A springform pan is a type of cake pan that has removable sides. The strip of metal that makes up the sides of the pan is shaped into a ring and is held together with an adjustable latch or buckle. It can be tightened by snapping the latch into place, tightening the ring and creating a tight seal with the pan’s base. When unlatched, the ring expands and can easily be removed from the cake and/or the cake base.
A springform pan can be used in place or a regular cake pan in any recipe. When the ring is closed, they bake cakes (or other baked goods) in exactly the same way as a standard one-piece pan. The difference comes when you want to remove the cake that is inside the pan. With most pans, the cake must be inverted to remove it from the pan. This isn’t a good idea with all cakes, like delicate cheesecakes or cakes with toppings on them, such as streusel-heavy coffee cakes, because the cakes would never survive being flipped upside down out of a regular pan in one piece! With a springform, you can essentially remove the pan from the cake with great ease. Typically, cakes baked in springform pans are cooled right in the pan and the ring is removed before serving. The cake can be served directly on the pan’s base or carefully slid off onto a cake plate or othe serving platter.