4 simple microwave recipes

Microwaves are well-loved for their ability to cook food quickly—with little effort, clean up, and culinary know-how needed. But, besides being one of the fastest cooking appliances in the kitchen, microwaves are also capable of producing some truly delicious meals.


To help home chefs rethink their microwave’s capabilities, we’re presenting a variety of tasty microwave recipes to save you time in the kitchen. From sensational starters to delectable desserts, these diverse meals display the potential of your countertop’s quickest cooker. 

#1: Quinoa salad with apple cider vinaigrette

To get the turntable rolling, we’ll start off with a light and refreshing appetizer. Quinoa, while technically a seed, is classified as a whole grain. One cooked cup packs a whopping nutritional boost that includes eight grams of protein and five grams of fiber. This means easy microwave recipes aren’t only fast, convenient, and delicious—they can be healthy as well. 

This microwave recipe comes in two parts: the salad and the dressing. For this delightful dish, we’ll be making the salad first. To begin, gather:

● One cup (160g) red quinoa, rinsed and drained

● Four ounces (115g) cauliflower florets

● One medium carrot, grated

● Two green onions, thinly sliced

● Two cups (18g) Italian parsley leaves, chopped

● Five ounces (140g) cherry tomatoes, halved

● ¾ cup (85g) sliced almonds, toasted

● Four ounces (115g) feta, crumbled

For equipment, you’ll need a few large microwave-safe containers and another large bowl to mix and serve in. Then:

1. Add the quinoa and two cups of water to a large bowl and microwave on 100% for 15 minutes.

2. Set aside and allow it to cool before turning your attention to the cauliflower.

3. Put the florets in a large bowl with one tablespoon of water, and cover with a vented lid or plastic wrap.

4. Microwave on medium-high for a few minutes, remove, and check for tenderness. If not fork-soft, mix and microwave minute by minute until complete.

5. Allow the florets to cool before combining them with the quinoa and other ingredients and mixing thoroughly.

This dish is delectable at room temperature or cold. So, if you like things cool and crisp, stash your salad in the fridge for a few hours—or overnight. And, while things cool down, you can start the dressing. To create this vibrant vinaigrette, grab:

● Three tablespoons (45ml) apple cider vinegar

● One teaspoon honey

● One teaspoon Dijon mustard

● ¼ cup olive oil

Assemble your ingredients, grab a large mixing bowl and whisk, and beat your dressing until it all comes together as smooth as silk. Then, mix it into your salad until everything is evenly coated.

This healthy bite works wonderfully as a starter salad or, in larger portions, as a mouthwatering meal that’s easy to take on the go. You can double the recipe to make a big batch—it should last in the fridge for several days.

#2: Fun chicken dinner for one 

From a satisfying starter to a mouthwatering main, this nutritious meal uses lean, protein-rich chicken breast kept juicy with a magnificent mustard and maple marinade. Although this microwave recipe serves one, it goes so fast, you can cook another serving before the first gets cold. 

We’ll start with the marinade, which has:

● 1 tablespoon olive oil

● 2 teaspoons whole-grain mustard

● 2 teaspoons maple syrup

● 1 clove garlic, minced

● 1 teaspoon lemon zest

● ½ teaspoon kosher salt

Combine everything in a large bowl and whisk thoroughly. Then, slip in one eight-ounce chicken breast sliced into ⅜ inch pieces. While it marinates:

1. Peel a six-ounce sweet potato and cut it into ⅜-inch-thick slices.

2. Place the slices on a microwave-safe bowl or plate, season with salt and pepper, and pour over ¼ of a cup of chicken stock.

3. Cover with a vented lid or plastic wrap and microwave on 100% for five minutes.

4. Arrange the chicken in a single layer over the sweet potatoes and place 4 ounces of trimmed broccolini around the perimeter. 

5. Cover again and microwave on 100% for four minutes.

6. Remove and allow to sit for a few minutes before digging in.

This bulletproof recipe takes the hard work out of chicken dinners without sacrificing any of the flavor. Garnish with a wedge of lemon and serve to a special someone without telling them how you made it—they’ll never guess such juiciness and flavor could come from the microwave!

#3: Vanilla blueberry mug cake with cream cheese icing

No microwave meal is complete without a dessert to finish things up. Bursting with blueberry goodness and sweet notes of vanilla, this mug cake isn’t only delicious—it’s also ready to eat in just a few minutes. 

This two-part recipe begins with the cake, which is moist and delectable enough to rival a bakery’s sweetest offerings. To begin, gather these ingredients:

● 2 tablespoons vegetable oil

● 1 tablespoon milk

● 1 egg yolk

● 1 tablespoon sugar

● 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

● ¼ cup all-purpose flour

● ½ teaspoon baking powder

● ¼ cup frozen or fresh blueberries

If you have a keen eye for cake crafting, you’ll notice that those are some common ingredients to use when baking the traditional way. For this microwave varietal:

1. Mix the milk, oil, egg yolk, and vanilla extract in a medium-sized bowl.

2. Add the flour and baking powder, and stir until fully combined.

3. Gently fold in the blueberries, making sure not to work the batter too much in the process.

4. Transfer the batter to an eight-ounce ceramic mug and pop it into the microwave.

5. Set it on maximum power for a minute and a half.

6. Remove from the microwave by the handle (careful—it will be hot!). 

7. Allow to cool on the countertop.

While your magnificent mug cake cools to a cooler temperature, turn your attention to the cream cheese icing. This recipe only uses two simple ingredients:

● 2 tablespoons cream cheese, softened

● 1 teaspoon powdered sugar

If your cream cheese is fresh out of the fridge, pop it in the microwave for a few seconds on a low setting to warm it up and get the right texture, then:

1. Add the softened cream cheese and powdered sugar to a bowl.

2. Mix together until thoroughly combined.

3. Smear over the top of your cooled, but still welcomingly-warm mug cake, and dig in!

This quick and delicious dessert is a reliable go-to when you’re craving something sweet but don’t want to put in the effort of baking a cake from scratch. 

#4: Microwave molten lava cake

Just like our first dessert, this recipe uses many of the same ingredients you would find in any professional baker’s cabinet. To get started, grab:

● ¼ cup flour (30g)

● 1 teaspoon baking powder

● 2 tablespoons sugar

● v2 tablespoons cocoa powder

● ⅛ teaspoon salt

● 2 tablespoons oil

● 2 tablespoons milk

● 1 chocolate truffle

For this recipe, any microwave-safe mug or bowl will work. To begin:

1. Add the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, sugar, cocoa, and salt) to a container and mix thoroughly. 

2. Add the wet ingredients (oil and milk) to the dry, and incorporate until a smooth paste is formed.

3. Pop the chocolate truffle directly into the middle of the batter and cover with a vented lid. 

4. Place the mixture in the microwave on a medium-high setting for about 70 seconds before removing it and allowing it to cool slightly. 

The perfect pièce de résitstance for this craveable cake is a drizzle of dark chocolate. High-quality chocolate, however, is notoriously fickle and difficult to melt without splitting. Likewise, melting it at different temperatures yields different results in the texture of the final product.

To reach a glossy, crisp finish for your drizzle, it’s crucial to melt your chocolate as close to 94°F as possible using the Melt Chocolate setting. If your microwave doesn’t have an option for Melt Chocolate, you can skip this step. If it does, however:

1. Add a piece of high-quality chocolate to a microwave-safe bowl and select the Melt Chocolate setting to match its weight.

2. Heat until the microwave stops and carefully remove the bowl. 

3. Gently stir the chocolate to ensure it’s fully melted.

4. Using a spoon, gently drizzle lines of melted chocolate across the top of your cake.

This crowning touch makes this dessert pop and will have you rethinking the possibilities of your microwave. From the quick and convenient to the genuinely gourmet, there’s more to this versatile device than last night’s leftovers would have you think.

Elevate your microwave repertoire with Breville

Not all types of microwaves are created equally, and that’s why most microwavable foods instruct you to routinely check for doneness and heat more according to the power of your appliance. However, there’s one line of microwave ovens that cooks meals to perfection and packs many features to boot.

Breville’s cutting–edge collection of microwaves heats, reheats, and cooks with exceptional evenness every single time. The sleek and functional Compact Wave™ Soft Close is the perfect space saver for home chefs who want to master all the recipes on this list. Or, if you’re after a multifunctional unit or are deciding between an air fryer vs. microwave, the Combi Wave™ 3 in 1 has all your microwaving, air frying, and baking needs covered.

With Breville’s line of microwaves, cooking delicious, healthy meals in minutes is simpler—and tastier—than ever.  


1. Harvard University. Quinoa. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/

2. Breville. The Combi Wave 3 in 1. https://www.breville.com/

3. Breville. Chicken Dinner for One. https://www.breville.com/

4. Breville. Vanilla Blueberry Mug Cake with Cream Cheese Icing. https://www.breville.com/

5. Tasty. Microwave Chocolate Lava Cake. https://tasty.co/

6. Library of Congress. Why does chocolate melt in your hand? https://www.loc.gov/

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