How To Microwave Trader Joe’s Tamales In Simple Steps

Tamales are such a versatile snack, isn’t it? It’s just so tasty and it keeps me full. This is why it’s usually one of my favorites especially whenever I’m busy. But I’m not going to lie when I say it’s not something very easy to make from scratch.

Well, thank goodness for Trader Joe’s tamales for existing! This is something I make sure I have in store in my home. Whenever I need to have a quick breakfast that should keep me full at least until lunchtime, I’d just grab a few of these and toss them in the microwave to cook them.

I have always been microwaving my Trader Joe’s tamales and I think you should try it too!

Here are some things you need to know when microwaving them so you can make sure you have quick meals whenever you have too little time to spare.

Can you microwave Trader Joe’s tamales?

Of course! You can cook your Trader Joe’s tamales in the microwave. This is the quickest and easiest way of preparing your favorite snack. These tamales are already pre-cooked and flash-frozen so that you can enjoy them within several days. With that, it is recommended that you reheat them before eating so that you are sure it is not contaminated.

Microwaving your Trader Joe’s tamales may not be the best way to cook them, but if you really don’t have that much time in your hands and you’re craving for it so badly, then this is the way to go!

Also, you may want to know that it’s also risky since your tamales might end up crumbly or dry once you’ve microwaved them.

But hey! This is why you’re here and this is why you’re reading this. Keep reading to know more on how to make sure you get the best out of your microwaved Trader Joe’s tamales.

Is it safe to microwave Trader Joe’s tamales?

Absolutely! You don’t need to worry because it is safe to microwave your Trader Joe’s tamales. All you have to do is make sure that your tamales reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit or 74 degrees Celsius after you microwave them.

We all love having a wide range of choices, right. With that, it’s good to know that the fillings in Trader Joe’s tamales are made up of various ingredients like vegetables and different kinds of meats for you to choose from.

As we all know, these ingredients are very prone to be contaminated easily. This is why reaching the given desired internal temperature is important. It’s because high heat temperatures kill harmful bacteria and, thus, make sure that your food is safe for you to eat.

Of course, before you decide on microwaving your Trader Joe’s tamales, you should remember to check the expiry date printed on the packaging. If it goes past the expiry date, then don’t even risk eating them even if you’re going to heat it.

Additionally, make sure you use a microwaveable container when microwaving your tamales. The original packaging of Trader Joe’s tamales is NOT microwave-safe. So, save yourself from eating melted plastic and get those ceramic or glass containers out.

How to keep Trader Joe’s tamales moist while microwaving?

All you need is the corn husk or the original wrapper of your Trader Joe’s tamales along with some damp paper towels and plastic wrap to make sure your tamales stay moist while you microwave them.

One of the struggles I faced when microwaving my Trader Joe’s tamales was keeping them moist so that I don’t get a crumbly pile of tamales after microwaving them.

I tried to Google it out and saw that you can use the corn husk, some paper towels, and plastic wrap to do it. At first, I thought it wasn’t right, but it turned out well. Here’s how I did it:

  1. Prepare some paper towels and wet them with water.
  2. Gently squeeze out the excess water your paper towels don’t drip anymore.
  3. Get a tamale and make sure you keep the corn husk on it. The corn husk helps the tamale retain its shape and its flavor while it is heated in the microwave. Plus, it can also be used as a plate when it’s ready to be eaten.
  4. Wrap the damp paper towels around your Trader Joe’s tamales until it covers the whole thing. Make sure you do this for each tamale.
  5. After that, wrap each tamale with plastic wrap. This makes sure that your tamales will stay moist and that the moisture is trapped inside them.

Should you defrost Trader Joe’s tamales before microwaving them?

Yes! It is better if you defrost your Trader Joe’s tamales first before microwaving them. This is because frozen tamales take longer to cook in the microwave. Moreover, it is recommended that you defrost it first so that it cooks thoroughly.

Of course, you can still use your microwave to defrost your Trader Joe’s tamales first. All you have to do is set your microwave to the defrost setting, put your tamales in, and let the microwave do its thing.

But if you have more time to spare for defrosting, then you can just remove your Trader Joe’s tamales from the freezer and leave them in the refrigerator to thaw. Another way is to leave it at room temperature.

If you do decide to leave it at room temperature, you have to make sure you heat it and eat it immediately. This is to make sure your tamales don’t go bad in the long run. With that, make sure that you only take out as many pieces of tamales that you and your friends can consume.

How long do you microwave Trader Joe’s tamales?

It only takes around 3 to 4 minutes to microwave your Trader Joe’s tamales! You read it right. All you need is a couple of minutes, a little patience, a microwave, and VOILA! You now have your favorite Trader Joe’s tamales for you to enjoy.

Of course, there are a few factors that affect this. For one, the time you spend cooking your Trader Joe’s tamales depends on how many watts your microwave has.

I used a microwave that has a wattage of 1200. With this, I can cook my tamales for 3 minutes. So, if you have a microwave that has a lower wattage, say 800 watts, then expect that you’ll need to microwave your tamales for longer.

The number of tamales you decide to microwave in one go will also affect how long you will finish cooking them all.

One thing you need to know about microwaving tamales is that you need to flip them at some point. So, if you need to cook a lot of pieces, you have to do it by batch so that the heat is distributed evenly and it all cooks thoroughly.

Another thing that affects the cooking time of your Trader Joe’s tamales is its temperature. If you decide to microwave your tamales while it’s frozen, then you’ll surely need to do it for a longer time.

I tried cooking a tamale while it was still frozen and I had to defrost

With that, if you want to microwave your Trader Joe’s tamales quickly and enjoy them faster, then I suggest you defrost them first.

How to microwave Trader Joe’s tamales?

Now that you know everything you need to know before microwaving your Trader Joe’s tamales, it’s time for you to start heating your favorite snacks. I know you’re busy and you need to have this quick meal right now. So, here are the simple steps to microwaving your tamales:

  1. Take some pieces of tamales out of their packaging and defrost them. Make sure that you can eat all of these pieces immediately.
  2. Moisten up your tamales by following the steps mentioned earlier.
  3. Prepare a microwavable plate and line the tamales on it. Make sure that they are evenly spaced so that they are heated properly.
  4. Put the plate inside the microwave and set the heat setting to high.
  5. Microwave for 1½ to 2 minutes.
  6. After that, flip the tamales so that the other side is heated as well.
  7. Microwave for another 1 minute.
  8. When done, check if the desired internal temperature is reached. If not, heat for another 1 minute.
  9. Remove the tamale from its husk or wrapping and serve.


So, now you know a really quick and easy way to cook your Trader Joe’s tamales! This showed you all you need to know from preparing your tamales to microwaving them perfectly. That means that you don’t need to let yourself go hungry even on a busy day.

Now, what are you waiting for? Go, grab those Trader Joe’s tamales and give yourself a filling treat!

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