Can You Put a Paper Towel In The Microwave?

Microwave ovens may be one of the most innovative investors that man has created in recent years. It allows the users to heat leftover food without difficulty in such a short time. With the microwave oven in your kitchen, you will be able to get warm and toasty food on such short notice without even batting an eyelash. It has become one of the essential staple appliances in the kitchen to this day.

If you’ve ever tried living alone, then you should be well versed in microwaving food by now. It is one of the most comfortable and most convenient ways to prepare your food without the hassle of turning on the oven or stove to cook it manually.

However, it can be very confusing as to what types of material you can put inside a microwave without causing any trouble. One of the most common questions that we encounter regarding microwaving food is this: Can you put a paper towel in the microwave? Is it genuinely safe to do? What are the possible side effects of placing a paper towel inside the microwave? Are there any?

Fortunately for you, the paragraphs will specifically answer the questions above and much more. From here, you will find out the answer that you seek, among many other vital data regarding microwavable materials for future kitchen use.  

So it would be best for you to read on to find out more about what you can and cannot put inside the microwave each day. The next few paragraphs will undoubtedly be educational not only for you but for your family as well.

It will keep you and your family safe from potential disasters and fire hazards down the line. What are you waiting for? Go ahead and continue reading. You will not regret doing so. 

Definition of Terms: The Microwave Oven

Before we go any further, let us first discuss the microwave oven and what it does for the food. This way, you will understand how the machine works about and in connection to paper towels.

The term microwave oven refers to the cooking contraption that uses tiny radioactive waves to prepare food by heating it. It is typically used to heat leftover food the next day. It works in such a way that it lets moisture from the leftover food evaporate so that the food will remain warm and toasty for at least a few minutes after being taken out of the machine. 

How Can You Put Food Inside The Microwave Oven?

In terms of putting food inside the microwave, the safest bet is to make sure that you only put natural condiments, dishes, and the machine.  However, it would be challenging to place food inside the microwave without a container.  The question is, what kind of container would you be able to place inside your microwave without any danger down the line? 

To make it easier for you, here is a list of materials that you can use to house your own food while in the microwave. 

What to Not Put In a Microwave Oven

  1. Avoid Anything Metallic

The first thing that you should avoid is anything metallic. As we all know, metal is known to conduct electricity, and microwaves use electrical particles to heat food. If you put metal materials inside the microwave, chances are you will be bound to create an electrical charge that can short circuit your machine and cause fires.  

If you want to be safe while microwaving your food, it would be best to use glass containers instead. Last would not readily conduct electricity and would not quickly melt under the heat. 

  1. What about Plastic?

The next thing that you should not put inside the microwave is plastics.  Microwave ovens work in such a way that they release water particles within the food to heat and toast the food for consumption later on. 

With this notion, it is generally not safe to put plastic containers inside the microwave. It may not only cause an electrical surge but also contaminate the food in the container itself. If you don’t want to be hospitalized because of food poisoning, please avoid putting plastic containers or cardboard boxes inside your microwave.

That being said, there are also certain types of plastics that you can safely use inside a microwave. Most of the time, Tupperware and thicker plastic materials can be microwavable. It is why you would have to ask the manufacturer or dealer to determine whether or not their plastic containers are microwave-safe. Just place a call, and they will surely be able to accommodate you.

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  1. Paper

Usually, if you put paper containers such as cardboard, paper bags, or plastics inside the microwave, chances are your cardboard container will end up getting soggy and wet. Thin plastic will also end up breaking down and be rendered unusable in the future. 

Generally speaking, you shouldn’t put the paper inside the microwave. However, there are certain types of paper that you can use safely in the machine. An example would be parchment paper and paper towels, among many others.

These two are safe because they are made of thicker material. Paper parchments and towels usually absorb moisture from the food to keep it as dry and warm as possible. It is why parchment paper or paper towels and not easily break down and will not contaminate the food particles even if they are subjected to low voltage inside the microwave.

  1. The Question of Paper Plates

How about paper plates? Will you be able to put these contraptions inside the microwave? Much like cardboard boxes, it may end up melting and softening up, which can lead to contamination of the food, so if you want to put anything on a paper plate inside the microwave, it would be best to transfer it to another type of dish.

Container Recommendations 

We highly recommend glass or ceramic plates as long as it doesn’t have painted inlays or designs. Any paint will affect the quality of the food you are going to ingest, even if it is water-based, especially after being microwaved. 

Plain glass or ceramic plates will do nicely when it comes to microwaving leftover food. This is because glass is not an electrical conductor and would not easily break under extreme temperatures. You have to make sure that you use the containers in significantly long intervals and put them in low heat. It will keep you safe from any electrical surges that might not only contaminate your food but also destroy the oven itself.

Answering the Question

Now to answer the question of the hour: Can you put a paper towel in the microwave?

The answer is yes, and no. As mentioned earlier, paper towels work inside the microwave by releasing water particles inside the material itself. Because of the machine’s heat, the water particles will be removed and evaporate into the air. It will result in warm and toasty food not only for you but also for your family.

That being said, specific brands of paper towels would still be dangerous to use inside a microwave. It is why you would have to look into the branding and packaging of said paper towels or any other container that you are going to use for your microwave.

The manufacturers usually put symbols such as three vertical lines on the packaging to indicate that they are microwave safe. If you see small marks, feel free to use them in the microwave. However, if you don’t see symbols and are still in doubt whether or not you should use any specific material aside from food inside the microwave, it would be best to consult the manufacturer’s website to be on the safe side.

As they say, when in doubt, don’t do anything. It is an excellent model to follow, especially if you are not too familiar with any gadgets you might use in the future. 

The Closing Statement

If you genuinely want to be on the safe side when using paper towels inside a microwave oven, it would be best for you to read the instruction manual first before doing anything else.  By doing this, you will be able to protect your family and yourself against any adverse effects of food contamination shortly.

In this regard, please don’t hesitate to contact the manufacturing website if you feel that you are still unconvinced regarding the safety of paper towels for your microwave oven. It is always better to be safe than sorry for sure. Do not hesitate to ask for help regarding whether or not to put a paper towel in microwave. The manufacturer’s website will be able to answer questions without difficulty. If you want to learn more about paper towels and how they work with microwavable food and technology, it would be best to do your research first before doing or using anything else in the kitchen.