Is it safe to put wax paper in the oven? No! Take the better substitute: parchment paper.
Wax has many purposes in the kitchen and can come in handy for various things. This food-safe paper is covered with thin layers of paraffin wax, making it non-stick and moisture resistant. However, people often confuse wax paper with parchment paper, and thus, it is quite common to hear the question “can wax paper go in the oven?”
In a short answer: you can’t put wax paper in the oven because it will melt in a short period of time. But you are already here reading the article, let’s learn about wax paper and how to use it correctly, so that you won’t make mistakes in the future, some improper action may hurt you!
Therefore, in today’s article, we are going to go through everything you need to know about wax paper. Aside from that, we will also cover some of the alternatives you can use and help you get a better grasp of what wax paper is designed for.
What Is Wax Paper?
For some reason, wax paper is often a catch-all term for various types of paper, such as parchment paper for instance. As this paper is covered with wax and is moisture-resistant, it is often used for wrapping foods as it keeps them fresh and prevents the strong aromas from spreading out. So, wax paper, also known as waxed or paraffin paper, is simply paper that is covered with wax on either one or both sides, depending on the type.
However, wrapping food isn’t the only thing you can use wax paper for. It is also very often used in arts, film photography for instance. Believe it or not, some people even use wax paper to wrap razor blades, protecting them from moisture.
What Is Wax Paper Used For?
Even though wax paper can be used for various things, in today’s article we will primarily focus on its functionality in the kitchen. If you are looking for something that keeps your food fresh, away from moisture, but at the same time doesn’t affect the taste of the food, the wax paper makes a perfect choice.
You can easily wrap and store your chocolate bark, homemade marshmallows, or pre-rolled meatballs at room temperature or in a refrigerator. Not to forget that it can also be used for rolling out dough. Just put pie or cookie dough between two wax papers and it won’t stick to the rolling pin. Plus, it can really come in handy when pounding meat like veal or chicken.
Can Wax Paper Go In The Oven?
As people often confuse wax paper for parchment paper, they assume that it can be used in the oven. Not only do these two types of papers look the same, but they are often sold in the same section of most stores and come at a very similar price. However, wax paper is something you definitely want to avoid using in the oven.
Although it can be used in the oven for a very short period of time at a very low temperature, there are much better alternatives. When you put wax paper in a very hot oven, it is most likely going to melt really quickly and will not only ruin your pans and food but the oven as well. As it wasn’t designed to withstand such high temperatures, you should consider some other options.
Can you Use Reynolds Wax Paper In The Oven?
Now, do different brands mean different capabilities? You have probably already heard about the Reynolds wax paper. On their official website, they advertise their wax paper as BPA-Free and microwave-safe. Does that mean it can withstand higher temperatures?
Well, it depends. Even though they mentioned that their wax paper shouldn’t be directly exposed to high temperatures of an oven, it can be used as a pan liner when baking muffins, bread, or a cake. The only thing important to remember is that you should just bake the foods in which the batter or the dough covers the wax paper lining completely.
Can You Use Dry Wax Paper In The Oven?
The same situation is with dry wax paper. Dry wax paper can be used only in certain ways. Meaning it should never be exposed directly to heat as it could not only smoke but catch fire as well. In other words, dry wax paper can be used in the oven the same way Reynolds wax paper can.
Wax Paper And Parchment Paper: Are They The Same?
We have already established that a lot of people often confuse wax and parchment paper. And no, they are not the same thing! But what are the main differences between these two types of paper and which one should you go for?
The main and most important difference between wax and parchment paper is in the coating. While parchment paper is covered with silicone that gives it a heat resistant, non-stick surface, wax paper is coated with either paraffin wax or soybean. Parchment paper is a much better choice for lining cookie sheets when baking, while the wax paper is better for wrapping foods and cold storage.
What are Alternatives for wax paper?
Once people hear that using wax paper in the oven is not a very good decision, they start wondering what are the alternatives to wax paper. Therefore, if you are in the need of something that can withstand the temperature of up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit, you should try some of the following options:
- Parchment Paper: Parchment paper is one of the most common alternatives for baking. The main reason for that is that it can withstand a temperature of about 450 degrees Fahrenheit. It often has a very similar look to the actual parchment, as it is thin and brown-colored. Still, it is not unusual to come across bleached or white parchment paper either.
- Aluminum Foil: When it comes to baking and cooking, one of the first things that come to mind is aluminum foil. This makes an amazing substitute for wax paper and parchment paper and it can withstand heat better than any other alternative you can find. It is known to withstand up to 1200 degrees Fahrenheit and it won’t burn, melt, or ruin your food.
Can Aluminum Foil Go Into The Oven?
You have probably seen people using aluminum foil in the oven thousands of times, right? And yes, it is definitely safe to put it in the oven as it can withstand a high temperature better than any other alternative you can find. Still, there are a few things you should keep in mind when using this method.
First off, never use aluminum foil on the bottom of the oven. Not only can it stick to the porcelain surface, but can cause damage to the oven over time. Not to forget that it reflects heat, causing uneven cooking and potentially damaging the heating elements of the oven.
So, if you are planning on using this alternative, the best way to do so is by wrapping it around the food. This will keep the liquids in if the food is marinated and for the most part, you won’t have any issues using it this way.
Can You Bake With Wax Paper?
Long story short, no, you shouldn’t try to bake with wax paper. As it is only moisture-resistant but not heat resistant, wax paper is going to melt when exposed to such heat. Therefore, if you want to prevent sticking, melting, and burning, we highly recommend you to use parchment paper.
Still, wax paper can be used for wrapping baked goods once they cool down. With wax paper, you can wrap and store any type of baked goods, starting with cookies, over muffins, to bread. However, some brands are known for making wax paper that is microwave-safe. Therefore, if you are planning on microwaving, just place your cookies or any type of food onto the sheet of paper or wrap around the food.
Our Bottom Line
All in all, you can use wax paper for a lot of different things, but not put it in the oven! As it is moisture-resistant, you can use wax paper to wrap foods, keeping them fresh and preventing strong smells from spreading out. Still, as it would melt, stick, and burn when exposed to heat, you shouldn’t put wax paper in the oven.
Instead, you can use parchment paper that can withstand up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Parchment paper is the ideal alternative for lining baking sheets and baking cookies, cakes or any other types of foods.
My love for food was influenced by my brother, a chef at a 2-star Michelin restaurant, and we often exchange food knowledge together. It’s been 12 years since I first stepped into the kitchen, and with my vast experience and expertise, I will share many ideas on how to make dishes more delicious!