How you prepare your food is a critical part of maintaining a healthy diet. Even if you hit the gym for hours, without a clean diet, you will not get the full benefit of your workout. Preparing vegetables or rice on a stovetop can get rid of some of the essential nutrients that are beneficial to your health.
Some health enthusiasts swear by the effectiveness of eating food prepared in a steamer. Although the jury is still out on it, the number of people switching to prepare vegetables and poultry in the microwave should give you an idea of the potential health benefits.
If you are looking to jump on the health train, there is no better time than today. By investing in the best microwave steamer, you can cook your vegetables, fishes, and poultry in a healthy and nutritious way. Your body will never starve for the essential vitamins once you start eating steamed food.
In this article, we will give you a quick rundown on some of the best units you can buy to help you prepare a healthy and nutritious meal in a matter of minutes from your microwave. So without further ado, let us get started.
5 Best Microwave Steamer Reviews
Investing in a microwave steamer is not something you should take lightly. Since this unit is responsible for the quality of food you consume, it never hurts to do some research. Considering the number of cheap knock-off models floating around the marketplace, you need to know which units are worth buying.
To that end, here are our recommended picks for the best microwave steamers that you can buy today.
1. Sistema Microwave Collection Rice Cooker
We will be starting up our list with an excellent unit by the brand Sistema. It comes in a neat design giving you an easy way to cook rice, polenta, or other similar food instantly in the microwave. In addition, it features BPA-free, virgin plastic construction, ensuring the food you eat is safe and healthy.
Cooking rice in the unit is extremely easy. All you have to do is add proper amounts of water for the rice that you take in it. Fit the lid on the steamer using the clip-on lock, and put it in the microwave. Turn on the instant cook option, and within minutes your rice will be ready to eat.
Because of the steam release vent on the lid, you do not need to worry about splatters or anything as you heat your food. The handle in the unit stays cool regardless of how hot it gets in the oven, which is excellent for handling. On top of that, the unit is safe to put in the refrigerator and dishwasher.
- Vibrant red color
- BPA free, virgin plastic construction
- Cooks rice in a matter of minutes
- Easy to clean and handle
- May melt if you turn up the heat too much
2. OXO Cooker Good Grips Microwave Bacon Crisper
If you cook from time to time, the name of OXO should be pretty known to you. It is one of the most popular brands in the industry when it comes to kitchen products. This microwave bacon crisper by the brand is a must-have if you love the taste of crispy slices of bacon every morning.
Cooking bacon with this steamer is a piece of cake and takes only a few steps. It has a silicone cooking surface that you can remove and clean easily by hand. Furthermore, the unit does not contain any BPA, and you can clean it in the dishwasher too.
The product also comes with an adjustable kickstand that you can use to help grease drain away to the grease trap. Thanks to the removable drain lid, you do not need to worry about the grease splashing out of the trap. In addition, the foldable nature of the unit makes it extremely convenient to store it when not in use.
- Adjustable kickstand
- You can fold it flat.
- Comes with an excellent grease draining feature and grease trap
- Dishwasher friendly
- Not very versatile
3. Sistema Microwave Collection Steamer
It looks like another unit by Sistema has made its way to our list of reviews. Although the last product is an excellent unit on its own, the versatility and space you get from this one are unmatched. It is the perfect choice for people who want a large microwave steamer for cooking a variety of items like fish, poultry, or vegetables.
It features a steam release-vent on the lid, which ensures the interior compartment does not get splattered with condensed vapor. Thanks to the easy-lift tabs, you can close the lid tightly to ensure the best heating inside the compartment. Taking off the lid is also easy because of these tabs.
After cooking, you will notice that the steamer itself stays cool, allowing you to handle it easily. This unit comes with a 100% virgin plastic construction that does not contain any phthalate and BPA. As a result, you do not need to worry about any health issues.
- Large interior space
- Steam release vents on the lid
- Stays cool to the touch
- BPA free construction
- No apparent cons
4. Lekue 1-2 Person Steam Case With Draining Tray
Next up, we will be looking at a steamer for not one but two people. If you are preparing food for yourself and a partner, then the Lekue 1-2 Person steam case might be exactly what you need. It allows for easy steamed food preparation minimizing the hassle on your part drastically.
It has an excellent steaming capacity allowing you to keep the optimal temperature between 200 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit. As a result, you will be able to get the most nutrition and vitamins out of your meal. In addition, the unit also comes with a handy cookbook to help you get started on some delicious recipes.
The steam tray also features a pure steaming function so that you can cook food that has high water content. It comes in an interesting shape that promotes faster heat circulation. This feature, in turn, allows you to cook faster and more efficiently. As a cherry on top, you can even clean it in the dishwasher.
- Enough space to cook for two persons
- Dishwasher friendly
- Maintains optimal cooking temperature
- Comes with a cookbook
- A bit more expensive
5. Rapid Veggie Steamer
To wrap up our list of reviews, we will be looking at one of the best microwave vegetable steamers on the market. With the Rapid Veggie Steamer, you can prepare steamed vegetables like never before. If you want a stovetop cooking flavor with microwave cooking level of speed, this unit is a perfect choice.
Preparing veggies on the stovetop can be time-consuming since you have to wait for the water to boil first. However, with this steamer, you can simply fill the tray with water, place your vegetables, and let the microwave take care of the rest. It is fast, efficient, and allows you to enjoy a healthy meal in a matter of minutes.
Furthermore, the handles of the unit stay cool after you are done preparing your meal. As a result, you can transport it easily without feeling the heat. The unit features a BPA free construction and can be cleaned using a dishwasher, saving you from a lot of scrubbing.
- Simple design
- Can prepare your vegetables quickly
- The handles stay cool.
- Compact size
- No vent on the lid
Things to Consider when Buying the Best Microwave Steamer
Now that you have seen our recommended products, you might be wondering how we picked them. Well, a microwave steamer is typically a simple product. There is not much wrong you can do when making your selection. However, paying attention to a few preliminary details can help you get more out of your investment.
To that end, here are some of the aspects that you want to check when buying the best microwave steamer for yourself.
The first element that you want to check with any microwave steamer is the size. If the steamer is too small, you will have to prepare the same meal multiple times while steaming a small portion at a time. When you are cooking for more than one or two people, it can become quite a hassle.
Moreover, the size requirement from a steamer varies from one person to another. You want to think about how many people you are preparing a meal for before you settle on a specific size. Investing in a bigger steamer for one person is not a good idea either as you will have a harder time storing it in a cramped kitchen cupboard.
In addition, you also want to think about the size of your oven. Some people even make a mistake of investing in a steamer that does not fit inside their oven. Although this seems like a silly mistake, it never hurts to think about your oven size before investing in a bigger microwave steamer.
Some microwave steamers come with a vented lid on top that allows some of the steam to escape to ensure minimal condensation. Although it reduces the efficiency of heating to a certain extent, it might be worth it for certain types of meals. Before you pick a vented lid or closed lid, consider the type of food you will be preparing in the steamer.
For instance, if you are cooking rice, a vented lid will ensure the texture of the rice is smooth. On the other hand, for fish or meat gravy dishes, a fully closed lid might be a better idea as it traps the entire flavor inside the steamer. It ultimately comes down to what you are cooking in the unit.
Durability and Construction
Durability is always a concern with anything that you plan to buy. When it comes to the steamer, it is not only the durability that you have to think about but also its construction materials. Most steamers come with plastic construction, and there is nothing wrong with that.
However, some types of plastics are more durable than others. It is on you to assess the sturdiness of the plastic and determine whether it will break on impact. In addition, some plastics come with BPA construction, which is not healthy for food preparation. So you need to ensure your unit features a BPA-free construction.
Versatility is an essential element to the best microwave steam oven. If you want to prepare a specific type of food, you can probably get by with a steamer that only works well for that food. However, to maximize your value, you should get a unit that allows you to prepare multiple dishes.
Getting a versatile steamer will help you cook any food you want. Even if at that moment you do not want to cook anything else, with a versatile steamer, you will be essentially future-proofing yourself.
That way, after a few months, if you want to cook a different meal, you can do that with your own steamer without buying a new one.
Some microwave steamers come with a few extra functions that let you get more out of your cooking experience. Although these features are not essential to your meal, they can enhance the quality of your diet drastically. With some units, you can even control the steam pressure.
With some units, you also can control the lid vents. Although these steamers might cost a few bucks extra, it is often worth investing in these extra features. That way, you can adjust the functions of the steamer depending on the type of food you are cooking.
You can set up the steamer for optimal performance, whether you are cooking fish or vegetables.
How to Prepare Steamed Vegetables in a Microwave Steamer?
If you have never cooked in a microwave steamer before, there is nothing to worry about. Preparing vegetables in a microwave is actually quite easy if you have a microwave steamer.
- Clean and Chop the Vegetables
The first step is to clean your vegetables obviously. If your vegetables were refrigerated, you might want to let them sit for a few minutes to bring them down to room temperature. After cleaning the veggies, chop them up in pieces that you want to consume.
- Place them in the Oven
Then all you have to do is take them on the container of the steamer and put it in the microwave. Remember to put the lid on before placing it in the oven.
- Set Timer
Moreover, the timer you set on the oven depends on a couple of factors. The first thing you want to decide is how well done you want it. Typically, 2 minutes should be enough if you are preparing veggies only for yourself. However, if you cook a larger portion, you might want to extend the timer by a minute or so.
When the timer goes off, your food is ready for you to enjoy.
Frequently Asked Questions
- Is it healthy to prepare food in a microwave steamer?
Yes. Microwave steamers minimize loss of nutrition and vitamins when you prepare your vegetable or meat. In addition, if your unit comes with a timer, you do not have to worry about overcooking your meal and losing all the nutrition.
- How long does it take to cook food in a microwave steamer?
It depends on the type of dish you are cooking. Vegetables, for instance, takes little time to cook in a steamer compared to meat.
- What can you cook in a microwave steamer?
You can prepare a lot of dishes in a microwave steamer. The most common use of this device is to prepare rice, vegetables, poultry, and fishes. Apart from cooking, it also works well as a food heater.
- What are the benefits of preparing vegetables in a microwave?
The major benefit of steaming vegetables in a microwave is obviously the speed. In most cases, you only need to wait two minutes to enjoy your food. Additionally, you do not need as many pots and pans to prepare your veggies.
Furthermore, by steaming vegetables in the oven, you can prevent the loss of nutrients from your food resulting in a healthier meal.
- Can I use a plastic bag instead of a microwave steamer?
You really shouldn’t. Although some people opt to steam their vegetables by sealing it with a Ziploc bag and putting it in the oven, it is generally not a good idea. The plastic in the bag can contain BPA or other harmful elements that can impact your health negatively.
If you want to enjoy a healthy and delicious meal, investing in the best microwave steamer is essential. With our handy review of the top products and buying tips, you should now have no trouble picking out the right unit for your requirements.
We hope you enjoyed our extensive article and could benefit from the information that we gathered for you.