Is porcelain oven-safe? The answer is both yes and no. There are many types of porcelain, and not all are oven-safe. Basically, porcelain cookware that's made entirely of porcelain is oven-safe and can withstand heat up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
On the other hand, thin, old, and highly decorated porcelain dishes are not oven-safe. How will you know if porcelain dinnerware is oven-safe or not? Look for an "Oven Proof" mark on the packaging or at the bottom of the dinnerware.
Porcelain dinnerware sets and cookware are beautiful pieces used for many centuries. If you own one at home or are planning to buy one, you should know which type of porcelain is oven-safe or not. Read further to know more.
What You Should Know About Porcelain
Porcelain is a baked clay heated at high temperatures between 2,200-2,600 degrees Fahrenheit. Porcelain is a ceramic material made from white clay, called kaolin, in combination with other materials like silica, quartz, and other rocks.
The kaolin clay gives the porcelain a white, smooth, refined, and delicate appearance. Indeed, porcelain is made from a hard and dense material, making it a candidate for ovenware. The strength and durability of the porcelain come from the process called vitrification during the manufacturing stage.
But can porcelain break? Unfortunately, yes. Porcelain is breakable and prone to chipping and cracking. When you cook, handle, wash, or store your porcelain cookware, handle it with extra care. A slight bump on your kitchen sink's surface can cause it to chip or crack.
Since porcelain comprises natural materials that are non-porous, which means it doesn’t have pores, porcelain won’t absorb stains or odors. That’s why many home cooks prefer porcelain over other types of cookware. To conclude, porcelain is durable, versatile, and stylish.
Is It Safe to Use Porcelain Cookware Inside the Oven?
Generally speaking, yes, it is safe to use porcelain cookware or bakeware inside the oven. Porcelain bakeware can withstand high heat up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. You can bake anything using porcelain cookware like meat, casserole dish, or gratin.
Expect to have an evenly baked dish, with a nice crispy outside and delicate texture inside. Furthermore, casserole dishes made purely of porcelain are generally safe to use for baking. It can withstand oven heat between 550-575 degrees Fahrenheit.
Remember to always refer to the cookware’s owner's manual to see if the product is oven-safe and the highest temperature it can withstand. However, there are other types of porcelain that are not suitable for oven use. Here are the exemptions:
- Highly decorative porcelain cookware is most likely not oven-safe.
- Porcelain cookware produced before 1970 is probably not oven-safe.
- Porcelain cookware with delicate knobs or spindly handles is at risk of breaking inside the oven.
- Avoid using old or second-hand porcelain cookware inside the oven, especially if you suspect it has cracks.
- Avoid using porcelain cookware that doesn’t have a formulated coating. This means the porcelain did not go through high-heat baking during the manufacturing process. This means the porcelain dish most likely cannot withstand high heat.
Take note: When you’re in doubt, if your porcelain cookware is not oven-safe, do not risk putting it inside the oven or microwave. It’s better to buy a new product certified as oven-safe by the manufacturer. You can use your old porcelain cookware for serving the food, not cooking, especially if you own stylish ones.
Avoid Using Old Porcelain Cookware Inside the Oven
Old, antique, or second-hand porcelain cookware may have fine hairline cracks in them. A hairline crack may not be visible to the human eye, so take extra precaution. With continued use of the porcelain cookware inside the oven, the crack may worsen over time, more likely to shatter and eventually break.
In addition, this is a health hazard. The crack may serve as a breeding ground for bacteria growth if food accumulates in the crack. Also, avoid using old chipped or cracked porcelain in the oven because leaching may occur.
Some porcelain cookware has a coating containing glazes of metals like lithium, copper, or cobalt. Leaching occurs when the metal glaze is cracked or chipped. As a result, the metal glaze leaches into your food, which is a health hazard.
Always Preheat and Cool Down Porcelain Cookware
Here’s what you need to remember when using porcelain bakeware inside the oven - always preheat and cool down. Porcelain cannot withstand sudden temperature changes, otherwise known as thermal shock.
The sudden temperature change may cause porcelain bakeware to contract and break. Never put porcelain in a hot oven. Instead, heat the porcelain gradually. The best thing to do is to place the porcelain cookware inside the oven while preheating.
Also, never put hot porcelain cookware on a cold counter or submerge in cold water; this is considered a sudden temperature change too. What is the best thing to do? Let your porcelain cookware cool down while the oven cools down for 15-20 minutes before taking it out.
Is It Safe to Use Porcelain Dinnerware Inside the Oven?
Not all porcelain dishes are oven-safe. May it be a porcelain bowl, coffee mug, salad plate, or porcelain dish. Make sure to look for porcelain dishes marked as ‘Oven-safe’ or ‘Oven proof’ on its packaging or below it before putting it inside the oven.
If you’re sure the porcelain dinnerware is oven-safe, you can safely use it to warm food in them inside the oven. Do not confuse ‘Oven-safe’ with ‘Microwave-safe’ as the image markings often look similar.
Furthermore, there are porcelain dishes covered with enamel rather than made of 100% solid porcelain. Porcelain-enameled dishes like cast-iron casserole dishes are oven-safe and can withstand an oven heating up to between 400 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Always check the product manual on the maximum heat tolerance of the porcelain cookware before using it.
Is It Safe to Use Porcelain Inside the Microwave?
Now you know the answer to the question "is porcelain oven safe," how about a microwave oven? Is it safe to use porcelain inside the microwave? The answer is both yes and no. Microwave-safe means the product should not ruin, break, damage, or release any harmful chemicals when used inside the microwave.
You should use the right cookware inside your microwave to prevent any damage to the microwave and avoid health hazards. Some porcelain cookware is microwave safe, especially the newer models.
Always look for the microwave-safe sign on the packaging or at the bottom of the cookware or dinnerware. What kind of porcelain is not safe inside the microwave? The ones that do not have a microwave-safe sign and some old porcelain cookware.
Old porcelain cookware likely includes metal on its edges or coating. The metal surface may trigger exothermic reactions; as a result, porcelain cookware heats up faster. Hence, older porcelain cookware is not safe inside the microwave.
Yes, you can use porcelain for baking as long as the cookware has an "oven-safe" marking. If you can’t find the oven-safe marking on the packaging or at the bottom of the cookware, do not place it inside the oven.
You can tell if porcelain cookware or dinnerware is oven-safe if the packaging clearly states it. Also, you can check at the bottom of the cookware or dinnerware if it has an oven-safe mark.
Yes, porcelain is dishwasher safe. However, when you put porcelain inside the dishwasher, you need to take extra care. The porcelain may accidentally knock into other dishes during the dishwashing cycle, causing it to chip or crack.
Yes, porcelain is naturally non-stick. Porcelain has an ultra-smooth non-stick coating surface. Furthermore, porcelain does not react to acidic foods like vinegar, tomatoes, and lemon, unlike cast iron cookware. Hence, this reduces the need to add excess fat or oil to prevent food from sticking to the cooking surface.
There you have it! The answer to the question "is porcelain oven-safe" is both yes and no. The bottom line is: check for the oven-safe marking on the packaging or instruction manual of the product. Also, check the bottom of the cookware and look for the oven-safe marking.
If you own old porcelain cookware and have doubts about its cracks or chips, don’t risk using it inside the oven or microwave. Lastly, take extra care of your porcelain products.
Do not expose your cookware to sudden temperature changes — let it preheat and let it cool down. With the knowledge you just learned, we hope you have tastylicious meal with your porcelain cookware!