Steaming frozen broccoli is a quick and easy way to get a healthy meal. The recipe requires no additional ingredients or cooking skills, making it ideal for beginners. While there are more advanced ways of steaming broccoli, using a microwave is fast and conserves energy.
However, one may want to learn, how to steam frozen broccoli in microwave?
So, to steam frozen broccoli, take out your microwave-safe plate and add about an inch of water. Place 2 cups of frozen broccoli florets in the dish. Cover with a microwave lid and cook on high for 8-10 minutes or until tender. Drain excess water and enjoy.
Today’s article will delve deeper into how to steam frozen broccoli, including instructions and tips. We’ll also outline the benefits of using a microwave for steaming broccoli and compare it with traditional methods such as boiling. But first, let’s look at what exactly is frozen broccoli.
What Is Broccoli?
Every parent knows that introducing their kids and family to vegetables is imperative. A child’s diet and that of the family should include at least five servings of fruit and vegetables each day, whether fresh or frozen. And what other vegetable lends itself better to impressing children than broccoli?
Before we delve into how to steam this vegetable, it’s a good idea to understand what it is. Broccoli is a green vegetable that belongs to the same species as cabbage, kale, and cauliflower.
This edible plant is available year-round and can be found frozen or fresh alongside other products at your local grocery store. It’s also considered an inexpensive source of vitamins and minerals.
What Are the Benefits of Steaming Frozen Broccoli in a Microwave over Boiling?
Steaming frozen broccoli in a microwave has several benefits over boiling it on the stove. Below we explain some of these benefits.
1. Faster Cooking Time
Steaming frozen broccoli in a microwave is faster than boiling it on the stove. This is because it does not necessitate pre-boiling of water.
You only need a microwave-safe dish, frozen broccoli, and water to get started. While boiling broccoli on the stovetop takes about 20 minutes, microwaving requires 5-8 minutes of cook time.
2. Retain Nutrients
Using a microwave helps maintain nutrients in your broccoli vs. boiling it on your stovetop.
Research shows that boiling frozen broccoli at high temperatures can cause some of its vitamins and minerals to break down and become less available for absorption. However, steaming does not involves high temperatures, so you still get your broccoli’s nutritional benefits.
3. Easier Cleanup
Steaming in the microwave eliminates the need to clean any pots or pans. And because microwaves cook food by superheating steam, there are far fewer splatters than boiling on the stovetop.
Additionally, unlike metal pots and pans that rust over time when used on stovetops, most microwave dishes are dishwasher safe. All you have to do is rinse your glass bowl and wipe down your microwave’s interior, and you’re good to go.
4. Uses less energy
Using your microwave is much more energy-efficient than boiling food on your stovetop. This is because microwaves heat food from within, meaning it uses less power than conventional heating methods like gas or electric stoves and ovens.
In fact, it’s estimated that using an average household microwave saves approximately $100 per year on electricity costs compared to other kitchen appliances.
5. Doesn’t Lose Flavor
Finally, steaming frozen broccoli retains more of its Flavor and provides a fresh taste than boiling it on your stovetop. Microwaves cook food by accelerating hot water molecules into your microwave-safe cooking vessel to create superheated steam.
However, because it does not use high temperatures for extended periods like conventional ovens, you have fresher flavors that aren’t cooked over.
How to Steam Frozen Broccoli in Microwave
If you’re sick of eating frozen broccoli straight from the bag, learning to steam them in the microwave is an excellent way to spice up your diet. The instructions below explain how to microwave frozen broccoli to come out delicious, bright green, and flavorful every time.
Step 1 – Cut Broccoli Florets from Stems into Bite-Sized Portions
Before you can cook your frozen broccoli, you’ll first need to remove them from their bags. Next, you’ll want to trim any excess stems and cut each floret into bite-sized pieces.
Step 2 – Transfer 2 Cups of Frozen Broccoli into a Microwave-Safe Container
Once you’ve prepared your broccoli, add 2 cups of them to a microwave-safe container. There are two options for containers; glass or plastic. However, ensure that whatever you choose is microwave safe and can withstand high temperatures.
Step 3 – Fill Your Container with About an Inch of Water
After you’ve transferred your broccoli, you’ll want to add about an inch of water to the bottom of your microwave-safe container. This will allow steam to build up around your frozen broccoli while cooking. However, avoid adding too much, or your broccoli may get soggy.
Step 4 – Cover Your Dish with a Plastic Wrap or a Glass Lid
After you’ve added your water, cover your container tightly with either a plastic wrap or glass lid. For the top, ensure it is microwave-safe.
Step 5 – Steam Your Broccoli on High for 8-10 Minutes
Now that your broccoli is ready place it into your microwave. Next, cook on high until your broccoli reaches the desired tenderness (it takes about 10 minutes).
If you prefer a crispier texture, reduce the cooking time to about 8 minutes. However, depending on the type of broccoli, the steaming time may differ.
Final Step – Let Sit For About 2 Minutes before Handling Your Dish
Once your broccoli is done steaming, let it sit for about 2 minutes. Then, you can carefully peel the wrap off or lift off the lid. Once done, you can serve with a fresh squeeze of lemon or a drizzle of olive oil if desired.
Tips for Steaming Frozen Broccoli in Microwave
Here are five tips for steaming frozen broccoli in the microwave.
- Only use a microwave-safe bowl: This is probably obvious. Use a microwave-safe container that can handle high heat. These include ceramic bowls, glass containers, or any other microwave-safe dish.
- Add very little water: Adding too much water makes it harder for your microwave to produce steam; it will take longer for your broccoli to cook and result in soggy vegetables or even explosions of flying hot liquid. Also, the water could leak during cooking and make a mess of your microwave.
- Steam two cups of frozen broccoli florets at a time: Ideally, steam two cups of frozen broccoli florets to ensure your broccoli heats up quickly and thoroughly.
- Use small florets if possible: The smaller your frozen broccoli florets are, the better your microwave steaming will turn out. Larger florets take longer to cook and may become soggy or lose texture.
- Steam on high for brief periods: Steaming at high power and short periods ensures that your broccoli nutrients remain intact while providing a tasty side dish to any meal.
Faqs About Steaming Broccoli in Microwave
How do you steam frozen vegetables in the microwave?
Transfer your vegetables to a microwavable bowl with about 1 inch of water. Cover it with plastic wrap or a glass lid. Heat for 3-5 minutes on medium power or until soft, depending on how powerful your microwave is. Once done, drain off any excess water and season as desired.
How long does it take to steam broccoli in the microwave?
It takes approximately 8-10 minutes to steam broccoli in a microwave. For crispier broccoli, cook for 8 minutes, while for tender broccoli, cook for 10 minutes. However, some microwaves are more powerful than others, so check your manual for specific instructions.
Can you steam broccoli in a Ziploc bag?
A Ziploc bag is a viable choice for steaming fresh broccoli. These bags are BPA -free and microwave-safe for reheating foods, so they should work well as a vessel for your frozen vegetables.
Is it better to boil or microwave frozen vegetables?
Without a doubt, microwaving frozen vegetables is better than boiling. When fresh vegetables are boiled, nutrients leach into water or cooking containers. However, nutrients are retained when steamed using a microwave since there is no direct heat contact.
How long does it take to steam vegetables in the microwave?
The amount of time it takes to steam vegetables in a microwave varies depending on the wattage of your microwave and the vegetable type. Ideally, you’ll want to use between 3-5 minutes as a baseline for steaming any vegetable.
Why do frozen vegetables spark in the microwave?
Minerals such as magnesium, selenium, and calcium are abundant in dense vegetables such as spinach, green beans, and peas. These minerals act like minute metals, and when they come into contact with microwaves can spark or arc. These arcs can start fires, especially if flammable products are nearby.
How do you steam frozen vegetables without a steamer?
There are various ways of steaming frozen vegetables without a steamer. Using a microwave is one easy way.
To microwave, your veggies, place them into a shallow microwavable bowl and add some water. Cover with a lid or plastic wrap to ensure no steam escapes. Next, heat for 3-5 minutes or until tender.
Is it safe to microwave frozen vegetables in the bag?
Unless the bag is labeled microwave safe, it’s not a good idea. Many frozen vegetable bags are lined with aluminum or paper-based coating, which will leak chemicals into your food if microwaved.
Is steaming vegetables in the microwave healthy?
Absolutely. Using a microwave for steaming is one of the quickest, easiest ways to prepare vegetables for your family and yourself. Steaming via a microwave retains all of a vegetable’s nutrients while making it fast enough for those who have limited time.
Steaming frozen broccoli using a microwave is fast and easy. It produces a side dish with fewer calories, better texture, and less moisture loss than standard cooking methods.
However, you should steam it for a little more than 10 minutes. Allowing frozen broccoli to stay in the microwave for too long will result in a mushy, soggy dish with lost Flavor and texture.
Following the instructions and the tips diligently will help you achieve your goal of enjoying healthy food and saving you time and money. A microwave is an easy, simple, fast, and inexpensive steaming method.
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