Cooking Tip #1. Do Not Microwave Cool Whip

I had a friend in college who used to microwave her ice cream.  Apparently it was too cold straight out of the freezer, so she warmed it up a bit.  We laughed at this idiosyncrasy for weeks… until we all started doing it too. 

Such is the nature of friendship.

Now it seems to me that if microwaving ice cream is a good idea (don’t knock it if you’ve never tried it), then microwaving Cool Whip would also be a good idea.

Okay, maybe this isn’t really a logical conclusion.  After all, ice cream is made out of things like sugar and cream, while Cool Whip is made out of things like xanthan gum and artificial flavoring.  But I didn’t really think that through at the time.  I just pulled the frozen whipped topping from the freezer and didn’t want to wait the recommended 4 hours to thaw it in the refrigerator.  A few magical seconds in the microwave and – Voila! I was left with a thick yellow syrup barely coating the bottom of the previously full tub of whipped topping.  Frozen to liquid in 5.2 seconds.  Amazing!

Now just in case you ever disregard Cooking Tip #1, let me advise you with a subpoint.  We’ll call this Cooking Tip 1a:  After microwaving Cool Whip, do not try to put it back in the freezer.  It will indeed solidify again.  But into a solid yellow brick that would be more appropriate for the back porch’s foundation than your piece of pie.  Trust me on this.  I learned it the hard way.

Perhaps if I had been paying more attention to Solomon’s wisdom, I could have avoided this whole incident.  Not that Solomon wrote much about Cool Whip and microwaves, but he did say Desire without knowledge is not good—how much more will hasty feet miss the way! (Proverbs 19:2)  In modern lingo, I think that could be translated as: Do not microwave Cool Whip.

In cooking, as with other things I don’t particularly enjoy, I often want to be done quickly.  I want to finish cooking so I can move on to the fun part of eating.  Unfortunately, this hasty desire frequently usurps what little knowledge I do have.  And as Solomon attests, such hastiness often misses the way.  If I had taken the time to just look at the tub of Cool Whip, I would have noticed it specifically says “Microwaving not recommended.”  (Whether I would have tried it anyway is debatable, but I think that’s a topic for a different piece of Solomon’s wisdom.)

Regardless, my hastiness on that particular night led to a syrupy mess.  This was quite sad, since I’m a fan of Cool Whip even if it is made of xanthan gum and artificial flavoring.  But ruining a tub of Cool Whip should be the least of my concerns. There are far more serious circumstances where I could act on my hasty desires without thinking through the consequences… or without even knowing what the consequences may be.  There are times when taking the time to glean a little knowledge could make a big difference in the outcome.  So let the lesson of the Cool Whip shine forth: Truly, desire without knowledge is not good.  And sometimes hasty actions are not so easily undone.

Cool Whip Brick, anyone?

Desire without knowledge is not good—how much more will hasty feet miss the way! (Proverbs 19:2)


  1. DoctorChemEd on April 19, 2012 at 7:53 pm

    Never have tried to microwave Cool Whip… but definitely have rushed to do something, only to discover that having not thought through my actions have resulted in an undesirable conclusion. Thank you for reminding us to take time, to be patient, and to seek knowledge while following our desires! ~Jeff

    • mustardpatch on April 20, 2012 at 12:48 pm

      Thanks, Jeff! (If you ever need a chemistry experiment, I recommend utilizing Cool Whip…)

  2. Chris on April 19, 2012 at 8:44 pm

    Janet, thanks for the laugh!! I once made a FAT FREE cheese cake. Trust me NOT a good idea!!

    • mustardpatch on April 20, 2012 at 12:46 pm

      Haha! I’ll take your word on that one!

  3. Susan Walter on April 25, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    I too microwave my ice cream; i also have been known to rush into things without considering the consequences ; however, in tar future, know that cool whip can be eaten even if frozen

  4. […] are horror stories (like here), where some microwaved Cool Whip and it turned into a yellow tub of […]

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Meet Janet!

Janet Beagle, PhD is the founder of The Mustard Patch. She divides her time between the Midwest and New England, and if she’s not writing, she’s probably out hiking with her 2-and 4-footed friends.