an item made in the USA and am very disappointed at the apparent reduction in quality of am item that I use almost on a daily basis.
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on January 12, 2008
I too purchased this pan because it was recommended by Cook's Illustrated. 10 minutes in a 400 degree oven was all it took to warp my pan. I called the company and they agreed to take them back. They are paying for return shipping, but we'll see if they reimburse me for the shipping I paid to have them delivered to me...

Tip: Go to your local restaurant supply store. They are bound to have half-size heavy duty sheet pans for half the price, and no shipping charges!
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on October 7, 2008
The pan I received warps at 400 degrees and above. On the back is stamped Wear Ever 5314. I contacted Lincoln directly and I was told that they do manufacture Wear Ever but it is obviously the inferior product. They are sending me their 5303 pan which has a concavity and bead wire per their description, and is non-warping because of this. The Amazon order was fulfilled by a third party retailer and I apologize that I do not have the name with me, except that it contained the word "Gourmet". I suspect America's Test Kitchen tested the 5303 pan. If you order by clicking this link you may have the same problem.
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on November 1, 2007
I used these pans today for the first time. I did so reluctantly because I read the boards on the Cook's Illustrated website and the ratings weren't too great. I bought two pans. One was perfect and roasted with no problems at 400 degrees. The other one warped at 475 degrees. Not sure what to make of it. The one that warped still remains slightly so even after cooling down. All I can say is buy at your own risk. I'm thinking of trying Sur La Table's new brand. It says no warping on the packaging and you get two pans for 20 bucks. They do not mention the gauge, however. These Lincoln pans are 13 gauge which is the thickest supposedly. (The higher the number = less gauge.) Thickest is supposed to be the best according to the CI boards, less condusive to warping. C'est la vie...

Update: 11/2/07 The pan that warped slightly has straightened itself out. I simply stacked the two pans overnite and voila! So if I could, and Amazon won't let me, I would change this rating to FOUR stars.
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