Freezer Paper and Parchment Paper (Are They The Same Thing?)

There is a variety of baking and cooking papers to choose from when working in the kitchen, which makes it difficult to know when to use certain ones. For example, is freezer paper the same as parchment paper and can they be used interchangeably?

Freezer paper and parchment paper are not the same, and they’re designed for different uses. Freezer paper has a poly (plastic) coating to keep food fresh and prevent freezer burn, while parchment paper is designed for high-temperature cooking, like baking. 

To learn more about the differences and similarities between freezer paper and parchment paper, keep reading. I’ll highlight safe alternatives to parchment paper (for baking), as well as safe alternatives to freezer paper (for freezing food). Learn more about these two kitchen papers and get answers to some frequently asked questions below. 

Pork chops: is freezer paper the same as parchment paper

Is Freezer Paper The Same As Parchment Paper?

Freezer paper is not the same thing as parchment paper. Freezer paper is made for the purpose of wrapping and storing meats and other perishable foods in the freezer due to its waterproof coating on one side. 

This polyethylene coating is often applied to the side of freezer paper that goes on the inside of the wrapped food to strengthen the seal and keep in moisture. It also helps to prevent freezer burn. Polyethylene is a commonly used plastic/polymer used for storage products and materials. 

On the other hand, parchment paper is made for the purpose of baking or cooking food at high temperatures, while keeping the food from becoming soggy. Parchment paper is notably non-stick, which makes it great for baking cookies, greasy foods, and other sticky doughs. It’s made from cellulose and can be safely heated up to 450 degrees F. 

Other notable differences between these cooking papers include the following:

  • Thickness – freezer paper is thicker than parchment paper.
  • Coatings – freezer paper has a polymer coating, whereas parchment paper either has no coating or a thin silicone coating.
  • Storage uses – freezer paper is made for storage uses, while parchment paper can be used for storage but won’t be as effective in the freezer.
  • Cooking uses – freezer paper isn’t made for most cooking purposes (as it has plastic on it), while parchment paper is made for cooking and high heat.

Parchment Vs. Freezer Paper (Differences & Similarities)

Note some of the important differences between parchment and freezer paper in the table below.


Oven Safe?

Freezer Safe?

Microwave Safe?

Moisture Resistant?


Parchment Paper






Freezer Paper






Baking With Freezer Paper?

One question many people have when comparing freezer and parchment paper is can you bake with freezer paper? The short answer is no, since freezer paper is coated in a polymer plastic called polyethylene, it can’t withstand heat. 

If you do try to bake with freezer paper, you end up running the risk of starting a fire in your oven. Further, you run the risk of contaminating your oven and food with polyethylene, which is toxic if its contents leak into the food that you plan to consume. 

In fact, freezer paper is similar to wax paper in that you shouldn’t expose it to heat, or else it could melt and cause serious problems. Instead, you should opt for a cooking paper that’s clearly designed for use in high heats, such as parchment paper or aluminum foil paper. 

Don’t use freezer paper in place of baking papers, not even in the case of an emergency (you’ve run out of foil or parchment), as it will be pointless since it renders your food inedible.

Freezing With Parchment Paper?

On the other side of the coin, you may be wondering can I use parchment paper to wrap foods that I plan to put in the freezer? The answer to this question is undoubtedly a yes, as parchment paper is resistant to most temperatures, and when coated, it becomes moisture-resistant as well. 

This makes it a good substitute for freezer paper if you’re in a pinch, as you can seal your foods and separate individual pieces from one another so that they don’t freeze together or get freezer burned.

Note, however, that parchment paper is a lot thinner than freezer paper. And when it’s coated, the coating isn’t very thick like you have with freezer paper. This means it won’t be as effective at storing foods in the freezer, but it will work. 

To freeze food in parchment paper, wrap the food carefully in the paper, covering up all surfaces of the food. You want to lock out the air so that the food doesn’t dehydrate and get freezer burn. Once you do, secure the seal by taping the package shut with masking tape. 

Good Substitutes For Parchment Paper

Since parchment paper and freezer paper are not the same and not interchangeable, it’s good to be aware of some parchment paper alternatives. 

Baked cinnamon rolls on baking paper

Note that there aren’t a ton of cooking/baking papers that are designed to withstand high heat, so you may need to get creative, scrap the paper altogether, and resort to greasing your heat-safe cooking pans and trays.

When it comes to baking and cooking, you can replace parchment paper with the following if you’ve run out:

  • Aluminum cooking foil – designed to withstand high oven temperatures and works well in combination with a thin layer of grease to make it non-stick.
  • Silpat (silicone baking mats) – this is a good oven cooking/baking substitute for parchment since it withstands high temperatures (up to 500 degrees F), is non-stick, and is thick and durable on top of a baking sheet.
  • Metal baking sheets/sheet pans – this is a good alternative to lining a pan with parchment paper if you’ve run out because you can directly grease the surface and cook on top of it.

Good Substitutes For Freezer Paper

Alternately, you may be wondering what you can use in place of freezer paper to store foods in your freezer. If you’ve run out of freezer paper, there are luckily several good alternatives that work just fine in cold temperatures, such as the following:

  • Butcher paper – a good alternative for freezer storing meats, but you’ll have to tape it up to keep the seal fresh.
  • Aluminum cooking foil – this works well and it sticks to itself when you fold and crimp it, but you may not get as tight of a seal as you’ll get with freezer paper.
  • Plastic zip bags – zip lock bags seal really well to store food in the freezer for long periods of time, but you have to carefully press out all of the excess air before sealing them.
  • Tupperware – seal well, but it’s hard to remove air from them to keep food fresh and hydrated in the freezer.
  • Parchment paper – works similarly to freezer paper with less moisture resistance, and needs to be taped to seal.


Can you freeze food in parchment paper?

You can technically wrap food in parchment paper to store it in the freezer. Since it’s moisture-resistant, it can help to prevent food from sticking together and getting freezer burn. However, it’s thinner than freezer paper with a lighter coating (or no coating), which makes it less effective for freezer storage than freezer paper. 

How long will meat last wrapped in freezer paper?

When wrapping meats such as fresh beef in freezer paper for freezer storage, you can expect up to 12 months of freshness. But keep in mind that this time frame varies for certain types of meat, like chicken, which should only be kept for up to 3-4 months in the freezer. 

According to the US Government’s Food Safety website, there are different frozen freshness time frames for all types of meat.

Can you use freezer paper on a grill?

No, you should never use freezer paper on a grill top or open flame surface, as the paper is not designed to withstand heat. It is coated in plastic (polyethylene), which can cause it to melt when heated and contaminate your food. On an open flame, freezer paper could even catch on fire and cause a safety hazard.

Is Freezer Paper The Same as Parchment Paper – Final Thoughts

So, freezer paper or parchment paper (are they the same?) – Hopefully, this guide has cleared the air on this topic. These two types of kitchen papers aren’t interchangeable, although you can use parchment paper in place of freezer paper.

However, you should never put freezer paper in the oven or other heated cooking spots, though, as it is a health and safety hazard. 

You can generally find safe alternatives to both parchment and freezer paper if you run out of one or the other. Try out the suggestions above.