The saran wrap is useful to seal the food container to keep it in the refrigerator. It is also used for a safe food storage but what about microwaving saran wrap with the food container? Yes, you can microwave saran wrap but with some conditions and important guidelines.
Many people reheat their food in saran wrap or plastic wrap in the microwave, while some people claim that it’s not safe. So, it is important to know the facts about if you can put saran wrap in the microwave or not.
Are Plastic Wrap and Saran Wrap the Same?
No, plastic wrap and saran wrap are similar but not the same. The plastic wrap is made of low-density polyethylene, while the saran wrap is made of polyvinyl chloride or polyvinylidene chloride or polymethyl-pentene.
There are different types of saran wrap and plastic wrap. Some people consider them the same as they appear quite similar. But you should know everything about saran wrap before putting it with your food container/bowl in the microwave.
Can You Put Saran Wrap in the Microwave?
Yes, you can put saran wrap in the microwave but you need to take care of cooking temperature. Because there is a temperature limit for saran wrap that you must not exceed otherwise it can melt inside the microwave.
The saran wrap provides airtight sealing to the food which keeps it fresh for longer. Moreover, the saran wrap is safe to put in the microwave to heat up the food. So, you can use saran wrap to securely cover your food in refrigerator as well as reheat it in the microwave.
Many people use saran wrap to store their food on daily basis. They also cover their food with saran wrap when putting in the microwave with zero complaints. You should ignore the rumors and use saran wrap which is labeled as “microwave-safe” to cover your food in the microwave.
Types of Saran Wrap
You can use saran wrap to seal the food and put it in the microwave but check the type of saran wrap before using it. There are four different types saran wrap and not all types of saran wraps are microwave-safe. So, it is important to know the types of saran wrap before putting it into the microwave.
Here I provide different types of saran wrap and their material info to help you pick the right type of saran wrap to put in the microwave.
#1. Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC):
The saran wrap made from Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is a food-grade cling wrap. It is suitable to wrap all kinds of food items including fruits, vegetables and cooked food as well. You can also microwave PVC saran wrap with your food as it is safe to put in the microwave.
The PVC saran wrap is safe to seal the food containers but the wrap should not touch the leftover food. Moreover, you should keep the microwave temperature in control when cooking the food with this saran wrap in the microwave oven.
#2. Polyvinylidene Chloride (PVDC):
The saran wrap made from Polyvinylidene Chloride (PVDC) is the safest saran wrap to put in the microwave. Because this wrap is capable to bear higher temperature levels like 284°F to 356°F (i.e. 140°C to 180°C).
Some food need to be cooked at high temperatures but the food wrap should be capable to bear it. Therefore I recommend to use PVDC saran wrap to cook your food at high power in the microwave. Just make sure that the food is not touching the wrap during the cooking process.
#3. Polymethyl-pentene (PMP):
The Polymethyl-pentene saran wrap is a thin-film coated food wrap used by millions of people. It is a non-toxic wrap that is safe to use with the food and beverages. It does not contaminate the food when comes in contact with it but it shouldn’t touch the food when cooking in the microwave.
#4. Polythene or Polyethylene (PE):
The Polythene or Polyethylene (PE) saran wrap is used at most grocery stores to seal fruits, vegetables and other food items. Some grocery stores seal this saran wrap with a little heat to provide airtight sealing so that the food remain unaffected by outside climate.
The Polyethylene saran wrap is not safe to put in the microwave. It can release toxic chemicals when heated in the microwave and get shrunk or burnt easily. So, you should not put the food with PE wrap in the microwave as it is not safe.
Does Saran Wrap in the Microwave Cause Cancer?
No, Saran Wrap in the microwave doesn’t cause cancer. The saran wrap is safe to put in the microwave as long as it is made with microwave-safe materials. There is no scientific proof or research available to confirm that using saran wrap in the microwave causes cancer in anyway.
The rumors about fatal diseases are more dangerous than the actual diseases. Because the rumors keep people scared of living a normal life. For example: I already said that there is no evidence of putting saran wrap in the microwave causing cancer yet many people are scared of using it.
The plastic wrap or film with detectable dioxins is not safe to put in the microwave. The dioxin is a cancer causing chemical which is released when the plastic wrap/film is heated up for longer or at high temperature or both.
The saran wrap made of materials without dioxins is safe to microwave and it doesn’t cause cancer. Moreover, there is a “microwave-safe” label on the package of the saran wrap that you can check before putting the same in the microwave.
Does Saran Wrap Melt Inside the Microwave?
Yes, saran wrap does melt inside the microwave if the temperature is higher than its bearing limit. The saran wrap is made from non-toxic and BPA-free materials. You can use it to wrap the food to cover it with an airtight sealing and it is also safe to put in the microwave.
On an average. a saran wrap can tolerate heat under 220°F temperature. So, you should keep the microwave power level under the 220°F otherwise the extreme heat may burn or melt the saran wrap inside the microwave.
The PVDC saran wrap can bear high temperature up to 356°F but other saran wraps don’t have such high temperature tolerance capacity. You can check the package of your saran wrap to know if it has mentioned any temperature limit or not.
Safest Way to Put Saran Wrap in the Microwave
The saran wrap is very useful to cover the food in the bowl or container to provide airtight sealing. It does not allow the humidity and other stuff in climate to affect the food. It means that the saran wrap helps to keep the food fresh for longer. You can put saran wrap in the microwave and here I provide the safest way to do it.
Kindly follow the steps I have shared here to put your food with saran wrap in the microwave in a safe way.
- Get a microwave-safe bowl or container and put the food inside.
- Cover the bowl/container with microwave-safe saran wrap.
- Use fork to drill small holes on saran wrap for venting of heat.
- Make sure that the wrap is not touching the food.
- Put the bowl/container with saran wrap in the microwave.
- Run the microwave at low to medium power to cook/reheat the food.
- Don’t heat up the saran wrap longer than 2 minutes or 5 minutes at lower heat level.
- Turn off the microwave and get the food bowl/container out.
Safety Tips for Using Saran Wrap in the Microwave
The saran wrap is suitable to put in the microwave with your food container/bowl. But you need to consider some safety tips as precautions to prevent accidents while using saran wrap in the microwave oven. I am going to share those safety tips here.
- Always use the saran wrap that is labeled as “microwave-safe” on its package.
- Make sure that the food and saran wrap don’t come in contact inside the microwave. It means that the food must NOT touch the saran wrap during the cooking process.
- Punch small holes with a fork to create venting for passing of excess heat.
- Don’t microwave food with saran wrap at high power/temperature levels.
- Don’t microwave food with saran wrap for more than 5 minutes.
- Don’t use saran wrap with food containing oil, high fat, high sugar or cheese like fatty meat or pie.
Some Alternatives of Saran Wrap to Put in the Microwave
The saran wrap is safe to put in the microwave but with some conditions. Moreover, you cannot keep the saran wrap inside the microwave for longer than 5 minutes. So, you may need an alternative that you can use in place of saran wrap and I have found some.
In case you don’t have saran wrap or don’t want to use it, you can use fiber bowl covers, silicone bowl covers, parchment papers, wax papers, extra plates, glass jars, tin foil and oilcloth. All these covers/papers are suitable to cover the food and safe to put in the microwave.
If you want to microwave your food for a longer period then you should not use saran wrap. I suggest to use an alternative of saran wrap from various alternatives mentioned above. While using an alternative paper/cloth wrap, make sure that it is labeled as “microwave-safe” before putting it in the microwave oven.
FAQs about Putting Saran Wrap in the Microwave
Here I provide some common yet necessary questions about saran wrap. You should read all questions and their answers carefully to know how to use saran wrap in the microwave safely.
Q.1 What happens if you microwave saran wrap?
If you microwave saran wrap covered on a food bowl/container, it stays normal as it is safe to put in the microwave.
Q.2 Is Glad Saran Wrap microwave-safe?
Yes, Glad Saran Wrap is microwave-safe as mentioned on its package, so you can use it to seal food in the bowl and put it in the microwave.
Q.3 Does saran wrap melt easily?
No, saran wrap does not melt easily. If you set the microwave on high power with 220°F or higher temperature then the saran wrap may melt in the microwave.
Q.4 Is melted saran wrap toxic and harmful?
Yes, melted saran wrap is toxic and harmful. You should not eat the food if the saran wrap is melted and mixed with the food. It can cause food poisoning, indigestion and other health issues.
Q.5 How long can you microwave saran wrap?
You can microwave saran wrap for 2 minutes to 5 minutes and not longer than that.
Summary: Microwave Saran Wrap Safely
Saran Wrap is very common and easily available at any grocery store. Most saran wraps are microwave-safe and it is mentioned on their package. You can use saran wrap to cover food in a bowl or container to keep it fresh for a longer period.
You should always choose microwave-safe saran wrap so that you can put it in the microwave without any fear. While microwaving saran wrap, keep the heat level at low or medium power. The saran wrap is not safe to microwave at high temperature levels.
The experts recommend to microwave saran wrap for 2 to 5 minutes only. In case you need to cook/heat up your food for longer than 5 minutes, you should choose a silicone cover or fiber cover or wax paper in place of saran wrap.
Never use saran wrap or any other food wrap/cover that is not labeled as microwave-safe. I hope that you have learned all important things about saran wrap and how to microwave saran wrap safely.