Investing in a microwave is something one shouldn’t have second thoughts about. This is because it helps you cook different kinds of food. You can use the microwave to defrost your meat, reheat your leftovers among other uses.
However, for your microwave to work well you need to have some essential parts in place.
A microwave cover is one of those essential parts. The list of microwave covers in the marked is endless but what defines a good one is a balance of features you will see below.
Let’s watch the video first.
Should I Cover Food in the Microwave?
Well, let’s just say, covering food before you put it in the microwave is a smart way to retain the moisture. It also avoids the tendency for the food to spatter in the microwave. It also helps to reheat or cook the food evenly.
However, remember to leave a small gap between the food and the cover to let out the steam formed. Notice that, if you cook your food uncovered it will mostly lose its moisture or lose its heat making it warm up on the outside but not inside.
Other covering items
- You can use the paper towels: they let the steam to escape while preventing splatter and cause even heating. You can use it to cover your bacon or sandwich. However, confirm that the paper towel is usable in the microwave.
- Waxed papers: they are good when it comes to holding the heat and fast cooking food without steaming it. You may use it to cover your fruits, chicken, hamburgers and roasts. For effectivity, cut a large waxed paper so that you can tuck it under the plate.
- Glass covers: they are better than plastic when in the microwave. Use it to microwave food that use moisture and steam to tenderize them. Once the food is cooked and you need to remove the lid, exercise caution because you can get steamed easily.
- Microwave cooking bags: from the name, the covers are made for cooking in the microwave so, they prevent spatter and help your food to retain its juices. What makes it even better is the fact that it evenly distributes the heat.
- Plastic wraps: you can use the plastic wraps if you intend to shortly reheat your food. Remember, the plastic wraps can’t stand excess heat thus you must remove it in a few minutes.
Reasons Why You Need the Microwave Plate Cover
- For even and quick cooking
If you cook your food in the microwave, it’s likely that in covering the food it will heat evenly and quicker. When you leave the food uncovered, most of the time it will cook on the outside but have the inner part not fully cooked or reheated.
This goes for even stovetop cooking. Covering the food not only cooks your food quickly but it also cooks it evenly.
- Retains the flavor and texture
When you let the food cook uncovered, it loses its moisture thus drying it out and consequently altering the flavor. However, when the food is covered, it retains the moisture and heat within the food thus maintaining the texture and flavor.
- Your food is protected from overheating
If you will use the right material for the cover when heating your food, chances are that overheating is unheard of since the heat is controlled.
- It keeps you safe
If you are using either the right and FDA certified plastic cover, glass or other safe material for covering the food as its cooking you are kept safe from harmful chemicals seeping it not your food. What’s more, in most cases the handle will remain cool and safe to touch.
The Microwave Cover Buying Guide
- What size
Of course, depending on the size of the container you use to reheat or cook your food in the microwave, you should know the ideal size of your cover. You don’t want to buy a small cover that won’t serve its purpose effectively.
- What shape
You could have the covers in circular or oval shapes that they mostly are. Sometimes though they come in rectangular and square shape. The question, therefore, is what is the shape of your containers and how big do you want the covers to be.
- The cover material
You can have the cover made of plastic or glass. Sometimes though there are those that are made using the ceramic. Of course, the plastic made ones must be FDA approved failure to which it will let harmful chemicals seep into your food.
The glass ones are however generally safe to use. Most of the glass covers come with silicone handles which are cool to touch even after you’ve been heating the food in the microwave for a longer time.
Glass never discolors too and is more trustworthy than the plastic that has come under scrutiny.
- Is it safe to use?
This is a question of health safety as we have discussed in the previous paragraphs. Unless your items are FDA approved you may subject yourself to harmful chemicals. I would normally avoid plastic covers unless proven safe.
Notice that, the use of plastic wrap is okay but only when it doesn’t encounter your food. If it does then chances of the chemicals leaching in your food is raised.
- Your budget
We all know that these items are generally cheap but you need to buy within your budget range. When you have between $5 and $50 you can get an effective microwave cover.
8 Microwave Covers Recommend
No one likes to reheat or cook their food in the microwave only to find it splattering everywhere. With your high-quality Nordic microwave cover, you will avoid this. You can also safely let the food cool before eating as you let the cover keep the food warm.
Although it’s made using plastic Nordic, it’s FDA certified and thus safe from harmful chemicals like BPA. For this reason, it’s safe for cooking food. What makes it ideal is that it fits up to a plate of 11 inches and whichever depth. It further fits the Nordic 2-sided bacon meat grill.
Moreover, you can reheat or cook food with two plates at once. This may work as you cover one with the cover and place another at the top of the cover.
Worry not about the cleaning because if you place it on the top rack dishwasher its safe. The item is further see through which makes it easy to watch the food as it continues to cook.
Your cover will concentrate the heat around the food making it evenly cook while retaining the moisture.
Microwave dish covers
The advantage of this microwave dish cover is that it’s a set that comes in different sizes. This means that it’s almost inevitable to miss a size that fits your plate. It comes in plastic material that is clear allowing you to monitor the food cooking or reheating within it.
Unlike the previous one and many other covers, these ones have the ventilation caps which prevents the pressure from building up. This help to maintain the texture and flavor of the food. The plastic material features an elegant design that will fit in any kitchen set up.
The plastics are durable and reusable. They prevent the splattering of food while evenly cooking your food. The storage is a non-issue since the items are small. They also offer a safe steam vent to retain the food texture.
Collapsible microwave cover
Its collapsible nature makes it easy to store because it will expand to 3.5 inches while collapsing to an inch when you wish to store it. You only use your thumb to pop it up and the fingers to flatten it when you need to store it.
Its lid has perforations that make it easy for the steam to escape when you are either cooking or reheating the food. This ensures that your food remains moist but most importantly you have the splatter contained in the cover.
The cover has a high heat resistant of up to 600˚F and it doesn’t come to contact with your food. You don’t stain in lifting it off the microwave while it acts as your hover anti splutter.
It has the food guard on top of the microwave that doesn’t block the steam vents. This makes it easy to clean in the top rack of the dishwasher. It’s BPA free, food safe and perfectly designed to suit any decoration.
Glass microwave cover
For all your versatile needs choose the microwave glass cover. It acts as a 2 quarts baking dish and microwave cover. It has the unique concentric rings and vents to hold the cover in place while allowing for healthy cooking.
With the item, you can steam your food up to a high temperature of 450˚F and all this can happen in the microwave. With its splatter guard, you have the kitchen appliance remaining clean while your continuous handle gives you a firm grip.
What makes this item ideal is that it’s made from the borosilicate glass that is a hard kind of glass which does absorb the food odor. It’s also less toxic and dishwasher safe. With its scalloped edge, it offers a unique and attractive design.
For those who love the nontoxic alternative use the cuchina microwave cover.
BPA free microwave cover
Most microwave covers are made as simple plastic lids but this one has the top having magnets which means you can store it in your microwave ceiling. The good thing about this is that you don’t lose it or need to find the storage space.
The magnetic lid is tested for strength to ensure that the item that you have can safely stick on the ceiling. The splatter guard is made safe to use with your food thus making it BPA free. Furthermore, the cover is safe to use under high heat of both the microwave and dishwasher.
It features a large lid of about 11.5 inches which will cover most plates. It remains high enough to come to contact with your food. With its designed steam vents, it releases the steam effectively. Lifting it up is further easy with your finger.
Notice that it works best with your stainless-steel oven that has a flat ceiling. It works with a heat of about 300˚F. Ensure that you don’t it let it heat in the microwave for more than 10minutes.
Plastic microwave cover
This microwave cover is made using a safe FDA certified plastic that is BPA free. You can use it if your microwave will go up to a maximum of 300˚F. The elegant design cover allows you to watch as your food is cooking and it’s easy to place in the microwave and remove it.
This cover acts as the splatter protection that keeps your food intact thus leaving your microwave ever spotlessly clean.
With its 11.8 inches, it covers almost all plate sizes with ease. You shouldn’t, however, use it for the baking neither should it stay in the oven for more than 9 minutes.
Cleaning the item should be a non-issue as its dishwasher safe. The plastic cover is further break-resistant and will keep your food free of flies and other intruders on the kitchen counter.
Are plastic microwave covers safe?
This is a question that many people are struggling to understand. But the answer is that it all depends with the kind of plastic you use. Those that are FDA certified are free of the most common BPA, melamine and Phthalates. This means that they are safe to use.
On the other hand, be wary of those that aren’t certified.
Vented microwave cover
The vented microwave cover is designed to fit most of your standard plates while it shields your oven from splatter thus maintaining a clean microwave oven. You have it in a large dome shape to ensure that it stays out of contact with your food.
It has handles that make it easy to lift and put in or take out of the microwave. Moreover, it comes with a vented top that helps to release the steam from the food thus maintaining the texture and flavor. It further retains the warmth of your food.
Though made of plastic, the item is BPA free which means that it’s safe to use.
Large microwave cover
This large cover will suit the larger plates that go over 11 inches yet its convenient to use since it keeps your oven clean. It particularly saves you from splatter. Additionally, aside from covering your plate, it’s used to cover most large bowls, mugs and other plastic cans.
Since it has its polymer encased magnet, when you finish heating your food you can let it stick on the microwave ceiling. This storage solution keeps your kitchen organized.
The lid has 4 steam vents which you may use to release the steam thus maintaining the food texture and flavor.
On top of the cover are the finger grips which remain cool to touch and the item is ergonomically designed for easy usage. Its dishwasher-safe thus making the cleaning easy.
Microwave plate cover 12 inch
Last on the list is the large microwave cover that is collapsible. You can pull the knob when you want to pop it open or push it when you want it to collapse. It features an ergonomic design that will stand the test of time.
It has vents on all its sides to prevents the condensation of the food when it allows the steam to expel. It acts as your food steamer that keeps your food evenly heated, fresh and moist. The item is ideal for use since its BPA free, chemicals free and odor free.
It has high tempered glass that has silicon which makes it dishwasher safe. In addition, its dome shape keeps it safe from direct contact with your food. At 12 inches it can accommodate various plates and bowls. Its knob is heat resistant which makes it easy to remove the cover.
Silicone is best preferred because it won’t harbor the molds, germs and mildew.
The Things You Should Never Put in Your Microwave
Have you ever started a fire in your microwave or had it explode? Don’t worry so many people have done it too. How the microwave works is a mystery to many, thus, you should know that not everything works in the microwave. Some items are in fact hazardous.
- Don’t place your take-out containers that are made using paper in your microwave. Moreover, don’t place a newspaper, paper bag or plastic bags in the microwave that will cause a fire.
- You may forget and think you can place those onetime use plastic containers in but don’t. Designed for one-time packaging, they won’t stand the high heat you subject them to in the microwave.
- Don’t place metal spoons, cookware or utensils.
- Aluminum foil won’t work in a microwave either because its listed as one of the metals which we had already said should never go in your microwave.
- Peppers: don’t ever warm the hot peppers in the microwave. Another thing is that the heat produced in the microwave can harm your eyes when you open the microwave door after heating the hot peppers.
- Don’t place any cookware that has the metal rims because as we had earlier stated metal doesn’t work with microwave.
- Styrofoam: it’s a plastic kind of container that can’t stand high temperatures thus don’t use it in the microwave.
- Never try to boil your eggs in the microwave because the high heat will just lead to the eggs bursting open. This will only cause you unnecessary mess.
- A container without a lid means you won’t avoid the splatter caused by bubbling of the food. This is especially so when you are reheating sauces. If you want to have a whole cleaning day then reheat your food without the lid.
- The fruits: it goes without saying that when you put grapes in the microwave to heat up, the explosion is unavoidable. This could essentially lead to a fire. Another fruit of this kind is a raisin. They tend to release plasma when heated using the microwave which could lead to explosions.
- The china: maybe you have plain stoneware or earthenware china those are okay to use in the microwave but if you have those with gold or silver lining, put them aside because they could cause a fire. The gold and silver are metals.
- The travel mugs: your mugs are made using stainless steel which makes them not microwave safe. The material not only blocks your food content from heating but it also spoils your microwave.
Microwave Mistakes to Avoid
- Be wary of using plastic containers
We have identified the items that you shouldn’t use in the microwave but we didn’t mention plastic then the reason being that if you use the safe plastic you will be okay. Safe plastic means that its BPA- Bisphenol A(BPA) free.
For you to be safe, go for microwave plastic covers that are FDA approved. Using those that aren’t certified would subject you to the risk of health problems like diabetes, cardiovascular disease among others.
- Don’t use the plastic wrap
When your plastic wrap encounters your food, it causes a health hazard. Instead of paper wraps use the paper towels, glass or ceramic cover.
- Don’t open the lid towards your face
Most injuries you will hear related to microwave are caused by opening the lid toward your face. People get spill burns thus be careful when opening it. If possible, protect your hands too by using the hand protection gears.
- Eating the food right away
Let the food cool down a little after heating it in the microwave. This allows it to cook a little more and reheat the parts that aren’t yet heated. Notice that, the minute or two makes a difference on whether the food becomes poisonous or flavorful.
- Never defrost on a foam tray
You will find the meat you buy sold in the foam tray. Nevertheless, never try to defrost your meat in the foam tray. It will melt and even explode.
From the list, Cuchina Safe 2-in-1 Cover ‘n Cook Vented Glass Microwave Plate Cover and Baking Dish is my favorite. Mostly because it is made using glass that has never come under scrutiny and it’s also effective.