Microwaves are a convenient and time-saving way to prepare food, but they can be a messy affair if not handled correctly.
One common drawback is the dreaded splatter that occurs during the heating process.
Fortunately, there are effective techniques to minimize splatter and keep your microwave clean.
In this article, we will explore practical tips on how to microwave without splatter.
Factors that Lead to Splatter
There are several factors that contributes to splattering in the microwave. Here are some common reasons:
High moisture content
Foods with high moisture content, such as soups are more likely to splatter in the microwave.
The water inside the food can rapidly turn into steam, causing the food to burst and create splatters.
Microwaves heat food unevenly, with some areas becoming hotter than others.
This creates hot spots within the food, leading to sudden bursts of steam and splattering.
Lack of cover or venting
When microwaving food without a cover or venting, steam builds up inside the container.
Eventually, the pressure becomes too high and causes the food to splatter.
Microwave power and cooking time
Using a higher power setting or cooking food for an extended period can increase the likelihood of splattering.
The intense heat can cause the food to heat up rapidly and potentially burst.
Overfilling containers can result in the food bubbling over and splattering.
Leave enough space for the food to expand or release steam during the heating process.
How to Microwave Without Splatter
To minimize splattering when using a microwave, follow these tips:
- Cover your food
Use a microwave-safe lid like the Tovolo Vented Collapsible Medium Microwave Cover to cover your food while microwaving.
This helps trap the steam preventing it from escaping and splattering inside the microwave.
- Use microwave-safe containers
Make sure you are using a microwave-safe container that is designed to handle the heat of the microwave.
- Leave a small opening
If you’re covering your food with a microwave-safe lid, leave a small vent to allow steam to escape.
This helps prevent pressure buildup, thus reducing the likelihood of splattering.
- Use a larger container
Choose a container that is larger than the food you are microwaving.
This will give the food some room to move around and reduce the chance of splattering.
- Stir the food
If you’re heating foods prone to splattering, such as soups, stop the microwave every 30 seconds or so and give your food a stir.
This will help distribute the heat more evenly and reduce the chance of splattering.
- Use a microwave-safe splatter guard
You can place a microwave-safe splatter guard like the Tovolo Vented Collapsible Medium Microwave Cover over your food to contain any potential splatter.
These are usually transparent covers with small holes to allow steam to escape while preventing splattering.
- Use a microwave-safe paper towel
Placing a microwave-safe paper towel like Bounty Quick-Size Paper Towel over your food will help absorb any splatter thus preventing it from spreading inside the microwave.
- Adjust power and time
Consider reducing the microwave power level and increasing the cooking time for certain foods.
This gentler heating approach can help minimize splattering.
How to Clean Splatters
Cleaning splatters in the microwave is a relatively simple process. Here’s a step-by-step guide:
- Unplug the microwave.
- Remove the turntable and wash it in the sink.
- Mix a solution of equal parts water and vinegar in a microwave-safe bowl.
- Place the bowl in the microwave and run it on high for 5 minutes.
- Let the bowl sit for a few minutes to allow the steam to loosen the splatters.
- Carefully remove the bowl from the microwave. Wipe down the interior with a damp cloth.
- Use a scrub brush to remove any stubborn spots.
- Don’t forget to wipe the exterior of the microwave with a damp cloth to remove any stains.
- Wash the turntable and any other removable parts in the sink.
- Use a dry towel to thoroughly dry the interior, turntable, and exterior of the microwave.
- Plug the microwave back in and test it to make sure it’s working properly.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Should I do if food splatter in the microwave?
If food splatters in the microwave, you should stop the microwave immediately to prevent further splattering.
Use oven mitts to remove the food container.
Immediately clean it up with a damp cloth to prevent it from sticking and becoming harder to clean later.
Why does my microwave always create a mess with splatters?
Microwaves heat food by exciting the water molecules inside it, causing them to release steam.
If the steam can’t escape properly or the container is not covered, it causes splatters.
Using a microwave-safe cover will help prevent this.
Are there any specific microwave settings or power levels that can help reduce splattering?
Yes, using a lower power setting and covering the food with a microwave-safe lid helps reduce splattering in the microwave.