Having microwaved potatoes and carrots for some minutes the end product still seems a bit raw/undercooked compared to boiling, frying, roasting.

Since tomatoes tend to be a lot softer and start ripping apart/exploding after one minute in the microwave I’m wondering if this means they are fully cooked or are they still partially uncooked when using microwaves and the tearing/exploding is reflecting something else?

Also I’ve had grill tomatoes in restaurants and it seems the cook has tried to not let them tear/explode as they are still intact. Would this mean they are perhaps a bit undercooked as it’s very difficult to fully cook them to the core without tearing/bursting them? Grilled tomatoes do taste more closer to the taste of raw to me but taste is subjective I can’t be sure.

Edit: just to clarify the question some of u have mentioned to poke holes, cook on a lower heat and for longer, but part of my question is even if this is done when cooking in the microwave, would the tomatoe still be relatively undercooked - in the sense that even when cooking potatoes and carrots for long In the microwave you can still see they are hard and relatively undercooked compared to potatoes, carrots etc which have been boiled or fried and become very soft.


  • Explosion is due to steam violently escaping the poor tomatoes. Poke a few holes in their skin before microwaving anything. Or lower the power.
    – Luciano
    Commented May 22 at 9:14
  • That's an answer @Luciano
    – GdD
    Commented May 22 at 9:19
  • 6
    Can things that are edible raw be "undercooked"? Commented May 22 at 9:20
  • @the-baby-is-you not fully cooked = undercooked. It's about the process.
    – Luciano
    Commented May 22 at 9:36
  • 1
    @Luciano more like cooked less than you want. Some veg can be reasonably served raw, lightly cooked, cooked more, or cooked to mush.
    – Chris H
    Commented May 22 at 9:40

1 Answer 1


Food explodes in the microwave when steam builds up inside and there's no way to escape. Don't try microwaving a whole egg in its shell.

Food not cooked long enough will be... uncooked. If you poke a few holes on the tomatoes you should be able to cook them for longer with no explosions.

Microwaves also don't need to be used at 100% power all the time; you should try using less power and add more time. The oven will "bombard" your food on and off during the cooking time, giving time for heat to distribute more uniformly inside the food, which will result in a more gentle cooking.

Cooking in the microwave you're heating only the water molecules in the food, so the result might have a different texture. When grilling, you're adding heat from the outside, so if you don't cook it for long enough the center might be raw. Since you're applying high heat to the outside, you might have to stop cooking earlier to avoid burning the outside completely, hence the texture you might be experiencing.

  • Many thanks it does appear that a raw Center was the problem here. You mentioned to poke holes, however I’ve also just started cutting the tomato into slices and have found I can microwave for much longer. Would it be better to poke holes or cut into slices to ensure you can cook longer and better? Thanks Commented May 25 at 22:55
  • @JamesWilson if you cut the tomato you expose more flesh to microwaves, so it will cook faster (also 0 risk of explosion). With the tomato whole you're 'steaming' the insides, it might retain more moisture (because there are only a few holes for steam to escape). Matter of preference.
    – Luciano
    Commented May 27 at 12:46

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