1. Slice onions much more easily
You won’t have to worry about crying over onion peel anymore with this amazing hack. Simply trim off the ends of the onion, then heat it in the microwave for around 30 seconds. Your eyes will no longer sting when you chop into it – genius!
2. Remove old stamps
You can use your microwave to remove a postage stamp without making a complete mess! Simply place a couple of drops of water on the stamp, then microwave the letter for about 20 seconds. The stamp will peel away easily.
3. Make lumpy brown sugar smooth again
Brown sugar can often turn into a huge, stubborn lump when it’s left in the cupboard too long. To make it smooth again, place a piece of damp paper towel in the box, close the box tightly and then put the whole thing in the microwave for 20 to 30 seconds on high.
4. Quickly clean a disgusting microwave
Have you had a food explosion and then forgotten to clean it up? Never fear – you can heat a glass bowl of water containing a small amount of vinegar for around five minutes. This will make the inside of the microwave nice and steamy. Then simply wipe down the inside and the grime will come off without a problem.
5. Quickly clean your microwave
Simply throw a handful of wet kitchen roll in your microwave and leave it to cook on high for 3-5 minutes. The steam from the towels will soften any grime on the inside of the appliance. Once the kitchen roll cools down, use it to easily wipe the microwave’s interior.
6. Cook fish well in the microwave
What’s the secret to cooking fish well in the microwave? Dry the fish thoroughly and overlap the tail ends of thin fillets so that the fish cooks evenly. Remove all fish from your microwave when it is still opaque, as the fillet will continue to cook while standing and may become overcooked.
7. Dry herbs in the microwave
Parsley and other herbs dry beautifully in the microwave, which completely reduces waste. Place about 150g of your selected herb on a paper towel and microwave on high for 2 to 4 minutes. Crumble into the paper towel and voilà – dried herbs!
8. Restore crystallised honey to its former glory
A jar of honey notoriously keeps for ages in the cupboard, but it usually crystallises after a couple of months. Rather than being tempted to throw it away, simply remove the lid and heat it on 50% power for 2 minutes.
9. Make a hot compress
If you suffer from sore muscles or joint pain, then a hot compress can often provide some welcome relief. Luckily, your microwave can conjure one up in moments. Simply heat a damp hand towel or wash cloth on high for about one minute and you’ll have a soothing hot compress in no time.
10. Get more juice out of your citrus
If you want to get even more juice of your lemons and limes, then place a whole piece of fruit into the microwave. Heat it for 20-30 seconds on high power – this makes the fruit extra juicy and incredibly easy to squeeze.
11. Find out if your containers are microwave safe
The following is an easy test to determine whether one of your mystery containers is microwave safe. Fill a mug you already know is safe with cold water. Place the mug on the container you want to test and put everything in the microwave together. Heat on high for 1 minute. If the water is hot and the testing container is cold, then the container is safe. If the testing container is hot then it’s not microwave safe.
12. Keep bread nice and moist
You may be familiar with this problem if you’ve ever loaded up a sandwich then realised that the tasty filling has made the bread soggy. Place a bit of kitchen roll around sandwiches, rolls and other baked goods – this will absorb any moisture that would otherwise make the filling go damp or limp.
13. Peel garlic quickly and easily
You can peel garlic in an instant with this easy trick! For a single clove, heat in the microwave for 15 seconds. The heat draws the moisture out of the clove which gets trapped between the skin and then loosens it so you can peel it away quickly.
14. Easily peel certain foods
If you need to peel foods such as tomatoes or peaches, then simply heat them for 30 seconds and allow to stand for around 2 minutes. The peel will then slip away, leaving you to slice the food how you want.
15. Poach eggs without making a mess
Poaching eggs is always tricky, but the microwave can do the job for you. Pour boiling kettle water into a microwave-proof bowl and and lightly pierce the yolk with a toothpick. Cover the bowl with clingfilm and microwave on full power for 30 seconds. Remove, then gently turn the egg and cook on full power for another 20 seconds.
16. Soak lentils and beans
It’s happened to many of us at one point – a recipe requires soaking some chickpeas overnight and you’ve completely forgotten to do it. But never fear – you can simply place the beans or lentils in a bowl with a pinch of bicarbonate of soda, then cover with water. Microwave on high power for 10 minutes, then allow to rest for 30-40 seconds. Use as directed in your recipe.
17. Make stale bread moist again
You can rehydrate stale bread by wrapping it in a completely damp piece of kitchen roll and then microwaving on high power in 10 second bursts. Keep checking the bread to see whether it is moist enough and repeat as necessary.
18. Cook certain foods without creating an explosion
There are actually lots of foods you can cook in the microwave, particularly thick-skinned vegetables such as potatoes, squash and tomatoes. Although these foods trap steam during the cooking process, if you make sure to pierce the skins before heating then you’ll end up with perfect veg every time.
19. Make old crisps crunchy again
You can save leftover crisps that have lost their crunch by placing them on some kitchen roll and heating them very briefly. The kitchen roll will absorb the moisture and restore the crips to their original crisp-ness.
20. Toast nuts and spices
It’s really easy to make nuts, spices and seeds smell beautiful and aromatic with just a few moments inside the microwave. You can even place whole spices into a microwavable bowl and zap them on full power for 15 seconds, creating a spicy aroma in no time at all.