Difference Between Wax Paper and Parchment Paper

Main Difference – Wax Paper vs. Parchment Paper

Wax paper and parchment paper are two types of coated papers that are often used in kitchens. The main difference between wax paper and parchment paper lies in their coating. Parchment paper is coated with silicone whereas wax paper is coated with wax, soybean or paraffin wax to be specific. These different coatings give them different qualities and uses. In this article, we are going to look at the difference between wax paper and parchment paper in terms of usage and applications.

What is Wax Paper

Wax paper is a paper coated with a wax such as paraffin or soybean. This wax layer makes the paper non-stick and moisture resistant. So, wax paper is ideal for wrapping food for storage since it keeps the water out.  It is especially useful for wrapping food for cold storage; putting a piece of wax paper between two items to be frozen will prevent them from sticking together. Moreover, wax paper can be used to cover tables and counter tops when kneading bread and rolling pastries as well.

However, it cannot be used in the oven as the wax tends to melt when exposed to high temperatures thereby making it useless as a non-sticky surface. But this paper can be used to cover food inside the microwave. The paper is not much affected by microwaves since they do not heat to the point of combustion under normal usage.

In addition, wax paper is relatively cheaper than parchment paper though it cannot be recycled.Main Difference - Wax Paper vs Parchment Paper

What is Parchment Paper

Parchment paper is a cellulose based paper coated in silicone. This silicone coating makes the paper non-stick and heat resistant. Parchment paper is also grease and moisture resistant. It is available in two forms: bleached and unbleached forms. Parchment paper is ideal for the oven. It is resistant to the heat and can withstand temperatures up to about 420 degrees Fahrenheit. It is also used to cook en papillote, which is a technique where food is steamed or cooked within closed packets or pouches made from parchment paper. Another benefit of parchment paper is that it can be used again and again since it is recyclable.Difference Between Wax Paper and Parchment Paper

Difference Between Wax Paper and Parchment Paper


Wax paper is coated with soybean or paraffin wax.

Parchment paper is coated with silicone.


Wax paper is non-stick and moisture resistant.

Parchment paper is non-stick, moisture, heat and grease resistant.


Wax paper is relatively inexpensive than parchment paper.

Parchment paper is more expensive than wax paper.


Wax paper is not recyclable and, therefore, can be used only once.

Parchment paper can be used again and again.


Wax paper can be used for wrapping food for storage, covering tables and counter tops, and covering food in the microwave.

Parchment paper can be used for baking, cooking en papillote and all other applications of wax paper.Difference Between Wax Paper and Parchment Paper- infographic

Image Courtesy:

“Chocolate chip cookies on parchment paper, August 2009″ by jules – originally posted to Flickr as cookies-4. via  

“Waxed paper” by Kerkyra at English Wikipedia – Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons. (Public Domain) via

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