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Parchment paper, wax paper, aluminum foil, saran wrap…. you’ve come to the right place for all of your questions regarding when to use these!
Each of these types of “paper” serve a purpose in the kitchen and more often than not, you can find alternate ways to use them as well.
It’s so important to not use them incorrectly though!
Aluminum foil will catch fire in the microwave and saran wrap (plastic wrap) will melt in the oven.
If you don’t know these things, you might be caught in a little trouble!
But if you know what you can use where, which you can reuse and how to use them efficiently, you’ll be well on your way to baking!
So let’s dive right in and go through all of the types of kitchen paper!
What can I use to bake cookies?
Parchment paper is one of my all time favorites in the kitchen.
There are just so many uses for it! It is the one I always reach for first and really makes clean up a breeze (no matter what you’re baking!).
Of course, the first use that comes to mind is baking cookies. I always use parchment instead of greasing a pan because:
1) no need to wash the pan afterwards and
2) the cookies don’t get dark on the bottom from the grease.
It is the simplest way to bake a cookie. Just cut a sheet of parcment, lay your dough on top and bake!
To answer the very title of this post:
Can you reuse parchment paper when baking cookies?
The answer is YES.
Parchment paper tends to get little circles of grease where you baked your cookies.
I have scooped onto the areas that don’t have those circles of grease as well as placing the second round of cookie dough right in the same spot as the first and the results are the same.
I use most of my parchment paper for baking at least twice, sometimes even three times if it still looks to be in good condition.
Just keep in mind, the less greasy the cookie, the longer you can use it!
The only way you wouldn’t be able to use it, is if the temperature of the oven is too high and it started to bake the paper.
If that’s the case, it rips up all on it’s own and no longer is functional.
A tip for parchment paper:
The highest temperature you can use it at is 425 degrees.
Keep in mind that broiling is 500 degrees and above so you never want to broil anything on parchment paper!
Can I reuse parchment paper for baking loaves and cakes?
Also yes! Same rule applies. If it’s too greased down, it might not be effective.
But if it still seems sturdy, give it another whirl in the oven with your next loaf!
For an inexpensive roll of parchment paper to get you started on your baking journey, click here!
Baking cookies on wax paper?
No! Don’t do it!
Wax paper is exactly that- a waxy coated paper on both sides. It doesn’t allow foods to stick to it.
However, it is not heat resistant. The wax will melt into your cookies and it will absolutely ruin them.
Worst case scenario- it could even catch fire! Baking cookies on wax paper is definitely not a good idea.
You could use wax paper in the microwave to reheat a cookie though! Put the cookie on a plate, a piece of wax paper on top and microwave for 5-10 seconds!
How about baking cookies on aluminum foil?
Baking cookies on regular foil is not my favorite, but it also isn’t horrible.
It does work. It prevents your food from sticking to the pan.
However, it does yield a different cookie.
The entire surface that comes in contact with the foil is being cooked at a more concentrated heat, therefore the bottoms tend to be darker and get crunchy after they’ve set out to cool.
However, if you’re in a pinch and don’t have parchment paper or grease for your pan, you can definitely get some cookies in the oven with foil!
There is one foil that is GREAT for baking though…
Here is the best foil for baking
My all time favorite foils is this Reynolds Non Stick Foil.
Is it a little pricey? Yes.
Is it worth it?
I use it for baking cookies on, or for covering a loaf of my Apple Bread.
Since that has a cinnamon sugar topping that gets all gooey, I want to cover it so it doesn’t burn, but the non stick side allows it all to stay neat and on the bread the entire time.
It’s also amazing for baking chicken and veggies in the oven too or covering anything that’s cheesy and usually messy to peel foil off of!
I always make sure to have a roll stashed away for recipes that could use it!
Use these papers to bake cookies:
Parchment paper and aluminum foil can both be used effectively in the oven.
They’re easy to use and can both be reused when making multiple batches.
Do not try to use Wax Paper or Saran Wrap (plastic wrap).
You could start a fire and will definitely ruin all your cookie dough.
How to minimize waste with kitchen papers:
Sometimes I use a reusable silicone baking mat. This eliminates the need for parchment paper altogether when baking cookies.
However it isn’t as effective for baking a loaf or cake where you need to line the bottom.
Sometimes I just really love using the parchment though, so this is how I try to reduce waste:
I reuse the parchment or wax paper for other things.
If I make a batch of baked oatmeal, I cut them in squares and then put a sheet of the reused parchment between each one.
Place in a zip top bag and pop in the freezer to keep for longer.
Another way to use the parchment is when you need to smash something in the kitchen but want to eliminate the mess invovled.
You can smash burger patties between used parchment or wax paper.
I just like to keep a zip top bag with used papers that are still in good condition to reuse when I need it!
I have found most of them still have plenty of life left in them and I tend to be better at reusing when I have them right next to the full box and easy to reach for.
I hope I was able to answer your questions “can you reuse parchment paper when baking cookies” as well as the rest of your kitchen paper questions!
Do you have any other tips for parchment/wax/foil?
If you have any other questions regarding baking on these papers, definitely drop them below!