The Key To Melting Brown Sugar In The Microwave

brown sugar and other sugars
brown sugar and other sugars - Shironagasukujira/Getty Images

Melting sugar in the microwave can be quick and efficient. But did you know there's a trick to melting brown sugar in the microwave even more effectively? This key is to circulate steam in the microwave and to do this, all you need to do is add a bowl of water next to the brown sugar.

Steam is also the key to loosening and softening brown sugar that has hardened into one massive lump over time. But why does the introduction of steam help soften hardened brown sugar and melt it more effectively? The reason is because brown sugar contains only two ingredients: Granulated sugar and molasses. While molasses has some water content, the granulated sugar needs some help from added moisture, like from the steam in the microwave, to get soft or melt effectively.

To easily melt brown sugar in the microwave, place the brown sugar in a study, heatproof bowl and water in a separate heatproof and shallow bowl. Microwave the two together, side by side, in 30-second bursts. As the water heats up, it will release steam into the microwave, which introduces moisture to the brown sugar. Stir the sugar after every burst and repeat the process until the sugar is melted. Just be careful, as the sugar can get very hot.

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Steam In The Microwave Can Also Help Soften And Loosen Hard Lumpy Brown Sugar

melted brown sugar with butter
melted brown sugar with butter - this_baker/Shutterstock

Sugar can also melt and burn quickly if you don't keep an eye on it. This is why you want to melt the brown sugar in the microwave in bursts, and check on the sugar and stir it after each burst.

Now if you have hard lumpy sugar you need to loosen, you can also microwave the brown sugar with water, but in just one 30-second burst. Alternatively, you can wet a paper towel to cover the sugar with it. Microwave for 20 to 30 seconds and the sugar will soften nicely, almost like magic.

Once you've melted your brown sugar nicely, you can use it as a syrup to top desserts or use in boba tea, or even use it to make caramel. If you find that you're running low on brown sugar, since you've melted all of it having discovered this nifty trick, making brown sugar at home couldn't be easier. Once you've replenished your supply, be sure to check out our 17 tips for baking with brown sugar.

Read the original article on Tasting Table.