Can you microwave bamboo plates or spoons? Like with wooden plates, bowls, dishes, and utensils, it’s not recommended to microwave bamboo anything. Keep on reading to find out why.
Many people use the microwave not realizing it’s as fiery as an oven due to how quickly it heats up things. They should be more careful in handling the microwave since it uses a separate set of rules for containers and dishes compared to the bakeware sets developed for traditional ovens.
For example, you should use microwave-safe items like thick Pyrex glass or ceramic dishes when microwaving leftovers or making quiche and mugcakes. On that note, is bamboo microwave safe or not?
Is Bamboo Microwave-Safe or Not?
Bamboo is not microwave-safe. Like with wooden bowls and other items made from plant matter, the heat from the microwave can ruin any dish, plate, bowl, cup, or dinnerware.
Microwave rays can ruin bamboo dinnerware, thus making it fragile, darkening it, or ruining the glue holding it together. The reason for this? Bamboo has moisture inside it. Even bamboo you’ve cut from the stalk and have long ago dried out.
How Microwaves Can Ruin Your Bamboo Dishes
Microwave rays react to moisture and make it boil or heat up really quickly by friction on the molecular level. That’s how the microwave oven heats up the food and that’s why only a handful of materials can survive inside it.
Aside from risking the bamboo catching fire, these dishes shouldn’t be microwaved because the best case scenario for them involves getting warped or ruined. Those microwave rays can ruin your dinnerware made of wood or bamboo.
It can become unglued, it can splinter, or it can lose its glossiness. It’s dangerous to microwave bamboo items across the board, from utensils to dishes and so forth. They’ll lose their flexibility and they can become as brittle as chalk or wet particleboard.
Why Isn’t Bamboo Microwave-Safe?
Bamboo has water in it and it’s not heatproof. It can burn from the inside or at least become more fragile after microwaving. Most bamboo utensils, bowls, and plates are often created using crushed glued bamboo strips.
The moisture from such bamboo dishes will evaporate inside the microwave oven, which causes the bamboo to crack and warp. Sometimes it’s instead of the strips that will fall apart because they’ve literally become unglued.
If You Have to Absolutely Microwave Bamboo
If you have to absolutely microwave bamboo dishes then limit it for less than half a minute. If that’s not enough to heat up your food then transfer that food into a microwave-safe container or even disposable wax paper to avoid permanent damage to your bamboo dinnerware.
Bamboo items aren’t cheap. If you don’t want your investment to go up in literal smoke or get damaged, don’t use them in the wrong way by microwaving.
What Will Happen if You Put Bamboo in a Microwave?
By avoiding microwaving your bamboo bowls and plates, they can last years without special care. Don’t soak them in water, don’t microwave them, and you’re good to go. Even a quick 1-minute or 30-second microwave session can ruin them.
When you microwave your food with a bamboo plate or bowl container, you risk doing the following to it. In short, every second it sits inside the microwave oven, it could end up with the following issues:
- Fall apart
- Catch on fire
- Lose flexibility
- Become fragile
- Lose glossiness
- Become darker or change color
Use a ceramic container or Pyrex bakeware to microwave your food in order to save your bamboo dishes from getting microwave-damaged.
Heat up your food on a separate microwave-safe container then transfer it on your bamboo bowl or dish to keep them in good condition when all is said and done.
Why Do People Insist on Microwaving Bamboo?
People love to pop something inside the microwave without thinking about food container. It’s unfortunately very common for people to microwave plastic inside the microwave until it melts, thinking it will only microwave the food.
If you’re thinking about cooking a quick meal or reheating something with a bamboo dish, don’t do it. Even microwave-safe materials like ceramic can end up non-microwave-safe (they heat up too easily or they’re too thin so the heat could break them).
WARNING! You Could Set Your Bamboo Dish or Fire (and More)!
What more proven microwave-unsafe materials like wood and bamboo? Such soft woods typically get glued together instead of nailed, so they’re in danger of unsticking their glue by heat, resulting in the bamboo strips coming apart.
The heat from the microwave on the moisture inside the bamboo could dry out, darken, crack, burn, or darken the bamboo plate, making it non-useable or lowering its value. Its days can also get numbered after just 30 seconds of microwave ray exposure.
Seriously, Even Microwaving Bamboo Dishes for a Few Seconds is Risky!
If your only option involves microwaving bamboo do it only for 30 seconds and not in 30-second increments. You’ll still risk damaging it by incrementally microwaving it. Just limit it for 30 seconds because any longer can destroy it.
It at first dries the bamboo out. Furthermore, it loses its glossiness that you depend on as a plate. Because bamboo offers similarities to wood, microwaving it for a couple of minutes is enough for it to catch fire. Before burning, it at first darkens, starts cracking, and becomes really fragile.
What Dishes Can You Microwave Safely?
Bamboo material serves as an eco-friendly, strong, and beautiful way to make dishes. It can last you years if you avoid doing certain things with it, like soaking it too long in water or microwaving it for more than 30 seconds.
Avoid using bamboo with your microwave. Instead, use microwave-friendly materials such as the following:
- Oven cooking bags
- Microwave-safe and BPA-free plastic
Test your kitchen set if it’s microwave-friendly or microwave-safe. Some ceramics heat up too easily (by the hotness of the food instead of the microwave rays) to be microwave-safe. If the glass is too thin like wine glass it might break from microwaving.
Items to Consider
If you wish to reheat dinner then choose something other than bamboo plates to put inside the microwave. They could be glued together and the glue could come undone with microwave rays. The radiation can also ruin your cups, bowls, and dishes by extreme heat exposure.
This goes for both bamboo plants and bamboo dinnerware. Anything made of bamboo shouldn’t be put inside the microwave oven. Ditto when it comes to anything made of wood.
- “Can Bamboo Go in the Microwave?” BambooHomeDecor.com, Retrieved December 10, 2021