If you just got your first set of bamboo tableware, you must be really excited. I mean, it is about time you went green and reduced your carbon footprint, huh? Plus, bamboo is durable, safe, and light – qualities we all want in our tableware.
But just like with any other new purchase, it can come with a lot of uncertainty and questions. You may wonder if there is a special way you are supposed to wash it or even store it. I mean, is it even dishwasher-safe?
But of all the bamboo tableware questions we have heard, the most popular one is, “Can you microwave it?” Well, today is your lucky day, that is what we are here to answer.
So, is bamboo tableware microwave-safe?
No, bamboo tableware is not microwave-safe. Not only does microwaving bamboo utensils make them dry out, but it could also lead to warping.
What exactly happens when you microwave bamboo tableware?
Since bamboo has moisture within it, microwaving it would make it dry out and significantly reduce its lifespan. And when you are dealing with certain types of molded bamboo whose fibers are quite fragile, your plates and cups are bound to fall apart any minute. Moreover, when melamine is used as a coating or binding agent within the bamboo, there is much more to worry about; chemical migration.
Since melamine does not do well with heat, microwaving it could lead to the release of formaldehyde or other toxic molecules, causing a serious health hazard. Studies even show that using bamboo cups to drink liquids of temperatures higher than 70 degrees Celcius can lead to the ingestion of toxic substances.
In fact, a 2019 study by the German Federal Institute for Risk Management (BfR) determined that melamine infused bamboo ware leaches much more toxins into hot food than even conventional melamine-formaldehyde resin tableware. As a result, those who regularly use such tableware to eat hot food are estimated to ingest up to 30 times the tolerable daily intake of melamine and formaldehyde.
And with the effect of such substances on kidney health, this is definitely a reason for concern. Ultimately, for the sake of your health, you should avoid microwaving bamboo tableware or using it to eat hot and acidic foods and drinks.
In a nutshell
While it is obviously a bummer that you can’t microwave your bamboo tableware, you should not let that get you down, there is so much more you can do with this tableware. For instance, since bamboo plates and cups always look so classy, you can use them for parties, especially those hosted at high-end restaurants.
Considering that bamboo tableware is usually also light yet heavy-duty, it is no wonder that many event planners love them. Plus, you can choose to get the ones that you can just throw away after a big event. In many ways, bamboo is the perfect substitute for paper and glass china. Its quiet elegance and functionality are things many adore. So don’t overthink it; get some bamboo tableware today!