We all enjoy our muffins! But did you know that many people also enjoy chewing on the wrappers when they have finished their muffins? A few even eat them up!
I don’t enjoy chewing or eating paper wrappers myself when I treat myself to a delicious muffin, but the topic intrigued me, so I started to do some research.
Most conventional muffin wrappers are made of simple paper. As paper is made from cellulose fiber, which is indigestible to humans, eating your muffin wrapper is not a great idea. Sucking or chewing on the wrapper to get the muffin’s last pieces and flavor out of it is generally fine, though.
Read on and find out more about muffin wrappers, including how they taste and if they are store-bought alternatives that are labeled edible.
Are Muffin Wrappers Edible?
Most paper-based muffin wrapper products are made of simple paper or wax paper. And while you can technically eat paper, it’s best to avoid it, as paper contains a considerable amount of cellulose fiber, which is entirely indigestible to humans.
It goes without saying that the other types of muffin wrappers, which are made of either foil or silicone, are both wholly inedible and indigestible. These materials can also cause serious health issues!
But let’s go back to the paper wrappers! While eating paper generally won’t cause you any severe harm, swallowing an entire muffin wrapper whole could potentially lead to abdominal discomfort and bowel obstruction.
This probably doesn’t happen very often, but why take the risk, right? I mean, that paper is tough and literally not easy to swallow!
So why give your digestive system a hard time!?
On the contrary, chewing, licking, or sucking on paper muffin wrapper is considered completely harmless.
Quite a few people actually do this on a more or less regular basis, and it kind of makes sense, as it’s very often the case that some pieces of the muffin remain stuck on the wrapper.
Sometimes, those pieces are pretty large, and I guess some people don’t want to waste those last parts of their muffin. I don’t blame them; muffins are delicious, and you want to eat up every last piece of them!
But how does it taste, then? I wanted to base this article on an authentic experience, so my husband Max and I tried it out for ourselves.
During the first few seconds of sucking and chewing on the wrapper, it actually tasted pretty alright, as the flavor of the muffin was still stronger than that of the wrapper.
Shortly after that, though, the whole thing turned pretty mushy, and the wrapper’s fairly dull flavor became the dominant one.
It just tasted, well, like paper!
To conclude, keep sucking or chewing on those paper wrappers if that’s what you want to do! But if you ask me, avoid ingesting them!
Are Paper Muffin Wrappers Toxic?
Today, many paper wrappers are completely untreated and free of any toxins or additives, making them non-toxic and food-grade. However, this only applies to the paper-looking wrappers that aren’t dyed.
Colored muffin wrappers (yes, even the white ones) can have dye or bleach, which can release toxic dioxin.
And even though many wrappers only contain lower amounts of dye or bleach and are generally labeled food-grade, it makes you think twice before chewing on a paper wrapper.
Thankfully, there are quite a few non-toxic, untreated, and environmentally friendly muffin wrappers out there!
Can You Buy Edible Muffin Wrappers?
A few paper muffin wrappers are labeled edible and available on the market today.
And now we are talking about the real edible stuff, not just paper you can chew on until it gets all doughy and mushy!
Dr. Oetker has developed a fine-looking and tasty wrapper called Edible Wafer Cupcake Cases. Unfortunately, this was back in 2014, and I don’t know if they still make them.
I also found these edible wafer paper wrappers that are self-supporting and ovenproof.
Both of these products are made in Europe, and I am a little surprised that there doesn’t seem to be an American company that produces edible wrappers!
That sounds like a solid business idea to me!
Can You Put Paper Muffin Wrappers in the Oven?
Conventional paper muffin wrappers, or liners, are entirely ovenproof and can be put in the oven together with your muffin mix.
Given that you don’t give them too much heat or bake your muffins far too long, they will survive the baking process inside of the oven and come out just as nice looking as they went in.
But be aware that most paper muffin wrappers aren’t self-supporting and can not stand alone in the oven.
Are Paper Muffin Wrappers Compostable?
Most paper muffin wrappers can be thrown onto your compost heap, as paper breaks down fairly quickly.
On average, it takes a standard paper muffin wrapper 1 to 2 weeks to fully biodegrade.
On the other hand, you should avoid throwing the following types of muffin wrappers onto your compost:
- foil wrappers
- plastic wrappers
- bleached or colored wrappers
- silicone wrappers
- aluminum wrappers
Sure, your compost ecosystem probably won’t collapse from the bleached or dyed ones, but it’s still not a super appropriate type of waste to put into your compost heap!
In my opinion, it’s probably better to throw those in your regular trash!