Muffin tins aren't just for muffins anymore. Whether you're looking for bite-sized appetizers, perfectly portioned dinners or individually packaged desserts, this old pan is about to make things a whole lot easier for you!

Savoury appetizers

Mini quiches are sure crowd pleasers. The combination of flaky pastry, soft eggs and melt-in-your-mouth cheese is certain to get your party started right. For a simple way to get going, try Canadian Living's mini quiches Lorraines. But don't feel restricted to pie crusts and fillings when coming up with unique hors d'oeuvre ideas, because these little guys don't have to be baked in the usual pastry. Get creative with swiss and bacon quiches that are baked in crepes. Or try Egg Farmers of Alberta's recipe for phyllo pastry cups. You can forgo the cups entirely and create's easy spanakopita bites. There's a bite-sized appetizer out there for every type of guest, so don't feel like you have to settle on the first one you see — have fun looking around and select the recipe that's just right for your style of event.

Perfectly portioned meals

When you make a massive casserole or meatloaf, it can be very easy to over-indulge and wind up feeling too full. By making these types of dishes in muffin tins, you create perfectly portioned dinners. If one doesn't filled you up right away, you can take a moment to decide whether you really need another one and then proceed accordingly. Frittatas, risottos and pastas can also all be baked in muffin tins for a perfectly portioned dinner. And such creations are great for wrapping up and taking with you for lunch the next day.

Delectable desserts

For a sweet treat your family or guests have never seen before, make your favourite dessert recipe in muffin tins rather than an old pie plate. Blueberry tarts, pecan pies, chocolate cheesecakes and many other desserts can easily be put together in muffin tins for individually portioned desserts. There's no need to worry about who got the biggest piece when your dessert comes in a muffin tin! Simply lay the dough in each individual cup rather than one large plate and adjust the cooking time accordingly. You'll have a fresh twist on an old favourite that everyone is sure to enjoy.

No discussion on the uses of muffin tins would be complete without bringing up the topic of cupcakes. They bear mentioning because of all the creative and unique spins you can put on a batch. You can go for a smooth icing swirl and upscale flavours such as lemon zest and lavender for a fancy soiree. Or, for a fun family activitiy, let your kids decorate a batch of Funfetti cupcakes with whichever sprinkles and candy treats they choose. There are so many creative cupcake ideas to choose from, so grab those old muffin tins and have some fun!

More muffin tin ideas

Mini Sweet Potato Tarts
Mini BLT tarts
Bite-size comfort foods