We are currently living in a technological world, one where the microwave has become one of the most important appliances in the kitchen. Not only can microwaves be used to reheat your leftover food, but they can also be used to make their own delicious meals and even to bake elaborate cakes.
However, this does not mean that microwaves do not come with their limitations, as there are certain foods and materials that should never be reheated. For example, when it comes to microwaving your leftovers, you may think it’s fine to reheat them inside their styrofoam containers, which is not always the case.
So if you have ever wondered if you can microwave number 6 styrofoam, then you have come to the right place.
In the following article, we have gathered some important information concerning number 6 styrofoam and whether it can be put in the microwave. We will also explain how you can microwave your styrofoam safely without causing any lasting damage to your kitchen and home.
So if you want to learn more about this material and its limitations, then we have everything you need to get started…
Can You Microwave Number 6 Styrofoam?
If you want a short and simple answer to this question – then no, you cannot put number 6 styrofoam in the microwave. However, this does not mean that the material is dangerous, as styrofoam can sometimes be microwaved under certain conditions.
But in most cases, we do not recommend putting the material in the microwave unless it is microwave safe, as this could expose your food to harmful chemicals and lead to future concerns.
When it comes to keeping leftovers, you may choose to store them in their original containers, which will often be made from number 6 styrofoam. And while this material can work to preserve your food for a few more days, this does not mean it should be put in the microwave when you are ready to reheat your evening meal.
These days, most people will use microwaves to reheat or cook their food, which can make the overall process much quicker and less messy. However, microwaves do come with the setback of being dangerous when used to reheat certain foods and materials.
This is because microwaves use electromagnetic radiation to generate heat, which can react badly when used on metal and organic matter.
In most cases, styrofoam is very similar to plastic in its composition, as both materials are cheap and easily obtainable. Like plastic, styrofoam is also a versatile product that can be used for countless purposes, with one of its most common uses being as containers for fast food and leftovers.
So while it is possible to put your styrofoam containers in the microwave, this does not mean it should be done regularly.
Is It Dangerous To Microwave Styrofoam?
As a synthetic material, styrofoam is made from a unique combination of toxic compounds, which means the material can melt or warp when exposed to extreme temperatures. For this reason, you should refrain from putting styrofoam containers in the microwave, as they could infuse your food with harmful chemicals.
However, this does not mean that all styrofoam is a potential threat, as you can purchase both traditional styrofoam and microwave safe styrofoam, with the latter often yielding the best results.
In most cases, traditional styrofoam can be used to store and transport food, however, it will melt or warp when placed inside a microwave. While on the other hand, microwave-safe styrofoam is considered to be the safer option, as it can serve the same purpose as its traditional counterpart and withstand high temperatures.
So if you ever purchase food that comes in a styrofoam container, then we recommend checking the box for a microwave-safe tag, as this will alert you to whether the box can be microwaved or not. If the container does not come with a tag, then it is advisable to remove your leftovers and place them on a microwavable plate before reheating.
Can You Microwave Styrofoam Safely?
As we previously mentioned, it is possible to microwave styrofoam containers if the material has been labelled as microwave safe, for this means that the container has been tested and can withstand the intense heat.
In most cases, you will find the label on the bottom of the container, which will help you to determine the status of the material and whether it has been properly tested.
Of course, many restaurants and fast food establishments now use microwave-safe styrofoam when storing their food, as the material is safer to use and can be put inside the microwave for reheating purposes.
However, this does not mean that your styrofoam containers will be microwave safe, which is why you will need to check the label before reheating your food.
When it comes to reheating your leftovers, we recommend proceeding with caution, as cheap or traditional styrofoam containers are not recommended for microwave use. So if you notice that your containers are labelled, this means that you can put them in the microwave without a second thought, as they will have been tested to withstand the high temperatures.
How To Safely Microwave Number 6 Styrofoam?
Because there are two varieties of styrofoam in circulation, this means that many people get confused about what can be placed in the microwave. So if you are still concerned about reheating your leftovers in their containers, then we have everything you need to avoid any problems.
In the section below, we have outlined some important information about styrofoam and how it can be microwaved without issue. So here are some tips to get started…
- Before placing your styrofoam container in the microwave, you will need to check the box for a label, as this will indicate if the material is microwave-safe or not. This same principle also applies to number 6 styrofoam, as this can also be purchased in one of two varieties.
So if you find a number 6 styrofoam container that bears a microwave-safe label, then you can reheat it without any problems, as this material will be able to withstand the radiation.
- Another to ensure your safety is by using your knowledge and experience to combat any problem that should arise. For example, if you have placed your styrofoam container in the microwave and it has started to melt (despite being labelled as microwave-safe) then you should remove it from the microwave and immediately dispose of the food.
This is because the food will already have been contaminated by the styrofoam’s compounds, which can infuse it with harmful chemicals.
When it comes to putting styrofoam in the microwave, you will need to be mindful of the two different varieties of styrofoam currently available, as this could make the difference in how the material will react to the intense heat. These days, styrofoam can be purchased in both traditional and microwave-safe options.
Of course, traditional styrofoam should never be used in the microwave, as its main function is to store and carry food. If you place this particular material in the microwave, then you could risk the material warping and infusing your food with its toxic chemicals.
This is because the material cannot withstand the radiation and will buckle under the subsequent temperature.
This is why you should only use microwave-safe styrofoam when reheating any leftovers, as it has been designed to withstand the heat of the microwave and aid in the cooking of your food. To determine whether your containers are microwave-safe, you can check the bottom of the box and see if it has been tested and labelled.
As long as the box has been labelled, you will know that it is safe to microwave and therefore capable of being reheated.