Parchment paper is versatile in use. It serves as a non-stick surface for baking cakes and bread in the oven but can you smoke meats and chickens with parchment paper? The answer is yes.
Parchment paper is heat-resistant, non-stick, and moisture-resistant so using it is great for wrapping meat for smoking in the oven. It helps to retain the meat moisture and flavor, as well as shortens the cooking time.
Find out more about smoking on parchment papers, the effect, substitutes for parchment paper, and safety measures for smoking with parchment paper.
Why smoke with parchment paper?
Parchment paper is a common item used for cooking in the oven. It is used mostly for baking the likes of cakes, brownies, and bread but it can also pass for smoking meats in the oven.
It is a thin silicone-coated paper with heat-proof, moisture-resistant, and greaseproof properties. It’s usually lined on baking sheets as an improved solution for greasing with oil or butter.
Parchment paper is great for smoking because it holds up water released from meat allowing for faster cooking time, as well as, a crispy, tender, and flavorful meat.
While slow-cooking meat and fish in the oven, there’s a quick rise in their internal temperature causing the release of a lot of water and evaporation.
This evaporation results in a decrease in temperature and stalling. This means that the meat will remain at a certain temperature for a long time after each evaporation before cooking further. As a result, it may take up to 6 hours for your food to finally cook.
So, the best option is to wrap your meat or fish with oven-safe paper. This way you can keep the moisture in and help the food’s internal temperature rise faster with diminishing or stalling for a perfect result.
How to use parchment paper for smoking
Smoking with parchment paper is quite easy and straightforward. Simply follow the guidelines highlighted below:
- Heat up your food in the oven up to 165-degree Fahrenheit
- Make ready two parchment sheets that are four to five times longer than the meat or fish
- Place one sheet horizontally on a tabletop and the other vertically on the first parchment paper
- Place the food right in the middle of the parchment paper
- Fold the bottom edge of a paper tightly over your food at an obtuse angle
- Do the same for the other paper and smooth it out
- Keep rolling the paper until all sides are secured and wrapped firmly and thick
Can you use parchment paper in a smoker?
Yes. It is safe to use parchment paper in a smoker. But since parchment paper can only withstand heat up to 420-degree Fahrenheit, it is best not to use it for smoking beyond that.
Thankfully, most meat smoking temperature doesn’t exceed 300 degrees Fahrenheit but be careful not to use it directly in contact with direct fire or heat source because it will burn.
Also, bleached parchment paper is laced with chemicals that can leach into its food and pose a health risk. Unbleached parchment paper is a safe option for smoking food. It is non-toxic and doesn’t pose any risk whatsoever.
What can you substitute for parchment paper when smoking?
Aside from parchment paper, there are other alternatives that you can use to smoke meats in the oven, which include:
1. Butcher paper
Butcher paper is specifically designed to wrap foods such as meat and fish. It is the safest and most appropriate option for smoking because it has little pores that allow heat to get into food while retaining water from them and making them cook faster.
2. Aluminum foil
Foils are another option to use for smoking in your oven. It is sturdy and can wrap food more tightly because of its ability to form shapes easily. Foil cooks meat faster because of its tight seal, so you may have to shorten your cooking time by 5 – 10 minutes when using aluminum foil.
Only that foil paper doesn’t give the food the smoky flavor that other alternative does because it is non-permeability. Apart from that, foil is an excellent replacement for parchment and butcher paper.
Can parchment paper get set on the fire?
Yes. Parchment paper will burn if it comes directly in contact with fire when it is too close to the oven heat source, or if the heat is beyond 450-degree Fahrenheit.
Is parchment paper the same as butcher paper?
No. Parchment paper is coated in silicone and treated with sulphuric acid while butcher paper is made from kraft pulp treated with caustic soda and sulfide as well as sizing agents to help prevent leaking.
Can you use butcher paper instead of parchment paper?
Yes. Butcher paper is a perfect and even more appropriate option than parchment paper for smoking meat.
Is parchment paper toxic?
Bleached parchment paper is toxic because it contains sulfur that can leach into your food but unbleached parchment paper is safe to use.
Smoking with parchment paper is an excellent method for cooking meat and fish. It holds the water inside, allows the food to cook faster, and makes it juicer and more tender. When meats are not wrapped in parchment papers, it takes a longer time to cook and the end result is soggy and dry meat.
Butcher paper still remains best for smoking and grilling meat and fish but aluminum foil can also serve as an excellent alternative if it’s all you have. For safety purposes, do not put parchment paper directly on fire or heat source, and ensure that the oven temperature is not beyond 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
I hope this article was helpful. Thanks for reading.