Anyday Cookware Wants You To Cook All Your Food in the Microwave

Dinner from-scratch in the microwave? It's possible.

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August 17, 2021

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By Rachel Trujillo for Food Network Kitchen

If it weren’t for my discovery of microwave scrambled eggs (an office favorite for years — trust me, if done right they’re delicious), I would have been far more apprehensive turning to a microwave for anything other than popcorn. But since I spent many mornings wholeheartedly defending my microwaved breakfast choice, I couldn’t pass up the intrigue of a set of cookware designed solely to turn an underutilized appliance into a three-meals-a-day workhorse. Eager to test out Anyday Cookware, I got my hands on a full set and got cooking.

I tested a variety of foods, starting with basic grains and vegetables before tackling the cookware’s provided recipes of Chicken and Black Bean Taco Bowl and Chia and Oatmeal Pudding. Putting raw chicken breasts in the microwave felt sacrilegious, but my skeptical mind was pleasantly surprised by almost everything I ate in my few days of testing.

Anyday Cookware’s FAQ page offers an answer to nearly every question you might have about cooking in the microwave. It’s a good place to start if you find yourself wondering if cooking in the microwave is safe, good for you or why you would consider cooking with one in the first place. They also do a great job of breaking down the nitty gritty of your microwave’s power levels and why it’s okay that the lids have a metal rim (yes, they’re microwave-safe). Below, you’ll find my full review on Anyday Cookware so you can start making the most of your microwave, too.

First, Check Your Microwave’s Wattage

If your relationship with using a microwave is limited to quickly heating up leftovers, you’ll need to shift to a more precise mindset (especially if you’re cooking meat). From our experience, even a few-minute difference when cooking in a microwave can drastically change the outcome, so you’ll want to be exact when setting the timer. To determine how long each food item will cook, you’ll first want to make note of your microwave’s wattage. This is typically located on a label inside of your microwave’s door, and Anyday instructs you to base cooking off the output wattage. As noted on Anyday’s site, their recipes default to 1000 watts, but there are instructions on how to adjust the time depending on your microwave.

Directions are Simple (and Important!)

Cooking with Anyday Cookware isn’t as easy as placing your food in the container and pressing start, though it’s not too far off. You first need to understand a few important details about how the cookware works to ensure the best results.

The lid is what makes this cookware unique. Both the dishes and the lids are made from heat-resistant borosilicate glass, but the lid’s silicone seal makes it airtight to hold in steam and lock in moisture (i.e. your food won’t be dry and rubbery). The lid also has a silicone knob that acts as a vent and must be left open while cooking. While the site claims that the soft silicone vent will lift on its own if you forget, take it from me that it’s best not to miss this step.

Another crucial direction that can easily result in confusion is paying attention to power level. This isn’t the same as your wattage and should be adjusted when cooking dishes like rice and pasta. I misunderstood this the first two times I cooked rice and couldn’t understand why I was getting burnt pucks rather than fluffy grains. Luckily, following this step is as easy as hitting the power level button on your microwave’s panel. Now I can make rice in half the time without pulling out any bulky gadgets.

Tender Chicken Cooked In 10 Minutes

Similarly to my thoughts on other quick-cooking kitchen gadgets, I assumed I would only like Anyday Cookware for hard-to-ruin side dishes like potatoes or rice. It still surprises me that my favorite taco bowl meal (and the one I am most likely to make on repeat) included a raw chicken breast. Seasoned with cumin, garlic powder and chili powder and mixed with beans, a bell pepper and, of course, chicken, this meal was prepped in just over 10 minutes. Cook time was less than that, requiring only nine minutes in my microwave. I checked the temperature of my chicken to make sure it was cooked through before adding to a pile of rice. The meat was juicy and flavorful, and the seasoning mixture is one I’ll be replacing taco seasoning with indefinitely. It was easy, fast and decently delicious for a quick dinner option.

Portion Sizes Were Misleading

The moment I started making the Chicken and Black Bean Taco Bowl, which called for only one chicken breast and bell pepper for a two-person serving, I knew the portion amount was going to be off for my household. This is a small problem with a quick fix (I’ll just double up next time), but it is worth noting that you’ll need to take portioning into your own hands when following the provided recipes.

The Design Has Some Drawbacks

As you can imagine, these dishes will be pretty hot after 10 to 20 minutes in the microwave. I found them hard to grip when pulling out of the microwave and would have appreciated a handle or gripped edge for easier transporting. I love that idea of one bowl being able to do it all (they are microwave-, dishwasher-, freezer- and oven-safe up to 500 degrees F), but I did find them to be too bulky for storing leftovers in the fridge. It sounds convenient to cook, store and reheat meals in the same dish, but it wasn’t always a realistic option for me.

Overall I was impressed with how much this small set can tackle, and I look forward to both cooking and serving food out of these beautiful frosted bowls over and over again.

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