They are lifesavers when it comes to preparing speedy meals and reheating leftovers. In fact, there are loads of hacks which you can use your microwave for, from quickly peeling garlic and juicing oranges to making scrambled eggs and even cleaning your Beauty Blender sponge.
But they can also be dangerous if used in the wrong way. Due to their design, they are heavily metallic and reflect the waves off their surface, so there are a lot of things which should go nowhere near your trusted small appliance.
These are some of the items and foods which should go nowhere near your microwave.
One which pretty much everyone knows, but why can’t tin foil be used in a microwave? Well, it is all to do with the waves reflecting off the metal. When it is placed inside a microwave, the waves reflect off of the item, causing the aluminum foil to burn rapidly and ignite. This will likely cause a fire within moments
When warmed up, an ordinary paper bag will release toxins and fumes which could cause it to catch fire. Only specially-made bags such as popcorn bags are appropriate, as they contain susceptors which absorb the waves
Now we don’t know why you would want warm grapes anyway, but they explode and could catch on fire if microwaved. In fact, they create a bit of a fireball as they turn into plasma. It doesn’t need to be cut in half, as the rumour suggests. Two whole grapes will do the same thing.
So don’t do it. Not even to recreate this video.
Another fruit which may find its way into the microwave, and it is more likely than a grape surprisingly. Say you have frozen a batch of bananas for use in smoothies, but actually want to defrost some for topping cakes or porridge.
Bananas contain high levels of potassium, which is a metal (but safe to eat, of course). The electricity waves will bounce off the banana, and while the levels may not be high enough to start a fire, it is still going to cause a pretty scary light show which you don’t really want to risk
You have the posh cups out because you have guests, and someone is complaining that their cup of tea isn’t warm enough. They ask you to microwave it for a little bit. Do not listen to that order.
Many china cups contain some metallic elements to give them the aesthetic look, even if they are modern options. Even if it is just a little tiny bit of gold paint along the handle, it could have the same effect as aluminium foil and end up causing a lot of damage. Also watch out with some trimmed plates
There aren’t many instances in which warm alcoholic beverages are appealing anyway, but if you like a mulled wine or an Irish coffee and think it will be good to get it a bit hotter in the microwave, find another method.
Alcohol’s boiling temperature is less than that of water, and therefore it will become dangerously hot quickly. And as alcohol is flammable, if it reaches over this, it could catch fire. The higher the alcohol content, the greater the risk, but it is best not to take the risk at all
Nothing At All
We have all wondered about it. What would happen if I were to turn the microwave on without actually putting my dinner in there? Well if you have ever tried it, or indeed if you’ve been distracted and forgot to put anything in there, you will know that it doesn’t have a happy ending.
When the waves don’t have anything to bounce off, they are absorbed by the same walls which are releasing them. This all becomes a bit too much for the appliance and it will combust.