What is the difference between a ring pan or a ring mold and a bundt pan? Both are circular baking pans with holes in the center. But aside from a similar overall shape and the fact that they can both me made from many different types of material – from stoneware to silicone – there are quite a few differences between these pans. The standard ring pan is 9 or 10 inches in diameter and about 2 1/2 inches high (they come in different sizes, but this is definitely the most common). The pan is completely rounded, like a half cylinder that has been wrapped around to make a ring shape. Bundt pans, on there other hand, are usually 10 or 12-inches in diameter and are up to 5 inches deep (again, there are different sizes available). While they are usually molded into different designs, the sides of a bundt pan are almost vertical, much less rounded than those of a ring pan.
Ring pans have a much smaller capacity than bundt pans do, with a typical pan holding 4-6 cups, while a bundt holds 10-12 cups. A 4-6 cup capacity is about the same as a 8×4-in loaf pan, to give you a point for comparison. It is much easier to unmold a ring pan than a bundt pan, largely because it is very easy to slide a spatula along the curve of the cake and loosen it; the pan is not too deep and there are no grooves for a cake or bread to stick in.
Ring pans are used for yeasted cakes, like savarin, but can be used for many other dishes, as well. They make great Jello-molds and can be used to bake any type of cake or quickbread batter that will easily fit into it (volume-wise). It’s not a must-have kitchen item because you can use a plain bundt pan instead of a ring pan – as long as you bear in mind that whatever you’re baking will not fill up the pan – but it is easy to work with, doesn’t take up much space and makes a great change in presentation for smaller baked goods like banana bread.