Can You Microwave Plastic Wrap? There’s a Right and Wrong Way
You may know it as Saran Wrap, but that is actually a BRAND of the general kitchen staple known as plastic wrap! Plastic wrap works well when storing food in the refrigerator, but can you microwave plastic wrap?
Yes, you can! Plastic wrap is an excellent insulator when used to heat up food in the microwave. It also helps distribute heat so food is more thoroughly cooked through.
When using plastic wrap in the microwave it’s important to check for the microwave safe label though. And even if it is, do not allow the plastic to touch the food. It can quickly become quite hot and meld into your food.
In this post we will go over the right way to use plastic wrap to heat up your food in the microwave for perfect results every time!
What is Plastic Wrap?
Plastic wrap, also known as cling film or food wrap, is a thin, clear plastic material that is commonly used to cover, preserve, and heat up food. It’s made from a variety of materials, including PVC (polyvinyl chloride), LDPE (low-density polyethylene), and LLDPE (linear low-density polyethylene).
Plastic wrap is typically sold in rolls and can be easily torn off to fit various sizes of containers. It’s often used to cover leftovers or prepped ingredients in the fridge or freezer to keep them fresh for longer periods of time.
It’s worth noting that some types of plastic wrap may not be safe for use with certain foods, particularly those that are high in fat or acid content. In these cases, it’s best to use alternative methods for heating up your food, such as using parchment paper instead.
Can You Microwave Plastic Wrap?
Yes, you can safely use plastic wrap to heat up food in the microwave!
- Check to make sure it’s labelled as microwave safe. Each manufacturer of plastic wrap is different. So, your first step is to check the box for the microwave safe label. If it is, move on to the next step!
- Use a low or medium setting on the microwave.
- Do not microwave plastic wrap with high fatty or sugary foods.
- Do not allow the plastic wrap to touch the food.
Why Doesn’t Plastic Wrap Melt in the Microwave?
One reason plastic wrap doesn’t melt in the microwave is that it’s made from a special type of plastic that can withstand high temperatures. This plastic is designed to be heat-resistant and won’t break down when exposed to microwaves. Additionally, when you heat food in the microwave, water molecules inside the food vibrate rapidly, creating heat. Plastic wrap doesn’t contain water molecules, so it doesn’t get hot enough to melt.
How to Microwave Food Using Plastic Wrap: Step by Step
Microwaving food with plastic wrap can be a convenient way to heat up leftovers or prepare meals. However, it’s important to take certain precautions to ensure that the plastic wrap doesn’t melt or release harmful chemicals into your food.
Here are 9 steps to microwaving food with plastic wrap:
- Choose microwave-safe plastic wrap. Look for plastic wrap that is labeled as microwave-safe. This means that it has been tested and approved for use in the microwave. It is also able to withstand high temperatures.
- Place your food in a microwave-safe dish. We prefer Pyrex because it’s designed to be heat resistant.
- Leave a vent. Before microwaving, leave a small vent in the plastic wrap to allow steam to escape. This will prevent the plastic from melting or warping. You can also poke holes in the top to allow air to circulate through.
- Leave an inch at top. Allow an inch or two between the plastic wrap and the top of the food. This will help the food cook evenly and allow air to circulate.
- Keep the plastic wrap tight: Don’t allow the plastic wrap to touch your food. The plastic could potentially meld with your food causing ingestion. You should never ingest plastic wrap.
- Avoid contact with fatty foods: Plastic wrap can release harmful chemicals when it comes into contact with fatty foods like cheese or meat. This is because fatty foods will heat up faster and hotter than non-fatty substances. To avoid this, place a layer of paper towel between the food and the plastic wrap.
- Use short cooking times: When microwaving food with plastic wrap, use shorter cooking times than you normally would without it. This will help prevent overheating and melting.
- Check for melting: Stop the microwave every 30 seconds or so to check if the plastic is melting or warping. If it is, remove the plastic immediately and continue cooking without it.
- Let cool before removing: After microwaving, let your food cool for a few minutes before removing the plastic wrap. This will prevent steam burns and make it easier to handle.
By following these 9 steps, you can safely microwave your food with plastic wrap and enjoy quick and easy meals without worrying about harmful chemicals or melted messes.
Alternatives to Plastic Wrap in the Microwave
If you’re looking for alternatives to using plastic wrap in the microwave, there are several options available that can help you reheat your food safely and effectively. Here are some of the best alternatives to consider:
Beeswax wraps are a natural alternative to plastic wrap that can be used in the microwave. They’re made from organic cotton coated in beeswax, jojoba oil, and tree resin, which creates a breathable seal around your food.
Soy Wax Paper or Parchment Paper
Soy wax paper or parchment paper is a great alternative to plastic wrap when reheating food in the microwave. It’s biodegradable, compostable, and won’t release any harmful chemicals into your food.
Silicone covers are another great option for covering food in the microwave. These covers create an airtight seal around your dish, which helps to prevent splatters and keep your food moist while it cooks. Plus, they’re reusable and easy to clean.
If you don’t have any glass containers or silicone covers on hand, you can also use paper towels as an alternative to plastic wrap. Simply place a damp paper towel over your dish before microwaving it. The moisture from the towel will help keep your food from drying out while it heats up.
Overall, there are plenty of alternatives to using plastic wrap in the microwave that are safe, effective, and easy to use. Whether you prefer glass containers, silicone covers, or paper towels, there’s an option out there that will work for you.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Can You Tell if Plastic Wrap is Microwave Safe?
If you’re wondering whether your plastic wrap is safe to use in the microwave, there are a few things you can look for. First, check the label on the packaging to see if it specifically states that it is microwave-safe. If it does not, it’s best to err on the side of caution and not use it in the microwave. Additionally, you can check the quality of the plastic wrap itself – if it feels thin or flimsy, it may not hold up well in the heat of the microwave.
It’s important to note that while some plastic wraps are labeled as microwave-safe, they may still release harmful chemicals into your food if they come into direct contact with it. To minimize this risk, make sure that the plastic wrap is not touching your food directly and that there is a small vent for steam to escape.
Can Glad Cling Wrap go in the Microwave?
Glad Cling Wrap is safe to use in the microwave as long as you follow these instructions:
- Use only microwave-safe cling wrap.
- Do not let the wrap touch your food.
- Leave a small vent or opening to allow steam to escape.
- Avoid using cling wrap on fatty or greasy foods, which can get hot enough to melt the plastic.
By following these guidelines, you can safely use Glad Cling Wrap in the microwave without any issues!
What Happens if You Microwave Saran Wrap?
Saran Wrap, also known as plastic wrap or cling film, is a common kitchen item used for covering and storing food. Many people wonder if it is safe to use in the microwave. The answer is yes, but with some precautions.
When you microwave Saran Wrap, it can melt or warp due to the heat. This can cause the wrap to stick to your food or create holes that allow steam to escape. Additionally, if you microwave Saran Wrap at extremely high power levels over long periods of time, it can release harmful chemicals into your food.
To avoid these issues, it is recommended that you use microwave-safe plastic wrap when heating food in the microwave. These wraps are designed to withstand high temperatures without melting or warping. It is also important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and avoid microwaving plastic wrap at high power levels for extended periods of time.
Overall, while it is safe to use Saran Wrap in the microwave, taking precautions and using microwave-safe plastic wrap can help ensure that your food stays safe and free from harmful chemicals.
Is Reynolds Plastic Wrap Microwave Safe?
Yes, Reynolds plastic wrap is microwave safe as long as it is labeled as such. Reynolds Kitchens Quick Cut Plastic Wrap, is a great option for covering microwave-safe containers to reheat food without making a mess.
To use it in the microwave, simply cover the container with the wrap and turn back one corner to vent steam. Always leave at least 1 inch between the wrap and the food, and heat for the recommended time. With Reynolds plastic wrap, you can enjoy quick and easy reheating without worrying about splatters or messes.