The word ‘casserole’ is a French word that means a saucepan. A casserole dish is a kind of cooking pot that is best suited for preparing one-pot recipes. It can be made of glass, ceramic, or cast iron. It is also a very popular utensil to store food because reheating can be more accessible due to heat spreading evenly across the dish.
You might want to reheat the leftover lasagna lying in the fridge, and the first idea would be to push it into the oven. If you wonder whether that’s a good idea, the answer is ‘yes,’ but with a few precautions. If done in a certain way, you can quickly go for reheating leftovers in a cold casserole dish.
Many people have shared their experiences of explosions or breaking of the dish on the internet. This article will analyze how you can put your casserole dish in the oven without any damage.
How To Use Cold Casserole Dish In The Oven
If your casserole dish is of a glass material, it is better not to transfer it straight from the freezer to the oven. The sudden temperature change can put thermal stress on the cookware and might result in breakage.
Although most casserole dishes will not disappoint you, some low-quality cookware can shatter easily due to thermal shock. Even the pyrex cookware manufacturers recommend avoiding cold dishes in the oven.
Solution: What’s the Fix?
If you want to reheat the leftovers in the casserole dish, you should take some precautionary measures.
Let the casserole dish stand for some time at room temperature.
The preferred way of reheating the casserole is to bring the casserole dish to room temperature. Defrosting will reduce the risk of thermal stress on the cookware.
Don’t preheat the oven before putting the casserole dish inside.
Here’s another hack if you’re running short of time and cannot wait for the casserole to match the room temperature. Instead of preheating the oven, put the cold casserole in the oven and begin to heat.
This will also help the casserole catch up with the temperature slowly, thereby avoiding sudden shock.
Do a quality check
Ensure that the casserole dish is oven-safe and has no cracks. (it is easier to break with cracks already) Besides that, don’t heat the casserole dish beyond a specific temperature, somewhere around 300 to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.
Leave enough space for the food to expand.
Some foods, such as chicken or beef, expand when heated. Do this, especially when there are no liquids in the casserole dish. If you don’t leave enough space in the container, the pressure on the walls can lead to damage.
What Happens If You Put A Cold Casserole Dish In Oven Without Defrosting?
Even though some people would never have any trouble putting their cold casserole dishes into the hot oven, it is not preferred. Let’s expand on this by taking another typical example.
Have you ever wondered why the bottom of your saucepan is no longer as flat as it used to be initially?
That’s probably because of rinsing it with cold water too quickly. The sudden change in the extreme temperatures can result in the warping of the material. Therefore, we should avoid putting cold dishes directly into the hot oven.
Let’s see what’s the science behind this.
- The extreme temperature change will cause a thermal shock to the casserole material. If it is a glass material, it will try to expand more with brisk. Since glass is a bad conductor of heat, uneven heating and rapid expansion can crack or break the dish walls.
- Existing scratches and tiny cracks can escape your sight easily. If you put such a cold casserole into a hot environment, it tends to break way faster due to the thermal shock.
- If you are reheating the casserole that doesn’t contain liquids or space for expansion, you are making a mistake again. Reheating the casserole dish the no liquids and space will result in excessive pressure on the casserole walls leading to damage.
Is It Okay To Put Frozen Casserole Dish Into Hot Oven?
Since putting the cold dish into the hot oven is not recommended, you should never put a frozen dish into the hot oven. No matter how good the dish’s quality is, it is harmful to the casserole dish material.
The chances of shattering the dish are very high. Even if the casserole dish doesn’t break into pieces, it will be damaged. Therefore, it is highly recommended to avoid putting a frozen dish into the hot oven.
Tips For Reheating Cold Casserole Dish In An Oven
Here are some tips that you should follow to reheat your casserole dish in the right way.
- Allow the casserole dish to sit at room temperature for about 20 minutes to up to an hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Cut the casserole into smaller pieces to make some space inside the dish.
- Cover the casserole with an aluminum sheet.
- Reheating will take around 20 to 30 minutes. Keep checking the casserole every 10 minutes to avoid any burns.
Frequently asked question about cold ceramic dish in the oven
Can I put a cold ceramic dish in the oven?
You cannot put all ceramic dishes in the oven because most of them are not marked as oven-safe. It would be best to only put the oven-safe ceramic dishes in the oven that can hold out against the heat.
Can you put a cold Corningware dish in the oven?
Corningware dishes are oven-safe and can withstand up to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. They can be directly put into the oven from the freezer without normalizing the temperature.
Can I put a cold Pyrex pie plate in the oven?
You should not put a cold pie plate into the hot oven. The reasoning is that it can result in damage to the pie plate. Hence, avoid it.
Casserole dishes are very commonly used because of casseroles’ popularity. Many people often tend to make mistakes while heating their casseroles. The effect of these mistakes can vary with the kind of casserole dish you are using.
We have discussed why you should avoid putting cold casserole dishes in the oven and the science behind it. However, now you don’t have to risk your all-purpose casserole dish for reheating the leftovers. But if you still want to do so, go around with the suggestions mentioned above.
So, if you’re reheating your casserole dish the wrong way, consider trying the safer methods. This way, you can give your casserole dish the long life it deserves.