The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Food Grade Plastic Bags to Cover Half-Sheet Pan

Greg D's picture
Greg D

Food Grade Plastic Bags to Cover Half-Sheet Pan

Reinhart and others recommend half-sheet pans for proofing bagels, etc.  But you are supposed to place the half-sheet pan into a food grade plastic bag during the proofing and retarding cycles.  Twenty years ago my late mother in law purchased a large quantity of such bags from the KA catalog and gave me 100 or so but even with careful washing and recycling I am about out.  Anybody know where I can buy more?

Thanks and Happy Baking. 

verminiusrex's picture

I purchased my bags from, smaller ones when I individually bagged bagels for sale and I still have hundreds of the larger size that I use for loaves. They have gusseted bags that are FDA/USDA compliant in sizes from single servign to covering industrial equipment. If you tend to wash and reuse I'd suggest 2 mil minimum, if you want them disposable the 1 mil is fine (what I've been using for years).

Greg D's picture
Greg D

Thank You verminiusrex.  The 2 mil Uline 12 x24 bag with gusset is exactly what I have been using and what I need as a replacement.  I will call and place my order tomorrow. 

Happy Baking

Greg D's picture
Greg D

My order of FIVE HUNDRED 2 mil plastic bags (minimum quantity to order) is on the way.  Based on the fact that my initial supply of 100 bags has lasted me 20 years (with careful washing and repeated re-use), I think I am good on plastic bags until my 160th birthday. 

Thank you all for the help and Happy Baking.

richkaimd's picture

Elagins's picture

Any plastic bags that are clear or white are generally food-grade, according to a local (San Diego) polyethylene bucket manufacturer. It's the dyed bags (black, green, etc.) that are off limits for food handling. I used Glad white trash bags and they work just fine.

Stan Ginsberg

gerhard's picture

Part of what makes a plastic bag food safe is the machinery used in making the packaging, including the lubricants, sanitation and types of other products that the machine may be used to make.  Then there is how it is treated in storage and transport.  I think for personal use I am not paranoid enough to be worried for commercial use I would pay extra for a box that states food safe.


Malchemist's picture

I have found see-through plastic lids designed to fit half sheet pans to be much easier to work with when proofing bagels, pretzels, focaccia and other low-profile doughs. I ordered from Amazon, but local restaurant supply stores have them, too. 

Greg D's picture
Greg D

I thought about rigid plastic covers, but I generally make 8 batches of bagels at the same time which means I need to put 8 half sheet pans in my garage refrigerator to do the overnight retarding recommended by the PR Crust and Crumb recipe.  My refrigerator barely fits the 8 pans in plastic bags and the rigid covers would not be workable.   But thank you for the suggestion.

Happy Baking.

Malchemist's picture

it's possible they would take up less space. The lids are stackable, so they don't need to be on shelves. I top out at four pans at a time, but a single stack of eight pans would only take up the bottom 20 inches of one side of my fridge. 

Good baking!

Kitchen Barbarian's picture
Kitchen Barbarian

white bags may be food safe - just make sure they aren't perfumed or "deoderized".

I just rip off a big piece of the 18" wide plastic wrap I got at Sam's and cover with that.

coloradobaked's picture

I do not recommend using trash bags no matter what color (including clear).

They are often made from recycled plastic which requires less regulation. If a bag manufacturer wants to use recycled plastic for food-grade products they will need to be inspected to ensure any harmful chemicals are purified or removed. So the best way to know if the bags you're using are FDA/USDA approved is to ask. Most of the time plastic/poly bags are made from 100% virgin (non-recycled) plastic.This isn't always the case for trash bags which is why most trash bags are made in colors. Even the clear trash bags are foggy or not very clear because of the type of resin used to make the bags. By the way, we get our bags from tandempac because they're less costly.