Kitchen utensils are essential items for cooking. Without them, home cooks wouldn’t be able to cook their food properly, as they sometimes have to mix ingredients constantly in the pan to develop consistency in the texture of the dish.
Almost all cooking utensils will touch your food while cooking or even before preparing it on a plate. As such, it is vital to know the compounds and materials that companies use for creating the utensils you own because you don’t know if the elements in the tools can be harmful to your body once you consume it.
Many people tend to buy plastic cooking utensils in the market as they are cheaper and more convenient to replace since they are available almost everywhere. However, plastic is one of the most dangerous materials because it is made up of different chemicals that can sometimes be hazardous to your health. Here are some disadvantages of using plastic kitchen utensils for cooking.
The Disadvantages of Plastic Cooking Utensils
Plastic, while it is heat-resistant, is not precisely heatproof. Most plastic utensils can withstand heat for up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and any heat higher than that can cause the plastic to melt. Several kinds of dishes are cooked on that temperature, so using plastic utensils in those dishes are not recommended.
Plastic utensils can also melt after constant use, and once they do that, several tiny parts of the plastic may chip off. These chips can sometimes mix with your food, making it dangerous to use old plastic equipment.
Some companies may say that their plastic products are BPA-free. BPA or Bisphenol A is a hazardous element usually found in plastic. According to research, BPA can cause infertility, complications on infants, and the development of cancerous tumors in the prostate and breast.
If the plastic product is BPA-free, it still doesn’t mean that it is safe to use. A few companies replace BPA with BPS or Bisphenol-S, which is also another toxic element for our bodies. Too many BPS in the body can result in blood problems because it alters and impairs blood homeostasis, and it can also cause heart complications since it can make the heart weaker.
Instead of taking risks in buying BPA-free plastic utensils, you should find alternatives made with different and safer materials. One of these alternative materials is wood.
Wooden Cooking Utensils
Kitchen utensils made of wood may not be as durable as the plastic ones, but they are much safer, and they also give added benefits to your cooking and your food.
One of the advantages that wood kitchen utensils have is that they won’t melt under hot temperatures, so they are perfect for mixing hot stews and soups. Wooden mixing utensils can also help distribute heat evenly in the pan or the pot since they don’t conduct heat, which can result in evenly cooked dishes. In addition, wood utensils won’t be able to scratch the surface of your cookware as they are much more delicate than plastic.
These utensils are also environmentally friendly since wood is a natural resource that doesn’t need harmful or toxic chemicals to form, unlike some kinds of plastic.
However, there are still several disadvantages when it comes to using wooden cooking utensils. For one, they will often form cracks after constant use. These cracks will often trap food in between the separated wooden parts, which can often lead to the formation of bacteria or molds in the cracks. If you notice a crack in one of your wooden utensils, then you should immediately replace it with a new one to avoid bacteria contamination in your food.
Also, wooden utensils are more challenging to clean than plastic ones since some particles of the food can stick to the surface of the wood.
Wood may be the best choice as an alternative to plastic, but it still presents some problems that will develop over time. If you want genuinely long-lasting utensils, then cooking utensils made of metal are perfect for you.
Metal Cooking Utensils
Metal cooking utensils provide almost all the benefits that wooden ones have to offer, but they are much more durable because of the stainless steel used in creating these metal utensils. If you don’t want to replace your kitchen utensils continually, then buying metal ones are better for you since they won’t easily break.
Like wood, metal won’t be able to leak or leave traces of chemicals in your food, and they will also not melt in high temperatures.
Moreover, they are easier to clean than wooden utensils since metal doesn’t have a porous surface like wood; instead, it is just one solid material without any small holes. Because of its smooth texture, food particles will be able to stick to the material.
On the other hand, while wooden utensils do not conduct heat, metal utensils can become too hot to the touch after you leave it in the pot or pan while cooking. This heat conduction in metal is the reason why some people put on kitchen gloves while using metal utensils because they can get burned if they touch the steel handle. There are also metal utensils that have plastic parts in their grip to reduce the heat, but this is not recommended for those who want to stay away from using plastic products.
All types of cooking utensils are not perfect; some can give you more disadvantages, while various kinds have plenty of advantages. Knowing all the benefits and drawbacks of several materials used for kitchen utensils is crucial for you to know which one is safer and which one brings out the best out of your dishes.