20 Delicious Recipes to Cook in the Microwave

A microwave is great for reheating leftovers, but it can also pull its weight as a stand-alone cooking tool. Use it to make your own potato chips, cook dinner — or even bake a loaf of bread.

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Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Renee Comet ©© 2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

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Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Matt Armendariz ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

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Photo By: Renee Comet ©2016, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved

Photo By: Armando Rafael Moutela ©2014, Television Food Network, G.P. All Rights Reserved 2014, Cooking Channel, LLC All Rights Reserved

Microwave Chicken and Dumplings

Food Network Kitchen's version of this old-fashioned dish works beautifully in the microwave. It is made with rotisserie chicken, so you're halfway done before you start. Golden cornmeal dumplings make a tender-chewy topping; using a bowl in a smaller microwave protects them from overcooking.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Chicken and Dumplings

Microwave Chocolate Pudding Cake

Brown sugar in the batter of this classic fudgy cake makes it extra rich and gooey. Baking it in the microwave doesn't heat up the kitchen, which means this cake makes a great summer treat, topped with vanilla (or your favorite) ice cream. The longer the cake cools, the more the pudding is absorbed.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Chocolate Pudding Cake

Microwave Mac and Cheese

This from-scratch mac and cheese cooks in one bowl, and you don't have to boil the macaroni or cook the cheese sauce separately. Plus, it's ready in less than 15 minutes. A blend of American and Jack cheeses makes the sauce smooth and tangy.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Mac and Cheese

Microwave Bread

Although it has no crust or color, this loaf of bread is light and airy, with surprisingly great texture reminiscent of Chinese steamed buns. Equally amazing — it takes only about 4 minutes to bake.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Bread

Microwave Potato Chips

The quickest and easiest way to make your own potato chips at home? The microwave. With just 3 ingredients and Valerie's easy-to-follow recipe you can have a bowl of your own in a matter of minutes.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Potato Chips

Microwave Ginger-Soy Flounder with Snow Peas

Fish and vegetables cook beautifully in the microwave, making it the perfect appliance for healthy dishes like this one. Here, delicate flounder fillets cook gently and evenly on a bed of earthy shiitake mushrooms. While the fish rests outside the oven to finish cooking, you have time to cook the snow peas quickly, ensuring they stay crisp and bright green.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Ginger-Soy Flounder with Snow Peas

Mug Omelet

The microwave is the perfect tool when you need a quick, no-fuss breakfast. You can mix up a cheesy, puffy egg bake (loaded with your favorite meat and veggies) in almost no time. And, because you cook the eggs right in the mug you eat them from, you’ll have one less pan to clean up after your meal.

Get the Recipe: Mug Omelet

Microwave Mushroom Risotto

Here is a risotto that doesn't demand you spend 30 minutes stirring a hot pot. We start with an earthy broth made with dried mushrooms, then add fresh mushrooms and Arborio rice. One stir and, minutes later, you'll have the easiest, creamiest risotto imaginable.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Mushroom Risotto

Microwave Beets with Greens and Goat Cheese

This impressive side dish cooks in a fraction of the time it would take to roast beets in the oven. We use the beet greens, but if you purchase beets without tops, you can substitute 2 cups of other greens such as Swiss chard or kale.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Beets with Greens and Goat Cheese

Chocolate Cake in a Mug

What could be better than a warm chocolate cake for one that’s ready in just 15 minutes? With only a handful of baking staples, a microwave-safe mug and this simple recipe you’ll be indulging in chocolatey goodness in no time. And, because this recipe doesn’t call for eggs, you can feel free to treat yourself to a softer, gooier cake if you prefer.

Get the Recipe: Chocolate Cake in a Mug

Microwave Creamed Spinach

This is a top-notch version of the steakhouse classic. We make it with fresh spinach, which retains a deep bright-green color when cooked briefly in the microwave, and finish it with a crisp topping of toasted breadcrumbs or fried onions.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Creamed Spinach

Microwave Baby Bok Choy with Miso Sauce

This quick and flavorful vegetable side dish comes together in a flash. Vitamin-rich baby bok choy is steamed with garlic and ginger in the microwave and is drizzled with a quick miso sauce. Serve a piece of steamed or pan-roasted flaky white cod or salmon with the bok choy for a healthful and complete dinner.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Baby Bok Choy with Miso Sauce

Microwave Cherry-Almond Crisp

This dessert is special enough for guests but fast and easy enough for a weeknight meal. Crisp up the homemade streusel topping in the microwave and use frozen cherries so this can be a year-round treat.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Cherry-Almond Crisp

Microwave Ratatouille

Using the microwave to cook rounds of eggplant, summer squash and tomatoes arranged decoratively in a pie dish takes far less time (and olive oil) than does traditional ratatouille, a Provencal appetizer or side dish that calls for dicing and sauteing each vegetable separately. 

Get the Recipe: Microwave Ratatouille

Microwave Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

Skip the just-add-water packets! This hearty breakfast dish is packed with cholesterol-lowering soluble fiber. Leaving the apple skin on contributes even more fiber. Most of the fat is a healthy monounsaturated fat from the nuts.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal

Microwave Potato-and-Chorizo Scramble

We scrambled some spicy chorizo sausage and tangy goat cheese into a traditional Spanish tortilla to make a dish that is perfect for brunch or supper. A bit of half-and-half is the secret to these fluffy and tender eggs.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Potato-and-Chorizo Scramble

Microwave Ropa Vieja

This version of ropa vieja ("old clothes") — a Cuban dish of shredded beef in a piquant tomato sauce — has a deep, slow-cooked flavor we would never expect from a microwave. You don't have to brown the steak first; just let it bubble in the sauce until it's tender enough to shred. Serve it over rice to soak up the sauce.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Ropa Vieja

Microwave Fudge

If traditional fudge recipes (and the idea of using a candy thermometer) feel intimidating, this no-fuss recipe is for you. Simply microwave chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk for 5 minutes before stirring in vanilla extract and chopped nuts. Trust us, the hardest part of making this sweet treat is waiting for it to cool in the refrigerator so that you can eat it!

Get the Recipe: Microwave Fudge

Microwave Sweet and Spicy Carrots with Scallions

This simple carrot side dish gets a dose of sweetness from a dash of brown sugar and unrefined coconut oil (unrefined is key, as it has not been whitened or deodorized, so it keeps its mellow coconut flavor in recipes). It's a great addition to any quick, weeknight meal.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Sweet and Spicy Carrots with Scallions

Microwave Brownies

Who knew you could make a pan of fudgy, irresistibly chocolatey brownies from scratch in less than 20 minutes? With the help of the microwave, this beloved treat comes together in a flash.

Get the Recipe: Microwave Brownies

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