Perceived as unhealthy, but why do people use microwave oven even up to this day?
Thousands of units are being produced every day for different brands, capacities, and designs.
And during peak season, microwave oven manufacturers can’t even supply in time because of the high demand.
Join me as we find the answer.
Why Do People Use Microwave Oven?
The simplest answer is convenience. Besides, a microwave oven cooks faster and thus can be more energy-efficient than the conventional way of cooking.
Likewise, a microwave oven can cook a variety of foods.
While the microwaving myth has caused some confusion to people… some studies have indicated that food cooked in microwave ovens can retain more food nutrients.
Below are the most common reasons why people choose to use Microwave ovens.
1. Reheating Cooked Food
This is very typical, especially for office workers who bring their meals. While others will rely on convenience store-prepared packed foods that come in handy and will just reheat them using office provided microwave before eating.
At home, it’ll be for the leftover foods that are still okay for consumption that would best serve the microwave oven’s purpose.
2. Defrosting Frozen Foods
Cooked foods that are reserved for future consumption will be done efficiently by defrosting using a microwave oven when you’re about to gobble them, rather than leaving it open to thaw naturally and then reheat using the ordinary way.
Defrosting using a microwave is the fastest way to thaw frozen food which could also minimize the growth of bacteria.
Likewise, frozen raw food that was reserved for future consumption is dealt accordingly by defrosting it first before cooking.
In restaurants, microwave ovens are common because of this very purpose… defrosting frozen raw and even cooked ingredients.
Let’s take a look at the below example:
Here’s frozen meat and will try to defrost using a microwave oven.
I use the same container as it is a microwave-safe type of plastic. So, just make sure that the turntable is fixed well then place the food that is to be thawed.
Normally, digital microwave ovens have two auto-defrost functions (defrost by weight or defrost by time). Choose which one fits you.
Of course, for mechanical types, all you have to do is rotate the control knob and set it to a position marked “defrost”. Then wait until you hear the end bell alarm.
Here, I have selected dEF1 which is a defrost function by weight. If you have a kitchen scale then utilize it to know the exact weight of the food so that you can select the nearest weight setting.
After pressing dEF1, the weight selection is displayed, turning the control knob you can set the desired weight. In this example, I set it to 100 grams.
After selecting the weight of the food the defrost time is automatically generated (default program) which is in this case was 3 minutes.
Then press the Start button to commence defrosting.
And below is the frozen meat that has just been thawed. In any case, if you think that defrosting is not enough, you can always do it again and maybe in a much shorter time.
Defrost function uses lower power (normally 10% of rated power), so as not to cause overcooking of the food.
Yes, microwave ovens are not limited to just reheating and defrosting only.
Microwaves as commonly known can be used to cook a variety of dishes.
Standard type microwaves can cook foods such as vegetables, fish, meat, pasta, pizza, potatoes, and soup to name a few.
Some brands provide recipe books when you buy a microwave oven, while you can freely search for microwave recipes on the internet.
Important note when cooking using Microwave Oven:
- Do not microwave a whole egg without poking a light puncture on the eggshell… it will explode (you can be safer using an egg boiler or food steamer if you want a hard-boiled egg)
- Do not microwave a whole potato without punctured holes around the potato… it will explode
- Only use containers that are labeled microwave-safe especially plastic containers
- Avoid using metal containers as it can cause sparking and cause accidents
- Don’t put or include sharp metal objects such as forks when microwaving… it can cause sparking and damage your microwave and worst create accidents or fire
- Always FOLLOW the SAFETY INSTRUCTIONS stated in the user’s manual
Like normal cooking, microwaves can also be used for baking. This is especially true for microwave designs that include grill and convection functions.
This type of design is more popular for built-in microwaves.
However, it is also available for the freestanding type of microwave oven… and of course at a much higher price tag.
Below are related articles that cover both Built-in and Freestanding Microwave ovens.
Built-in: What is Major Domestic Appliances
Freestanding: What is Small Domestic Appliances
Microwaved foods do not become radioactive or contaminated as opposed to what some people think! The process that which the microwave energy that is produced or emitted by the magnetron is changed to heat as it is absorbed by the food that cooks the food.
Why Microwave is a Good Choice?
As explained above, Microwave cooking is faster thus it is more efficient than another conventional way of cooking… especially for busy individuals.
One very obvious example is if I just want to reheat food, with the microwave I just need to press one button and it can be done in seconds.
Additionally, microwaves are safe to use.
Supported by some studies that microwave cooking can retain more food nutrients than normal cooking (e.g. frying, etc)
While there are people who have been mystified by the myth that microwaved food is unhealthy, there has been no recorded evidence that they cause harm.
One disclaimer though, unless you have reheated a spoilt leftover or overdue food that caused you an upset stomach.
As pointed out above, some studies even suggest that using a microwave oven to cook food is healthier than another traditional way of cooking (e.g. frying)
And one would think, why thousands upon thousands of units are being produced up to this day if microwave causes health risks or other issues with the food that are cooked by microwaving.
Moreover, premium brands and companies are spending huge money on innovation by developing new microwave designs such as smart microwave ovens.
Thus, it only proves that microwave is a safe product!
And a lot of people are still patronizing the Microwave ovens.
So, there you have it folks, thank you for reading. If you find this article helpful or if you have questions and suggestions please leave them in the comment area. And I will be glad to answer them as soon as I can.