Are Blender Bottles Microwave-Safe? (Microwave Safety Tips)
Blender bottles used to be limited to one brand but, like many products, expanded into a field all of its own. They’re typically plastic bottles with a sealed lid and a mesh screen or metal spiral ball inside. Blender bottles are useful for shaking protein shakes, making homemade smoothies, health drinks, milkshakes, mixed drinks, and more.
Although most of those things are commonly consumed cold, there may be situations where you want to heat up the contents of your blender bottle. The microwave is the most obvious solution, but you should never microwave blender bottles.
Why You Shouldn’t Microwave Blender Bottles
There are a few reasons for this. First, blender bottles are usually made of plastic that will heat up, melt, deform, and even catch on fire in the microwave. Secondly, the metal spiral balls or mesh screens in blender bottles can cause arcing or fires to start in your microwave. Naturally, this is something we want to avoid.
Finally, the sealed lid of a blender bottle can allow pressure to build up inside. This can leave the bottle extremely pressurized, and when opened, boiling hot liquid will spray everywhere. That just doesn’t sound like a good time, so it’s best to just avoid the situation altogether.
Ultimately, the best way to heat up the contents of your blender bottle is to put them in a microwave-safe container to heat up. After, simply transfer the contents back to your blender bottle.
In some cases, you can remove the lid and mesh screen/metal ball and simply microwave the bottle and contents alone in the microwave. If you try this, we recommend only microwaving for a short time to avoid melting or burning plastic. Sturdier bottles will hold up to microwaves more effectively than cheap, thin blender bottles.
Health Risks of Heating Plastic
More people are aware of the health dangers of plastic than ever, but heating them is even more dangerous. Plastics have compounds called plasticizers in them, like BPA. Another dangerous chemical created when you heat plastic is called dioxin, which harms your skin, liver, and nervous system.
The silver lining is that you can completely avoid the health risks of burning plastic by just not putting plastic in the microwave unless it’s specifically designed and labeled for microwave use. If you’re unsure, such as with blender bottles, it’s best to err on the side of caution and not use it for reheating drinks or food.
How to Identify Microwave Safe Materials
First up is plastic. Microwave-safe plastics usually always have a microwave-safe label or symbol on the item or packaging. It may either say “microwave safe” or have a microwave symbol underneath some wavy lines.
Pyrex and heat-resistant glass are safe to use in the microwave as well, but as with plastic, you need to check the item or its packaging. Thinner glass vessels may not be designed with heat in mind and can shatter in the microwave.
Ceramics are typically safe for microwaves, but it’s difficult to tell for sure. Mugs are the most likely to be safe, followed by bowls and plates. This material can get very hot in the microwave, so you should wear oven mitts or heat-resistant kitchen gloves to handle it. Or you can just wait for it to cool down—the choice is yours.
Can I Use Just the Bottle for Reheating Soups or Coffee?
That’s iffy. Some bottles may moonlight as a soup vessel, but many don’t. Always check the bottle’s labeling or packaging to see if it specifically mentions being microwave safe. If not, you should assume it’s not. By default, assume plastic bottles aren’t microwave safe unless you’re proven wrong.
Blender bottles are very useful for blending smoothies, shakes, health drinks, and other beverages. They’re not so useful in the microwave, though. In the best case, you won’t melt your bottle. At worst, you could expose yourself to toxic chemicals and set a fire!
Featured Image Credit: sasimoto, Shutterstock