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How to Steam Carrots in Microwave

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Have you ever tried to steam carrots in the microwave? If you have been boiling water and using a steamer on the stovetop, this will help you meal prep efficiently without dirtying extra pots and pans. 

Microwaving carrots is a quick and easy way to add nutritious and delicious veggie to your dish. Quickly steaming carrots in microwave help to not only sustain its mineral and vitamins, but also results in crisp and tender taste.

How to steam carrots in microwave? Peel the carrots and slice them into bite-size pieces. Transfer the carrots in a microwave-safe bowl and drizzle 2 tablespoons of water into the dish. 

Cover with a lid, damp paper towel or plastic wrap, and microwave for 3 minutes on high power. Let the steamed carrots sit for 1 minute in closed microwave. 

Carefully remove the lid and check the doneness. Transfer the carrots into a serving dish, and add butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Enjoy!

Whether the carrots are fresh or frozen, when it comes to steaming, ensure to defrost frozen carrots in the microwave before cooking them. This will help in maintaining the taste, texture, and overall doneness.  

Preparing steamed vegetables in the microwave is a great way to save time by quickly adding fresh veggies to balance fiber and nutrients on your plate. In addition, it does not use any oil for frying. 

In this article, we are going to learn how to steam carrots quickly without a steamer. Answered below are frequently asked questions about steaming carrots in a microwave including tips for doing it successfully without getting mushy and soggy results.

Can I steam carrots in the microwave?

Yes, you can steam carrots in the microwave. In fact, microwaving is the quickest way to steam carrots to make them crisp and still maintain their nutrients.

Peel and slice the carrots to steam quickly instead of cooking whole. A bright orange color will signal doneness, so keep a watchful eye to prevent the carrots from becoming too soft and mushy. 

How do you steam carrots quickly?

There are three ways to steaming carrots including frying pan, microwave steamer, and pot-in-pot method. But if you are looking quick ways to steam carrots, microwave is the ultimate choice. 

Whether you are using microwave steamer or not, the taste and texture does not change very much. The only difference is the steamer makes it slightly more convenient to cook them quickly. 

In order to steam carrots quickly in the microwave, rinse and cut the carrots in small-sized pieces. Transfer into a microwave safe bowl and add 2 tablespoons of water.

Cover the dish with a lid or microwaveable plate to trap a majority of the steam. Microwave on high for 3 minutes and let the carrots sit for 1 minute before removing from microwave. 

Once the carrots are fully steamed, carefully remove the lid and transfer to a serving dish.

How to steam carrots without a steamer

There are different ways to steam carrots without a steamer. One way to steam carrots without a steamer is by placing a couple tablespoons of water at the bottom of the microwave-safe dish with a lid over the top. 

Add the prepared carrot pieces and cook for 3 minutes or until tender yet still crisp.

Another method would be to steam them in a microwave-safe dish with a wet paper towel or cloth on the bottom. Place carrots in the dish and cover with another damp piece of cloth, then cook for 3 minutes or until soft and tender.

If you don’t have any vegetables that need long cooking times, steam them separately so they’re not overcooked and mushy when done.

Tips to steam carrots in the microwave

The following are microwave tips to steam carrots faster and more successfully:

  • Choose a variety of fresh, firm carrots and wash them thoroughly to remove any dirt and debris, then peel the skin. Cut off and discard the top and ends.
  • Cut the peeled carrots into 2 or 3 pieces. The size of each piece is up to your personal preference. I usually cut them into pieces, about 2 inches long.
  • Place the prepared carrot pieces in a microwave safe dish and cover with a lid. 
  • Microwave at high or 100% power for 3-5 minutes, depending on how soft you like the carrots to be.
  • Do not steam carrots with any other vegetables that need shorter cooking times as they will be overcooked and mushy when done.
  • Add enough water to cover the bottom of the steam basket before adding carrots.
  • Add a little olive oil or butter to carrots for flavor before microwaving them.
  • Garnish with spices such as cumin, paprika, chili pepper or salt and pepper.

Best way to steam carrots in the microwave

From stove to steamer basket, you may already have tried different ways to steam carrots in the microwave. Here are best way to steam carrots in the microwave that I’ve tried:

  • Place peeled and sliced carrots in a large microwave-safe bowl with about an inch of water in the bottom. 
  • Microwave for 3 to 5 minutes on high and stir every minute to promote even doneness. Steam should be coming out of the top of the bowl.
  • Once finished, pour steamed carrots into a colander and let cool for a minutes or so. The steam should continue to cook them perfectly.
  • After steaming, add 1 to 2 teaspoon of melted butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. 

If you are not fond of sinking carrots into shallow water, this is another method that I highly recommend:

  • Place a wet piece of paper towel at the bottom of the microwave-safe dish and add few drops of water on top of carrots.
  • Add whole, sliced, or chopped carrot pieces on top. 
  • Add a little olive oil or butter to steam the vegetables and give them a nice glossy shine.
  • Cover with lid or microwavable plastic wrap.
  • Microwave for 3 to 5 minutes, using one-minute intervals to keep a watchful eye until the carrots are tender and cooked.
  • Once the carrots are steamed, sprinkle with spices, salt, lemon juice and butter at the end of cooking time.
How to steam carrots in microwave

Steaming Carrots in Microwave: Conclusion

Steaming carrots in a microwave is not very different from steaming vegetables in an electric or stovetop steamer. Be sure to use a steam basket or microwave steamer that easily fits in the appliance you’ll be using, and make sure the water does slightly cover the bottom to provide enough moisture. 

Whether you choose to pour water into the bottom or damp paper towel method, peel the carrots and cut them into bite-size pieces that is not bigger than 2 inches wide. 

Place the sliced carrots into a microwave-safe bowl and add 2 tablespoons of water or place a wet paper inside the bottom of the bowl.

Cover the bowl with a microwave-safe lid or plate, damp paper towel or microwave safe plastic wrap. Microwave on high for 3 to 5 minutes until the carrots turn bright orange and still have a crisp and tender texture.

Let the carrots sit for 1 minute in the microwave so the residual steam can carryover cook the root vegetable until done. Afterward, transfer into a serving dish and garnish with your favorite herbs, spices or toppings. 

This is proper way to steam carrots in microwave. I would also recommend adding aromatics like garlic cloves, onion slices, a sprig of rosemary, or a few bay leaves which add amazing flavor to steamed carrots.