The Reason Why Your Microwaved Meals Are Mushy Is Because You’re Not Using the Right Cookware

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You know that feeling of having really good (like, straight-up incredible) leftovers in your fridge? There's a freedom in knowing that when lunchtime rolls around in your WFH office, you'll be able to just stroll over to the fridge, heat up last night's Thai food, and savor that second-day flavor. Sadly, a lot of microwaved leftover meals end up wilt-y or mushy the next day. That broccoli and orzo casserole that was so good the night before now has the texture of canned soup. Pasta that was rich in flavor and brought out the best of your heirloom tomatoes and fresh garlic is now mediocre. And when you try to actually throw a meal together from scratch? It can be really tough—certainly not the same as using a stove, oven, or air fryer.

This is likely because the molecules that make up our food and its cell structure can get damaged while getting heated up in a microwave—it can totally change the flavor of your meal, especially when you're reheating proteins. And especially if you're using regular plates or storage containers. But! It doesn't have to always be that way. We tested Anyday, glass bowls that are uniquely designed to be used for cooking food in the microwave without losing texture or flavor. We wanted to see whether or not Anyday could be used not only for leftovers—but freshly cooked meals. Here's what we learned.

What's Anyday about?

Anyday bowls (which come in various sets and sizes, depending on your needs and preferences) are made from frosted borosilicate glass (meaning, it can withstand much higher temps than regular glass—it's often used in science labs and restaurants), premium-grade silicone, and microwave-safe stainless steel. The material protects your food (and its textural and flavor integrity) a lot more effectively than a regular plate would.

With its ready-to-serve frosted glass bowls, Anyday is rendering your pots, pans, and other kitchen gadgets somewhat useless (or, at the very least, you can put them away for a night). With these bowls, you can whip up the basics (think: rice, eggs, and broccoli) in mere minutes, or follow one of the brand's signature recipes to enjoy Shakshuka, an omelette, or a pasta dish cooked—pardon me—microwaved from scratch. Simply choose a recipe from the Anyday site, follow the instructions, and serve up your breakfast, lunch, dinner, or dessert in under 15 minutes. Basically, it's supposed to completely change the microwave game forever.

A testament to Anyday's ease of use, the brand has over 500 five-star reviews from people who are rediscovering their microwave after years of leaving it in leftover exile. "The Anyday is a weeknight night game changer," writes one reviewer. "Instead of reheating leftovers, cooking from my usual repertoire, or giving into laziness and ordering delivery, I’m using Anyday to steam fresh veggies and poach fish. Learning to reinterpret recipes for the microwave has been an exciting new creative outlet in the kitchen." Others deem the gadget a "life hack," and treasure—in particular—that the each bowl is microwave-safe.

What happened when I tried Anyday to make a meal from scratch—in the microwave

Intrigued by the idea of giving my pans a night or two off, I decide to break in my Anyday bowls by making a quinoa tabbouleh salad. Tabbouleh is a dish hailing from Lebanon and Syria, and usually consists of a grain (in this case, quinoa), herbs, and spices. Anyday's version calls for mint, lemon, cherry tomatoes, and plenty of parsley—so I set to work chopping as my Anyday bowl cooked the quinoa in my microwave.

Photo: Kells McPhillips

Once the quinoa was steamed to perfection, the only thing left to do was throw in the herbs and tomatoes, add some salt and pepper, and enjoy. The overall experience of cooking with Anyday was easeful, if a bit new. (I haven't cooked a full meal in the microwave since, well, ever.) When all was said and done, the tabbouleh was flavorful and fresh, and the texture was perfect. I took it to a barbecue one of my friends were throwing—it turned out to be much-needed summery, citrus-y addition to our burgers and fries feast—and I was happy to scrape the bowl clean.

While I normally don't fret too much about losing Tupperware to a friend's brunch or dinner party, I was careful to grab the Anyday as my boyfriend and I thanked our guests and started walking home.

The verdict? I don't think my microwave will be my new go-to cooking instrument—I'm way too committed to my air fryer for that—but this experience has made me take a second look at the microwave. And one thing that I know for sure is that I'm never, ever cooking grains over the stove again.

anyday microwave cookware
Photo: Kells McPhillips

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Our editors independently select these products. Making a purchase through our links may earn Well+Good a commission.

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