What is Microwave Cooking?

Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

Microwave cooking is a kind of cooking that relies entirely on one appliance: the microwave. This kind of cooking is sometimes considered to be a form of convenience cooking as microwaves often cook and heat food faster than ovens. This kind of cooking is also very useful for people who live in small spaces and may not have a stove or oven. Microwave cooking is especially useful for college students who need to do occasional cooking in their dorm rooms and only have a microwave to work with.

Microwave cooking is usually faster and more convenient.
Microwave cooking is usually faster and more convenient.

Microwave cooking can also be very useful for people who are temporarily living in a hotel or hotel suite as well as people who are having their kitchens remodeled. During travel for work or when a kitchen is under construction, it can be both expensive and unhealthy to eat every meal at restaurants or fast food chains. In these instances, microwave cooking can create a way to continue to cook one's own food, even when kitchen space and cooking appliances are limited.

Microwave cooking can be useful for people in temporary living situations.
Microwave cooking can be useful for people in temporary living situations.

Some people think of microwaves simply as appliances that are used to re-heat leftovers or the occasional cup of coffee and a no muss, no fuss appliance for making popcorn. There are many people who have found that they can create lots of their favorite dishes simply using a microwave. Microwave cooking can be used to steam vegetables, make hot cereal, cook eggs for breakfast, even casseroles.

Most modern microwaves typically contain glass turntables to facilitate even cooking.
Most modern microwaves typically contain glass turntables to facilitate even cooking.

There are entire websites and books dedicated to microwave cooking. These sites and books include tips on how to get the most out of one's microwave and have a healthy, varied diet eating meals that were cooked only using this one appliance. Although there are many delicious dishes that can be made in a microwave oven, this appliance cannot replace the oven for foods like baked bread and muffins or a roasted turkey.

A healthy eating application of a microwave is to use it to steam vegetables.
A healthy eating application of a microwave is to use it to steam vegetables.

There are some people who assert that microwaved food can lead to illness. Many of these people believe that microwaves chemically change the makeup of foods, which can be cause the foods to be unhealthy for human consumption. Despite these assertions, many electronics companies are approved to sell microwaves and continue to come out with new models every year. The purported health risks of microwave cooking are usually countered with research that proves that microwaves do not contain enough energy to actually change the makeup of food.

Some believe that microwaves change the chemical composition of food, making it unhealthy to eat.
Some believe that microwaves change the chemical composition of food, making it unhealthy to eat.
Some people use microwaves to re-heat cups of coffee.
Some people use microwaves to re-heat cups of coffee.
It can be expensive and unhealthy to eat fast food for every meal.
It can be expensive and unhealthy to eat fast food for every meal.
Diane Goettel
Diane Goettel

In addition to her work as a freelance writer for wiseGEEK, Diane is the executive editor of Black Lawrence Press, an independent publishing company based in upstate New York. She has also edited several anthologies, the e-newsletter Sapling, and The Adirondack Review. Diane has a B.A. from Sarah Lawrence College and an M.A. from Brooklyn College.

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Discussion Comments

candyquilt

Has anyone made mug cakes in the microwave?

I just made one and it's actually quite good. I just mixed together self-rising flour with half an egg, some butter, milk and cocoa powder. It only cooked in about three minutes!

It doesn't match baked cake, but I can totally see myself doing this when I get a craving. I bet I could make steamed buns this way too. Yummy.

ysmina

@fBoyle-- I make rice and vegetables in the microwave all the time. You just need to put rice and water in a large bowl and put it on the low setting in the microwave for 15-20 minutes. It turns out great. I also buy frozen vegetables that are microwaveable. You can just throw the bag in there for a few minutes. It's delicious and healthy.

You can also cook hot dogs in the microwave, or make a cheese dip to eat with tortilla chips. I like mixing canned beans with cheddar cheese and cooking it in the microwave for a little bit. It's very good.

fBoyle

I'm in college and stay at a dorm. The only appliance I have access to is the microwave in the common room. I've made instant noodles and popcorn in it. What else can I make? I need ideas because I get hungry at night and I can't find anything to eat. Does anyone have microwave cooking recipes?

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