Some days, you just don’t have time to cook. It happens. Maybe you had a long day at work and would rather watch Netflix than slave over a hot stove.
Or perhaps you’re running late for a date and need something quick and delicious.
Whatever your reason, frozen dumplings are an easy way to get dinner on the table fast. The best part? You can cook them right in your microwave.
Here’s how to cook frozen dumplings in microwave.
In a microwave-safe bowl, place your desired number of defrosted dumplings. Add hot tap water until they’re halfway submerged. Cover with a plastic wrap or microwavable lid and nuke for 3 minutes on high. Remove from the microwave, drain excess liquid, and serve immediately with sweet chili sauce for dipping.
In this post, we’ll delve deeper and discuss two methods for cooking frozen dumplings in the microwave. We’ll also share some tips for a successful meal and answer frequently asked questions about microwaving frozen dumplings.
Can You Microwave Frozen Dumplings
Yes, you can microwave frozen dumplings. Cooking frozen dumplings in a microwave is easy, fast, and convenient.
However, it’s not as simple as tossing them into a bowl and hitting start. There are some caveats; otherwise, you’ll end up with soggy or rubbery dumplings.
Dumplings are a staple of Chinese cuisine made from dough and stuffed with meat, seafood, or vegetables. You can eat them on their own as an appetizer, but they’re often served alongside other dishes like soups and stir-fries.
Typically, these meat-filled pastries are boiled, steamed, or pan-fried before serving, but a microwave provides a convenient alternative. However, microwaves’ tendency to cook unevenly is one of their major drawbacks. This, coupled with the dumpling’s thin skins and delicate filling, means special attention if you want them to turn out perfect.
So how do you get around that?
Let’s see below tips and tricks for a perfect microwaved dumpling.
Tips for Microwaving Dumplings
Like any other cooking method, microwaving also has its own guidelines and rules. Here are some tips for cooking frozen dumplings in a microwave.
- Don’t Overfill Your Bowl: It is probably one of the most common mistakes people make when microwaving frozen dumplings. An overfilled bowl will result in soggy dumplings due to too much water. The general rule is not to fill it more than 80% of its capacity.
- Don’t Overcook: Frozen dumplings are usually precooked. Cooking them for too long will likely result in dry, hard dumplings. As such, nuke them on high power for no more than 3 minutes. However, microwaves vary, so check them every 30 seconds until they are cooked through.
- Add Hot Tap Water: Hot water will help thaw your dumplings faster and cook them more evenly. It’ll also prevent soggy bottoms. However, don’t fill it more than halfway as you don’t want water spilling over when you nuke it.
- Use a Microwavable Bowl: While any microwave-safe bowl will work, one with at least 2 inches of depth is preferred. This will help prevent water from spilling over when microwaving.
- Cover: While it might seem like an unnecessary step, it will prevent water from spilling over and making a mess. You also don’t want steam escaping while cooking your dumplings. As such, cover with a microwavable lid or plate.
How to Cook Frozen Dumplings in Microwave
There are two ways to cook frozen dumplings in the microwave: microwaving and steaming.
Both will result in delicious, hot dumplings, but each has its benefits. Read on for details about these two easy cooking methods.
Method 1: How to Microwave Dumplings
The method involves submerging dumplings halfway in the water and microwaving them for a few minutes.
Step 1: Defrost Frozen Dumplings
Leave them on your counter for 15 minutes, or place them in your refrigerator overnight. Thawed dumplings are easier to handle and cook faster than frozen ones.
Step 2: Place Dumplings on a Microwave-Safe Plate
You’re advised to place no more than ten dumplings at once. Overcrowding will cause them to stick together and make it difficult to cook evenly. If you’re cooking more than 10, divide them into two or three batches. Also, choose a bowl with tall sides so as not to spill over while cooking.
Step 3: Add Hot Water
Pour enough hot water into your bowl to cover your dumplings halfway. You can check the packaging for instructions on how much water to use since different brands have different requirements.
Step 4: Cover with a Lid
Cover your bowl with plastic wrap or another microwave-safe lid, but don’t seal it tightly. You want some steam to escape so that your dumplings cook evenly.
Step 5: Nuke for 3 Minutes
Cook your dumplings on high power for three minutes. This is enough time to cook them through without drying them out. If you’re using frozen dumplings, add an extra minute or two.
Step 6: Drain the Excess Water
Remove your dumplings from your microwave and drain off any excess water. Use a colander or strainer, or just tilt your bowl. If you want crispy dumplings, not soupy ones, move on to the next step.
Step 7: Oil a Nonstick Pan and Heat It Up
Pour some oil into your nonstick pan and heat it on medium-high. You want it hot enough so that when you add your dumplings, they sizzle immediately. Remember to let your dumplings stand for 15 minutes to dry out before frying them.
Step 8: Fry Your Dumplings
Arrange your dumplings in a single layer on your pan and fry them for two minutes on each side until they’re golden brown. Remove them from your pan with tongs or chopsticks. Serve immediately with soy sauce, vinegar, chili sauce, or other dipping sauces of your choice.
Method 2: How to Steam Dumplings in Microwave
This approach is less risky and gives you more control over doneness than directly cooking your frozen dumplings in the microwave.
Step 1: Put Your Thawed Dumplings on a Microwave-Safe Plate
Defrost your frozen dumplings first, then place them in an oiled microwave-safe bowl to prevent them from sticking.
Step 2: Add 1-2 Tablespoons of Water to Your Bowl
Add enough water to steam your dumplings, then cover with a microwave-safe lid or plastic wrap. Leave room for venting; you don’t want any explosions.
Step 3: Microwave for 2-3 Minutes
Nuke your dumplings on high until they’re cooked, about two minutes per serving. If you’re not sure, cut one open and check it.
Editor’s Tip: Alternatively, use a Ziploc bag. Make sure to drizzle some water on your dumplings and not completely seal the bag.
How Long to Steam Frozen Dumplings in Microwave
The time it takes to steam frozen dumplings in the microwave will vary based on a few factors: microwave wattage, the number of dumplings, and types. Generally speaking, cooking times can range from 3 to 30 minutes.
For example, if you have a 1,000-watt microwave, you’ll need less time than someone with a 700-watt model. If you have one or two dumplings, you’ll need less time than someone who has four or five. And so on.
The best approach is to try out different settings until you find what works best for your situation. Check the packaging of your frozen dumplings for any additional instructions. Most brands should include steaming instructions as well as a recommended cooking time.
How to Reheat Dumplings in Microwave
- Leave frozen dumplings on the counter for 20 minutes or until they are partially thawed.
- Sprinkle the microwave-safe bowl with water, and place frozen dumplings inside.
- Heat your dumplings on high for 3 minutes or until heated through.
- Serve with soy sauce and enjoy.
Faqs On How to Cook Frozen Dumplings in Microwave
1. Do you need to defrost frozen dumplings?
Thawing your dumplings before cooking them is an important step. If you don’t, they will take longer to cook and cook unevenly. The best way to defrost frozen dumplings is by leaving them overnight in your refrigerator or running them under cool water for about 15 minutes.
2. Can suet dumplings be cooked in a microwave?
You can cook suet dumplings in a microwave if you follow simple steps. Sprinkle some water on your dumplings and in the container to prevent them from sticking together or burning while cooking. Also, cover your container with a lid while microwaving to prevent steam from escaping and making your dumplings soggy.
3. Can you cook dumplings in water?
You can boil your dumplings to cook them. Although it is not as quick as cooking them in the microwave, boiling ensures they are thoroughly and evenly cooked. To begin, bring a pot of water to a boil and add your frozen dumplings. The process should take about three minutes; they’re done when they all start floating.
4. How do you cook frozen dumplings in an Air fryer?
Place frozen dumplings on an air fryer sheet. Spray all sides with cooking spray and cook for 8 minutes at 375 degrees F. Flip over and cook for another 2 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with a dipping sauce of your choice.
5. How Long Do Dumplings Last?
If you find yourself with leftover frozen dumplings (or even your homemade batch), don’t despair—you can store them to enjoy later. Store your leftover dumplings in the fridge for up to five days, or freeze them for up to six months. Make sure to adhere to health and safety standards when storing food.
Cooking frozen dumplings in a microwave is an easy way to enjoy your favorite meal at home. Like other cooking methods, it yields the same-quality results but in a fraction of the time and effort.
However, you must follow our steps to ensure that your dumplings turn out perfectly every time. In other words, add hot water to prevent them from sticking to your plate, and take care not to overcook them.
The results will be savory dumplings that are crispy and tender on the inside—just like they should be.
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