Many cities have undergone lockdown. Most people don’t dine out nowadays in light of the Covid-19 pandemic and emerging mutant variants. However, not everyone has time to cook because they also have to work at home.
One solution for this? Learn how to cook quick recipes through a microwave!
What is a Microwave?
Simply put, a microwave is an oven-like appliance that uses short-frequency radiowaves instead of conductive heat in order to cook meals, reheat leftovers, and defrost frozen food.
How Do You Cook Food Using a Microwave?
A microwave uses a magnetron to create the “microwaves” while its metal interior makes the waves bounce around and hit the water molecules of the food being cooked, which then heats the item up.
To avoid hotspots or bacteria-incubating cold spots, most microwave ovens feature either a turntable or a rotating interior antenna.
Don’t Miss: What are the Best Microwave-Ready Meals?
What are Simple Microwave Recipes?
Here are 35 simple microwave recipes you can try out for yourself.
1. Macaroni and Cheese
It only takes 5 minutes to prepare and you can go as simple or complex as you want. You typically require half a cup of macaroni, half a cup of water, 3 tablespoons of milk, salt and pepper, and a quarter cup of cheese.
You can also add fresh chives for an optional garnish. Just add macaroni, microwave for 2-3 minutes, stir, then add everything else and stir before microwaving 30 seconds or more.
2. Frothy Milk
You can make a café-quality cappuccino is another easy-to-do DIY thing with your microwave. Just get some milk, a jar, and a microwave.
Shake the milk inside the jar, heat it up for a few seconds in your microwave, and put the latte into your coffee. Add cinnamon if you wish.
See more here.
3. Corn on the Cob
Instead of boiling corn on the cob using a big pressure cooker, cook it instead with the microwave while it’s still covered in husks. No need for wrapping, soaking, stripping, or even a plate.
Cook the corn on the cob using its own juices or water until the husks are steaming hot.
4. Fully Loaded Microwaved Potato
You can simply “bake” a potato as is with the holes poked for 7 to 9 minutes in the microwave oven. Don’t forget to rub it with salt and oil first before microwaving.
You can add bacon slices and sprinkled shredded cheese with an additional half-minute of cooking.
5. Spaghetti Squash and Meatballs
If you want a microwavable spaghetti and meatballs meal, consider using spaghetti squash as your pasta substitute. Cut the squash in half, microwave for 5 minutes, scoop out the seeds and innards, and microwave for 10-15 minutes.
Use a fork to make spaghetti squash noodle strands then microwave meatballs with the pasta sauce to add to the vegetarian noodle.
6. Microwaved Scrambled Eggs
You need to know how to microwave scrambled eggs in order to make the “Fried” Egg Rice down below. Just break a couple of eggs into a bowl and scramble with a fork.
Microwave the resulting concoction for 2-3 minutes in 30-second increments while stirring until done.
See more 10 Microwave Dinner Ideas for the Millennial on the Go!
7. Microwaved “Fried” Egg Rice
To make this, mix ½ cup rice, 1 teaspoon sesame oil, 2 strips of chopped bacon, 1 cup water, and a tablespoon of soy sauce in a bowl for 6-8 minutes. Microwave beaten eggs for 1-2 minutes, then break up eggs bits on hot rice.
8. Barbecue Chicken Nachos
To make these nachos, mixed a cup of shredded rotisserie chicken with barbecue sauce then spread evenly on a tortilla chips bed.
Add ¼ cup of green onions, 1 cup shredded cheddar, and 1/3 cup of pico de gallo on top of the microwave for 2-4 minutes until the cheese is melted. Add sour cream and guacamole for good measure.
9. Crispy Microwave Bacon
You can microwave bacon to crispiness without depending on a stove or air fryer.
You can also use paper towels to catch the hot oil and fat or heat the slices using an overturned bowl on a saucer. This allows the fat to drip on the sides of the bowl.
10. Chocolate Chip Pecan Mug Cake
You can have this healthy or even gluten-free (use gluten-free flour for that) delight in less than 5 minutes.
Just get the standard single-serve portions for this pecan pie recipe then add chocolate chips and pecans for good measure.
11. Homemade Microwave Popcorn
Instead of using store-bought popcorn, do it in a DIY fashion. Grab raw corn or a bag of corn kernels then microwave using the same instructions you’d get from store-bought popcorn.
Save money and add flavor packets if you wish!
12. Strawberry Microwave Breakfast Bowl
Get complete protein and substitute plain old oatmeal with buckwheat groats.
This microwaveable gluten-free breakfast combines fiber-rich buckwheat with applesauce, flax meal, and oats as well as strawberries for a nutrient-rich meal.
13. Vegetable Quiche with Cauliflower Crust
Another delicious item you can make with your microwave? Quiche. To be more specific, the 10-minute cheesy vegetable quiche with cauliflower crust.
Cauliflower crust also doubles as pizza crust and tastes like vegetarian pizza when made into a breakfast quiche form.
14. Mug Banana Bread
You’ll notice many single-serve mug-sized cakes and bread on this list of microwaveable treats. The mug of banana bread can also be made of zucchini instead.
You can quickly make one in the microwave—just pour the sliced banana, flour, and other ingredients into the mug, stir, microwave, and serve.
15. Mug Omelet
To make a mug omelet, you need a quarter cup of fresh spinach, 2 slices of diced ham, diced ½ bell pepper, and 2 eggs. Also, add salt and pepper to taste.
Simply combine all the ingredients inside a microwave-safe mug then microwave everything for 2-3 minutes. Be careful about the egg bubbling over by stirring the mug 1 minute in.
16. Mug Potato Soup
Aside from the soups, you can make from instant noodles, you can also create homemade potato soup in a mug as well.
This recipe involves microwaving bits of soft potato inside a microwaveable mug then adding other delectable ingredients like sour cream, cheese, and bacon bits.
17. English Muffin
You can cook an English muffin in 90 seconds with the right recipe. It’s up to you whether you want almond flour/meal or gets something gluten-free and grain-free.
You can make yeast-free “baked” English muffins inside your microwave that borders on being a Paleo Diet delight.
18. Mug Meatloaf
Aside from baked goods, you can also make meatloaf mixed with spinach and carrots using your microwave.
You can swap out the onion soup mix with some other seasoning mix or your own blend of seasoning.
19. “Roasted” Garlic in the Microwave
You’ll be steaming the garlic more than roasting it inside the microwave oven due to its limitations. However, you’ll still end up with a serviceably scrumptious meal when push comes to shove.
The microwaved garlic offers a strong flavor that’s not so mellow and cooks rather quickly (in minutes, in fact). The microwave should be at 50 percent power if it’s a 1-kilowatt unit.
20. Cinnamon-Maple Breakfast Quinoa
Now for something a bit more complicated. This microwaveable breakfast recipe imbues cinnamon goodness into your quinoa.
This then results in a protein-packed delivery filled with high fiber content and tastes like a pancake cooked inside a bowl.
21. South Indian Eggplant Curry
How about a more exotic microwave recipe? Purple eggplant or aubergine gets its name by how some variants look like uncracked white eggs.
A microwave can churn out a decent eggplant curry meal filled with cilantro, coconut, chickpeas, and spices in 15 minutes.
22. Chilaquiles in a Coffee Cup
A coffee cup is slightly smaller than a mug and thusly this is a small serving of chilaquiles. Make them one serving at a time and about three servings could satisfy a hungry stomach.
You can make the quick Mexican-inspired meal with egg, cheese, tortilla chips, and salsa as well as shredded beef or chicken.
23. Chicken Fajitas
The Tex-Mex favorite now comes in microwave recipe form. This healthy snack serves as a good source of vegetables in a delightful package. You can make these fajitas fast and super easy.
Just mix up some chicken, peppers, and onions together wrapped in tortillas filled with cheese and one dollop of Greek yogurt.
24. Poached Eggs
You can try your hand at making your own homemade miracle microwave poached eggs.
You can also do away with boiling water and getting the right mixture of vinegar and salt by availing of one of those egg poacher containers off of Amazon to do the work for you.
25. Vegetarian Burrito Bowl
Instead of debating whether your Chipotle or QDOBA vegetarian burrito bowl is microwaveable or not, you can instead attempt to make a homemade burrito bowl yourself.
It might be composed of all sorts of veggies, salsas, and cheeses or cheese alternatives if you want a vegan burrito bowl instead.
26. Microwaved Mushroom Risotto
This risotto uses ingredients such as loads of mushrooms, cheese, wine, and broth together in order to make a microwaveable version of this classic Italian food item.
You can also add on extra vegetables for good measure such as sautéed spinach to make the dish even healthier.
27. “Toasted” Nuts in the Microwave
A toaster or a stove does better at toasting nuts than the microwave, but it still gets the job done. While being microwaved, the nuts release oils that give them a fragrant scent.
The beauty of the microwave involves how it can cook the nuts without preheating the interior.
28. “Toasted” Coconut
No, we’re not using the shell part of the coconut to make “toasted” coconut.
Instead, it’s the coconut “white meat” that’s being “toasted” or microwaved in 30-second bursts for less than 10 minutes overall, stirring the tasty shredded coconut all the while.
29. Microwaved Pickles
As for microwaved pickles, this recipe allows you to pickle something for minutes instead of months of curing.
No, it’s not microwaving ready-made pickles. It involves throwing pickling spices into a bowl full of onion, cucumbers, sugar, and vinegar before being microwaved for 8 minutes.
30. Microwaved Potato Chips
Aside from “baking” potatoes, you can also make potato chips. Although microwaves find it tough to toast things like bread to that brown goodness, it can make food get hot enough to become crispy.
You can slice potatoes thinly with the mandoline slicer then microwave them in a few minutes to get a less oily version of Lay’s potato chips.
31. Microwaved Sweet Potato Chips
For sweet potato chips, you also need the mandoline slicer to get super-thin chips to turn crispy with the assistance of your microwave oven.
You can top the resulting chips with sea salt and rosemary to taste then use dips to add more flavor.
32. Flaky Microwaved Salmon
Get a healthy, tasty, and fast salmon flake recipe by cooking it through a microwave. You can add flavor to this delish fish by putting Sriracha mayonnaise over it.
However, to keep it healthy it’s best to swap the mayo for Greek yogurt instead.
33. Steamed Broccoli
Keep things simple by steaming delicious broccoli. Kids might find it gross but adults will yearn for this childhood staple after eating an endless cavalcade of processed food.
You just need a microwave-safe bowl to cook this—you don’t even need to trot out the steamer!
34. Coffee Mug Cake
If you love coffee cake from the bakery, you can bake one yourself using the right ingredients—cinnamon, flour, butter, sugar, and streusel top—and your trusty microwave.
Just make sure to eat the mug loaf in the morning or late afternoon instead of before bedtime to keep you from robbing yourself of sleep.
35. Chicken Quesadilla
To make a microwaved chicken quesadilla, first microwave the tortillas to crispness. Mix the half cup of cooked shredded chicken, taco seasoning, and peppers in a bowl.
Afterwards, microwave for 1-2 minutes until the peppers become soft. Spread the mix on one tortilla, cover the whole thing with cheese, the top off with the other tortilla. Cook for half a minute, slice and serve.
The Final Countdown
Before the pandemic and lockdowns hit, the average American household spent about $3,000 a year eating out.
Therefore, it’s encouraging to know that you can eat at home by going homemade and depending on your trusty microwave to cook your food for you—whether it’s macaroni and cheese or a whole quiche.
- Kathleen Elkins, “7 legit meals you can make in a microwave that will save you time and money“, CNBC.com, August 31, 2021
- 5-Minute Crafts, “25 QUICK AND DELICIOUS MICROWAVE RECIPES“, YouTube, October 8, 2019
- Amy Richter, Nick English, “34 Surprisingly Delicious Things You Can Make in a Microwave“, Greatist.com, March 15, 2020