10 things that absolutely should not go in the microwave

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Updated on 05 Aug 2023
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Reheating leftover food in the microwave is something we all do from time to time to put a quick and easy meal on the table. Many foods can indeed be put in the microwave without a problem, but that is not true for all food. Below we list ten things that absolutely should not go in the microwave.

1. Eggs

There are all kinds of ways to prepare an egg, but the microwave is not one of them. This is because a raw egg can explode in the microwave due to the high pressure, which makes for a dirty mess. So always prepare your egg in a pan with water or fry it in a little oil.

2. Frozen meat

Many people think that defrosting frozen meat in the microwave is convenient. However, you run the risk of getting sick from this. During heating, the outside cooks, but the inside remains frozen and bacteria can develop. Always defrost your meat from the freezer the night before by putting it in the refrigerator.

3. Red pepper

Basically, a red pepper will do just fine in the microwave and very little will happen. But be careful when you open the door: not only your eyes, but also your mouth will be on fire. So a spicy pepper is better prepared in the pan.

4. Puff pastry

The nice thing about puff pastry snacks and puff pastry dishes is the crispy exterior that contrasts with the soft filling. Unfortunately, when you microwave puff pastry, you don’t achieve this effect. The puff pastry feels limp, tastes limp AND is glowing after a while in the microwave. So always use an oven for preparing or reheating puff pastry dishes.

5. Water

Heating water in the microwave seems convenient and simple, but often turns out wrong in practice. In the microwave, the water gets so hot that it can boil over. In a pan, air bubbles form, but in the microwave this does not happen. This causes the water to become red-hot and can even cause burns. Better to opt for a kettle or a pan on the stove.

6. Leafy vegetables

Many leafy vegetables contain the substance nitrate, and reheating them in the microwave converts the nitrate to nitrite. This is harmful to your health and so do not reheat leafy vegetables in the microwave. Examples are spinach, endive and lettuce.

7. Frozen fruit

Want to use frozen fruit and defrost it quickly? Especially don’t do that in the microwave. The fruit gets an unpleasant taste in the microwave and often the juice splashes all over, which means you have to clean the whole microwave. It is better to thaw the fruit in a bag in warm water.

8. Warm up a plate full of food

It may seem like the easiest way to microwave a plate full of food all at once, but this often results in a hot outside and cold inside. Instead of heating everything in the microwave all at once, do it in parts. This way, the heat spreads better and your food heats up evenly.

9. All kinds of packaging

There are all kinds of containers that we microwave. It is common knowledge that an ordinary plastic container is not microwave safe, but what about other containers? Microwave-safe containers, for example, do not melt in the microwave, but that does not mean they do not contain harmful substances. Avoid all paper containers in the microwave: this can cause a fire unless the bag is made specifically for microwave use. Also be careful with aluminum foil. Once this comes in contact with your food it can cause flashes in the microwave.

10. Empty microwave oven

Besides a lot of things that can’t go in the microwave, “nothing” shouldn’t go in the microwave either. So you never turn on an empty microwave! The radiation in the microwave can’t focus on anything and so the device damages itself.

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