You are not considered a baker if this hasn’t happened to you at least one single time. Just before you start baking your favorite pastry, you check and you realize that you ran out of parchment paper. And let me tell you, parchment paper is a kitchen must-have, especially if you happen to be a baker. In those desperate times where you don’t want to run to the store to the baking aisle just to pick up some parchment paper, you can use some of these alternatives I named down below.
The best parchment paper substitutes are aluminum foil, a Silpat baking mat, and wax paper.
If you are a baking enthusiast and want to learn more on how to substitute parchment paper, keep on reading this article.
Parchment Paper Substitutes
Aluminum foil is a thin and shiny sheet made of aluminum metal. Aluminum is used for various things in the kitchen, even more than baking paper. This shiny piece of metal is used to cover your dinner leftovers, to cover baking surfaces just like parchment paper, to cater food in, etc… There are even aluminum baking trays and aluminum pans that can be bought in almost every grocery store and are mostly used for an outside baking experience(like when going camping) or catering food.
Parchment Paper VS Aluminum Foil, Which Is Better
Here’s the thing, both of them are great to use, but it really depends on what you’re cooking. For example, roast chicken is so much better when cooked on aluminum foil and cookies are tastier when baked on a baking sheet(parchment paper). So, here is a list of what you should and shouldn’t make in each of these baking types of equipment.
- Cookies And Baking Brownies- To achieve a nice, soft, and moist cookie I suggest using parchment paper. The paper is non-stick, so you will know that the bottom of your cookies will never stick to the surface and ruin the shape. Parchment paper is mostly used for baking purposes.
- Cake- Baking a cake is so much easier if you’ve lined a baking sheet on your cake mold. The baking sheet prevents direct contact with your cake molds(cake tins or cake pans) so you don’t have to scrape your cake from the bottom. Take the bottom of the mold, put some parchment paper on top, and just cut it by following your mold’s shape. You can add a coat of butter if you feel uneasy about your cake sticking. Make sure it’s unsalted butter before you coat your mold with butter.
- Pizza- I admit, you can bake a pizza in aluminum foil, but pizza on a sheet of parchment paper tastes so much better to me. Plus, with most of the aluminum foils, you don’t know whether it’s going to make your dough stick, so stick to parchment paper with this one when you have the option to do so.
- Bread- This applies to all things that are considered to be made out of dough, bread especially. Bread is best when baked on a baking sheet on a flat tray. You can bake bread without parchment paper, but you won’t have the same crispiness.
- Roast chicken- The best memory of everybody’s childhood is a roasted chicken. When wrapping your chicken in aluminum foil you basically keep all the juices and flavor in one place. That makes the roast chicken so much more tender and juicy. For this particular dish, aluminium foil is an ideal substitute for parchment paper
- Roasted Potatoes- It really goes well with your roasted chicken. Wrapping your potatoes in aluminum foil ”boils” you potatoes, also making them very tender and juicy. If you still want that crispiness that baked potatoes usually have, unwrap the aluminum foil halfway through baking, and leave the potatoes to catch that golden brown color.
- Roasted vegetables- Carrots, onions, asparagus, and other yummy vegetables you can roast, I suggest you try roasting them on aluminum foil.
- Banana Bread- Line your mold with aluminum to achieve soft and fluffy banana bread. To make your foil non-stick, spray some baking spray on your foil(baking spray is a non-stick cooking spray that is used mostly when baking)
A Silpat baking mat is an ideal alternative for parchment paper. This is a silicone baking mat(there are also silicone baking trays) made out of a quality food-grade silicone material, which makes it safe for putting your food on. The base of the silicon mats is made out of heat-resistant silicone that is smooth and slippery. Not only you can bake on this nonstick surface, but you can also knead any kind of dough on it, as well as marzipan and fondant(used mostly for cake decorations).
There are different types of silicone mats that come in all shapes and sizes. There are even some mats with measures for kneading dough or fondant and making a proportionate size for pizza dough. That’s why this is my favorite substitute for parchment paper that is perfect for doing some non-stick baking. A Silpat mat has a great advantage over parchment paper because it can be reused over and over again, it is an affordable option, and investment, so you don’t have to run out of baking sheets ever again.
Types of Silpat Products
- A Brownie Baking Mold– This kitchen gadget makes it easier for you to achieve the perfect brownies that won’t stick at the bottom. You can even put the silicone mat in a tray for baking(or baking pans) if that makes it easier for you to manage.
- Pizza Silicone Mat– It’s simply a baking mat for preparing and baking pizza. Simply just knead your dough(put dry ingredients first) on the baking mat surface, make it as wide as the mat, and add your favorite toppings.
- A Silicone Cookie Baking Mat- Baking cookies on this non-stick mat is so easy, even without adding any cooking spray or butter on it. This surface for cookies can be very easily clean because of its anti-sticking properties.
Wax paper looks like a perfect alternative to parchment paper (and also comes in a roll), but it is quite different. Wax paper is a thin-sliced paper that has a thin wax coating. This replacement for parchment paper is water-resistant, nonstick(because of the waxed paper), and can be helpful in many ways but, it is NOT heat-resistant so please never use this paper in baking, it shouldn’t be in contact with high heat, not even medium heat. I mean you don’t want to eat food with wax in it, nor do you want to accidentally cause a fire in your home. So, please be careful and read the instructions note.
What Can Wax Paper Be Used For
- Kneading dough- Use your work surface with wax paper so you don’t have to mess up your workspace with flour and dough everywhere.
- Wrap Food- Before you store your food in the freezer, grab some wax paper and wrap it with it. It will keep your food fresh and protected from that freezer burn(a freezer burn is when frozen food has oxidized) and smell. You can also wrap your food before putting it in the fridge. Cheese stays fresh much longer when wrapped in wax paper. It makes an excellent freezer paper or fridge paper.
- Great For Lining Your Fridge Cabinets- If you don’t want to put sauces, cans that may leak, jars, and other things directly on the surface of your fridge, wax paper literally has you covered. You can line any of the fridge surfaces with a single layer of wax paper. There are also pre-cut sheets of wax paper that make it so much easier for you to use.
- As A Resting Place For Already-Baked Items- Leave your baked goods to rest a couple of minutes on this baking mat, but first, take them out of your baking tray of course.
Parchment paper is a heat-resistant kitchen tool that can be used for baking, freezing food, and storing baked goods in the pantry. It can be substituted with aluminum foil, a silicone baking mat, and wax paper(for storing purposes only, it is not high-heat resistant and shouldn’t be baked with).