Kitchen Stewardship | A Baby Steps Approach to Balanced Nutrition

Is My Silicone Baking Mat Safe?

November 8th, 2011 · 11 Comments · Green Living

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(photo source)

When a reader mentioned that my silicone baking mat might be filled with fiberglass, and that I probably shouldn’t be taking a knife (or pizza cutter) to it at my homemade crackers post, I got to thinking:

Where is that research that says the silicone products are safe? Or was I just going on other people’s comments that they hadn’t found anything wrong with it so they were going with it?

Is silicone bakeware safe?

I set out to answer that question in this month’s post at Green Your Way:

With holiday baking coming up and gift season to boot, I’ve been thinking again about the safety of silicone bakeware. Silicone pans, baking mats, and cooking utensils are not only a huge trend in the common culture but also touted as a way to “bake green” since you can avoid throwing away aluminum foil or parchment paper if you use and reuse silicone baking mats. They make great gifts since they’re generally both cute and affordable. But is silicone really a safe choice for your health?

I’ve been using the baking mats for years under the pretense that silicone is safe, especially compared to the hazards of aluminum and the many safety issues surrounding Teflon.

It seems that a few times a year, I’m asked to explain my rationale for choosing silicone bakeware, and since I can never remember the answer, it’s time to officially revisit that issue: Is silicone bakeware safe? Can it leach into the food or offgas into the air?

As you prepare for holiday baking season and perhaps consider stocking stuffer ideas (my silicone baking mat was a Christmas gift years ago), you’ll want to read the rest.

Some Holiday Prep Notes

Next week’s Monday Mission is actually focusing a bit on planning for eco-friendly gift giving, but I wanted to share a few resources with you immediately because they’re so timely. One homemade gift idea and one recipe booklet for the holidays:

imageMy Buttered Life eBook: Gift Giving Edition by Renee Harris of MadeOn Hard Lotion

I’ve always said one of the things I love best about Renee is that she’s not afraid to share her secrets. As she did in the summer edition, Renee is once again sharing 5 recipes with 5 ingredients or less, plus videos and more:

  • chocolate body mousse
  • flavored lip balms
  • chocolate peppermint lotion bars
  • scented & shaped lotion bars
  • beeswax candles (Renee sent me one of her candles in cinnamon, and I haven’t even lit it yet, but it makes the room smell amazing! My favorite scent, and with no worries about inhaling weird chemicals!)image

Did that list make you hungry? Feed your dry skin, or make gifts for others this holiday season! The eBook is also free with a purchase of the DIY kit pictured above, so you’ll have almost all the ingredients you’ll need to finish the projects and wrap up some names on your Christmas list.

I bought 20 lip balms for stocking stuffers last year and a few special gift bags (Au Chocolat is my favorite), but to be frugal, you could totally make them yourself. Buy the book here. Enjoy!

Fun note: When Smart Sweets comes out, there will be a bonus skin care chocolate recipe included, plus a great coupon for purchasers to get some Au Chocolat lotion for yourself! Woot!

imageA Whole Food Holiday and Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes by Brenda Scott of the Well Fed Homestead

Both books are for grain-free or GAPS dieters to make the holidays possible without compromise.

My thoughts: I’m totally impressed by both books. If you’re on GAPS or another low-carb or grain-free diet, the holidays have to be one of most challenging times. Check out the traditional recipes The Well Fed Homestead has adapted to be grain-free/GAPS legal for you in A Whole Food Holiday:

  • Meatballs
  • Seed crackers (with pumpkin seeds! Nut-free and grain-free!)
  • Spinach Artichoke Dip
  • Slow Cooker Hot Wings
  • Caesar Salad with Croutons!
  • 2 Green Bean Casseroles
  • Sausage Stuffing! (2 ways)
  • Mock Mashed Potatoes (having this for dinner tonight- I’ll let you know how it goes on Facebook and Twitter.)
  • Biscuits
  • Many ways to cook a turkey
  • Pumpkin and Apple Pies
  • Pound Cake
  • Chocolate Banana Brownies

There are even four fun beverages included, menu plans and shopping lists. I think this would make a great book for anyone trying to have a healthy holiday, not just GAPS dieters. (What is the GAPS diet?)

My only caveat is that the price is quite high…I promise I will let you know if any discount codes come  up this month! UPDATE: I got one! Use “healthycelebrations” to get $10.50 off the book! Shop here.

The Thanksgiving Leftover Recipes includes a bunch of soup and sandwich recipes for that Thanksgiving turkey, even traditionally grainy things like dumplings, sandwich rolls, flatbread, and paninis.

Again, I’m impressed and will definitely be trying some of these grain-free bread recipes, but I wish the price was lower.

Don’t forget to go read the GYW article on the safety of silicone bakeware before you dive into holiday baking!

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If you missed the last Monday Mission, click here.

Kitchen Stewardship is dedicated to balancing God’s gifts of time, health, earth and money.  If you feel called to such a mission, read more at Mission, Method, and Mary and Martha Moments.

Disclosure: I am an affiliate of both MadeOn and Well Fed Homestead and will earn commission from anything you purchase starting here. However, I only affiliate for products I really believe in. I jut turned down an eBook program this week because the book was too expensive and didn’t share enough good information for you guys. See my full disclosure statement here.

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11 Comments so far ↓

  • via Facebook

    Thanks for bringing this up. I’ve always been suspicious of silicone bakeware and have avoided buying any because of the uncertainty. I’m glad I’m not the only one wondering.

  • Kate via Facebook

    thanks for this!! I have been wondering about silicone for months!

  • Mara via Facebook

    Do you have nonstick cookware? You can find Teflon in your blood if you do. It leaches into the food look it up.

  • Sally via Facebook

    I don’t eat food that colorful, so why would I use strangely flexible, supposedly “inert” magical tools to cook it!? lol I’ve noticed that ice cubes made in silicone tray have a taste, so I tossed that tray…. Thanks for all the research you do. It’s awesome.

  • Karin C.

    I didn’t want to have to create a new log-in on the site with the rest of the story on the silicone baking mats, so I’m just commenting here! I love that you addressed this issue. I think we need to remember to adopt/change the mindset most of America has that “it’s Ok to use something until it’s proven dangerous” and change it to “don’t use it until it’s proven safe”. There are lots of food products big corporations change to foreign countries because consumers demand it, but in America if we don’t demand it, the same products will have altered ingredients and add the GMO’s and HFCS etc. Lets be in the majority, not the minority being told to sit down and be quiet by these big corporations and the govt.

    Katie Reply:

    Karin,
    I don’t think you need a login just to read…to comment you can use Facebook or Twitter, which is what I do (but yes, that system is not my favorite). Thanks for the perspective and reminder! :) Katie

    Karin C. Reply:

    Yeah, I read it fine, but when I went to comment, I couldn’t-I got rid of FB and never had twitter-they take up too much time for a very surface-sometimes superficial world that took time I could be devoting to my family instead! so email for everything for me-I find I’m being limited more and more on the internet for not having FB-but it must be fore the good-God is keeping me from something! He said my family is my ministry right now and that detracted from it!
    (sorry I rambled-I wrote that so some people know that there are those of us not on FB or twitter when designing their sites to take into account those like me that will not have an account)

    Katie Reply:

    Karin,
    Gotcha – I actually really dislike the Disqus commenting system, too, but I’m not the boss over there. :) Glad you were able to speak your voice here! :) Katie

  • via Facebook

    Mara Fritts I only use it for scrambled eggs…but I know it’s bad stuff. Usually only totally toxic at temps over 500F… But that’s just a cop out b/c I don’t like cleaning my cast iron after egg messes. :(

  • Robin via Facebook

    With seasoned stainless (Farberware, in my case), who needs “non-stick”?
    …and if you just can’t stand cleaning cookie sheets, use use a piece of parchment paper for even a huge batch. Then throw away the one piece of paper.

  • Christy

    Wow! Who knew that my little comment would be a spark for a great post? Thanks for doing the research. I’ve considered silicone bake ware but just wasn’t sure if it was truly safe. I also use If You Care baking cup liners. Their site doesn’t specify if silicone is used on the baking cup liners too, only that they are grease-proof.

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Welcome!  Meet Katie.

I embrace butter. I make homemade yogurt. I eat traditional real food – plants and animals that God created, not products of plants where food scientists work. Here at Kitchen Stewardship, I share how I strive to be a good steward of my family's nutrition, the environment, and our budget, all without spending every second in the kitchen. Learn more about the mission of KS here.

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