There are several ways of preparing food and dishes made with each one that ends up smelling, feeling and tasting different.
- Boiling involves immersing food in a liquid at or above boiling temperature.
- Steaming is cooking food over boiling water without letting it directly contact the water.
- Boiling is more suitable for foods that need to be thoroughly cooked, while steaming is better for foods that need to retain shape, texture, and flavor.
Boiling vs Steaming
Boiling is a cooking method that involves heating a liquid to its boiling point when the liquid turns into steam rapidly. Steaming is a cooking method that involves using hot steam to cook food items and helps preserve the nutrients and flavours of the food.
Boiling is a moist way of preparing food where ingredients are immersed in some liquid, either brought or maintained to the boiling point. Heat is conducted via vessel surfaces to the liquid in it.
Steaming is a procedure for making food that needs moist heat. This heat gets produced via boiling water which converts into steam. This steam provides warmth to the ingredients and cooks them.
|Parameters Of Comparison||Boiling||Steaming|
|Manner of cooking||Uses direct exposure to liquid to cook||Vaporized boiling liquid used to cook|
|Flavors||Flavors can be infused||Flavors can’t be infused|
|Vessel requirement||Could be done in any pot||Need additional vessel like a tray or insert|
|Breakage of ingredients||Food ingredients might break or become sturdy because of direct exposure to water||Raw ingredients don’t break|
What is Boiling?
Boiling is a vital cooking procedure used to make dishes from eggs, vegetables, and other meals. It is utilized in kitchens all over the globe and requires just a saucepan or heavy-bottomed pot to make the dish.
Boiling in the kitchen is done at a high temperature of around 100°C, in some base liquid or water. When the liquid involved boils, bubbles produced by water vapour move towards the liquid’s surface and pop.
The ingredients are sinks into the water for proper distribution of heat in the food. Boiling could be fast or slow in nature.
Usually, the raw ingredients are put into the liquid at a boiling stage but sometimes are lead to the simmering phase until the entire cooking finishes.
What is Steaming?
Steaming is a procedure of cooking that involves moist heating. The warmth gets produced via boiling water which converts into steam. This steam gets heat to the meal and prepares it.
To steam food, you only need to have two simple equipment pieces on your stovetop: a steamer basket and a pot. The pot is filled with liquid which leads to a simmer.
The hot steam flows into the pot and prepares the ingredients in it very quickly. The process is also known by the name compartment steaming.
Steaming could be done via high pressure as well. This sort of cooking will need specialized utensils. But, the basket-pot method works almost for all the steamed cooked dishes.
Main Differences Between Boiling and Steaming
- Boiling helps in killing more microorganisms due to higher temperatures. But while steaming, fewer microorganisms are removed if compared to boiling.
- Boiling might take away food flavours. On the other hand, steaming is likely to maintain food flavours to the utmost level.
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Piyush Yadav has spent the past 25 years working as a physicist in the local community. He is a physicist passionate about making science more accessible to our readers. He holds a BSc in Natural Sciences and Post Graduate Diploma in Environmental Science. You can read more about him on his bio page.