How to Microwave Baked Beans

Written By Acacia Crossley


Baked beans are a great source of protein and are a cheap way to feel full quickly. Perhaps that is why every household has at least 1 can of baked beans in the back of their pantry. Or maybe it is the fact that baked beans in their creamy, tomato-based sauce are simply scrumptious. 

Whatever the reason may be for their popularity, baked beans are a quick and easy meal to have on hand. But is it possible to make baked beans even quicker and easier to prepare by heating them in a microwave? 

To microwave baked beans, tip the contents of the tin into a microwave-safe container and microwave for 5 minutes, then cover and microwave for a further 10 minutes.

How to Microwave Baked Beans

Microwaving baked beans is not exactly a new or ingenious method of cooking the beans. After all, many baked bean tins will recommend using a microwave to heat up the beans in the first place. 

However, there is a method you can use to ensure that you can serve the best-tasting microwaved baked possible. This is that method: 

  1. Pour Beans Into A Microwavable Bowl 
    Most of the packaging that manufactured baked beans come in are not microwave friendly. You will need to empty the beans and their sauce into a microwaveable bowl before moving on to the next step. 
  2. Set The Microwave
    Set your microwave for 5 minutes at 75% power. 
  3. Microwave
    Leave the bowl of beans uncovered and place the bowl in the middle of the microwave before starting the microwave. 
  4. Cover
    After the first 5 minutes of cooking, take the beans out of the microwave. Cover the bowl with a dry tea towel or a plate. This will help to make the beans tender. 
  5. Microwave (Again) 
    When microwaving your baked beans for the second time, set the time to 10 minutes. 
  6. Serve Immediately 
    Do not wait to serve your baked beans, as they will go cold and stale. Instead, be ready to serve the beans as soon as they come out of the microwave. 
Can You Microwave Heinz Baked Beans?

Yes, Heinz baked beans only take a few minutes to cook in the microwave as you’re simply reheating them. Microwave for 4 minutes, stir and then repeat.

Beans on Toast

How to Microwave Baked Beans Successfully

It is hard to microwave baked beans wrong. They are a very simple food to cook, which is made even easier when you are using a microwave. 

However, there are a few rules and tips you should follow so that you can microwave your baked beans safely and effectively: 

  • Never Microwave The Can – Baked beans are commonly sold in tin or aluminium cans. No matter what, do not skip step 1 of the above method. Microwaving any type of metal will cause the microwave to explode, so always transfer your baked beans to a microwavable plate or bowl before cooking them. 
  • Double The Batch, Double The Time – The method above is how to microwave 1 can of baked beans. If you want to microwave more beans at one time, you will need to double the length of time that you microwave the beans for. 
  • Make Sure To Stir – You must stir the baked beans while they are cooking. Otherwise, the heat will not even distribute through the beans and they could explode in your microwave.

Why You Should Microwave Baked Beans

Considering that many baked bean manufacturers encourage customers to cook their beans in the microwave, it should be no surprise that there are plenty of benefits to microwaving baked beans. 

Mess Free

Baked beans are a quick and easy way to boost your protein intake. You don’t want to have to be cleaning pots and utensils every time you want some extra protein. 

When you microwave beans, you can cook the beans in the bowl you wish to serve them in. 

So long as the bowl is safe for use in a microwave, the whole process will create next to no mess. 

Perfect Texture

You will not have to sacrifice the soft texture of the baked beans when microwaving them. 

Because the baked beans are microwaved while still covered in their tomato sauce, the beans will not dry out or turn stale with the microwave’s heat. Instead, they will soak up some of the sauce and develop a great tenderness. 

Why You Shouldn’t Microwave Baked Beans

Indeed, modern baked bean manufacturers are just as likely to recommend microwaving their product as they instruct you to cook the beans on the stove. 

But there is something to be said about the traditional ways. 

Microwaving baked beans can cause some potential issues if the above method is not followed carefully enough: 

Explosion Risk!

Okay, so while baked beans that are microwaved correctly should not create any mess, the beans are prone to exploding in the microwave. 

This risk could be combated with other foods by keeping the bowl covered the entire time. However, leaving the baked beans uncovered for the first 5 minutes that they are microwaved is important to prevent the beans from getting soggy. 

You will need to keep an eye on the beans for those first 5 minutes to ensure that they do not create a mess. 

Not That Quick

There is a higher chance of microwaved baked beans burning or not heating through properly, which is why the method above is a little more complicated than shoving the beans in the microwave. 

It will be just as quick to cook beans on the stovetop as it would be to microwave them. You will not be saving time or effort by microwaving the beans but could be causing yourself more work. 

Microwaving Baked Beans FAQs

Got questions that still haven’t been answered? Then perhaps these will help you out a little:

Can You Microwave Tinned Beans?

It’s not just baked beans that come in a tin. Cannellini, kidney and butter beans can all be bought in a tin. The good news is that these can all be heated in the microwave.

How Do You Tell When Baked Beans Are Done?

Baked beans should be piping hot through, the sauce should be too hot to touch! The beans themselves should be soft but still have bite and firmness to them. You don’t want to create a puree!

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