Baker's Edge: Here's What Happened After Shark Tank

Delectable brownies are high on the list of many chocolate lovers' favorite treats. Aficionados fall into two camps: One side prefers the fudgy, gooey brownies from the middle of the baking pan while the other prefers brownies from the pan's sides and corners, which have a chewier texture and crispy edge. When inventor Matt Griffin entered the edge vs. center debate in 1998, he wanted to prove that chewy brownie corners are the superior portion of the baked confection. He designed a pan with zig-zagging sections for baking brownies that have two crunchy-sided edges of crispy goodness.

In 2002, Matt and his wife, chef Emily Griffin, used their savings to create a prototype of the new edge pan and secure its patent. On a whim, they entered it in the 2004 Ideas Happen contest and ended up winning $25,000. With this windfall, they were able to get production started, and in 2006, the Baker's Edge company was officially born.

The edge brownie pan took off almost overnight. Brownie corner connoisseurs bought them up, and the product's popularity skyrocketed. Oprah Winfrey, a self-professed edge-lover, caught wind of the specialty pan and included it in her 2010 Ultimate Favorite Things list, resulting in an understandable boost in sales. The Griffins wanted every month to have as many sales and believed that adding more reinvented bakeware to their line was the way to get there. They decided to take their corners-only pan onto "Shark Tank" in search of an investor to back their expansion.

What happened to Baker's Edge on Shark Tank?

The Griffin's got to pitch their all-edges brownie pan on "Shark Tank" in season 5, episode 29, which aired May 16, 2014. Matt Griffin told the Sharks that his patented pan had been competing with national brands — and that he intended to create a line of improved specialty bakeware to eventually overtake the competition. He asked for $400,000 for 20% equity in the company.

When asked about the business's financials, Griffin responded that the pan had made $6 million in sales. All were impressed until he revealed that was the total for eight years. Realistically, the highest yearly sales were $2 million, with $1 million attributed to Oprah's shout-out years prior. The past year's sales generated only $250,000. Challenged to explain how they would get back to $2 million yearly, the Griffins shared plans for new products and proceeded to debut their honeycomb-shaped pan that they claimed can bake better muffins.

Mark Cuban pointed out that sales had been sinking since their time in Oprah's spotlight. They needed a better plan to increase sales, but Cuban didn't think the muffin pan was it, and he was out. Kevin O'Leary agreed the muffin pan wasn't a game changer, and the brownie pan had a limited market. Remaining Sharks Robert Herjavec, Lori Greiner, and Barbara Corcoran came to similar conclusions, that the muffin pan wasn't unique, and although innovative, the brownie edge pan wouldn't make anyone rich. The Griffins left without a deal.

Baker's Edge after Shark Tank

Despite receiving no help from "Shark Tank," the Griffins moved forward with their plans. Emily continued experimenting and creating recipes for the edge pan, which can be used for more than just unbeatable brownies, including banana bread, cookie bars, and anything that benefits from a yummy, caramelized crust. Brilliant savory uses include pizza, macaroni and cheese, and casseroles. Taking things a step further, a new product was introduced — the simple lasagna pan. Essentially the same as the edge brownie pan but designed to fit lasagna noodles, the result is crispy lasagna in every bite. The lasagna pan received a lot of attention and a boost in sales after it was featured in the science-fiction drama "The Expanse" in 2017. Sales were so brisk, in fact, that the manufacturing machine broke its production mold. With repairs being very costly, the company was unable to produce more of the lasagna pans, and eventually the product was retired.

Thanks in part to "The Expanse," interest in the space lasagna pan remained high. In 2019, a Kickstarter campaign was started to raise $20,000 to pay for repairing the mold and producing a limited run of the sought-after pan. It was so in demand that the campaign was fully funded within a month and a half. A stretch goal of another $2,000 was also met and used to create a silicone pan lid. Within three months, the machine was fixed, production completed, and pans were being shipped out to buyers.

Is Baker's Edge still in business?

The company continues to do steady business, with its products available for sale on its website as well as through its Amazon storefront where the edge brownie pan is a top baking wishlist item. Not long after "Shark Tank," the pan made it onto "The Martha Stewart Show." In 2018, the episode that Baker's Edge appeared in was voted the number eight greatest "Shark Tank" episodes of all time. In 2019, the edge versus center debate was revived on Twitter when Chelsea Peretti of "Brooklyn Nine-Nine" declared her love for crispy brownie edges. In the replies, a fan introduced her to the edge brownie pan, which led to a fun interaction between Peretti and the brand, resulting in her millions of followers discovering the pan too.

Over the years, the company has struggled at times to keep its products in stock. Popularity around the holidays appears to be a culprit, as well as manufacturing tool and machine breakdowns. All items except for the discontinued lasagna pan are still available but do occasionally go out of stock.

Along with the original edge brownie pan and the better muffin pan, the company now also offers custom-made spatulas designed to fit the pans, and silicone wedges that create separate baking areas within one pan and can transform it from 9 by 12 inches to 8 by 8 inches. A complete brownie set was added in 2018, which includes the edge pan, lid, spatula, wedge, and recipes.

What's Next for Baker's Edge?

After being in business for over 20 years, in 2022 Matt and Emily Griffin accepted an offer and sold ownership of Baker's Edge to Sorfeo Brands. The Griffins felt it was the best move for taking what they had created to the next level and are still actively involved with the company. A press release from Sorfeo stated that the acquisition would be its twelfth brand and that all parties were excited for what lay ahead.

As for what comes next, there are no solid details available at this time; however, the stocking issues seem to have been resolved, which bodes well for the new management. The company's website promises that more great things can be expected. An entry on Sorfeo's website press page celebrates an excellent review of the edge pan that was featured on Taste of Home, which in turn was inspired by its authors having learned of the pan from a viral TikTok post about it. The six-second video from 2020 has nearly 12 thousand likes.

Coincidentally, even though Baker's Edge did not reel in any investors from "Shark Tank," and Mark Cuban did not show much confidence in the company, he happens to be a partner in Sorfeo Brands. So, while they weren't able to close a deal with him on the show back in 2014, all these years later, the Griffins now find themselves swimming with the Shark all the same, just in a much bigger tank.