Occasionally you run across a recipe that suggests mixing and baking all in one stainless steel bowl, but is it safe to put a stainless steel mixing bowl in the oven? We've checked out what food and cooking experts had to say and have gathered the answers for you here.
You can use some stainless steel mixing bowls in your oven. However, they can discolor over time, which may not be something you want, and get quite hot to handle. Be sure to check your mixing bowl to see if it is stamped or marked oven-safe or solid stainless steel before using it.
If you still have more questions about using stainless steel mixing bowls in the oven, don't fret. In this guide, we'll go into more detail on this, look at how to bake in stainless steel bowls, and answer some questions about other places your stainless steel bowls are safe to use. Just keep reading!
Using Stainless Steel Bowls In The Oven
Why would you want to use a stainless steel bowl in the oven? There are different recipes for bread and cakes that call for a bowl method in the oven. If you want to try them out, then you'll most likely use a stainless steel bowl.
Remember that it's always better to err on the side of caution. You never want to inadvertently cause a catastrophe in the kitchen. If you do use your stainless steel mixing bowls in the oven, use caution when removing them. The stainless steel can heat up very quickly.
For a quick illustration of the oven technique, check out this YouTube tutorial:
How Do You Know If A Stainless Steel Bowl Is Oven Safe?
There is information all over that says "yes, you can use stainless steel in the oven" and "no, you can't." This bread baker uses a stainless steel bowl that is unmarked and has had no issues other than discoloration. Other users suggest you just try your stainless steel bowl and keep an eye on it, taking it out immediately if you start to see warping.
As a general rule, stainless steel is safe to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. If your mixing bowl has nice thick walls, it should be safe in the oven. Thinner bowls may have issues. Though stainless steel cookware rarely says "oven-safe," it is marked as stainless steel. If it's solid stainless steel, go with the 500-degree rule.
How To Bake In Stainless Steel Bowls
Baking in stainless steel is not so different than baking in other materials. You want to generously coat the interior of your bowl with grease, butter, or shortening to prevent the food from sticking to the sides. Sprinkle that with a bit of flour, then add your dough. Use the temperature called for on the recipe (as long as it's under 500 degrees F) and keep in mind that it may take about 5 minutes longer to cook than in other materials.
If you're cooking up vegetables, simply toss them in some olive oil or butter and cook till the desired crispness level at about 350 degrees.
What Kind Of Bowls Are Oven Safe?
First, let's look at some heavy-duty stainless steel mixing bowls. You can heat stainless steel to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, but if you'd prefer other bowls, we'll also talk about some other alternatives.
All-Clad Stainless Steel Bowls
This set of 3 bowls by All-Clad is made by the same manufacturer of the famous All-Clad Cookware. You might not want to risk dulling bowls this nice by oven use, but you can rest assured they'll stand up to the task.
Vollrath Stainless Steel Bowl
These heavy-duty bowls by Vollrath have concave bottoms for stability. Sold individually, these are available in a number of different sizes and capacities.
Pyrex is a low-thermal expansion glass. It's developed for use in high heat situations. (See our post here on Pyrex: Can Pyrex Be Used on the Stovetop? [Not a simple question!]). It's the choice of many cooks for casseroles and other recipes for the oven.
This set of 3 nesting Pyrex bowls is safe to use in a pre-heated oven.
Not all ceramics are safe for the oven, but some are. As a general rule, you want to heat up your crockery with your oven (in other words, don't put a cold bowl in a hot oven). These bowls have an oven-safe mark on the bottom, or on the original packaging.
These crocks hold soups and stews and are oven safe.
Can You Put A Stainless Steel Bowl In The Microwave?
It is generally not a good idea to put anything metal inside the microwave. You risk damaging your microwave and damaging the integrity of your bowl. Plus, it will pop and spark and make you think your house is going to catch on fire (which it probably won't, but better to be safe than sorry).
It also won't work to heat your food as the microwaves won't penetrate the sides of the bowl and it would only heat from the top down.
Can You Put A Stainless Steel Bowl In The Freezer?
Most stainless steel bowls are freezer safe. You want to be sure not to overfill your containers and leave some room for the expansion of the food within. Many mixing bowls sold with included lids are expressly for this purpose. For instance, if you're making chocolate chip cookies and have excess dough, freeze it directly in your mixing bowl till you're ready to make a new batch of cookies.
This set of 3 Cuisinart mixing bowls (in 5 qt, 3 qt, and 1.5qt) each has its own lid and can pop directly into the freezer when you need to.
Are Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls Dishwasher-Safe?
Most stainless steel mixing bowls are safe in the dishwasher. You want to be sure to stack your bowls in such a way that they don't block water flow to the other dishes. There is some risk of scratching or pitting over time with lesser quality stainless steel. If you're worried about it, or your bowls don't explicitly say dishwasher safe, go ahead and hand wash them.
This set of six nesting stainless steel bowls are safe for the freezer, the microwave, and the dishwasher. This set includes a size for anything you might need.
For even more guidance, check out our article that discusses How To Clean Stainless Steel Mixing Bowls.
So, can you put stainless steel in the oven?
Yup, you can! However, if you're ready to give your stainless steel bowls a try in the oven, remember to keep an eye on them the first time. You want to make sure they're heavy-duty and solid stainless steel. Thinner or cheaper quality bowls may warp and get overly hot.
Also, remember that anything you bake in stainless steel may take a few minutes longer than the recipe calls for. Be sure and do a toothpick test on baked goods.
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