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9 foods & items you should never put in your microwave

Many Kenyans have experienced boiled eggs exploding when heated in a microwave

A woman looking at a burnt microwave

Microwaves have become an essential appliance in our daily lives.

They are quick, convenient, and efficient, making it easy to heat up leftovers, make popcorn, or defrost frozen foods.

However, there are certain things that should never be put in the microwave.

Knowing what to avoid can prevent accidents, damage to the microwave, and even harmful exposure to toxins.


First and foremost, metal should never go in the microwave. This includes aluminum foil, metal cookware, and even gold or silver accents on plates or bowls. Metal reflects microwaves, which can cause sparks and lead to a fire.

Anything with a metal twist tie or metal handle, such as a takeout container, should be removed before microwaving. The metal can cause sparks and lead to a fire.


Plastic bags are another big no-no. When heated, they can release harmful chemicals into your food. The same goes for plastic containers that are not labeled "microwave-safe."

To check if a dish is microwave-safe, place it in the microwave with a cup of water. Heat for one minute and check the temperature of the dish. If it is cool, it is safe to use in the microwave. If it is warm or hot, it is not microwave-safe.

Styrofoam containers may seem convenient for reheating leftovers, but they should never be used in the microwave. When heated, they can release toxic chemicals and melt into your food.


Eggs in their shells should never be microwaved, as they can explode and make a mess (and potentially cause injury). If you want to cook eggs in the microwave, be sure to crack them into a microwave-safe dish first.

Cookware with non-microwave-safe coatings or finishes, such as enamel or decorative paint, should also be avoided. These coatings can crack, melt, or release toxic fumes when heated in the microwave.


Fruits and vegetables with thick skins, such as potatoes, apples, and tomatoes, should be pierced or cut before microwaving. Otherwise, the steam buildup can cause them to explode.

Bread products, such as bagels, muffins, and bread slices, can become tough and rubbery when microwaved. If you want to warm them up, use a toaster or oven instead.


Frozen meat should be defrosted in the refrigerator or under cold running water, not in the microwave. Microwaving meat can cause uneven cooking and potentially harmful bacteria growth.

Anything with a seal, such as a jar or bottle, should also be opened before microwaving. Otherwise, the pressure buildup can cause it to explode.


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