How to Melt Chocolate in the Microwave? (perfectly!)

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Quick Answer: How to Melt Chocolate in the Microwave?

Chop the chocolate finely into smaller equal-sized chunks. Empty into a microwave- safe bowl and adjust the power level to 70% for 30 seconds at 90 degrees Fahrenheit/ 32 degrees Celsius. Remove and whisk thoroughly. Pop the bowl back into the microwave for a 20-second burst. Whisk again. If the chocolate still has some chunks left, put it in the microwave for short heat bursts of 5 to 10 sec intervals.

This article is an extensive guide on how to melt chocolate in the microwave.

Keep reading to find easy and simple steps needed to melt chocolate successfully using the microwave.

I have used this technique many a time and, the results have been wondrous every time. While researching for better ways to melt chocolate, I’ve come across numerous chefs who use this method.

Without further ado, let’s know the process.

How to Prep the Chocolate for Microwaving

Keep the chocolate in a moisture-free environment. Using a chopping board and a knife, Chop it into smaller half-inch pieces. You can also use chocolate chips.

Use a microwave-safe bowl. If you are not sure, check the bottom of the container to see if the container is microwave safe. Please, do not use any metal utensils in the microwave.

How to Melt Chocolate in the Microwave?

How to Melt Chocolate in the Microwave?

Prep Time: 4 minutes
Active Time: 2 minutes
Additional Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 11 minutes
Difficulty: Easy

Quick Summary - On a dry chopping board, Slice the chocolate finely into smaller equal-sized chunks. Empty the chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl. Pop in the microwave for 30 seconds at 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the bowl and stir the chocolate thoroughly. Put the bowl back into the microwave for 20 seconds. Whisk and allow it to melt some more. If necessary, microwave for no more than 10 seconds.

Materials

  • Chocolate
  • Microwave-safe bowl

Tools

  • Knife
  • Spatula/Whisk

Instructions

      1. Put the container containing the chocolate in the microwave: After slicing up the chocolate, put it in a dry microwave-safe bowl and insert the bowl into the microwave.

      2. Adjusting the microwave settings: Switch on the microwave. Set the timer for 30 seconds at 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Lower the power level down to 70%.

        It will prevent the microwave from excessive heating and maintain the temperature in the 90 - 120 degree Fahrenheit range.

      3. Checking in between the process: After 30 seconds, take out the bowl and check for progress. Stir thoroughly with a spatula or whisk.

        Although the chocolate appears in chunks, the residual heat from the bowl will keep increasing the temperature of the chocolate.

        Pop the bowl back into the microwave for just 20 seconds.

        Pro Tip: If 80% of the volume of the chocolate has melted, there is no need to continue with microwaving.

      4. Heat Bursts of 5 to 10 seconds: If the quantity of the chocolate is large, there might be chunks of chocolate left. Put the bowl back in the microwave for 5 to 10 seconds only.

        Take out and whisk again. Repeat the process until the desired consistency is attained. The final product should appear glossy.

        Check out some great tips from chocolate maker Jacques Torres to melt chocolate in a microwave.

Tips to Remember While Melting Chocolate in Microwave

Here are some tips to melt chocolate in the microwave without burning it:

  • Remember to never add any water to the chocolate. Make sure the containers and utensils are completely dry. Any moisture causes the chocolate to turn into a grainy, lumpy paste. This is the process of seizing.
  • Some master bakers prefer to use a microwaveable plastic bowl than a glass or ceramic bowl. For Beginners: Use a clear microwave-safe glass bowl to keep an eye on the chocolate.
  • Do not cover the bowl up. The water droplets due to condensation can lead to seizing.
  • Do not rush the process. Exposing the chocolate to too much heat too fast can change its texture and eventually cause it to burn. Take your time. Stirring is key. Keep scraping the chocolate from the edges of the bowl.
  • Also, remember to not overcook the chocolate. Some of the components of chocolate have a very low melting point. Overcooking can cause a change in taste and texture.

Alternate Methods to Melt Chocolate

You can also melt chocolate using the double boiler method on a stovetop or using the water bath method.

1. The Double Boiler Method: Heat water in a pan. The water should cover 1/3rd of the pan. Bring it to a boil and let simmer.

In a heatproof bowl, add equal-sized chocolate pieces. Place it on the pan. Stir continuously until the chocolate melts.

Check out Thomas Joseph, from Everyday Food demonstrating the double boiler method to melt chocolate.

2. The Water Bath Method: This method uses a slow cooker to melt chocolate. Remove the lid. Fill the Slow cooker with warm water one-third of the way.

Set the heat to high. Place mason jars filled with chopped chocolate pieces into the water. Leave for 30 minutes.

This is a suitable method to melt various kinds of chocolates simultaneously.

How to Melt White Chocolate?

To melt white chocolate, Chop it into smaller equal-sized pieces. Pour the chocolate into a microwave-safe bowl. Lower the power to 50%. Pop in the microwave for 30 seconds at 90 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove and give it a thorough whisk. Put the bowl back into the microwave for 10 seconds. Whisk again. If necessary, put it back in the microwave for no more than 10 seconds.

White chocolate doesn’t contain any cocoa solids hence it is white. White chocolate contains sugar, cocoa butter, milk solids, vanilla, and lecithin.

Lecithin burns at a very low temperature of 110 degrees Fahrenheit. To melt white chocolate, use a microwave-safe bowl. Dice the chocolate into equal-sized, half-inch pieces.

Follow this procedure:

1. Adjusting the microwave settings: Since white chocolate burns easily. Lower the power to 50% strength. Set the timer for 30 seconds at 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

2. Checking the melting process: Take the container out and give the chocolate a thorough whisk. The chocolate might not have completely melted yet. Pop the dish back into the microwave for another 20 sec.

3. Heat Bursts of 10 seconds: Give a heat burst of 10 seconds only, if necessary. Repeat the process until the 80% volume of the chocolate has melted. The residual heat from the bowl will do the rest of the work.

Check out this video from Meadow Brown Bakery for excellent tips on how to melt white chocolate in the microwave.

Should You Add Butter or Oil to Melted Chocolate9?

Yes, you should add butter or oil to melted chocolate, if your Chocolate has seized. There is no need to add extra fat otherwise. You can also add oil or butter to increase glossiness or to adjust the thickness.

If your chocolate has sized or you have overcooked it, oil or butter can be added to smooth out the consistency. Adding oil or butter essentially increases the fat content.

Use warm oil or melted butter, if necessary. Cold oil or butter can lower the temperature of the chocolate causing it to go thick and lumpy.

The oil should have a neutral flavor e.g. Coconut oil. Add in small frequent amounts while whisking.

If you add these ingredients, the melted chocolate will have a thinner, glossier texture. Once this chocolate hardens, it will retain the glossiness from the fat.

How Long Does it Take to Melt Chocolate in the Microwave?

It only takes about 50 seconds to 1 minute of microwaving time and 2 to 3 minutes in totality to melt chocolate in the microwave. It is the most convenient method to melt chocolate.

Chocolate is melted in the microwave in small intervals. Stirring is the key to ensure the chocolate doesn’t burn between rounds of microwaving.

How to Melt Chocolate Quickly?

Microwaving is the quickest way to melt chocolate. It only takes about 2-3 minutes to melt chocolate using the microwave.

To speed the process, chop the chocolate into small equal sized chunks before microwaving. Do not leave the chocolate in the microwave for more than 30 seconds at a time.

Stirring in between the microwaving intervals will even out the temperature assisting in melting the chocolate from the residual heat.

Is it Safe to Melt Chocolate in the Microwave?

Of course, it is safe to melt chocolate in the microwave. This article is a comprehensive guide on how to. Microwaving is the most efficient method to melt large quantities of chocolate without creating a fuss.

To avoid overcooking, remove chocolate from the microwave before it looks completely done.

Avoid using a plastic bowl. Plastic can release harmful chemicals into the melted chocolate. Instead, use microwave-safe ceramic or glass bowls.

How to store Melted Chocolate ?

The best way to store melted chocolate is to pour it onto a sheet of parchment or a silicone baking mat and refrigerate it till it hardens and the parchment releases it. This chocolate can be stored for 2 to 3 months.

It is better to melt only a sufficient amount of chocolate at a time. If you do happen to have leftover melted chocolate, it can have cookie crumbs, Caramel blobs, or even fruit in it.

Do not use a plastic container to store the melted Chocolate. It is likely to harden into a rock. Pour the melted chocolate onto a sheet of parchment. Refrigerate till it turns hard.

Seal in a plastic bag and keep in the refrigerator. The chocolate will remain safe for a span of 2 to 3 months.

Why does Chocolate not Melt in the Microwave?

Chocolate not melting in the microwave occurs because the melting point of chocolate depends on the amount of cocoa butter in it. Chocolate not melting can also occur because the chocolate has seized. Add warm oil or butter to fix seized chocolate.

Cocoa butter is a major ingredient of chocolates and has a low melting temperature of 77-degree Fahrenheit and burns at 120-degree Fahrenheit.

If the cocoa butter content is high, the chocolate will melt easily. (70% or above)

Seizing occurs if water mixes with the chocolate. It may seem like the chocolate is not melting and has compressed into a gritty, lump form.

Avoid any kind of moisture while melting chocolate.

FAQs

Why does Chocolate Burn in the Microwave?

Chocolate burns because cocoa butter cannot withstand high temperatures; Cocoa Butter burns easily at 120 degrees Fahrenheit.

Avoid burning by pausing and whisking the chocolate every 20 to 30 seconds. If the chocolate is overcooked the cocoa butter crystallizes resulting in brittle and dull chocolate and if overheated it burns.

Is it better to Melt Chocolate on the Stove or Microwave?

Using a stovetop is a preferred method to melt chocolate. Controlling the temperature in a double boiler is comparatively easier than in a microwave.

Although either of the methods has its pitfalls, the double boiler method raises the temperature of the chocolate gently. There is a chance the chocolate might seize this way.

Bottom Line

I hope this comprehensive guide about melting chocolate using the microwave helped you.

If you have any queries or would like to share any tips and tricks, mention them in the comments or mail them to us.

Share this article with your nears and dears who also love to cook with melted chocolate.

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About Nancy Miller

Nancy is a foodie by heart and loves experimenting with food. She likes to experiment not only as part of academics but also as a cook at home, sometimes she does not get the desired outcome of these experiments though! But that doesn't stop her from trying more out-of-the-box things. When Nancy entered college, it became clear to her that food was going to be an important part of her life.

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