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How to Microwave Oatmeal – Best Way

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Starting the morning with hot steamy oatmeal, whether it is sweet or savory, is a tried and true breakfast tradition. Adding oats, splash of milk, salt, vanilla, and top with nuts and fruits in a microwaveable bowl can completely fuel your morning to start the day.

Because oats needs time to cook, it is not possible to cook oatmeal in the microwave in less than a couple of minutes. In fact, a microwave is the perfect kitchen gadget to cook any type of oats

How do you microwave oatmeal? Add milk or water with oats, salt, splash of vanilla extract for smooth flavor and unsalted butter in a microwave safe bowl. Place the bowl uncovered in the microwave, nuke on high power for 30 second intervals with frequent stirring. 

The cooking time ranges between 90 seconds to 3 minutes for quick oats or rolled oats, and 7 to 10 minutes for steel cut oats, ultimately depending on the kind of oats, portion size being cooked and desired tenderness. 

Garnish with oatmeal toppings such as berries, nuts, seeds, and slices of banana and cinnamon spices to create a hearty and nutritious meal.

Hearty, sweet, and diverse flavor from the toppings, oatmeal wakes up your tastebuds every morning, and offers a healthy and nutritious meal to start the day.

The microwave is a quick way to reheat oatmeal that has already been cooked without altering its original taste. 

If you always end up with porridge texture like oatmeal, in this article, we are answering frequently asked questions about the best way to microwave oatmeal to fulfill your needs.

Is microwaving oatmeal healthy?

Yes, microwaving oatmeal is heathy. In fact, it is known a healthy superfood grain that does not change its nutritional value while heating in the microwave.

The benefits of oats include , increased fiber intake, reduced cholesterol levels and helps to stay full for a long time. Furthermore, this superfood grain is also a great option for weight loss.

There are many ways to prepare oatmeal such as making it from scratch or using pre-packaged instant oatmeal. When serving instant oatmeal, be aware of the increased sugar content that you may want to stay avoid when trying to find healthy ways to consume oatmeal.

Is it bad to microwave oatmeal?

No, it is not bad to microwave oatmeal. Reheating or even cooking oatmeal in the microwave is a completely safe way to prepare oats to reach the desired consistency.

When microwaving oatmeal, consider using a deep bowl that is less than ⅔ filled with oats and cooking liquid to allow plenty of space to heat up fully without boiling over or exploding while in the microwave. 

Is microwave oatmeal better with milk or water?

Microwave oatmeal is better with milk instead of water. Adding milk brings the taste whole new level of creaminess, smoother texture and increased nutritional value.

In contrast, water makes the oatmeal more gooey and milk tends to make a stickier and thicker oatmeal. Additionally, dairy or non-dairy milk makes microwave oatmeal creamy and delicious without changing texture too much. 

Not only the taste and texture aspect, microwave oatmeal with milk offers more protein compared to simply adding water.

How do you make oatmeal in the microwave?

Microwave is convenient kitchen gadget to make oatmeal instead of using a stovetop or rice cooker. In fact, it is the fastest way and takes the shortest amount of cooking time to prepare oatmeal quickly.

In order to make ½ cup or single serving oatmeal in the microwave, add 1 cup or water or milk, dash of salt, and optionally add a splash of vanilla extract or 1 tablespoon of butter to flavor.

Combine all the ingredients in a deep medium sized microwave-safe bowl and mix it well.

Microwave on high for 2 minutes to 3 minutes. Stir every 15 to 30 seconds and stir one more time before serving. 

Finish with oatmeal toppings such as nuts, berries, slices of bananas, chia seeds, and a drizzle of honey for extra sweetness. Enjoy while it is hot and delicious.

How long to microwave oatmeal?

Microwaving oatmeal is quite simple and easy as well as taking the shortest amount of time. Depend on the microwave wattage, oat type, serving size and the tenderness of the cook oatmeal, the microwave cooking time may vary.

In general, plain old-fashioned oatmeal whether with milk or water, takes about 1½ minutes to 3 minutes in high power. Steel cut oats can take up to 10 minutes to be fully cooked in the microwave.

To fully cook or heat up the oatmeal in the microwave, use 30 second intervals with frequent stirring so the heat distributes through out the bowl and the oats do not boil over.

How do I microwave oatmeal without it exploding?

When not being cautious, oatmeal tends to explode in the microwave and results in a mess to clean up afterwards. The texture and taste will alter with heat pockets that dry out the surface or scorch the oats making them edible and unrecoverable.

When microwaving oatmeal, most likely the outer surface of the oats are too rigid to expand smoothly as the moisture of inside change into steam at high pressure. The resulting surface is not big enough to let the steam escape causing the oatmeal to explode. 

To avoid oatmeal exploding in the microwave, instead of using high heat, consider reducing the power and increase the cooking time. A lower heat setting with slow cooking time helps the surface of oats to soften and then transition to expand much slower pace. 

Since a microwave tends to make everything heat up too fast, cutting the power by 30% with a longer cooking time will prevent the liquid from boiling rapidly and alleviate the issue of oatmeal boiling over in the microwave. 

Tips to microwave oatmeal

On a busy morning, preparing a large breakfast can become a hassle. However, using a microwave can save time to prepare a hot bowl of nutritious oatmeal in a couple of minutes.

However, microwaving oatmeal may result exploding, spilling, and alter undesirable texture when not done right.

Here are helpful tips to microwave oatmeal to nail the perfect consistency and doneness every time:

  • Use proper oatmeal liquid ratio per serving.
  • Place deep microwave-safe oatmeal bowl and only fill ⅔ way and leave the top of the dish empty to prevent spill over. 
  • Alternatively, add oat milk for a dairy-free option to enhance the flavor.
  • Whether you cook or heat up oatmeal, stir every 15 to 30 seconds with a wooden spoon to distribute the heat. 
  • Lower the power by 30% to avoid the oatmeal from exploding while microwaving. Less heat and longer cook time is a formula for success.

Best way to microwave oatmeal

To start the day with a bowl of hot oatmeal, the microwave will save preparing time and make the process super easy.

Always read the oatmeal cooking instruction on the packaging when making from scratch. Based on the microwave wattage, serving size, oat type and water ratio, the microwave cook time will vary.

Start by combining the desired amount of oats, milk or water, salt in a microwaveable deep bowl. Optional additions include a splash of vanilla extract or butter to enhance the flavor.

Uncover the bowl and place it in microwave to run on high for about 1½ to 3 minutes for quick or rolled oats, and 7 to 10 minutes for steel cut oats. To avoid exploding or spilling over, stop every 15 to 30 seconds to stir well and evenly distribute the heat.

Stir before serving, and decorate with oatmeal toppings like fresh berries, honey, toasted nuts, and banana slices to enjoy while the bowl of joy is hot and fresh. 

When reheating already prepared oatmeal, add a splash of water or milk and microwave on high for 15 seconds at a time. Stir well until the internal temperature reaches 74℃ or 165℉ and adjust the consistency by adding more liquid while heating. 

How to microwave oatmeal

Microwaving Oatmeal: Conclusion

Microwave is perfect tool to reheat or even cook oatmeal from scratch. Typically takes less than 5 minutes to get the right doneness, which is much faster compared to stove top method. 

In addition, microwaving oatmeal does not alter the nutritional value of the oats. The cooked oats taste great, and you can even increase the protein content for each serving by using milk instead of water.

Making oatmeal in the microwave is simple and generally takes between 1½ to 3 minutes for rolled oats and quick oats, and up to 10 minutes for steel cut oats. Depending on the serving portion, kind of oats, water ratio, and appliance wattage, microwave timing can vary. 

Mix well oats, water or milk with salt for starter. Adding vanilla extract and butter can be a great option for flavoring. Start with high power for 15 to 30 seconds at a time, and stir in-between each interval to cook the oats evenly.

To prevent the oatmeal from exploding, lower the heat power to 30% and increase the microwave time. Slow, low and frequent stirring is the best policy for successfully microwaving oatmeal to perfect doneness.

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