Home side dish How to Steam Frozen Broccoli in the Microwave

How to Steam Frozen Broccoli in the Microwave

by Stephanie

One veggie I can always get my family to get is steamed broccoli. If you can find steamable bags, it’s so easy to make frozen broccoli in the microwave.

Title image with a white bowl of green broccoli on a blue background and pale pink napkin

If you can’t find the steamable bags, it’s also very simple to steam frozen broccoli in the microwave for a quick and simple side dish.

Crisp or Tender Broccoli?

If I’m making a side dish of broccoli, we like it more tender, so I cook it for a longer time. I found that 10 minutes gives me the perfect tender broccoli in our microwave (which is 1500 watts). Then, I like to top it with a dash of salt and a pat of unsalted butter.

However, if I’m making a veggie stir fry in the microwave to put over rice or noodles, I prefer it a little more crisp. So, when I steam it, I’ll just cook it for 7-8 minutes.

What’s the difference between Broccoli Cuts and Florets?

I always make sure to buy broccoli florets. It’s the crowns. If the bag just says “broccoli cuts” that means it’s just all the cut up broccoli, so you won’t end up with pretty florets or “trees” as we like to call them.

Broccoli cuts are good to buy when you’re making a casserole like broccoli cheese casserole or just adding broccoli that will be mashed up into a dish. I don’t like to use it for a broccoli side dish.

I always buy broccoli florets, and if you’re like us and prefer the tender broccoli, “baby broccoli” is the best. Picsweet has bags of frozen baby broccoli that are the small florets that steam really nice and tender.

How do you steam frozen broccoli in the microwave?

If you don’t have a “steamable” bag of frozen broccoli that can be cooked right in the bag, you’ll need to steam your broccoli in a microwave-safe dish with a glass lid.

Place about 2 cups of frozen broccoli (about a 10-12 oz bag), in a microwave-safe dish. Add about an inch of water to the bottom of the dish. Cover with a glass lid and cook in the microwave on HIGH for 8-10 minutes. 8 minutes for crisper broccoli, 10 minutes for more tender.

When the broccoli is cooked, I just add a dash of salt and a pat or two of butter. I let the butter melt, and then stir it all up before serving it.

More seasoning ideas for Frozen Broccoli in the Microwave

  • A drizzle of balsamic glaze
  • Olive oil and some grated Parmesan
  • Rice vinegar and sesame seeds
  • A squeeze of a lemon
  • Crumbled feta cheese
  • Minced garlic and olive oil
  • A few shakes of soy sauce

More side dish ideas

Steamed broccoli is a great side dish for our microwave meatloaf, tuna noodle casserole and even our chicken casserole. Here’s a few more recipes for side dishes:

How to Steam Frozen Broccoli in the Microwave
Yield: 4 servings

How to Steam Frozen Broccoli in the Microwave

Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 11 minutes


  • 2 cups frozen broccoli
  • 1/4 cup water
  • dash of salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter


  1. Place the frozen broccoli in a microwave-safe dish with a glass lid.
  2. Add about 1 inch of water.
  3. Cook in the microwave for 8 to minutes. (8 min for crisper broccoli, 10 min for tender broccoli)
  4. Add a dash or two of salt and a pat or two of butter.
  5. Mix it up and serve with dinner.

Did you make this recipe?

Please leave a comment on the blog or share a photo on Instagram

You may also like

This website uses cookies to improve your experience. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Accept Read More

Skip to Recipe