Parchment paper and wax paper are both common kitchen staples that are used for a variety of cooking and baking tasks, but they are not interchangeable. Understanding the difference between the two can help you make the best choice for your recipe and cooking needs.
What is Parchment Paper?
Parchment paper is a heat-resistant, non-stick paper that is ideal for baking. It is made from wood pulp that is treated with chemicals to make it non-stick and heat-resistant.
Can I use parchment paper in the oven?
Parchment paper is safe to use in the oven at temperatures up to 420°F (220°C). You can use it for a variety of tasks, such as lining baking sheets, covering dough, and making packets for cooking fish and vegetables.
Can I use parchment paper in the microwave?
Parchment paper is generally safe to use in the microwave, but there are some important things to keep in mind.
- Use it only as a cover, not to wrap the food.
- Use it at lower microwave settings.
- Make sure that the paper does not touch the sides of the microwave or any metal objects.
- Keep an eye on the food while it cooks, and stop the microwave if you notice any signs of smoke or fire.
It's also important to note that not all parchment papers are created equal, some are specifically made for oven use only, so it's important to check the package before using it in the microwave.
Can I use parchment paper in the airfryer?
You can use parchment paper can in an air fryer, but as with any cooking method, it's important to use it with caution. When using parchment in an air fryer, it's important to keep the following in mind:
- Place the parchment paper on the bottom of the air fryer basket before adding the food.
- Make sure that the parchment paper does not come in contact with the heating element or walls of the air fryer.
- Keep an eye on the food while it cooks, and stop the air fryer if you notice any signs of smoke or fire.
- Be aware that cooking times may vary when using parchment paper, so it's important to check the food frequently and adjust the cooking time accordingly.
What is Wax Paper?
Wax paper is a heat-sensitive paper that is coated with wax to make it non-stick. It is ideal for tasks such as wrapping sandwiches and covering bowls.
Unlike parchment paper, wax paper should not be used in the oven or put in direct contact with heat sources. The wax coating on the paper can melt and cause a fire hazard.
Can I use wax paper in the oven?
Do not use wax paper in the oven as it is not heat-resistant and its wax coating can melt and cause a fire hazard. The heat from the oven can cause the wax to melt and stick to the food or the oven, making it difficult to clean and potentially dangerous. Additionally, the wax can also release harmful fumes when heated to high temperatures.
Can I use wax paper in the microwave?
Do not use wax paper in the microwave as the wax coating can melt and cause a fire hazard, release harmful fumes and also can stick to your food.
It's important to use microwave-safe materials when cooking or reheating food in the microwave. The best option for covering food in the microwave is using microwave-safe lids, plastic wrap or parchment paper specifically made for microwave use.
Can I use wax paper in the airfryer?
Do not use wax paper in an air fryer.
Air fryers work by circulating hot air around the food, causing it to cook quickly and evenly. The high heat and circulating air can cause the wax coating on the paper to melt, which can be a fire hazard and release harmful fumes.
It's important to use heat-resistant materials that are safe for use in high-heat cooking methods such as the air fryer. Parchment paper, aluminum foil, or silicone baking mats are safer options.
Uses for Parchment Paper and Wax Paper
- Lining baking sheets and pans for easy release of baked goods.
- Covering dough to prevent sticking and drying out while rising or proofing.
- Making packets for cooking fish, vegetables and other foods.
- As a non-stick surface for rolling out dough, cutting out cookies and other food preparation tasks.
- Creating a barrier between delicate pastries and the pan for easy release
- Making a crust for savory or sweet tarts
- Wrapping sandwiches and other food items for storage or transportation.
- Covering bowls, dishes and trays to prevent food from sticking.
- Protecting countertops and other surfaces when working with sticky or messy ingredients.
- As a non-stick surface for rolling out dough and other food preparation tasks.
Recipes We Love Using Parchment Paper
- Lemon Butter Salmon in Parchment by The Cookie Rookie
- Mediterranean Chicken Packets by Martha Stewart
- Beef in Parchment with Olive Sauce by NYT Cooking