How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave? [5 Quick Steps]

How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave?Unsure how to reheat tamales in the microwave? Whether they are homemade or you purchased them from your beloved Mexican restaurant, there are different ways to reheat your leftover tamales.

If you’re short of time, the best way to reheat your tamales is by using the microwave since it is pretty fast than the other methods.

Though it takes less time, one setback is it doesn’t give that brown and crispy exterior.

But if you follow the steps below, you’ll have the tastiest tamales ever!

How to reheat tamales in microwave? Arrange your tamales on a microwavable plate while spacing between the pieces. Ensure they are not in direct contact with one another to ensure they heat up evenly. Microwave the tamales for two to three minutes on medium power. While still heating, you can flip them to the other side to heat and the inside to reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step by Step Process on How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave

Step 1: Defrost the tamales

If you’re using frozen tamales, you should start by defrosting them using the different ways available. If you’re in a hurry, microwaving is the best option to thaw your tamales.

Step 2: Wrap the Tamale in a damp paper towel

Follow by wetting the paper towel under the tap and wringing out the excess water. Then wrap the tamales using the paper towels. Doing so helps retain moisture inside the packaging, holding your tamales and limiting their chances of drying up.

Step 3: Put the tamales on a microwave-safe plate

Place your tamales on a microwavable plate. Only place a maximum of two tamales on a plate and ensure they are well-spaced and are not touching each other,

Step 4: Heat for one to two minutes

Insert your microwave-safe plate into the microwave and set the heat on high. The tamales will be ready after one or two minutes. After the time is up, let them stay in the microwave for one minute and check if it’s ready.

If not yet, heat them for 15 more seconds and keep heating in intervals until you’re content with the outcome. In the subsequent round, it will be ideal to unwrap the first damp towel and using a new one to cover the tamales to ensure it remains moist.

Step 5: Unwrap the tamale and serve

Once the microwave beeps, after the second round, remove them and let them cool for some minutes. Serve and start enjoying.

How to Thaw Frozen Tamales Before Heating

How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave?Defrosting is critical before heating tamales. Failure to thaw will lead to soggy and wet tamales, which might totally affect their taste. It might sometimes cause accidents, especially when deep-frying with a pan or skillet.

The oil might splash water from the frozen tamales touching it, which can be risky. Therefore, thawing is extremely critical.

There are different ways to defrost tamales, and here are some methods which you can use:

  1. First, you can cover them with a damp towel or a paper towel and let them stay for three to four hours to thaw.
  2. Secondly, you can place your tamales in the microwave for three minutes on average heat. Place them in a microwavable tray and cover using a lid or bowl to prevent spillage.
  3. Lastly, you can put them in the refrigerator overnight for reheating the following day.

Using any of the three methods above will ensure your tamales are appropriately thawed and good for reheating.

Do You Microwave Tamales in The Corn Husk?

Basically, it’s advisable to reheat tamales in the corn husks so they can maintain their shape and moisture amount. The corn husks help cover the masa and contents and ensure the tamales’ fillings heat well.

For perfect results, you can keep the husks wet using cold water or wrap the tamales with a wet paper towel. Furthermore, the wet paper towel and a piece of the plastic wrapper can help lock the moisture to ensure smooth reheating.

Additionally, the corn husks will still be in place when thawing tamales in the microwave. They will thus retain tamales’ shape and prevent them from drying while retaining their flavor if thawed before reheating.

How to Tell If Tamales Are Bad

Finally, it’s critical to know how to identify spoiled or fresh tamales. If they have stayed at room temperature beyond two hours, there’s a high chance they have gone bad.

When tamales have spoiled, they start producing a foul smell, and molds will start forming around them. The color might also change from the usual yellowish color to a pink or orange hue.

It’s advisable to always start by checking your tamales before reheating them. If you notice even a single piece looking funny, you should ruminate about throwing them away for safety reasons.

Faqs on How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave

What is The Best Way to Reheat Tamales?

How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave?If steaming, get the tamales from the bag and put them in a hot steamer for roughly 20 minutes and if defrosted, add five to ten more minutes. And if you’re oven baking, preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.

Get the tamales from the bag, cover them using foil, and arrange them on a baking pan. Bake the tamales for 15 to 20 minutes if defrosted and 20 to 25 minutes if frozen.

How Do You Reheat Tamales in Corn Husk?

Use cold water to wet the husk or cover using a wet paper towel, then arrange it on a microwavable plate as you leave some space between them. Microwave the tamales for one or two minutes to reheat them.

How Do I Steam Tamales in Microwave?

Take the corn husks and spread them evenly in a microwave steamer. Cover the steamer’s lid and open the tab to allow steam to escape, then nuke for three to five minutes on high or until the inner temperature attains 165 degrees Fahrenheit or 74 degrees Celsius.

How Do You Eat Leftover Tamales?

It’s not essential at all to reheat your tamales before munching them. Though most people prefer them hot and fresh from the pan, there’s no particular law that states you shouldn’t eat them cold.

Can You Bake Tamales Instead Of Steaming Them?

The traditional way of cooking tamales is mixing your preferred ingredients and then using a corn husk to steam them. But you can decide to bake your tamales. Whether you decide to bake, steam or microwave tamales, the tamale’s corn husk covering will ensure it cooks evenly and prevents it from drying.

How Do You Steam Tamales If You Don’t Have a Steamer?

Start by rolling three sheets of aluminum foil into baseball-sized balls. Put them at the bottom of the pot and add approximately one inch of water. Then put the plates above the foil balls and add your tamales to the plate. Take a tight-fitting lid and cover the pot and let them steam.

What Happens If You Steam Tamales For Too Long?

Always ensure that you don’t overcook or undercook your tamales. Overcooking the tamales can make them extremely soggy and soft, and they might collapse while trying to cut them.

How Long Do Tamales Last in The Fridge?

Tamales can last for roughly one week in the fridge, six months in the freezer, and only four hours over the counter. If storing in the refrigerator or fridge, it’s recommendable to store your tamales by wrapping them in a plastic wrap and put in an airtight container. However, never leave tamales over the counter for more than four hours.

Are You Supposed to Eat Husk Of a Tamale?

If you’re not used to the tamale environment, you may wonder if you should eat the corn husks. No, you can’t eat the corn husks though they are perfect for wrapping food when cooking.

How Do You Unwrap a Tamale?

Start by pilling off one edge of the wrapper (normally a plantain leaf or a corn husk) and continue crunching. After you’ve finished, throw the wrapping in the bin and continue your daily activities. Tamales were initially designed to be handheld while eating, like how you grab a sandwich or paper wrapped bagels.

How Do You Reheat Tamales Without Drying Them Out?

First, never wrap tamales with aluminum foil but wrap each tamale with a wet paper towel to prevent it from drying out. Then arrange your tamales evenly spaced out on a microwave-friendly plate. Only heat less than two tamales at a time on medium to high heat for 15 seconds.

Can You Steam Tamales Wrapped In Foil?

How to Reheat Tamales in Microwave?Bring the two sides of the corn husk and fold to close the filling. Twist the ends together and tie using a tie. Take a piece of aluminum foil and use it to wrap individual tamales tightly.

Can I Reheat Tamales In An Air Fryer?

Place enough frozen tamales inside the air fryer basket or rack. Hot air coming from the air fryer will help in heating them. Adjust the temperature to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and cook for about ten to twelve minutes. Remove the tamales from the air fryer, then serve.

How Long Should You Steam Tamales?

Slightly boil some water and arrange your tamales vertically with the open side facing up. Pack them slightly loose to allow room for expansion. Use some corn husks to cover, then steam for approximately 35 minutes or until the horn husks jerk from the tamales.

What Goes Well With Tamales?

Some dishes you can serve with tamales include:

  • Pinto beans
  • Black beans
  • Tortilla chips
  • Mexican rice
  • Cilantro lime rice
  • Refined beans
  • Jalapeno cheddar cornbread and
  • Cucumber tomato avocado salad

How Do You Reheat Tamales In A Microwave?

Take the corn husks and arrange them in the microwave steamer evenly spaced. Turn the lid and cover and raise the tab to prevent steam from escaping, then nuke for three to five minutes on maximum heat or until their inner temperature attains 165 degrees Celsius.


Tamales are a Mexican delicacy full of flavor and tradition, and that’s why most people love them. Thus if you’re a huge tamale fan, you’re likely to have leftovers sometime. But some people prefer to precook and freeze them for later quick meal preparation.

Therefore, knowing how to reheat tamales properly using the microwave is crucial to enable you to get an almost freshly prepared taste. Without following the right procedure to reheat your tamales in the microwave, you may find yourself having extremely mushy and chewy tamales. So, follow the instructions above, and you’ll be on the right path to perfect microwave reheated tamales.

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