Tips & How To’s

How to use a Microwave to Maximize Kitchen Performance

Tim Parry


how to use microwave

Every kitchen deserves at least one microwave, as they are convenient, safe, and easy to use. Microwave ovens are popular and help defrost frozen foods, bake, warm and cook food. But, if you just bought a new one and still trying to figure out how to use it, don't worry; we got you. In this article, we'd like to discuss how to use a microwave.

Read on to know how to use a microwave oven.

Every microwave brand has its functionalities; therefore, you need to read the manual before doing anything. Reading the manual first will help you understand the features of your microwave oven and how to care for it, among other things. The user manuals of some of the best microwaves also enlist the power usage, pre-set programs and warning, if any.

How to Use a Microwave

Step One

Plug-In the Microwave

The first step in using a microwave is to ensure it's plugged into the correct outlet. There are several things to put in mind when deciding which outlet to utilize.

The normal microwave oven has a circuit rated at 120v and 20 amps, indicating that it should be given its outlet. However, it is best if you do not plug it into the same outlet as other high-energy appliances such as a toaster or a blender.

Step Two

Put the Food in a Microwave-Safe Container

Some containers and utensils are not suitable for use in a microwave oven. For example, avoid aluminum foil and metal containers at all costs, as they are not microwave-safe. Instead, use any microwave safe utensil. When you use metal containers, the microwave's electromagnetic waves can cause the metal to spark, which can cause damage to the inside of your microwave.

Similarly, many forms of plastics leak BPS, Phthalates and other harmful substances into the meals when heated, both of which have been linked to cancer. So, try by all means to use a microwave-safe plate.

Glassware is the safest material to use in a microwave oven out of all the options. Glass is not only non-reactive to electromagnetic radiation, but it also doesn't contain any harmful compounds that could seep into your food.

Step Three

Select the Right Setting

Microwave ovens have several pre-programmed capabilities that make them simple to use. The most frequent pre-set option is auto-defrost, which automatically defrosts frozen food based on its selected weight.

Pizza, popcorn, leftovers, and other common pre-set functions are also available. Microwave ovens can, of course, be programmed to run for a specified amount of time. Simply use the number pad to input the required duration, select the intensity setting and press the start button.

Step Four

Start the Microwave

Once you select the right setting, all you need to do is press start so that your microwave can start working. Then, let your food cook, and once the alarm beeps, you can safely remove your food.

Once your food is ready, get it out of the microwave and enjoy. Using the microwave is as easy as that, and we understand that now you can use it well for cooking and reheating food. However, ensure that you do not warm your food for a prolonged period to prevent burning it.

Also, if you do not know how to set up your microwave properly, we shall briefly discuss that.

How to Set Up a Microwave

Step One

Remove the microwave from the box and position it on a flat, dry surface where the air vents are not blocked, and it is convenient for most users. Ideal locations include a clean kitchen counter near your refrigerator or oven and a strong wooden table or kitchen island.

Step Two

Make sure the glass tray and roller ring within the microwave are secure. Most microwaves come with a glass cooking tray and a plastic or rubber roller ring for turning dishes during cooking. This helps them cook more evenly. On top of the roller ring, the glass tray should spin easily and smoothly.

Step Three

Connect the microwave to a grounded outlet. Only utilize a 20 A outlet that isn't shared with house or kitchen lighting or other equipment. Using the microwave correctly keeps you from getting avoidable accidents like burns.

Frequently Asked Questions on How to Use a Microwave

1. Does plastic release toxins when used to heat food in the microwave?

You should never reheat food in a plastic container. Reheating or cooking food in plastic containers (even though microwave safe) is unsafe because the plastic releases a chemical when heated, which leaches into the food and alters its genetic components.

2. Are microwaves safe to use all the time?

All non-ionizing radiation, including microwaves, radio waves, and visible light, is non-ionizing. UV light is the only non-ionizing radiation associated with cancer. Microwave ovens are, in general, safe to use and do not cause cancer or other health problems even when used to reheat leftovers and cook food frequently.

Image source: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics

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Tim Parry

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