1. Hard-boiled eggs The rapid heat from the microwaves creates a lot of steam in the egg, which has nowhere to escape. Exploded egg is hard to clean up – trust us.
2. Meat Frozen cuts of meat are tricky to defrost in a microwave: Thinner edges start cooking while the thicker middle remains frozen. The safest way to thaw meat is to defrost it overnight in your refrigerator.
3. Travel mugs Stainless steel mugs block the heat from warming your coffee or tea and can damage your microwave instead. Remember: no metal utensils, cookware, containers or aluminium foil in the microwave. Ever.
4. Plastic containers Many plastics contain compounds – called plasticizers – that mimic human hormones (BPA is a well-known one), which can leach into food when the plastic is heated. In a study published in Environmental Health Perspectives, 95% of 450 plastic products (such as baby bottles, zipper-top bags, and containers) tested released plasticizers after they were microwaved. Even products labelled “BPA-free” released some compounds that may contaminate food in direct contact with the container. To reduce your exposure, look for containers labelled “microwave safe”, or decant your dinner into a glass or ceramic dish before warming it up.