Parchment Paper vs Baking paper vs Greaseproof Paper
What to know

Parchment Paper vs. Baking paper vs. Greaseproof Paper for Microwaving and Baking

Baking and microwaving use many different papers. You have parchment paper, which is different from baking paper and greaseproof paper. They all seemingly look the same though. What’s the difference between them?

Baking paper allows you to bake safely without your cookies and cakes or roast beef sticking to the pan. They also absorb oils and whatnot to make your oven less of a mess. It serves as your perfect baking and cooking partner to make food preparation so much easier than before.

So what’s the deal with parchment paper vs baking paper vs greaseproof paper? Keep on reading to find out! Learn the differences (or lack thereof) between these types of baking paper.

Parchment Paper vs. Baking Paper vs. Greaseproof Paper

Here are the differences between parchment paper, baking paper, and greaseproof paper. Long story short, “both” parchment and baking paper refer to the same thing and they belong to the greaseproof paper umbrella term that also includes wax paper.

Parchment Paper

Parchment paper or vegetable parchment uses a cellulose-based composite that’s been processed to offer it additional properties like non-stickiness and temperature resistance. It also looks like ancient parchment.

Parchment Paper
Parchment Paper

Oven-safe parchment paper might darken as it’s heated in the oven or microwave, but it won’t catch fire. This makes it dependable for baking. When it darkens as it’s baked it kind of looks like parchment made of animal skin made for writing.

Baking Paper

Baking paper is just another name for parchment paper or bakery paper. It’s most popularly known as baking paper in the U.S., the country that gave us “sidewalk” instead of “pavement” or “waste paper basket” instead of “bin”.

Parchment Baking Paper
Parchment Baking Paper

It’s also a grease-proof type of paper used for cooking and baking that provides a non-stick, heat-resistant, and disposable surface to put your food or baked goods on without it sticking all over the place on trays and plates.

Greaseproof Paper

Greaseproof paper refers to “both” baking paper and parchment paper as an umbrella term for all heat-resistant papers that offer a wide variety of uses. This also includes wax paper, which is safe to use with a microwave but not so safe to use with an oven.

Whether you call the paper as baking paper or parchment paper, they can both be white or brown then turn darker as they’re being used as a reaction to the conductive heat or the microwave heat. Wax paper can have its wax melt when baked in the oven though.

You may also like: Can You Microwave Parchment Paper?

Which Among Parchment Paper, Baking Paper, and Greaseproof Paper is Microwaveable?

They’re all microwaveable. Actually, they all technically refer to the same paper type as opposed to wax paper or butter paper. Part of the reason why parchment paper is also called bakery paper or baking paper is for the sake of the conventional oven.

It separates it for the other greaseless paper types known as wax paper. You can’t use wax paper as a non-stick surface in the oven. It will have its wax layer melt or paper burn in the traditional oven while they’re much safer to use in a microwave environment.

Actually, both parchment/baking paper and wax paper are microwaveable. They don’t get affected by microwave radiation and feature enough heat resistance to temporarily house even greasy foods so that they don’t make a mess on your plate.

Disambiguation of Parchment Paper, Baking Paper, and Greaseproof Paper

Long story short, greaseproof paper refers to all papers—including waxed or wax paper along with parchment or baking paper—that can resist the greasiness of food or the stickiness of unbaked goods that you’re supposed to bake.

  • Baking Paper: Baking paper, also known as parchment paper or bakery paper, is a greaseless paper type ostensibly used for baking. It can withstand baking temperatures from 420°F to 450°F.
  • Wax Paper: Wax or waxed paper is like baking paper for microwaves. You can also use baking paper on microwaves but wax paper can only be used with microwaves as a substitute cover to plastic wrap. It can smoke or cause a fire to happen in a conventional oven.
  • Butter Paper: Butter or sandwich paper doesn’t have a nonstick surface, so don’t use it for baking. It can however cover for certain wax and baking paper applications such as protecting the chopping board when prepping fish, raw meat, onion, chili, and so forth.

All of these papers can be used as a temporary packaging or wrapping paper for moist and fatty food when you’re going on a picnic. They don’t turn into mushy pulp as easily as paper towels, for example. However, on short notice packaging and grease absorption, paper towels will suffice.

Enumerating the Differences between Different Greaseless Papers

Here’s what you need to remember about baking paper, parchment paper, butter paper, waxed paper, or wax paper. They’re mostly greaseproof papers that can resist heat, but only baking paper should be used for baking.

  • For Baking and Microwaving: Baking or parchment paper is for baking but is also microwaveable. It can be used in conventional ovens, microwave ovens, and food wrapping. They can double as sandwich or butter paper as well as wax paper for microwaving, in short.
  • Greaseproof Cover: Wax paper can resist greasiness and absorb hot grease that could explode or sizzle while being microwaved in the microwave oven. They can double as paper towels that cover greasy or fatty food so that they don’t make a mess inside the microwave oven.
  • Not the Same: Waxed paper shouldn’t be confused with parchment paper. It will smoke, catch fire, and/or change the taste of the food you’re cooking. It’s better to wrap your grilled fish or brisket with aluminum foil rather than wax paper or cookies with baking paper.
  • Butter Paper: This greaseless paper isn’t nonstick so don’t use it for baking. Wax paper is nonstick but it burns in the oven. Food will stick to butter paper. This paper should instead be used for chopping board protection or as wrapping paper for your sandwiches and moist food.

Additionally

The best baking paper ensures that the food doesn’t stick on dishes, cake forms, and trays for an easier baking and meal prep experience. Cleanup is more of a breeze; just throw away the used baking paper when you’re done.

You also don’t need to brush oil unto greaseless paper like baking and wax paper, which makes it easier to wash the dishes or use the dishwasher when push comes to shove. You can use such paper for rolling out, grating, and decorating your big cakes, cookies, cupcakes, and baked goods.

References:

  1. Greaseproof paper VS parchment paper“, CakesforDorothy Blog, May 1, 2013
  2. Guide: How to Tell if Something is Microwave Safe“, CBS7.com, November 18, 2015
  3. Anneka Manning, “Baking paper vs greaseproof paper“, BakeClub.com.au, April 2, 2020
  4. What are the differences?“, MetsaTissue.com, Retrieved December 13, 2021

Through the years, the microwave oven has become a standard appliance for all homes. It is safe to say that there is no home without a microwave oven. If you are looking for a microwave oven that best fits your needs, You find the right website.

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