Celebrity chef Alton Brown has always railed against ultra-specific kitchen utensils that serve only one purpose, or what he calls “unitaskers,” as a waste of money and space.
On his show “Good Eats,” Brown once dubbed pastry bags as one such unnecessary item and suggested replacing them with a plastic sandwich or freezer bag with a corner cut out.
The hack may be suitable for those who rarely bake, but Ziploc bags can be flimsy and easily torn, and conical piping nozzles may not fit well into their snipped square corner.
Pastry bags cannot exactly be labeled “unitaskers,” as they serve multiple purposes, like decorating cakes and sweets, shaping meringues and macarons, and filling donuts or pasta.
Pastry bags are also available in a variety of materials like nylon and different plastics, which can often handle denser, tougher-to-pipe frosting and firmer grips as you pipe.
Contrary to frail Ziploc bags, pastry bags are reusable and often a lot larger. The space issue isn’t a factor either, as pastry bags are made of foldable plastic or other fabrics.