In this post, we take a look at parchment paper vs wax paper, if they can both be used simultaneously or not. As the baking season draws nearer, you might be questioning, What is the difference between parchment paper and wax paper or who wins in the battle of parchment paper vs wax paper? And can they be used interchangeably?
In many cases, yes, they can be used interchangeably but not in the oven!
These papers are both perfect for making clean-up much faster and easier. They’re likewise great for coatings meat and fish and separating layers of baked products for storage. However, the number one factor parchment paper is far remarkable and superior to wax paper when considering parchment paper vs wax paper is because parchment paper will not ignite or melt in the oven.
That’s a big deal. Never ever put wax paper in the oven. It can cause excess flames in the kitchen.
What is a Parchment paper?
Parchment paper is grease and moisture-resistant paper specifically treated for oven usage. It is extremely flexible – and is used to line cake molds and baking sheets, to cover fish and other meals that are prepared en papillote, and to cover countertops throughout messy tasks to make clean-up simple. If you’re sorting or grating a percentage of a component, you can merely let it fall onto the paper, then get the paper and put it into a dish.
Parchment paper is generally more costly, that makes sense because it can do anything wax paper can, plus enter the oven to line baking sheets. The brown (natural) parchment paper likewise has that cool artisanal thing going on when you wrap baked products in it for gifts, particularly with butcher’s twine as ribbon – so Brooklyn.
What is Wax paper
Wax paper has a thin coating of wax on each side, making it moisture-resistant and nonstick; it is a great, less-expensive alternative to parchment paper for tasks such as coatings countertops, and is available at any grocery store. Unlike parchment paper, nevertheless, it is not heat-resistant and for that reason shouldn’t be used in the oven, as the wax might melt, and even ignite.
Lining baking sheets and cake pans, these affordable papers can be used for a variety of tasks, from putting active ingredients to steaming fish. Parchment paper is treated with silicone, so it is nonstick; it is grease-resistant and likewise heatproof. It’s readily available bleached (white) or natural (brown).
It protects pans, helps in clean-up, and prevents food from sticking. It likewise makes a helpful funnel for moving dry ingredients. You can bake fish or chicken in it for a low-fat cooking approach.
Rolls of parchment paper are available in the baking area of many grocery stores. Precut sheets and rounds can be discovered in baking supply shops.
Another excellent choice for lining flat pans is a Silpat baking mat. Made from versatile, heat-resistant silicon, they are far more costly than either parchment paper or wax paper, however last for many years.
Parchment paper vs wax paper
Waxed paper (or wax paper) and parchment paper are both layered papers. The distinction in them remains in their coatings. Parchment paper– which is available as bleached and unbleached – is covered with silicone, while the wax paper is covered in wax, as you may think. And to be factual, Soybean or paraffin wax.
Their coatings provide various usages. Parchment paper’s silicone coatings make it nonstick and heat-resistant. Line baking pans with this paper marvel and food will not stay with the pan. This technique can’t be replicated with the wax paper since the wax will melt, which makes it ineffective as a nonstick barrier and ruins whatever you’re cooking.
The best usage of Wax paper is for lining countertops and tables prior to rolling out pie crusts or kneading bread, to avoid a mess. Wax paper can likewise be used to cover food for freezing and even line a pan for making something like fudge. Putting a piece of wax paper in between products you’re freezing will likewise prevent them from sticking together.
What is parchment paper used for
To sum it up in one sentence, parchment paper is used for hot applications and wax paper is for cold. Wax paper should always be used to line dishes that aren’t entering the oven.
Can you use Wax paper instead of parchment paper?
Wax paper and parchment paper may look the same, however, they are used for different purposes in the kitchen. Wax paper has thin coatings of wax on each side, which prevent food from adhering to it and makes it moisture-resistant. But Wax paper is not heat-resistant; the wax will melt at high-temperature levels and the paper itself can ignite and start a fire.
Do not use wax paper to line baking sheets or cake pans or put it in a hot oven.
Wax paper is useful in many other ways. It comes in handy for rolling out dough of all kinds, pounding chicken breasts into cutlets, lining a baking pan for no-bake bar cookies (like our No-Bake Fudgy Toffee Bars), and covering countertops when you are decorating iced cookies, working with melted chocolate, or cleaning a dish with powdered sugar.
You can sort dry ingredients onto a big piece of wax paper, then raise the paper and put the contents right into your blending bowl. Wax paper also makes an excellent wrapper for sticks of butter, sandwiches, or wedges of cheese.
Like wax paper, parchment paper is non-stick and likewise moisture-resistant. Since it has been made with silicone, it can likewise be used in the oven, normally as high as 450oC. Even if your oven is a little hotter than that, the paper will typically darken, however, not burn. Parchment paper is offered in bleached (white) and unbleached (light brown), the color won’t make any difference in your recipe.
Parchment paper is used in lining pie pans, baking sheets, cake pans, and meatloaf pans, cook fish and vegetable en papillote, as makeshift muffin pan liners, and for any of the jobs noted above.
Using Parchment Paper and Wax Paper
A lot of recipes require using wax or parchment paper. A few of these can be tried:
Rice Krispies Treats
Here is a perfect reason to purchase wax paper: Rice Krispies Treats. Making use of buttered wax paper both to line your pan and to push the sticky mix of melted marshmallow and cereal into an even layer truly reduces the mess. You can make the classic squares (perhaps an adults-only White Russian variation?), or a multi-tiered Rice Krispies Treat Birthday Cake recipe.
Wax paper is likewise fantastic for lining your countertop (or a sheet pan) where you prepare to cool homemade sweets, from chocolate-coated bars like our copycat candy bar recipe to caramels and things like our Honey Butterscotch recipe. Parchment works too.
Perfect Roast Potatoes
Yes, aluminum foil can also be used to line a pan when roasting fish, meat, or vegetables, however, parchment paper works perfectly too. Roast actually anything on a parchment-lined pan, from our Perfect Roast Potatoes recipe with rosemary and garlic to our aromatic roasted fish with Thai Pesto Don’t just hold the wax paper by accident!
Easy Fish Baked in Parchment
If you wish to attempt cooking en papillote, fish is a fantastic protein option. It steams in the firmly folded package, leading to completely tender flesh and a fragrant cloud of steam when you open and want to eat it. You can make foil packets too, however, one advantage of parchment is that it will not react with acidic components like lemon juice or vinegar. Get our Easy Fish Baked in Parchment recipe.
Gingerbread Waffles with Vanilla Bean-Orange Butter
Both wax paper and parchment are useful for storage too. Next time you make waffles or pancakes, make extras and freeze them in between layers of wax paper or parchment for fast weekday breakfasts. Get our Gingerbread Waffles with Vanilla Bean-Orange Butter recipe.
The dough for these fragile sandwich cookies is presented in between sheets of wax paper (or plastic wrap) and after that, you will use parchment to line the pans. When the cookies cool off, they are kept in between more layers of wax paper in other containers or airtight tins. We advise using hazelnuts, however, you can bake these with almonds, walnuts, or hazelnuts too, and fill them with whatever jam or jelly you like. Get our Linzer Sablés recipe.
Brown Butterscotch Pie
When baking, another way to use parchment paper is to cover a pie crust prior to including beans, uncooked rice, or pie weights in order to blind bake it.
You can likewise use foil, but if the parchment is what you preferred or parchment paper is just what you have on hand, it will do the trick.
This warming winter season pie with a nutty but sweet browned butterscotch flavor is a good change from the normal pumpkin, however, we would not deny a Salted Maple Pie either (or, let’s be sincere, any pie at all). Get our Brown Butterscotch Pie recipe.
Bottom line: Parchment paper and wax paper can be used interchangeably if you are not cooking with heat. But parchment paper should be used if you are cooking with heat.