Investigating the flammability of all kitchen appliances is vital to preserving your safety, and, considering its place in your oven, parchment paper is likely to be at the peak of your agenda. As with all pantry staples, it’s essential to assess the safety of parchment paper before using it for the first time – and the best people to ask are those who use it daily.  Here, we spoke to chefs and food bloggers who are masters at kitchen ideas so that you can perfect your culinary skills without an extra fire hazard. 

Will parchment paper burn in the oven?

‘Yes, parchment paper most definitely can burn in the oven and can even catch fire if you are not careful,’ warns Kristen Wood, a cookbook author, recipe developer, and creator of MOON and spoon and yum (opens in new tab).  ‘The most important step in avoiding this is ensuring you only use parchment paper on the middle rung of your oven, as if you use it too close to the heating elements on the bottom or top of the oven, you run a larger risk of burning the parchment paper.’ When it comes to kitchen safety, there is understandably a lot of emphasis on appliances, including how to clean an oven and the best temperature settings for certain dishes. However, the question of parchment paper often feels less explored. There is, however, a way to keep track of parchment paper, and that is with a simple tearing trick. ‘Do you know how when you tear a piece of parchment paper off of the roll, it tends to curl in one direction? I use this as a guide when placing parchment paper on a baking sheet,’ Kristen says. The expert ensures the downward curl faces down on the baking sheet, so there is less of a chance of any paper sticking up and catching too much heat. This allows you to familiarize yourself with any potential danger before it becomes a hazard.   Alternatively, Kristen explains there is a method of preventing the parchment paper from burning by cutting the paper to fit the inset of the baking pan you are using precisely.  ‘I also find that a temperature any higher than 425°F has a higher chance of burning, and I do not recommend using the broiler function of an oven when parchment paper is in use,’ the expert says. ‘This usually results in parchment paper burning rather quickly.’ 

Can parchment paper start on fire in the oven?

Yes, parchment paper can cause a fire in the oven, so it is crucial to ensure you keep the temperature between 400 to 450 degrees F when using the product. It’s also important to ensure your paper is not subjected to high-temperature grease or oil, or it is not left for too long of a period of time, as these can cause a huge problem in your kitchen.