Is Parchment Paper Flammable? Myth or Reality

Baking is one of the most delightful pastimes you can engage in. Whether you are baking for fun or for business, the process can be therapeutic and rewarding. One of the essential items in any baker’s arsenal is parchment paper.

This multipurpose paper is not only great for lining baking sheets, but it also prevents food from sticking and makes for easy clean-up.

However, there has been some debate about the flammability of parchment paper. In this article, we will explore this topic and provide you with the information you need to make an informed decision.

What Is Parchment Paper?

Parchment paper, also known as baking paper, is a type of kitchen paper that is commonly used to line baking sheets, cake pans, and other cooking vessels.

It is made by treating paper with a thin layer of silicone, which makes it non-stick, heat-resistant, and water-resistant.

Parchment paper is used in cooking and baking to prevent food from sticking to the pan or dish, making it easy to remove and reducing the need for added fats or oils.

It can also be used to create a barrier between different ingredients to prevent them from sticking together or to create a non-stick surface for rolling out dough or pastry.

Parchment paper is safe for use in the oven at high temperatures and can withstand temperatures up to 450°F (232°C).

It is also safe for use in the microwave and can be used for wrapping food for steaming or roasting. Parchment paper is widely available in supermarkets and kitchen supply stores in rolls or pre-cut sheets.

Is Parchment Paper Flammable?

First, let’s define what we mean by “flammable.” When we say that something is flammable, we mean that it can catch fire and burn easily. This is an important consideration when it comes to kitchen safety, as we don’t want any materials in our cooking space that could potentially start a fire.

So, is parchment paper flammable? The short answer is yes, parchment paper is technically flammable. However, it’s important to note that parchment paper is considered a fire-resistant material.

This means that while it can catch fire under certain circumstances, it’s less likely to do so than other materials like wax paper or aluminum foil.

We must look at its composition to understand why parchment paper is less flammable than other materials. Parchment paper is made from vegetable pulp treated with sulfuric acid.

Is Parchment Paper Flammable

This process creates a material that’s strong, durable, and heat-resistant.

Parchment paper is also coated with a layer of silicone, which helps to make it non-stick and further enhances its heat resistance.

Is Parchment Paper Flame Retardant?

Parchment paper is not flame-retardant in the sense that it is designed to resist catching on fire or slowing down the spread of flames.

Parchment paper is made from wood pulp that has been treated with sulfuric acid to create a non-stick, heat-resistant, and grease-resistant material.

While parchment paper can withstand temperatures of up to 420°F (215°C) in the oven, it is not intended to be exposed to direct flames or high heat sources such as a broiler or grill.

If exposed to an open flame, parchment paper can easily catch fire and may even ignite.

It is important to use parchment paper only in the manner it is intended, which is as a non-stick surface for baking or cooking in the oven.

When using parchment paper, it is important to keep it away from any flames, and not to use it to cover dishes that will be exposed to direct heat.

Is It Safe To Use Parchment Paper

Yes, parchment paper is safe to use when used properly. It’s made from natural materials and not treated with harmful chemicals.

The silicone coating on the paper is also considered safe for food contact.

There are some concerns about potentially releasing toxic fumes when parchment paper is heated at high temperatures. However, these concerns are largely unfounded.

The FDA has stated that no evidence supports the idea that silicone-coated parchment paper is unsafe to use.

When using parchment paper, following the manufacturer’s instructions is important.

Don’t use the paper at temperatures higher than recommended, and don’t use it in a broiler or on a grill. If the paper starts to smoke, immediately remove it from the oven.

Some people also wonder about the environmental impact of using parchment paper. While it’s true that parchment paper is not recyclable, it’s important to remember that it’s biodegradable.

This means that it will break down naturally over time and won’t contribute to landfill waste.

At What Temperature Does Parchment Paper Burn

The burning point of parchment paper varies depending on the manufacturer and the quality of the paper. Generally, parchment paper can withstand temperatures up to 450°F (232°C).

Anything higher than that can cause the paper to burn and emit smoke.

However, it’s essential to note that the burning point of parchment paper can also be affected by other factors such as the type of oven, the thickness of the paper, and the duration of exposure to heat.

If you’re using a convection oven, the hot air circulating around the oven can cause the parchment paper to burn faster than in a regular oven.

In addition, if the parchment paper is too thin, it’s likely to burn faster than a thicker one. The duration of exposure to heat is also critical.

Leaving the parchment paper in the oven for too long can cause it to burn, even at temperatures below 450°F (232°C).

It’s best to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the packaging to ensure that your parchment paper doesn’t burn.

Most parchment paper brands indicate the maximum temperature that their paper can withstand. It’s also recommended always to keep an eye on your parchment paper while it’s in the oven and remove it as soon as possible once your baking or cooking is done.

Why Does Parchment Paper Burn-In Oven

Parchment paper is a type of paper specially designed to be heat-resistant and non-stick, making it useful for various cooking and baking applications.

However, it can still burn in the oven if exposed to high temperatures for too long.

Parchment paper can burn in the oven because it has a lower heat tolerance than other materials commonly used in baking, such as aluminum foil or silicone baking mats.

Most brands of parchment paper can withstand temperatures up to around 425-450 degrees Fahrenheit (218-232 degrees Celsius), but if the oven temperature is set too high or the paper is left in the oven for too long, it can start to burn.

Another factor that can contribute to parchment paper burning in the oven is moisture content. If the paper becomes wet or greasy, it can start to break down and become more susceptible to burning.

This is why it’s important to use parchment paper specifically labeled as “oven-safe” and avoid getting it wet or greasy before putting it in the oven.

Is Burnt Parchment Paper Toxic

Parchment paper is a high-density, non-stick paper that’s coated with silicone.

It’s typically made from wood pulp that’s been treated with sulfuric acid to break down the fibers and create a smooth, durable surface.

The silicone coating is what makes parchment paper non-stick and heat-resistant.

When parchment paper is heated, the silicone coating can start to break down and release fumes.

This can happen when the paper is exposed to high temperatures for an extended period of time, or when it’s burnt.

The fumes that are released can be harmful if inhaled in large quantities, but the good news is that the amount of fumes released by burnt parchment paper is typically very small.

In fact, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the emissions from silicone-based products like parchment paper are generally not considered to be harmful to human health.

The EPA has even approved the use of silicone in food contact materials, including parchment paper.

However, avoiding burning parchment paper whenever possible is still a good idea.

Not only can it release potentially harmful fumes, but it can also affect the flavor of your food.

Burnt parchment paper can leave a bitter taste on your baked goods, which is definitely not something you want.

So, what should you do if you accidentally burn your parchment paper? The best course of action is to throw it away and start over with a fresh sheet.

This is especially important if you’re cooking food that’s going to be in direct contact with the paper, like cookies or roasted vegetables.

Best Ways To Use Parchment Paper

Parchment paper is a versatile kitchen tool that can be used in a variety of ways. Here are some of the best ways to use parchment paper:

Baking: Parchment paper is commonly used as a non-stick surface for baking. It can be used to line baking sheets, cake pans, and loaf pans to prevent sticking and make cleanup easier.

Roasting: Use parchment paper to line roasting pans to prevent food from sticking and to make cleanup easier.

Steaming: Parchment paper can be used to create a packet for steaming fish, vegetables, and other foods. Simply place the food in the center of a sheet of parchment paper, fold the edges to seal, and steam.

Candy making: Parchment paper is a great surface for making candy because it prevents sticking and is heat-resistant. Use it to line the bottom of candy molds or to create a non-stick surface for candy making.

Rolling out dough: Parchment paper can be used to roll out dough for pie crusts, cookies, and other baked goods. Simply place the dough between two sheets of parchment paper and roll it out to the desired thickness.

Food storage: Use parchment paper to wrap and store cheese, bread, and other foods to prevent them from drying out or sticking together.

Placemats: Cut parchment paper into decorative shapes and use it as placemats for parties or special occasions.

Overall, parchment paper is a versatile kitchen tool that can be used in many ways to make cooking and baking easier and more efficient.

Does Parchment Paper Burn In Air Fryer

The answer is that it depends on the type of parchment paper you use and how you use it.

Some brands of parchment paper are not designed to withstand high heat and may burn or even catch fire in an air fryer.

Therefore, it’s important to use parchment paper that is specifically labeled as safe for high-heat cooking. Look for parchment paper that is labeled as “oven-safe” or “air fryer-safe.”

When using parchment paper in an air fryer, following some basic safety guidelines is important. Firstly, always cut the parchment paper to fit the size of your air fryer basket.

Overhanging parchment paper can blow around and potentially catch fire. Secondly, make sure the parchment paper is not touching any heating elements or the sides of the air fryer. This can cause the paper to burn or catch fire.

Another tip for using parchment paper in an air fryer is lightly spraying it with cooking spray. This will help the parchment paper adhere to the food and prevent it from flying around in the air fryer. It will also help prevent the parchment paper from burning.

What To Do If Parchment Paper Catches Fire

If parchment paper catches fire, it is important to act quickly to prevent the fire from spreading. Here are the steps to take if you experience a parchment paper fire:

Turn off the heat source: If the parchment paper is on fire in the oven, turn off the oven immediately.

Turn off the burner if the parchment paper is on fire on the stovetop.

Do not open the oven: Opening the oven can cause the fire to spread, so it is important to keep the oven closed.

Smother the fire: Use a fire extinguisher or cover the flames with a metal lid, baking sheet, or another non-flammable object to smother the fire. Do not use water to extinguish a parchment paper fire as it can spread the fire.

Wait for the fire to die down: If it is small, it may die on its own. Keep an eye on it to ensure it doesn’t spread.

Call for help: If the fire is out of control, call 911 or your local emergency services.

Remember to always be cautious when using parchment paper in the kitchen and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully.

Alternatives To Parchment Paper

Some alternative options are available if you’re still concerned about using parchment paper. Silicone baking mats are a popular option and are similar to parchment paper in many ways.

They’re reusable, easy to clean, and can be used for baking, roasting, and more.

Another option is using a light cooking oil or butter coating to grease the pan instead of parchment paper. This is a traditional method that many home cooks swear by and can be a good option if you’re trying to reduce waste in your kitchen.


Parchment paper is made of paper that has been coated with silicone, making it heat-resistant and non-stick.

While parchment paper is not considered highly flammable, it can catch fire under certain circumstances.

It is important to avoid exposing parchment paper to direct flames, high heat, or extended periods in the oven. If parchment paper catches fire, it is important to act quickly to prevent the fire from spreading.

Smother the fire with a non-flammable object and do not use water to extinguish the fire. While parchment paper is not highly flammable, it is important to use it safely and cautiously in the kitchen.