Can You Cook In Mylar Bags?

Last Updated on July 17th, 2023

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First, intuition will tell you no, this is not possible, but think again; the Mylar bag’s aluminum foil lining can act as a conductor and be used for cooking or steaming foods inside them.

There are types of Mylar bags, called ‘cook-in-bags,’ designed to hold hot ingredients, even boiling water to cook/rehydrate ingredients or steam a pre-prepped meal.

This does not mean that you should pour hot boiling water into just any Mylar bag; many standard Mylar designs cannot handle higher-temperature liquids. Be sure to know which design of Mylar bag you have to avoid any mistakes like this.

A white mylar bag - Can You Cook In it?

Can Mylar Bags be Heated?

As mentioned earlier, specific Mylar bag designs will hold boiling water and endure the hotter temperatures needed for cooking or steaming certain foods.

In the military, certain pre-packaged foods called MREs, or ready-to-eat meals, are made of simple and easy-to-cook foods.

With some of the more arduous outdoors-inspired Mylar packages, a camper can build a fire and use it to heat the MRE. Similar to the warning about boiling water, so shall there be a need for caution when heating your food in this manner.


How High can the Temperature be in Mylar Bags?

This will depend on the type of mylar used for the testing; some of the thinner, lighter, weight material-based bags will have different durability than the thicker designs.

As a reference, MRE Mylar bags can stand the hotter temperature waters of about two hundred degrees but beware of boiling water above two hundred and twelve degrees Fahrenheit.

That being said, the outer covering of the Mylar bag will be able to withstand temperatures around five hundred and seventy-five degrees and one thousand one hundred and ten degrees Fahrenheit.

Most Mylar materials are fire-resistant and will need these extreme temperatures to be present before catching.


What Can You Cook in Mylar Bags?

There will be the most leisurely meals, such as instant oatmeal or instant potato packets, which only require a minimal amount of time, between five and ten minutes.

Then you will have certain foods that must be steamed, like rice or pasta noodles, which will require different warming techniques than just pouring water into the bag.

Then you will have the pre-packaged meals that can be placed into a microwave or oven to heat up and cook. Some examples of those meals will be Mac’ n’ Cheese or Fettuccini Alfredo.


For Hot Long can You Cook in it?

This will depend on the materials used in making the Mylar bag but also on what means the cooking is being done. For example, if a Mylar bag is being cooked via a campfire or open-fire oven, there will be less concern for time limits than in a conventional oven.

There is hardly a meal that will take a longer time to prepare and cook than a Mylar bag can handle, and therefore, the answer must equate to the time needed to cook the meal inside the bag thoroughly.

To be safe, it is recommended only to prepare a single meal in each Mylar bag; no matter how safe the materials are, there is always the risk of toxic chemicals leaking into foods.


Are There any Meals You can’t Cook in it?

As the state of the obvious, a person grilling a meal must restrict the Mylar bag to cooking the side dishes, especially vegetables such as potatoes.

Likewise, it will not be recommended to cook baking meals, such as making bread or baking a cake, in a Mylar bag, mostly because removing them will be difficult.

A more pronounced set of meals to avoid will be frozen foods, such as desserts with ice cream or snow cone-like foods. Plus, to cover all the fundamental bases, do not pour any alcohol into the bags.


Final Thoughts on Can You Cook in Mylar bags

Cooking in a Mylar bag might be best saved for situations involving being outdoors and needing quick and easy-to-cook meals to enjoy when staying overnight.

For example, some old-fashioned meals involve wrapping potatoes or other foods in foils and placing them in the campfire to cook amongst the coals.

The modern-day Mylar bag can effectively replace the tin foil-wrapped method and provide the same cooked foods as tin foil, even the famed “hobo potato.” The bags are a backpacker’s dream and provide utility in the backcountry and everyday life.

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