Many of you may be wondering – can you put paper plates in the oven?
Paper plates are inexpensive, convenient, and so easy to use. Perhaps, you need to reheat food and you do not want to deal with having to wash any dishes. And so, you prefer to simply grab a paper plate to reheat your food.
But is it safe to do this? Or are there better options available?
Find out what you need to know about putting paper plates in the oven. Also, we will discuss some alternatives to paper plates that offer good results. Let’s jump right into it.
Can You Put Paper Plates In The Oven
Although there are some paper plates that may safely go in your oven, you need to make sure there is no heat or fire involved to prevent accidents. If there is direct heat, this can render the use of paper plates in an oven unsafe. Among the issues to look out for include toxins getting into your food, potentially harmful and unpleasant odors, and even oven fire.
When you put plastic material in your oven, the material will melt – and you can easily see this. On the other hand, it is harder to tell with a paper plate. Some toxic side effects are not evident straight away. This is why it is more risky to use it.
Among the common concerns when using paper plates in your oven are toxin consumption and fire. Although it should be relatively easy to prevent oven fire by simply keeping the temperatures lower than 450 Fahrenheit, it is not the case with toxins. The toxic risk of using this material is not always simple to tell.
For instance, if you are using paper plates with a shiny coating or dye for the color, then this is a potential health risk. If you have coated or dyed paper, you should neve put it in the oven no matter what.
Most paper plates nowadays come with colorful and printed styles. This is why they are enticing to use during parties. However, you should avoid putting them in the oven when reheating food. The chemicals used to dye or coat the paper can seem into your food, which are toxic elements.
In addition, any texture that you feel on your plate – which does not have the same texture of paper – is a concern. It means that once the heat deteriorates this material, you may end up ingesting toxins and creating a huge mess in the oven.
What Paper To Use In The Oven
As we have mentioned earlier, some paper plates are fine to use in the oven. This is the case with oven-safe labeled paper plates. You should check the label to make sure it is nothing but plain white and chemical-free plates – and be sure it is heat-resistant. What this means is that the plate simply releases steam and does not burn. There are no air molecules that cause burning.
But no matter what type of paper plate you put in an oven, you should not have your oven go over 450 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the case with paper plates or any other material that is oven-safe. Do keep in mind that plates – even heat resistant ones – will catch fire once the temperature is more than adequate.
Oven-friendly materials for your paper plate should be safe to use in an oven. However, those with a shiny or waxy texture are not ideal to use. This means the material can catch on oven fire because of the resin or aluminum in it. With toxins involved in the material, you may end up ingesting these and causing multiple health issues.
Now, it is also worth noting that several factors impact the rate at which paper plates catch on fire. The thickness, moisture content, and the type of material are all essential factors that influence the danger of using paper plates in an oven.
Additionally, you should never leave any oven-safe paper plate unattended. The temperature should be kept low and avoid keeping it inside for too long.
If you are wondering if you can put a paper plate in a toaster oven, the answer is no. It is never ideal to use this material since it can easily catch fire inside. So, you should use other oven-safe materials. When placed in an oven, the paper can easily catch fire due to the heating coils being close to the plate. There is also a quick circulation of air in a toaster oven, causing your paper plate to heat up too quickly.
This is why no matter what the temperature is in your toaster oven, you should avoid using paper plates.
Now, if you wish to reheat your food in a paper plate in your oven, there should be ample space between the plate and all dimensions of your oven. With more room, this prevents the plate from overheating rapidly. And as we constantly reiterate, keep the temperature under 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
Moreover, be sure to read the manufacturer’s instructions for using paper plates. It should indicate the ideal temperature setting. So, the lower the temperature, the better and safer.
But overall, paper plates are not exactly the best to use when cooking in your oven. Even if you stick to plain white and toxin-free varieties, there are better oven-safe plates you can use.
Cooking food on paper is usually slower, so you need a higher heat. Then, when it comes to the convection oven, you may end up burning the paper because of the circulating hot air.
This is why you are better off with other materials such as cast iron, glass, ceramic, stainless steel, silicone baking mats, and stoneware. If you want to wrap your food up, you can use aluminum foil or line the baking sheet with parchment paper.
On the other hand, you should avoid certain materials that are deemed unsafe for oven use such as wax paper, plastic, paper towels, and some glassware that are not oven-safe.
We hope this answers your question on whether you should put paper plates in the oven or not. Now, you are aware of the potential risks that come with heating food in the oven on your paper plates and what the best options are for oven-safe dishes.