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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
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    4,822

    Can you microwave styrofoam cups or plates?

    My entire life I have always been heating tea and coffee in styrofoam cups in the microwave for 2 minutes and never had a problem. But then last week I had some left over food on a styrofoam plate which I heated for 2 minutes and the styrofoam melted completely and burned up.

    This is when a lightbulb when off in my chicken head... that perhaps styrofoam is not suposed to be put into a microwave? I cannot believe I didn't know this until now!

    But I thought you could put those styrofoam cups you buy at the grocery store into the microwave... those cups have NEVER melted.. but the styrofoam plate I got from the restaurant melted almost instantly in the microwave. That makes no sense.

    Are some styrofoam cups/plates micowavable and others are not?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri
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    1,814
    Well on my styrofoam plates now, it says "Not recommended for microwave, might melt or ignite."

    I think it would depend from products, but most likely styrofoam isn't good for microwave. However, Plastic cups and plates are. Although probably not all.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    1,108
    I microwave cup noodles, I think that's somewhat styrofoam
    semi-retired

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri
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    1,814
    The noodle cups I buy say to boil the water, and then pour it in the cup, and wait like 3 minutes, and says Microwave not recommended, so I suppose it depends from manufacturer to manufacturer.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
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    I see, yes I think that maybe some styrofoam can handle it but some cannot. Because I have always microwaved water in those styrofoam cups from the grocery store and never had a problem.

    But when I microwaved the styrofoam plate from the restaurant it instantly melted and ruined my lunch!

    When I told this to my friend she ridiculed me saying that I am incorrect and that NO styrofoam cups or plates can be microwaved.

    But if that's so... how come those noodle cup soups are indeed styrofoam! On the noodle cups I have seen they all say to microwave for 2 minutes...
    Last edited by Frosty; 06-30-2007 at 07:46 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri
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    1,814
    What I've read from searching is that you can microwave styrofoam, as long as the food doesn't get hot enough to melt the styrofoam, but microwave heat itself shouldn't melt it. I think that sounds about right.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Kalamazoo
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    32,809
    Quote Originally Posted by Frosty View Post
    ... how come those noodle cup soups are indeed styrofoam! On the noodle cups I have seen they all say to microwave for 2 minutes...
    There's different densities of styrofoam. Some can take more heat than others.

    The plate from the restaurant probably had food with grease on it? That's gonna get a little hotter in the microwave.

    To be safe, don't use styrofoam in the microwave.
    .
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    4,822
    Yes the food from the restuarant was a cheese dip for nachos... lots of grease which got VERY hot after just 1 minute

    From now on I just won't use styrofoam though as I'd rather not have any styrofoam checmicals melting into my food if you know what I mean.

    But shoot, this means that I will have to use plastic or glass from now on which means I cannot throw the cup away after using it and now I will have to wash it between each use. What a terrible thing. Can you believe that?

    This is why I liked using those disposable styrofoam cups =)

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Chicago, IL, USA
    Posts
    1,235
    Im going to try this and get back to you.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Posts
    646
    I wouldn't recommend it. Check out:

    http://sneakykitchen.com/Ten_command...ave_safety.htm

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    4,822
    mtgm,

    Yes, that's what I've been reading on google as well that even if the styrofoam doesn't melt those checmicals still get into your food. I'm ditching the styrofoam/plastics for microwaves... that includes microwavable plastic containers. I've melted those too before!

    I'll just use ceramic plates and cups from now on =)

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Orlando, FL
    Posts
    12,185
    Never microwave any type of meal in a non-ceramic plate - even the ones that come frozen in plastic containers. Knock them out and into a microwave-safe plate. The plastic containers when heated melt and emit cancerous substances.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Posts
    4,822
    Yes, I shall use ceramic cups/plates from now on. I've never really cared for the micorwavable plastic containers... even the re-usable ones =)

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Florida Panhandle
    Posts
    1,975
    I've never had issues with styrofoam in the microwave, however I remember when I forgot to remove the rest of the tinfoil from something I was cooking and I literally saw electricity shooting through the microwave, not good.
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  15. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Ohio
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    8,070
    Every time I've tried they have shriveled up like a prune.

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