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6 Easy Rolling Pin Alternatives

Posted on 25 July, 2017 by Stephen R. Greenwood
88 out of 100 based on 554 user ratings

6 Easy Rolling Pin Alternatives

You can still enjoy baking your favorite bread and pastries even if you don't own a rolling pin because, while it's nice to have one, there are easy alternatives to rolling pin you can use if you know where to look.

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Kneading dough by the hand.

The rolling pin is one of the most well-known baking tool essentials. This cylindrical sturdy tool makes the daunting task of shaping and flattening the dough so much easier while giving the baker complete control over the thickness and texture of the dough.

So what do you do if you don’t have one in your kitchen? You turn on your creativity, look around your surroundings and find common household items with the right shape and sturdiness that can easily be used as rolling pin alternatives.

1. Wine Bottle


Flattening the dough using a wine bottle.

Wine bottles are heavy glass bottles that are used to store and serve wine. They range from single-serving to very large bottles that can easily hold enough wine for a crowd. You can buy them full of wine, or they are available empty if you want to have one on hand for this purpose but do not drink.

Pros

Wine bottles are generally heavy, which makes it easy to use that weight to help push out the dough.

They can be used when they are empty or full, which means that you don’t have to find a new bottle to use.

Can easily be chilled, which will help to keep the dough from cracking, especially if you are working on a pie and need the dough incredibly cold for the best results.

Full wine bottles will have more weight to them, which is great when rolling out the thick dough, and empty bottles will be lighter, which means that they are easier to lift and move.

Cons

They are not as long as rolling pins, which means that you need to reroll multiple times to get the best results.

Some wine bottles are tapered, which makes it incredibly difficult to evenly roll out the dough.

If the cork is not secure, then you may have problems with the wine leaking out and getting onto your dough.

The label can cause small indentations or lines in the dough, which may be a problem if you want a completely smooth surface.

2. PVC

PVC

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These durable and long-lasting pipes don’t degrade, wear out, or rust over time, no matter what they are exposed to. They are generally used in plumbing, but they are great as a rolling pin alternative, as you can choose from a variety of sizes. While you will have to visit a specialty store for this item, you can easily buy it in a hurry.

Pros

The smooth surface of PVC means that you won’t ever have to worry about your dough being indented or marked when you are rolling it out.

It’s easy to have PVC cut to any length that you want, which makes rolling out very large batches of dough incredibly fast and easy.

PVC is relatively inexpensive and can be found at any hardware store.

With different widths to choose from, you can customize your rolling pin to be very comfortable when using it. This is ideal if you have problems with your hands or don’t have a lot of strength, as you can choose a size that is easy for you to hold.

Can stand very strong pressure that is needed to roll out some food items like fondant or thick sugar cookie dough.

Putting caps on the ends of the PVC will ensure that your hands are protected from the cut ends.

PVC can be weighted with sand or water if you need a very heavy rolling pin, although this may make it more difficult to use.

Cons

The cut ends of PVC can be sharp, which makes it easy to accidentally hurt yourself.

For peace of mind, it is a good idea to wash and then bleach the pipe before you use it.

Some people are concerned that even with proper preparation, you don’t want to use PVC pipe on your food, as it can be dangerous.

Some PVC pipe may flex when you are using it, which makes it difficult to keep the product straight and flat enough to roll out your food.

If you do not cap the cut end of your PVC pipe, then there is a concern of bits of plastic coming off and getting into your food.

3. Drinking Glass

Cutting round-shaped dough using a wine glass.

When you want something to drink, you are most likely to reach for a drinking glass. These glasses come made out of a variety of materials, including glass and durable and hard plastic. When using a drinking glass as a rolling pin, you don’t need to worry about the design or color of the glass.

Pros

Most people have a wide selection of drinking glasses in their kitchen, making it easy to get your hands on this rolling pin alternative quickly and easily.

Being able to choose from different size glasses will allow you to roll out smaller or large pieces of dough without any problem.

It’s easy to put a drinking glass in the refrigerator or in the freezer to chill it before rolling out cold dough.

Drinking glasses can be placed in the dishwasher after being used, so you don’t have to wash them by hand.

As a glass gets a lot of dough on it or warms up too much to be used, you can easily choose another from your cupboard to complete the work that you were doing.

Cons

Only taller drinking glasses will be able to provide you with the length that you need to roll out a lot of dough at once.

It is easy to accidentally break drinking glasses if you push down too hard on them when you are rolling out the dough.

If the glass isn’t cleaned very well from being used before, then it may be covered in germs or bacteria.

The dough tends to adhere to drinking glasses unless you spray them with cooking spray or use a piece of plastic wrap or parchment paper to keep the dough from sticking.

4. Dowel

Dowel

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These cylindrical rods are generally made out of wood, although you can find them in metal and plastic. They are commonly used as axles in toys, as hangers, and as shelf support in various pieces of furniture. In the kitchen, they are often used as a support between layers of a cake.

Pros

Dowels are very inexpensive, can be found at a number of different stores, and can easily be cut to be the size that you need.

The wood of a dowel feels very nice in your hands when you are using it.

With a lot of different types of wood to choose from, you can easily select a dowel that is functional and attractive for use in your kitchen.

Dowels are designed more like French rolling pins because they do not have handles, but they are straight instead of tapered at the ends. This design is very easy for most people to use.

Because the dowel is straight and not tapered, you will be able to roll out large portions of dough without having to move your dowel.

You can easily control the pressure that you use on your dough when you opt for a dowel as a rolling pin alternative.

Cons

This is not the best option for hard or chilled doughs and may cause the dough to crack instead of roll out evenly.

If the dowel is not cared for, it can become stained and will retain odors.

Your dowel needs to be completely smooth so that you don’t affect the surface of your dough and so that you don’t accidentally get a splinter when using the dowel.

5. Beverage Can

Red and green beverage cans.

Anyone who has ever had a soda in a can knows the size and shape of these beverage cans. When they are full of liquid they are quite heavy and strong. Thanks to the amount of fluid in them, as well as the carbonation, these cans hold their shape very well until they are opened.

Pros

Most people have a cold can in the refrigerator, making rolling out dough fast and easy.

A chilled can will keep your dough from cracking when you are rolling it out.

Full beverage cans have just the right amount of weight to roll out soft doughs easily.

Beverage cans have such a smooth surface that you don’t have to worry about any markings being made in your dough. This is perfect if you are rolling out cookies and want a flat surface once they have baked.

The size makes them perfect for rolling out small amounts of dough and allows you complete control over the pressure that you put on the dough.

Cons

Only full cans should be used, as empty ones will easily collapse under the pressure.

The dough will easily stick to the can if you do not use cooking spray or a plastic wrap. This is because you can’t easily flour the surface of a can.

Condensation can form on the surface of your can, and if transferred to the dough, can cause a problem with consistency and stickiness.

Cans are so small that you can’t easily roll out a lot of dough all at once.

After using a beverage can as a rolling pin, you may experience problems with the can erupting when you open it. This is because of the motion of being rolled on the table. Decrease the likelihood of this occurring by not drinking the beverage right away.

6. Thermos

Wet stainless steel thermos bottles.

A thermos is used when you want to take hold or cold food or liquids with you and have them stay at the right heat. They generally consist of the main body, as well as a top that will screw into the body, which helps to prevent temperature exchange and keeps food or drink from spilling.

Pros

You can fill a thermos with cold water and ice if you want to make sure that your dough stays as cold as possible when being rolled out.

Using dry beans or rice inside your thermos will make it heavier and allow you to more easily roll out your dough.

The smooth surface of a thermos will create a very smooth dough for you to work with.

Long and skinny thermoses are easy to handle and comfortable to hold, which makes them a great choice for when you need to roll out a lot of dough or will be rolling dough for a very long time.

Cons

If there are any ridges or patterns on the side of the thermos, then they will show up in your final dough, which can ruin the aesthetic.

It is very difficult to flour a thermos, which means that you need to rely on other options for keeping the dough from sticking.

Shorter and fatter thermoses are not ideal for rolling out any kind of dough, as they are hard to get a grip on and are not long enough to allow you to roll out large pieces of dough at once.

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