Easy Microwave Roux

Did you know you can make a gumbo roux in the microwave? This easy microwave roux only takes 10 minutes and doesn’t require constant stirring! That’s way less time than making a traditional gumbo roux, and it tastes identical. This post covers the method plus some essential tips for success!

Microwave gumbo roux in a measuring cup.

If you don’t have an hour to stand over the stove making a traditional gumbo roux, then this microwave roux recipe is for you! A dark roux is essential for making a good gumbo, like the holy trinity, andouille sausage, and cajun seasoning, but it definitely takes some time and patience. By making a quick roux in the microwave instead of on the stove, you can make it 5 times faster!

The only drawback to this method is that the roux can burn very quickly. Make sure you are keeping a very close eye on it. If you keep having issues with burnt roux, try an oven roux instead! It’s the method of making roux that’s least likely to burn.

Recipe Quick Notes

Lauren’s Take: The best way to save time making gumbo! Microwave roux can be made in a fraction of the time as the traditional method, and I promise you won’t be able to tell the difference in taste!

Taste: A microwaved roux tastes identical to a roux made on the stove!

Texture: Dark gumbo roux should be like fine wet sand. 

Time: Only takes about 10 minutes!

Testing Notes: While testing out this method, I realized it is very easy to burn a roux in the microwave. All microwaves are different, and some are much stronger than others. Until you get the hang of making gumbo roux in your microwave, use smaller increments of time so you don’t burn it.

Ingredients & Substitutions

A microwave roux uses the same ingredients as a traditional gumbo roux: flour and oil.

Use a neutral oil like avocado oil or vegetable oil. Don’t use olive oil, as it has a strong flavor and low smoke point. 

You can also use rendered animal fats like chicken schmaltz, bacon grease, or lard. Just don’t use something that has a strong taste, or it can overpower the other ingredients. Butter is great for a blond roux, but I don’t use it for a dark roux  since the milk solids can burn easily. 

All purpose flour is the best choice for making gumbo roux. 

roux Labeled Ingredients.

See the recipe card below for the complete list of ingredients and measurements.

Equipment Needed

For microwave roux, you need a large microwave safe cup or bowl. I prefer to use a large measuring cup with a handle. Use a cup that is at least double the size of the ingredients you will be using. The flour and oil will bubble up while cooking, and you don’t want it to bubble out of the cup. 

For using 1 ¼ cup flour and 1 cup oil, I use at least a 4 cup measuring cup. When doubling the recipe, I use a 2 quart (8 cup) measuring cup

For stirring, I start with a whisk, then move to a silicone spatula to gently mix the heated roux. 

It’s also really helpful to use a microwave cover and oven mitts! Splattering roux can be a mess to clean up. The roux and container can both get very hot, so use caution when transferring in and out of the microwave and use oven mitts.

Making Roux in the Microwave

Microwave roux is quick to make, but easy to burn. Use caution and check on it frequently.

Whisking oil and flour in a measuring cup for roux.

Step One: Whisk

Whisk together flour and oil until there are no lumps in a large microwave safe bowl or cup. 

Bubbling blond roux.

Step Two: Blond

Cover and microwave for 4 minutes. It should be a blond roux at this point. Remove from microwave using oven mitts and gently stir. 

Mixing brown roux right out of the microwave.

Step Three: Brown

Microwave covered at 1 minute increments, stirring well in between, until you reach the desired color. This color is a brown roux, and used for crawfish étouffée

Dark brown microwave roux in a glass cup.

Step Four: Dark Brown

This stage is a dark brown roux. It should take about 8-10 minutes to get to this point, depending on your microwave. Roux will continue to darken from residual heat, so you may want to remove it slightly before your desired color. 

If you want to read more about making roux and the different stages of roux browning, see Gumbo Roux

Expert Tips for Making Easy Roux

  1. Use a large container. The flour and oil mixture will bubble up when heated, so use a large container to minimize the risk of the roux boiling over the sides. 
  2. Use oven mitts. The container can get hot when microwaving, so use oven mitts to handle it safely. 
  3. Use a microwave cover. Roux can be a mess to clean up, so its best to use a microwave cover when heating to minimize any splashes. 
  4. Check on it frequently. Microwave roux is EASY TO BURN. Check on it frequently, and use small time increments when heating. 
  5. Mix well but gently. Make sure to thoroughly mix between heating, but be gentle so you don’t splash the hot roux. 
  6. Ventilate. Dark roux has a very strong smell, and burnt roux smells absolutely awful. Turn your vent on and open your windows when making roux to minimize the odors. 
  7. If it burns, throw it out. There is no way to fix a burned roux. Burnt roux will smell terrible, have a bitter taste, and have flecks of black in it (see photo below). If you burn it, you have to start over. 
Burnt roux on parchment paper.

Storage & make ahead

Storage: Dark gumbo roux can be stored in an airtight jar at room temperature for 2-3 days or in the refrigerator for up to 6 months. Make sure to cool it completely before storing. 

Freeze: Store microwave roux in a freezer safe jar for up to 1 year. You can also freeze in ice cube trays for when you only need to use a little at a time. 

Make ahead: You can make roux months ahead of time and store in the fridge or freezer. 

Reheat: To use a pre-made roux, allow it to come to room temperature before using. 

Microwave roux on a spoon.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a gumbo roux be made in the microwave?

Yes! You can make a dark roux for gumbo in the microwave. The whole process should take about 10 minutes. See the recipe card for details and tips for success. 

How do you speed up a roux?

Making a dark roux can take up to an hour when making it on the stove. Making a microwave roux can cut the time down to only 10 minutes!

More Gumbo Necessities

More Cajun Recipes

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Microwave roux in a measuring cup.

Microwave Roux Recipe for Gumbo

Microwave roux tastes just like traditional roux, but only takes 10 minutes to make! Dark roux has a deep roasted nutty flavor and makes a delicious cajun gumbo.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 1 minute
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 11 minutes
Course Ingredient
Cuisine Cajun
Servings 10 servings
Calories 250 kcal

Equipment

  • Whisk
  • Large microwave safe measuring cup
  • Oven mitts
  • Microwave cover

Ingredients
  

  • 1 ¼ cup flour
  • 1 cup neutral oil

Instructions
 

  • WHISK: In a large microwave safe bowl or measuring cup, whisk together flour and oil until there are no lumps.
  • HEAT: Cover and microwave for 4 minutes. Using oven mitts, carefully remove the roux from the microwave and gently stir. It will be bubbling and foamy. It should be a blond roux at this point. Continue heating in 1 minute increments, stirring well in between, until you reach the desired color. The whole process should take about 8-10 minutes. Roux will continue to darken from residual heat, so it’s best to remove it just before the color stage you want.
  • USE: Use the roux in your recipes or store for later.

Notes

  • This makes enough roux for a gumbo with 8-10 servings. 
  • SAFETY TIPS: It’s very important to use a microwave safe container. It’s also very important to use a container that is at least twice the size of the amount you are microwaving. The hot roux will bubble and expand, and you don’t want it to bubble over. Cover the container while microwaving so it does not splash. Use oven mitts to handle the container to prevent burns.
  • Everyone’s microwave is different! Start low and slow until you get the hang of making roux in your own microwave. I use the regular heat setting on my microwave. If your roux keeps burning, try turning the heat to 70% power. Depending on your microwave you may even need to do 30 second intervals once you get closer.
  • Double the recipe to make a larger batch. Doubling will add time to the cooking process.
  • Store roux at room temperature for 2-3 days, in the refrigerator for up to 6 months, and in the freezer for up to a year.

Nutrition

Calories: 250kcalCarbohydrates: 12gProtein: 2gFat: 22gSaturated Fat: 3gPolyunsaturated Fat: 13gMonounsaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0.1gSodium: 0.3mgPotassium: 17mgFiber: 0.4gSugar: 0.04gCalcium: 2mgIron: 1mg
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Meet Lauren

I’m the blogger, recipe developer, food photographer, and otherwise food obsessed gal behind Lauren From Scratch. I was born and raised in New Orleans and lived in South Louisiana most of my life. Growing up around Cajun country has instilled a love of food that runs deep in my bones. I am passionate about food and teaching you how to make mouth-watering Louisiana inspired dishes in your own kitchen!


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