If you’ve ever tried to melt butter in the microwave, you’ve probably experienced the butter either not melting or, worse, ended up with a big mess of exploded butter on your microwave walls.
Learning how to melt butter in the microwave without it exploding is easy.
Here’s a quick guide on how to melt butter in the microwave without it exploding:
The easiest way to keep the butter from exploding in the microwave is to microwave on low power for a limited time (30 to 40 percent of power). For microwaves with a “melt butter” button, you can use that setting, or you can also use the defrost mode.
If you want to read a more detailed guide on how to melt butter in the microwave without it exploding, keep reading the article below.
How to Melt Butter In The Microwave Without a Mess: Step-By-Step Guide
There are many recipes that call for melted butter. For example, you can use melted butter as a topping for homemade popcorn, rich dip for lobster tails or shrimp, and the base for your favorite sauces, to name a few.
There are also different ways that you can use to melt the butter, but two of the most common methods are melting butter on the stovetop and melting butter in the microwave.
You need to keep in mind that butter has a low smoke point. So regardless of whether it’s melted on the stovetop or in the microwave, you’ll need to work with low heat.
Here are step-by-step instructions on how to melt the butter without ending up with a big mess of exploded butter on your microwave walls:
- Cut The Butter Into 1-inch Pieces
- Place The Butter Pieces On a Microwave-Safe Container
- Microwave for 30 Seconds at 40 Percent Power
- Check If the Butter Has Melted
- If There’s Still Unmelted Butter, Put It in the Microwave for an Additional 10 to 30 Seconds
1. Cut The Butter Into 1-inch Pieces
When you’re ready to soften your butter, it’s important that you cut it into small pieces.
This will help it to soften more quickly. Don’t worry too much about chopping the butter into perfect cubes. As long as it’s cut into pieces about 1-inch wide, you’ll be fine.
The reason why you want to cut the butter into 1-inch pieces is to give each piece of butter an even surface on which to spread.
If you tried softening an entire stick of butter, the exposed surfaces would cool off more quickly than the centers, preventing it from softening uniformly.
2. Place The Butter Pieces On a Microwave-Safe Container
Place the butter pieces evenly spaced apart on a microwave-safe plate. Make sure there’s enough space between each piece so that they don’t touch or overlap.
There are many different types of microwave-safe plates on the market today. Some are made from glass or ceramic, like stoneware or porcelain, while others are made from plastic or styrofoam.
That’s right; you don’t read it wrong. You can use plastic and ceramic plates in the microwave as long as they earn the microwave-safe label.
To tell the truth, some of the most common materials used to make microwave-safe plates are plastic and styrofoam.
This is because, unlike glass, they are not easily breakable. They are also lightweight, not to mention budget-friendly, making them a practical choice for consumers.
Some people may think it’s a bad idea to put plastic and styrofoam plates in the microwave.
How could it not be a bad idea when scientists have gone on record warning us against heating food in plastic and styrofoam containers, arguing that the toxic chemicals they contain could leach into our food?
That’s where things get complicated. To the FDA, what matters most is not whether the container does leach chemicals into your food, but whether there’s a significant enough amount to make you sick.
If the container has earned a microwave-safe label, it means the amount of chemicals being leached from those containers is negligible. In fact, it’s so small that the FDA says heating food in the microwave using these containers is perfectly safe.
Nonetheless, if you want to be absolutely sure of your safety, you can still opt to use dishes made from glass or ceramic.
3. Microwave for 30 Seconds at 40 Percent Power
The next thing you need to do is to microwave the butter. The best way to do it is by using low power. This will help to prevent the butter from exploding.
To melt the butter in the microwave at low power, set your microwave to “30 seconds” and then set the power to “40 percent”.
If your microwave has a melt butter function, you can simply press the button to activate it; otherwise, you can also use defrost mode, which can be activated by pressing the “defrost” button.
As for me, I prefer to set the microwave manually rather than use the defrost mode or melt butter function. I feel that it’s just more accurate to do it manually.
It’s also worth noting that many microwaves have different power settings for each of their cooking modes – defrost, reheat and melt, among others. These power settings are necessary because they determine how fast or slow you’ll be able to cook your food.
My microwave is 1000-watt. If your microwave is a different wattage, you may need to decrease or increase the cooking time.
4. Check If the Butter Has Melted
After waiting for 30 seconds, open your microwave and check if you can see that the butter has melted completely. If it still has not, what you can do is stir the butter or tip the bowl from side to side.
The butter has completed melted if it has turned into a clear yellow liquid.
If you can still see some solid pieces of butter, it hasn’t melted completely.
5. If There’s Still Unmelted Butter, Put It in the Microwave for an Additional 10 to 30 Seconds
Usually, moving the unmelted butter around the bowl will help complete the melting process without further needing to microwave it as the hot melted portion will melt the rest.
Sometimes, though, the butter doesn’t melt even after stirring. In this case, you can put it back in the microwave and heat it in 10 to 30-second increments until it is fully melted.
Again, be sure to maintain the low power setting and only increase the cooking time.
Is 1 Cup Solid Butter The Same As 1 Cup Melted Butter?
The next question that often pops into people’s minds is whether a half-cup of butter that has been melted is equivalent to a half-cup of butter that has not been melted.
In terms of volume, a half-cup of melted butter is the same as a half-cup of solid butter. However, if you meant to ask whether 1 cup of solid butter would turn into 1 cup of melted butter, the answer is no.
This is because solid butter is mixed with air, so its volume won’t be precisely the same when you melt it. It will actually be less than 1 cup.
This is why, when used in a recipe, you need to use it in the form it is called for because it can really make a big difference in the overall outcome of your recipe.
Here is an example:
When a recipe calls for “1/2 cup of melted butter, ” you must first melt a little more than 1/2 cup of solid butter, then measure 1/2 cup out of the melted butter using a liquid measuring cup.
If the recipe calls for “1/2 cup of butter, melted”, you will need to measure out 1/2 cup of solid butter and then use your stovetop or microwave to melt it.
In conclusion, the best way to melt the butter without it exploding is by using low power and heating it for a limited time.
Then, if you’re still having trouble getting the butter to melt, try microwaving it for an additional 10 to 30 seconds.
By following these simple steps, you’ll be able to enjoy all of your favorite recipes that call for melted butter without any of the mess!