Cooking meat in the microwave is one of the best ways to reduce overall energy costs while also preparing meals faster. For many, though, microwave cooking like this isn’t all that familiar. Many people don’t realize that cooking food, including protein, in the microwave is not only possible but a good option.
Cooking Meat In The Microwave
In this article:
- Using Proper Utensils Is the First Step
- Are Microwaves Safe, Then?
- What Can You Cook in the Microwave?
- Maintaining Nutrient Levels in Microwave Cooking
Using Proper Utensils Is the First Step
You may have heard that microwave cooking is not safe. It is if you use the right utensils to do so. In short, you do not want to place anything in the microwave that can melt. If you use items in the microwave that can melt, especially plastics, this can lead to some risk of the chemicals in the plastics to enter into the food you are preparing. Again, the best way to avoid this risk is to use microwave-safe products only.
Are Microwaves Safe, Then?
Microwaves work using waves of energy. They are much like radio waves but are shorter and very selective. They mostly impact just water and molecules that are electrically asymmetrical. That is, one end of the molecule is negatively charged and the other is positively charged. All of this boils down to the fact that microwaves can make these molecules vibrate quickly, which builds up heat. In fact, according to Harvard University, microwaves have one of the safest records of any type of cooking method out there.
Some name brand name cookware, such as Tupperware, is actually ideal for use in microwaves. Some of the company’s products are actually designed for cooking meat in the microwave in that they do not dry it out. Make sure you learn as much as you can about any plastic or other cookware you plan to use in the microwave before doing so.
What Can You Cook in the Microwave?
Microwave cooking is rather versatile in that you can use a variety of meats with good success. Here are a few tips to help you.
- For pork, cook it in some type of fluid, whether is a broth or just water. That’s important because it helps keep the meat from drying out.
- If you wish to brown ground beef in the microwave, you can do so. Look for a cookware piece that allows for a colander-like setup. This will allow the grease to sit under the cooked meat. Be sure to stir it frequently.
- For chicken, you’ll need to use a fluid with the chicken. The key here is to cook it slowly. This can help to reduce the risk that you’ll develop a rubber-like texture in the chicken. You can cook both whole pieces as well as cut up chunks.
You can use all types of seasonings on your meats. You can also cook them on various settings in the microwave (not just fast heating) to ensure you get the right texture. The size, cut of the meat, and the desired finished product all play a role in deciding the length of time it will take to cook any item.
Maintaining Nutrient Levels in Microwave Cooking
When cooking meat in the microwave, be conscious of the nutrients in them. Vegetables, for example, lose some of their nutritional value if they are in water while being cooked. If you plan to place vegetables in the microwave to cook with your meat, you’ll want to cook them at a faster rate than meats. This helps to prevent nutrient loss. This nutrient loss doesn’t happen with most protein.
Microwave cooking is actually highly desirable in terms of a cooking tool. Because it cooks foods faster and uses less energy to do so than your typical stove or oven, it can be an excellent choice for most people. More so, it helps lock in nutrients compared to other methods of cooking.