The Real Reason Butter Always Makes A Mess Of Your Microwave

Butter, it must be said, is a delicious add-on to many dishes. Whether you are adding it to a bowl of hot pasta or slathering it on toast first thing in the morning, it's a versatile ingredient that can make many dishes taste extraordinary. However, you have got to handle it carefully especially if you are using a microwave. Per The Takeout, butter needs to be observed carefully when you are heating it up in the microwave or you'll find yourself dealing with an unwanted, greasy mess.

You see, a major part of the ingredient is butterfat, with a tiny amount of milk solids and water thrown in. And yes, while a combination of fat, oils, and water isn't supposed to usually work, butter is able to pull this off with ease thanks to emulsification and butter manages to stay solid at room temperature. What happens when you pop it into the microwave, though?

It all comes down to science

According to The Takeout, when butter is heated, water molecules in there tend to vibrate and get heated up, while the fat melts. They eventually escape the fat and cause that ugly explosion in the microwave that none of us like to see. It all comes down to the droplets of water in the butter. Eek.

So, is there a way to avoid this from happening in the first place? Yes. All you need to do is heat your butter slowly and for short bursts of time instead of letting it stay in there for longer periods. It's wise to keep the microwave on low, as well. A Redditor has a different tip that might be worth trying, too. They write, "Put at least a cup (8 ounces) of water in the microwave with the butter while it's running. The water absorbs most of the energy and the butter softens and melts gently."