Butcher Paper vs Freezer Paper: The Ultimate Guide

Butcher Paper vs. Freezer Paper: A Comprehensive Comparison

When it comes to kitchen paper, two options that often come to mind are butcher paper and freezer paper. While these papers may seem similar, they serve different purposes and have unique characteristics. In this article, we will compare butcher paper and freezer paper, exploring their individual characteristics, uses, and differences. By understanding the differences between these two types of paper, you will be able to make informed decisions regarding their use in various culinary scenarios.

Butcher Paper: A Versatile Kitchen Companion

Butcher’s paper, also known as kraft paper, was originally developed to provide butchers with a reliable wrapping material for their meat products. It is a thick and strong paper that offers excellent preservation properties. Butcher paper is typically sold in rolls, which allows for easy customization to the desired length. This paper is made from kraft pulp, resulting in a grainy or coarse texture.
Butcher paper’s primary use in the culinary world extends beyond meat wrapping. Its versatility makes it suitable for a wide range of applications. Here are some common uses for butcher paper:

  • Arts and Crafts: Butcher paper is a popular choice for various arts and crafts projects due to its durability and texture.
  • Posters and Banners: Because of its large size and strength, butcher paper is often used to create posters and banners.
  • Wrapping china or glassware: The thick nature of butcher paper makes it an ideal material for wrapping delicate items such as china or glassware for storage or transportation.
  • Wrapping deli delicacies: Butcher paper is often used to wrap deli sandwiches and other food items for take-out or picnics.
  • Promotional purposes: Because of its large size and easy writability, butcher paper is often used to create eye-catching advertisements.
  • Tray and table liners: Butcher paper can be used as a protective liner for trays and tables, preventing stains and providing a clean surface.

Butcher paper is an affordable option, especially when purchased in bulk. It is widely available and comes in both white and reddish-brown colors. However, it is important to ensure that any butcher paper intended for food wrapping or storage is FDA approved.

Freezer paper: The ideal choice for freezing food

Freezer paper, often confused with wax paper, is a different type of paper that serves a specific purpose in the kitchen. While butcher paper is thick and coarse, freezer paper is comparatively thinner and has a plastic coating on one side that gives it a waxy look and feel. This coating distinguishes freezer paper from wax paper, which is coated on both sides, and parchment paper, which has no coating at all.
The primary function of freezer paper is to preserve and protect food during freezing, especially meat and seafood. The wax coating on one side of the paper helps retain moisture and prevents freezer burn. Unlike butcher’s paper, freezer paper is designed specifically for freezing and excels at keeping meat juices intact.
To use freezer paper, simply wrap the meat or food with the waxed side facing inward, directly in contact with the food. This ensures that the wax coating protects the contents and helps retain moisture. The uncoated side of the paper can be written on for labeling purposes. In addition, the paper can be secured with tape, wrapped in foil, or stored in a freezer bag.
Although freezer paper offers excellent benefits for freezing food, it may not be as widely used as other types of paper due to a lack of awareness of its specific uses. However, for optimal results when freezing meat, freezer paper is the recommended choice.

Butcher paper vs. freezer paper: A summary of the differences

In summary, butcher paper and freezer paper have different characteristics and serve different purposes in the kitchen. Here are some key differences to keep in mind:

  1. Function: Butcher paper is primarily used to wrap and store a variety of items, including meat, while freezer paper is specifically designed to freeze food and keep it fresh.
  2. Thickness and texture: Butcher paper is thick, heavy, and has a grainy or coarse texture, while freezer paper is comparatively thinner and has a plastic coating on one side that gives it a waxy feel.
  3. Cost and availability: Butcher paper is generally more affordable and readily available in large rolls, making it suitable for bulk purchases. Freezer paper, on the other hand, can be slightly more expensive and less common due to its specific use.
  4. Compare to other papers: Butcher’s paper shares some similarities with wax paper and parchment paper, but is thicker and stronger. Freezer paper is similar in appearance to waxed paper, but it is coated on one side only and is specifically designed for freezing food.
  5. Freezing Capabilities: While butcher paper can be used to wrap and freeze meat, it does not retain juices as effectively as freezer paper. Freezer paper’s wax coating provides superior moisture retention, making it the optimal choice for freezing food.

Bottom line

In conclusion, butcher paper and freezer paper are two different types of paper with different characteristics and uses in the kitchen. Butcher paper, known for its thickness and strength, is a versatile option for wrapping, crafting and protecting various items. Freezer paper, on the other hand, with its plastic-coated side, is specifically designed for freezing foods and preserving their moisture and flavor.
Understanding the differences between these papers will help you make informed decisions based on your specific culinary needs. Whether you’re wrapping meat for storage or embarking on an art project, choosing the right paper can make all the difference in achieving your desired results.
So next time you’re in the kitchen, consider the unique properties of butcher and freezer paper and choose the one that best suits your needs. Happy cooking and freezing!

Legal Disclaimer

This article provides a general overview of the topic and is not intended to be professional advice. Always consult appropriate resources and experts for specific guidance.


What is the main difference between butcher paper and freezer paper?

Butcher paper is a thick, sturdy paper used for wrapping and storing various items, while freezer paper is specifically designed for freezing food and keeping it fresh. Freezer paper has a plastic coating on one side to help retain moisture and prevent freezer burn.

Can I use butcher paper to freeze food?

Although butcher paper can be used to wrap and freeze food, it may not provide the same level of moisture retention as freezer paper. Freezer paper’s wax coating makes it more effective at preserving the juices and flavor of frozen foods.

What are some common uses for butcher paper?

Butcher paper has many uses in the culinary world and beyond. It is commonly used for wrapping deli items, arts and crafts projects, creating posters and banners, packaging fragile items, advertising, and as tray or table liners.

Is freezer paper the same as wax paper?

No, freezer paper and wax paper are different. Freezer paper has a plastic coating on one side, while wax paper has a thin layer of wax on both sides. Freezer paper is designed for freezing food, while wax paper is more suitable for lining baking pans or wrapping non-fatty foods.

Can I use freezer paper for anything other than freezing?

While freezer paper is designed specifically for freezing food, it can be used for many other purposes. Its waxy coating makes it great for crafting, protecting surfaces during messy projects, or as a durable wrapping material for non-food items.

Where can I find butcher and freezer paper?

Butcher paper is often available at kitchen supply stores, supermarkets, or online retailers. Freezer paper may be less common, but can still be found in some grocery stores or online platforms that specialize in food storage and packaging materials.