In this blog post, we will be answering the age-old question: can you put a cold dish in the oven?
This might seem like a silly question, but it is important to know if your dish needs to be heated up before cooking.
If you are going to cook a cold dish in an oven, there are some things that you need to consider beforehand.
For example, some people think that putting a cold casserole into the oven is fine because they’re just baking it and not actually heating anything up.
However, this could cause problems with food sticking or burning on the bottom of your pan – which would lead to unpalatable results.
Can You Put a Cold Dish Into the Oven?
It is not recommended to put a cold dish in an oven because there is the potential of the glass breaking and shattering. If you are going to be cooking and baking in a glass, make sure that it is first heated up on the stovetop or even in the microwave before putting it into the oven.
Why Does Cold Glass Break in an Oven?
A glass breaks in the oven because of extreme temp changes, the glass is not oven-safe, or the temperatures being used are too high for the glass.
The Science Behind Glass Breaking
What’s happening in the chemistry of the glass when it breaks from heat is that the internal glass structure is changing.
The molecules inside of the glass are shifting and moving which causes pressure to build up within itself, thus shattering or exploding all over your kitchen!
When the elements of a molecule heat up, they start to move at extremely fast rates and they bounce around the walls of the molecule itself.
Make them move too fast and pretty soon the elements break out completely from the molecule and your glass ends up breaking.
Extreme Temperature changes
One of the main reasons a dish in an oven breaks is because of extreme temperature changes.
If you take a cold dish out of the refrigerator and then place it in an oven that is at 350 degrees, this could cause your glass to crack or break right away due to the extreme change in temperature.
It’s not recommended to put any very cold glass container directly into an oven because there isn’t enough time for the glass to adjust itself.
The same goes for a glass dish that is coming out of the oven.
You’d never want to immediately store it in the fridge.
Leave your glass container at room temperature before transitioning it to the opposite end of the spectrum.
Glass Is Unsuitable
Another reason a cold dish can break in the oven is the glass type isn’t meant to be in the oven at all.
Normally, glass manufacturers will add warning labels onto the glass itself to inform you of all the safety features and any warnings.
For example, if your baking dish has a warning label on it that says “not for oven use”, this is because they don’t want you using these dishes in an environment where there are extreme temperature changes that will cause the glass to break.
Always check the glass before purchasing to ensure you can use it in the oven and also make sure the maximum temperature matches your needs.
Just because glass is oven safe doesn’t mean it can go to extremely high temps.
Check your glass dish before you throw it in an oven that is 450 degrees to see if it can handle the heat.
What Can You Do to Prevent Glass Breaking in an Oven?
Glass breaks in an oven for the reasons listed above but you can take some pretty clear steps in order to prevent anything from happening.
Since a cold dish will break in an oven because of the drastic temperature swings, your best bet to combat the issue is to take your dish out of the refrigerator and let it slowly come up to room temperature before putting it in an oven.
You can even throw the dish itself in the oven as the oven is heating up.
The gradual change in temperature will be enough to heat up the glass without it breaking on you.
Just remember not to place your dish on anything cold when taking it out of the oven.
It needs a neutral environment in order to adjust temps enough to be able to stick in the fridge.
You can always bust out a fan and point it at your dish if you want it to cool down more quickly.
Add Water to Bottom of Glass
Add a little room temperature water to the bottom of your dish when using any kind of dry food.
It’s not as frequent, but when your foods start to cook in the oven some of the liquids from inside are released.
The only problem is these liquids are colder because they are coming from the internal temp of your food.
As they hit your glass, they have the potential to break your glass but by adding a little water to the bottom you can prevent the problem from happening.
Freuqently Asked Questions About Can You Put a Cold Dish in the Oven
What type of glass should you use for the oven?
Baking dishes are often made with Pyrex glass that keeps it oven safe but you can use any type of tempered glass and it will be able to withstand the extreme heat from ovens.
How long should you wait before putting a cold dish in the oven?
You want your cold dish to reach room temperature before throwing it in the oven which can take anywhere from 20-30 minutes. To make the process faster, throw your cold dish in the oven as it heats up so it gradually raises temperatures without the risk of breaking.
Using Cold Dishes in the Oven
It is never recommended to use a cold dish and stick it straight into the oven.
There are too many potential problems that could cause the glass to break.
To keep this from happening, leave your cold dish out at room temperature before using it, or throw it in the oven while the oven is heating up.