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Our tips focus on a very important step: maintaining the moisture of the masa during the heating process for maximum eating enjoyment. After heating, you can add some grated cheese on top of the tamale pie for a richer taste. Cheese also helps tone down the heat from the chile peppers.


Steaming Your Tamale Pie

Steaming the tamale pie is the simplest heating method which provides the best results. It heats the tamale pie quickly while maintaining the moisture of the masa.

  1. Remove the plastic lid from the tamale pie package. Don't forget to recycle — its PET plastic.
  2. Add ~½ inch of water in a pot and bring to boil.
  3. Carefully place the pie pan directly in the boiling water or onto a steamer rack.
  4. Cover the pot and steam the tamale pie for approximately 5-7 minutes.
  5. If the tamale pie is frozen, steam for 12-15 minutes.
  6. Carefully take the pie pan from the pot, then remove the tamale pie by flipping it onto a plate.
  7. You can also eat it straight out of the pie pan (for those of us who want to start eating even faster)!

Microwaving Your Tamale Pie

Heating the tamale pie in the microwave is the fastest method. However, the microwave has a tendency to dry out the masa.  Generously sprinkle the tamale pie with water and cover it with a moistened paper towel before microwaving to ensure the masa stays moist.


  1. Remove the plastic lid from tamale pie package. Don't forget to recycle — its PET plastic.
  2. Flip the tamale pie onto a plate.
  3. Sprinkle the tamale pie with water, about 1 to 2 tablespoons.
  4. Completely cover the tamale pie with a moistened paper towel to preserve the masa's moisture. 
  5. If the tamale pie is frozen, set the microwave to Defrost for 2-3 minutes.
  6. Then microwave on High for approximately 1½ to 3 minutes. Microwave timing depends on:
  • the size of the tamale pie, Small or Large
  • whether the tamale pie is refrigerated or frozen
  • your microwave wattage
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