You can choose the best broiler pan by closely investigating the size and structural integrity of the available options. Broiler pans are two-piece metal sheet pans designed to withstand the high broiler temperatures and encourage browning and crisping. Generally, the upper piece on a broiler pan has holes or slats to allow fat and moisture drainage and airflow. The secondary shallow pan has a solid base to catch all the runoff from the broiling foods. A broiler pan must fit within the dimensions of the broiler tray to sit completely flat and cook foods evenly.
Take measurements of the width and depth of the broiling area where the broiler pan will be used. Record the dimensions of the broiler along with the name of the manufacturer and model name or number. Look through the owner's manual for the broiler to see if a matched broiler pan is available for the model you are using. Read the description of the pan set recommended by the maker of the broiler to find out what materials were used and what features it offers.
Most broiler pans have stainless steel, porcelain, or non-stick finishes. Stainless steel pans are very durable but may cause some foods to stick. The porcelain-coated broiler pans release foods better than stainless, but can still be difficult to remove baked on grease from. The non-stick varieties are the easiest to clean, but must be handled with care to avoid damaging their surface. Broiler pans made with thicker gauge metal usually retain and reflect heat to the food better.
Visit appliance retailers with the broiler measurements, manufacturer information, and a tape measure to evaluate potential broiler pan options in person. Measure the broiler pans that are for sale or look for a listing of their dimensions on the outside of the box. Ask salespeople at each store if they have any personal experience or product knowledge that would help you make a decision on a broiler pan. Take the two pieces of each broiler pan apart and put them back together to make sure they nest snugly and have no rough edges or flaws in their finish. If a display model you look at is already showing damage when it has yet to see the heat of a broiler, you can bet that it will be a short time before that type of pan will show damage from regular use.