Can You Microwave Porcelain? (Answered)

Categorized as Microwave Safety
Can You Microwave Porcelain

Many people prefer porcelain for their kitchenware due to its sturdiness, endurance, and resistance to high temperatures. Nevertheless, using porcelain in a microwave requires attention to specific details. Even though porcelain is typically microwave-safe, dishes with metallic adornments may not be.

This write-up will address the topic of microwaving porcelain and suggest safe practices for microwaving porcelain dishes.

Can You Microwave Porcelain?

In general, porcelain itself is safe to use in a microwave due to its high temperature resistance. However, not all porcelain plates are safe to use in a microwave, especially those with metallic decoration such as gold or silver.

While porcelain is generally considered microwave-safe, it is important to note that not all dishes made from this material can be used in a microwave oven. Porcelain dishes with metallic decorations, such as gold or silver trim or patterns, should never be microwaved. 

The metal in these decorations can cause sparks and lead to a fire in the microwave. Always check the label or manufacturer’s instructions before microwaving any porcelain dish to ensure safety.

Risks of Microwaving Porcelain

Microwaving porcelain dishes with metallic decorations is not recommended due to the risks of sparking and fire. Even porcelain dishes without metallic decorations can be risky to use in the microwave, as they can crack or chip under the intense heat and pressure.

When microwaving porcelain dishes, it is important to consider the potential risks of doing so. Porcelain dishes may crack, chip or overheat in the microwave if not designed for that purpose. Microwaving porcelain can also cause uneven heating, which can lead to hot spots that could burn the user. If the dish is not microwave-safe, it can also release toxic chemicals into the food or cause other harmful effects.

Additionally, porcelain dishes with metallic decorations may cause sparks in the microwave, which can lead to a fire. The metal in these decorations can heat up quickly, causing it to spark and potentially ignite any nearby material. Even if the dish is not visibly damaged, the metallic decorations can still be damaged or discolored by the microwave, ruining the dish and making it unsuitable for use.

Determining If a Porcelain Dish Is Microwave-Safe

When considering microwaving porcelain, it’s important to verify the dish’s safety. Check the label or manufacturer’s guidelines before microwaving to ensure the dish is microwave-safe. Many porcelain dishes feature a microwave-safe label provided by the manufacturer, which certifies the dish as safe for microwave use.

If a dish lacks a microwave-safe label, it’s crucial to exercise caution and assume that it’s unsuitable for microwaving. Even if the dish appears microwave-friendly, there may be underlying defects or vulnerabilities that may cause it to break or crack when heated.

In addition, microwaving a dish not designed for microwave use may cause the release of harmful chemicals into the food, posing a health risk.

Another method to check the dish’s microwave-suitability is to conduct a swift test. Place the dish in the microwave with a cup of water and heat it for a minute on high. If the water heats up and the dish remains cool or warm to the touch, it is likely safe for microwaving. If the dish becomes hot to the touch, it is not microwave-safe and should be avoided.

Tips for Microwaving Porcelain

Microwaving porcelain can be a convenient way to heat up food quickly. However, there are some tips to keep in mind to ensure that your porcelain dishes are not damaged and your food is heated evenly. Here are some tips for microwaving porcelain:

Check the label or manufacturer’s instructions: Before microwaving any porcelain dish, check the label or manufacturer’s instructions to ensure that it is microwave-safe. If the dish is not microwave-safe, it is best to avoid using it in the microwave altogether. If the dish is microwave-safe, the label may also provide further instructions on how to safely use the dish in the microwave.

Use a microwave-safe cover: If you are microwaving food in a porcelain dish, cover it with a microwave-safe lid or cover. This will help prevent the food from drying out and also protect the dish from splatters.

Use a lower power setting: Porcelain dishes can crack or overheat if they are exposed to high temperatures for too long. To prevent this, use a lower power setting on your microwave when heating food in a porcelain dish. This will help ensure that the dish is heated evenly and prevent hot spots from forming.

Avoid metallic decorations: As mentioned earlier, porcelain dishes with metallic decorations should not be microwaved due to the risk of sparking and fire. Avoid using these dishes in the microwave altogether to prevent potential hazards.

Do not stack dishes: When microwaving multiple porcelain dishes, avoid stacking them on top of each other. This can cause uneven heating and potentially damage the dishes.

Do not microwave empty dishes: Microwaving an empty porcelain dish can cause it to overheat and potentially crack. Always ensure that there is food or liquid in the dish before microwaving it.

Be cautious when handling hot dishes: Porcelain dishes can become very hot in the microwave, so be careful when handling them. Use oven mitts or potholders to protect your hands and avoid burns.

Alternatives to Microwaving Porcelain

If you own porcelain dishes that are not microwave-safe, there are numerous alternatives available to use instead. Microwave-safe glass and ceramic dishes are both suitable replacements for porcelain.

Glass dishes are sturdy and easy to clean, and they do not contain any toxic chemicals or substances. Ceramic dishes are also an excellent option, as they are typically designed to be used in the microwave and are obtainable in various sizes and designs.

When using glass or ceramic dishes in the microwave, it’s crucial to verify that they are microwave-safe by checking the label or manufacturer’s guidelines. Additionally, avoid using dishes that are cracked, chipped, or damaged in any other way, as they may pose a risk of injury or other hazards.


In summary, porcelain itself is safe to use in a microwave, but not all porcelain dishes are microwave-safe. When in doubt, always check the label or manufacturer’s instructions before microwaving any dish, and consider using microwave-safe glass or ceramic dishes as an alternative. With a little care and attention, you can safely and confidently use your dishes in the microwave, without compromising on convenience or taste.

By Rosie Elliott

I’m Rosie. I’m a professional chef with experience in Western, Mediterranean, and Italian cuisine. I’ve been cooking for over 15 years, and I have two daughters that keep me busy!