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7 Surprising Things Your Microwave Can Do to Save You Time

I am always trying to find ways to simplify my life, save time and make things easier whenever possible. I especially get excited whenever I find a new use for something that is already taking up space in my home.

Did you know that your microwave could do more than just warm up food? From cleaning itself to putting a crunch back into stale chips, there are many uses for a microwave, beyond just warming up leftovers. 

Let the Microwave Clean Itself! 

Much like the feature on your oven, your microwave can help to clean itself.

Microwave a cup of water with a cup of vinegar for 5 minutes.

When done heating, allow the bowl to sit in the microwave for an extra 5 minutes to allow steam to build up.

Be careful when removing the bowl, it will be hot.

Wipe down the microwave easily and faster with the help of steam and vinegar.

If you are all out of vinegar, this process will work on most messes with just the steam from the water. 

You can see the whole process in more detail with great before and after pictures by clicking here. 

No Need to Buy Prepackaged Popcorn 

Save money on prepackaged popcorn by using this method for popping your own. You can now buy bags of kernels which cost much less than the prepackaged bags of popcorn. 

I like to add my own butter and salt, this way I know exactly what I am eating. The bags usually contain artificial ingredients and random additives that are completely unnecessary. 

Microwave popcorn kernels in a paper bag for an easy and quick popcorn snack. I usually pop about 2 tablespoons of popcorn kernels for about 2 minutes.

This can be done in a large microwaveable bowl with a plate on top as well, although the timing will change depending on the method you choose. 

Listen for the popping to slow to about 2-3 seconds in between pops before removing popcorn from the microwave. 

This usually yields about 3 and a half to about 4 cups of popped popcorn. It’s much healthier and cheaper this way, with no need for pre-made bags full of unnecessary fat and calories. 

Sanitize Your Sponge

Sponges collect bacteria and using a dirty sponge to wash the dishes can be counterproductive. 

Pop your sponge in the microwave for 90 seconds to kill off most of the germs and bacteria that it collects during regular use.

Be careful when removing the sponge from the microwave because it will be very hot. I usually wait a minute to remove my sponge and then give it a good rinse before using it again. 

This can be done several times before getting a new sponge. I usually replace my sponge every couple of weeks, depending on how much I use it but this is helpful for daily sanitizing. 

Grilled Onions

Stop Crying When Peeling Onions

There are many tricks people use to prevent onions from making them cry but most of them didn’t seem to work for me.

I once heard that chewing a piece of gum while chopping onions will stop them from making you tear up but that didn’t work for me. 

Eventually, I gave up trying the tricks that claim to work but when I heard about this one, I decided to give it a try. 

Microwave an onion to release the sulfuric acid that causes onions to make you cry while chopping. Pierce a couple of holes into the onion and microwave on medium for 30 seconds.

This worked for me although I usually just deal with the tears. This would be useful if you have eye makeup on, no more raccoon eyes! 

Remove Labels & Stamps Easy

Have you ever needed to remove a stamp from a letter or wanted to remove a label from a jar for reuse?

Add a dash of water to the paper and microwave for 30 seconds, it should come off quite easily.

This will come in handy time and time again.

Check out this DIY Halloween Jar craft using old pickle jars. 

I have quite a stockpile of pickle jars so you will be seeing many more crafts made using this microwave trick to prepare them for crafting.

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Bake a Fast Dessert

Got the munchies but don’t feel like messing up the entire kitchen?

Throw a few ingredients together and make a quick brownie in your microwave that is dangerously delicious.

Check out this recipe for a 3 Minute Brownie Sundae that will blow your mind!

So easy and no need to get a bunch of dishes out or heat up the house by using the oven to make this dessert. 

This one is perfect if you don’t have a lot of time but are craving a deliciously easy dessert. 

If you are following the keto diet or just avoiding sugar and carbs, swap out the sugar for erythritol, the flour with almond flour, and the milk with almond milk for a quick low carb dessert. 

Make Stale Potato Chips Crunchy Again

No matter how many of those chip clips I buy, it never fails, someone always puts a bag away without closing it properly. 

Don’t throw away those potato chips that lost their crunch, microwave them for about 20 to 30 seconds to get that much-desired texture back. 

This trick works on a variety of chips, I hope it helps you prevent waste and save money, too. 

I haven’t tried this method on cereal but I would guess that it would work the same, if you try it out, leave me a comment letting me know how it worked for you. 

Homemade BBQ Chips


I hope some of these tips have helped you out in some way, to save time or money. Which one of these 7 useful things have you tried? Leave me a comment letting me know what has worked for you.

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About Thirty Something Super Mom

Melissa Dixon Thirty Something Super Mom
Thirty Something Super Mom | Website

My journey started after a Crohn's disease diagnosis, inspiring a commitment to well-being. This site shares my distinctive approach to healthy living with my collection of nutritious recipes that boast authentic flavors, mimicking the indulgence of traditional dishes. I love sharing guilt free recipes for low carb, keto, gluten-free, paleo, and the specific carbohydrate diet. I also share tips on natural living, including homemade cleaners and cleaning hacks. I also share my experience as a veterinary technician and pet groomer, to integrate pet health tips, homemade dog food recipes, and grooming insights to ensure your pets thrive.


Thursday 21st of January 2021

These are fabulous hacks and I knew about the sponge sanitizing but had no idea about putting the crisp back into the chips. Very cool and loved the post. Wonderful tips!

Jasmine Martin

Thursday 21st of January 2021

I never knew you could take labels off of containers and perk up stale chips with a microwave. I am definitely going to have to try some of these out really soon myself.


Wednesday 20th of January 2021

paper to microwave for 30 seconds,dose that really works? I would love to try this tips!


Tuesday 26th of January 2021

Yes, it does work! You should give it a try.


Wednesday 20th of January 2021

Such fablous hacks. Never thought a microwave can do as much. Useful and practical.


Wednesday 20th of January 2021

Such great hacks. Never thought a microwave can do as much. Useful and practical.