Gourmet Meals You Can Make In the Microwave

When microwaves first came out, they were supposed to revolutionize cooking. No longer would we have to spend hours slaving over a hot oven just to get dinner on the table — instead, we could simply pop all the ingredients in the microwave, turn it on, and go do … whatever people did for fun in the ’70s.

Nowadays, most people mainly use their microwaves for popping popcorn, heating beverages, defrosting meats, and blowing things up. It’s a shame, really, because there are so many meals that can be made entirely in the microwave with minimum effort. Like these:

Risotto

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Risotto is notoriously finicky when made the traditional way, which is why it’s weird that this risotto is basically effortless to make and turns out perfectly every time. And by effortless, we mean effortless: cook something, heat something, mix the ingredients together, cook, stir, cook, stir, eat. It’s that simple.

Mac ‘n Cheese

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Are you having a mac attack? (Sorry, we’ve always wanted to write that.) Then why not whip up this incredibly creamy mac ‘n cheese in the microwave? This recipe calls for noodles that have been precooked on the stove, but we know you’re better than that. For the full, complete microwave experience, put your noodles in a large bowl with enough hot water to fully cover them and then some, and cook on high, stirring occasionally, until they’re done. Then drain and follow the recipe from there.

Meatloaf

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Why spend hours baking a meatloaf (a feat which requires preparation and planning ahead — skills which many of us microwave jockeys lack) when you can quickly mix it up, throw it in the microwave, and have a steaming hot meatloaf on your plate in less than 45 minutes total?

Mug Cake

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Once you’ve had your delicious microwaved dinner, consider busting out that microwave one more time and crafting a mini microwaved dessert cake — in a mug! Just mix all your ingredients together in a microwave safe mug, zap it for a few minutes, and you’ll have a fluffy cake with next to no cleanup. Plus, you can add chunks of chocolate bar, bits of crumbled Oreo cookie, or whatever strikes your fancy for a truly gourmet experience.