What Is the Difference Between a Jelly Roll Pan and Cookie Sheet?

Baking sheets are a beneficial baking tool to have in your kitchen. Two popular types of baking sheets are jelly roll pans and cookie sheets. What is the difference between a jelly roll pan and a cookie sheet, you might be wondering?

There are certain key differences between a jelly roll pan and cookie sheet that baking enthusiasts should be aware of, which this article will help to illustrate and explain. We’ll also help you decide which one might prove more beneficial to you.

Cookie Sheet

Cookie sheets are a pretty popular tool for many bakers since they make perfecting your cookies much easier. Just as their name suggests, they are designed for baking cookies. The most important thing about their design is that cookie sheets are pans with a flat bottom.

This flat bottom is important since it prevents cookies from losing their shape and provides even distribution. So, your cookies will brown more easily and effectively on a cookie sheet.

Cookie sheets also don’t have any rims or raised edges. This allows you to slide the cookies more easily without worry about them chipping or breaking.

These sheets do often feature a small lip for easier grip and removing the sheet from the oven. Since they usually don’t feature rims, they’re not usable for baking anything that contains liquid as the liquid will generally seep out.

They come in a large variety of different sizes, which affects the number of cookies you can bake in one batch. There are also some variants of cookie sheets, which include insulated and non-stick cookie sheets.


You will generally use cookie sheets for baking cookies, but that’s not the only thing they can be used for. Cookie sheets, coupled with parchment paper, can be used to prepare bacon.

Jelly Roll Pan

Jelly roll pans are a different type of baking sheet. They are usually smaller than baking sheets, and the main difference is that jelly roll pans have raised or rolled edges, whereas cookie pans do not. These pans are most often made out of aluminum.

They usually do not have lips though the raised edges do allow for a more comfortable grip. The raised edges or rim prevents liquid from spilling. Since jelly rolls use jelly or cream, the fillings might spill out when trying to remove the tray from the oven.

You do not need to slide the cake layers or sponge cakes to remove them from the tray, so the rim doesn’t end up interfering.


Jelly roll pans are used to make sheets or sponge cakes, which are then used to make jelly rolls. Despite this, you can also use this pan to make cookies though you will need to adjust your cooking time to make sure the cookies brown evenly. You need to be a bit careful as the cookies might turn out a bit misshapen.

Another thing that jelly roll pans can be used for is that they can be used to roast vegetables. This does make the pan quite versatile.

Difference Between a Jelly Roll Pan and Cookie Sheets

Let’s highlight some of the differences between jelly roll pans and cookie sheets.


Jelly roll pans are smaller baking pans that feature a rim or rolled edges. In contrast, cookie sheets are flat pans that do not have a rim. Jelly roll pans do not usually feature lips to grip the pan with, but cookie sheets do.

Available Sizes

Cookie pans often feature a variety of sizes, so you have many more choices when getting a cookie pan. Jelly roll pans don’t have many options in terms of sizes.


Jelly roll pans are more versatile in that they can be used to make sponge cakes, roast vegetables, and also be used to make cookies. The raised edge prevents liquid from sipping out, so it can be used as a versatile tray.

Cookie sheets have comparatively less usage, and they are primarily used for baking cookies as their design allows better air circulation and prevents your cookies from coming out distorted.

Which Is Better?

There are some debates on jelly roll pans vs cookie sheets and people wondering which is better. For this debate, there isn’t any straight answer as it depends. If you’re not sure about which one to get, here are some things to consider:

1. What Do You Want to Make?

This is the main thing you need to consider. While jelly roll pans can be used to make cookies, cookie sheets are just much better at their job. If you like to bake cookies, then a cookie sheet is much better. In the case that you want to make jelly rolls or sponge cakes, jelly roll pans will prove more useful.

2. Will You Use the Pan Or Sheet for Anything Else?

Jelly roll pans can double as normal trays for baking other things. If you’re on a budget or running low on kitchen space, jelly roll pans are quite convenient. However, if you don’t mind having a large array of options and have space for it, it’s always nice to have a cookie sheet.


After reading this article, we hope that the differences between jelly roll pans and cookie sheets became clearer to you. The jelly roll pan vs cookie sheet debate mostly boils down to what you want to use them for. Happy baking.

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