High-temperature microreactors can play a role in developing reliable, portable energy sources for off-grid remote locations, microgrid concepts, and industrial process heat. Portability and passive safety criteria tend to skew microreactor structural component designs toward complex geometries, high thermal stresses, and design bases with large numbers of startup/shutdown cycles. Current design rules, as typified by Section III of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) Boiler & Pressure Vessel Code, are less than optimal for these conditions, particularly for preliminary component designs where developers need to rapidly consider a large number of potential component configurations. This paper presents a design method targeted toward rapid, efficient evaluation of preliminary component designs using modern finite element analysis. The new method retains key connections with the ASME Code rules and design data while streamlining the design approach. This paper presents the design method, several verification examples illustrating the similarities and differences between the new method and the current ASME rules, and the application of the new approach to the evaluation of a test article mimicking key features of a heat pipe–cooled microreactor.