Microwave-steamed celery can serve as a nutritious addition to a main or side dish or be tasty on its own. Although it possesses little in the way of calories, celery does supply a healthy serving of fiber and vitamin A, as well as vitamin C and calcium. Microwave cooking, in contrast to cooking celery on your stovetop, is a way to both prepare this vegetable quickly and preserve its nutritional value.
Separate the celery into individual stalks. If you are serving the celery as a vegetable side dish, use two stalks per serving as a guide to determining how many stalks you need. Follow recipe guidelines if you are microwaving the celery to include it as an ingredient in another dish.
Wash the celery by running it under cold water.
Cut 3 to 4 inches from the top of each stalk with a sharp utility knife to remove the leafy section and about 1 inch from the bottom to remove the base.
Chop each stalk into pieces 1 to 2 inches in length for a main dish or according to your recipe guidelines.
Add the celery pieces to a microwave-safe bowl along with about 1/8 cup cooking liquid per cup of celery pieces. While water is always appropriate, a cooking liquid such as low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth can be a flavorful substitution.
Cover the bowl to prevent steam from escaping as the celery cooks. If the bowl you are using does not have a microwave-safe cover of its own, use a sheet of wax paper or plastic wrap.
Set the covered bowl in your microwave oven and cook on HIGH for about two to three minutes per cup of celery. Test for doneness with a fork, taking care to protect your hands with oven mitts or hot pads when uncovering the bowl. When fully cooked, the celery should be fork-tender.
Carefully remove the bowl's cover and empty the celery into a colander to strain out the liquid.
Transfer the celery to a serving bowl, sprinkle on some black pepper for seasoning and serve; alternatively, add it as a recipe ingredient.