Is It Worth Cooking Pasta In The Microwave?

food, is it worth cooking pasta in the microwave?

pasta plate next to microwave

College is a wild place, but the most uninhibited aspect of all may not be the frat parties and the midnight undie runs. Often living on a very tight budget and without parental supervision for the first time, college students can come up with some pretty wild meals when left to their own devices. Move over, instant ramen — one student ate bread with butter and lemon juice for two months straight, while another topped noodles with fried spam, cheese, and a mound of canned tomato soup (via So Yummy).

While we applaud the creativity, it might be possible to make cheap meals without resorting to lemon juice toast, and there are plenty of dorm cooking hacks out there. Tasty recommends college students purchase cheap appliances that can be used in various ways, such as slow cookers or rice cookers, and make meals in bulk while saving leftovers. One device that’s universally beloved by college students and is already found in most dorm rooms is a microwave. While microwaves can be used to make ramen noodles and other quick fixes, they can also make full-blown meals like Mexican leek soup, meatloaf, and stuffed peppers, according to Taste of Home. One TikTok video even recommends making pasta in the microwave, which she claims helped her get through college. While it sounds great to avoid watching a pot of water boil, is the resulting pasta worth it?

Perfect Pasta That Cooks On Its Own

food, is it worth cooking pasta in the microwave?

bowl of pasta with tomatoes

According to the TikTok video, you’ll get a perfectly-made bowl of pasta if you fill a microwave-safe bowl with dry noodles and water, microwave it for a few minutes longer than the recommended stovetop cooking time, and drain as usual. You’ll want to stick to heartier noodles like penne or bowtie, creator Kitty Lipski notes, because skinnier varieties of pasta like spaghetti tend to stick together in the microwave. The benefits of cooking pasta this way are plentiful. You’re not tied to the stove waiting for water to boil, you don’t have to stir anything, and for college students, you don’t even need a full kitchen.

Even for those of us with a kitchen, microwave pasta may be well worth it. The Takeout tested this method at home and ended up with perfectly-cooked pasta that her kids enjoyed, although she noted that it took around the same amount of time as making noodles on the stove. The biggest benefit for college graduates, it seems, is that you don’t have to wait for a watched pot to boil (and cook the pasta), which leaves more time for other activities. If zapping a bowl in the microwave that long makes you feel uneasy, there are actual containers you can buy specifically for making microwave pasta. While this time-saving hack sounds like a winner, let’s keep this between Americans for now — we’re not sure pasta-obsessed Italians would share our enthusiasm.

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