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Whether you’re stuck in a dorm room or your stove doesn’t work, you might be wondering if it’s possible to microwave pasta.
You can microwave a lot of foods that people wouldn’t think of cooking that way, including eggs and bacon, so does it work on a pasta noodles?
The triumphant answer for anyone who has ever been to lazy to boil water for your pasta for real is that yes, you can make pasta in the microwave!
However, there are certain things to be aware of like the type of pasta you cook, how long you microwave it for, and things to watch out for (as well as one super easy hack), so make sure to read our guide on the best ways to boil pasta in the microwave so you can still enjoy your Italian meal.
PS – this article isn’t about microwaving pasta that already comes in microwaveable packets. This is about microwaving dry pasta and cooking it from completely dry to al dente (which we’d argue is much more impressive anyway!)
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Hey! Want more pasta top tips? Check out these guides!
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- Does pasta go bad? The truth
Can You Cook Pasta in the Microwave?
Despite what you might be thinking, it’s true!
You can cook pasta in the microwave, though there are some tips and tricks to keep in mind to make sure it’s the desired doneness and not just a starchy mess.
How to Make Pasta in the Microwave: 5 Tips
1. Microwave Spaghetti in a Microwave Safe Bowl
If you don’t have any “special equipment” (see below), the best way to cook spaghetti in the microwave is to first find yourself a microwave safe bowl.
Then, put the dry pasta in and cover with water until the water goes over and fully submerges all of the pasta in the bowl.
Microwave it, uncovered, for about 10-12 minutes (another suggestion is to add 3 minutes to the estimated cooking time for the dry pasta).
It’s essentially just a way to make pasta without a stove, as it takes about that long to make pasta on the stove, but you might be somewhere like a dorm room where you only have a microwave or your stove isn’t working.
The results will usually not be quite as good as pasta boiled on the stove, but pretty close.
2. Use a Tupperware Pasta Maker (like this one)
This is by far the easiest way to make pasta in the microwave!
I first learned about how to make pasta in the microwave when my coworker when use her microwave rice cooker to boil pasta.
After some trial and error, it worked perfectly well, so I wanted to see if there was a pasta-specific option.
And it turns out, there is!
This rectangular shaped microwaveable container allows you to cook up to 4 portions of pasta at once, and the lid comes with a handy dandy strainer built-in so you really don’t have to do much besides fill it with pasta and water and go.
You can cook multiple types of pasta in a microwave pasta cooker, and it’s a great gift for college students, anyone who can’t live heavy pots and pans, or just your lazy friend who prefers to microwave everything (no judgement).
3. Microwave Water and Pour over Pasta
Another option, if you don’t want to put the pasta in the microwave, is to microwave enough water to cover your amount of pasta for about 5 minutes.
Then, pour over your pasta in a bowl and cover that bowl to keep the steam and heat in.
Your noodles should soften up in about 10-15 minutes, but you may have to keep checking.
This method does create more starchy pasta, so give it a rinse after you’re done.
4. Cover with a Plate when Draining
Another tip for making pasta in the microwave is to simply cover with a plate when “draining.”
You can use a regular strainer, but if you’re really going for easy mode, simply use a heat-safe plate to cover your bowl and then tip over into the sink, slowly letting the water run out.
A strainer will be easier, but if you’re cooking pasta in the microwave, there’s a chance you are somewhere without other kitchen utensils like a dorm room, so keep this in mind.
5. Use Short Pastas or Small Pasta
If you’re just starting out with this method, try and boil short or small pasta in the microwave.
Thick pasta or long flat noodles like linguine will take longer to cook and aren’t ideal for your first foray into microwaving pasta.
Try something like spiral pasta or break your spaghetti into smaller chunks for the best results.