When it comes to heat, we often wonder what materials to use for certain places like the oven, microwave, and stove. Kitchen materials vary (e.g. stainless, plastic, ceramic, and silicone) and it might be hard to know the one you can pop into the oven for rookies.
When it comes to silicone, we can agree that the material is heat-friendly and also ideal for baking or cooking. Silicone is very convenient for the kitchen and it lowers the possibility of aluminum corrosion in your cookie sheet and muffin tin set.
Although silicone is made with its natural elements combined in a bonded structure so that it keeps its shape and resists heat at the same time, we might have some fears about the reliability and safety of this natural synthetic rubber called silicon. This article aims to uncover the nature of silicone and find out its capabilities, weaknesses, source, and potential, we believe this knowledge will help us answer the big question ” can silicone go in the oven?” better.
What is silicon?
What is silicon, is it rubber or plastic substance? Scientifically called polysiloxane, silicon seems to be in the grey area, however, it is mostly conceived and believed to be rubber.
Silicone is a man-made elastomer (a polymer with elastic components) with both plastic and rubber properties. Silicon can be used to make liquids, solids, and rubbery materials.
Silicone kitchenware is made of silicone and heat-resistant synthetic rubber. The silicone in the composition provides non-reactive stability, while the rubber substance maintains the bakeware’s flexibility even under extreme conditions.
Many silicone kitchen objects are created with different colors, which has become a trend, nowadays, these wares, are available in all colors. The pigments added for coloration makes silicone bakewares sturdy, able to withstand heat, moisture, and the demands of baking because it is continuous throughout the product.
Can you put silicone in the oven?
Yes, you can put silicone bakewares in the oven as the material tolerates the high temperature of the oven up to 428 degrees Fahrenheit (220 degrees Celsius). Silicone is safe to be used for baking, cooking, and everyday usage. High temperatures in the oven will not cause food-grade silicone to degrade or leach into foods.
Can silicon melt?
When heated, silicon flexes but does not melt until the temperature reaches 500 degrees Fahrenheit (260 degrees Celsius). Melting should not be a concern because most baking instructions keep the temperature below 400 degrees Fahrenheit (204 degrees Celsius).
Is it safe to bake with silicone?
Yes, it is safe to bake with food-grade silicone products at approved temperatures which are below 428 degrees Fahrenheit (220 degrees Celsius). It doesn’t alter flavors or emits odors or chemicals that could compromise food safety. Not only silicone is resistant to high heat, but it can also tolerate low temperature and can be kept in the freezer too.
Food Grade Silicone
Kitchen utensils are varying from different types and components of materials. Nonetheless, a common attribute shared among these ranges of materials is that they are made to withstand heat and adapt to kitchen usage. The same goes for silicone and this is what we call – food-grade silicone.
Food grade silicone can refer to a non-toxic and stable lubricant; re-usable silicone that is used for forming specific molds while holding the batter for baking. Alternatively, it could also refer to the type of silicone that we can mix into a custom mold for baking.
Both of these categories are safe for consumption purposes. With the first method, it will be very convenient to get freshly baked or formed food out of an existing mold, This is similar to a Jello pan or a chocolate mold.
The second process is one in which the custom food safe mold is built, this requires the fabrication of the specific custom void. This is done by creating the desired shape in a mold pan, then pouring liquid silicone onto the pan to fill the desired shape, the mold is then left to dry, form the desired shape, and cure properly.
Silicon vs. Plastic (Does silicon contain BPA)?
Bisphenol A popularly referred to as BPA, is an added substance in the creation of plastic. It is responsible for maintaining the flexibility of petroleum-based materials for a long period. However, silicone has no relation with petroleum therefore, it should have no issues with BPA.
Silicone bakeware and cookware are made of synthetic rubber, which is naturally flexible with a more considerable heat resistance capacity than plastic.
The basic components needed to make silicone bakeware do not require plasticizers because it’s naturally flexible.
Is silicon toxic?
Over the years silicone has been popularly associated with breast implants and other plastic surgery-related uses. And due to the commonly perceived risk and unreliability of this use of silicone, people have thought it unsafe. However, that lack of safety might only apply for baldly done silicone implants which are liquid in form. Kitchen-friendly silicon is engineered to be cured, fixed, and stable.
This is not to say that silicone kitchen wares are perfect without flaws.
Here are some common problems with silicon bakewares that you should note:
- Some consumers report that silicone bakeware flexes too much in their ovens, spilling their batter or baking ingredients whenever they are placing their pans on the rack. These spills can cause a smokey oven, mess, and even hazard. Which is why you’ll probably need a metal tray before placing your silicon bakeware inside your oven, this will prevent the bakeware from stretching and leaking uncooked batter.
- Because silicone is difficult to shift once it’s hot, make sure you have your cookie sheet or something synonymous spread underneath them, especially if you’re used to turning your baked products midway through the process.
- It has been commonly reported also that a sticky film build up over time on the silicon bakewares if they are not cleaned properly which could affect its non-sticky properties.
In conclusion, silicone is safe for baking and can go in the oven. It however comes with a few shortcomings, all carefully presented in this piece of writing.