It has dubbed the greatest invention of the 20th century. And rightly so. No other invention has made life easier and more convenient in the home than it. Yes. I’m talking about the humble microwave, and we got the best microwave ovens on this list!
From popping popcorn to cooking full meals, this wondrous appliance does it all. And that is why every home needs one. I’m guessing you are also looking for a new one as you are reading this page.
If so, your search ends here as I’m going to show you the best microwave ovens you can find on the market. And no, they won’t break the bank, although some might ask for a princely ransom because they are definitely worth it.
Before we get to the best microwave ovens, let me help you make the best purchasing decision in this area by showing you a few factors to consider when looking for a microwave oven.
The Best Microwave Ovens: Comparison Table
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5 Factors to Consider when Shopping for a Microwave Oven
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If you thought buying a microwave only depended on how good it looks, think again. Sur, looks do matter, but there are other factors that go deeper than a microwaves skin (or is it shell).
Here are the things you need to look for when you are on the hunt for your next microwave oven.
Space and Placement
Microwave ovens come in different sizes. And so do kitchens and their countertops. This ultimately means you need to consider the space available in your kitchen for the microwave.
For example, a good midsize microwave can be 22 inches wide and 17 inches deep, while larger models can be 24 inches wide and 20 inches deep. So you see, the placement of your microwave should not be an afterthought, it definitely has to be planned.
Another big factor to consider when looking for a microwave oven is how much you are willing to spend on one.
Your budget will determine the size, features, and specs of your microwave. One other factor that will also be affected by your budget is the type of microwave oven you can get. Which brings us to our next point…
Type of Microwave
Microwaves come in 3 distinct types, namely countertop, over the range (OTR), and built in.
Countertop microwaves are just that – they sit on countertops. Over the range microwave ovens are those that are placed over your range while built-in microwave ovens are designed to be built in, that is, to be surrounded by your cabinetry or built into a wall.
And among these 3 types, there is another subset of microwaves. This subset is divided into 2 categories that include standard microwaves that use electromagnetic waves and “combi” microwave ovens that include other alternative cooking methods that include grilling or the use of convection.
Which type is best for you? Well, that depends on your kitchen.
Features and Functions
Depending on your budget and what you need from your microwave oven, there are a lot of features that have transformed microwave ovens from just a tool to warm leftovers to a powerful cooking appliance in its own right.
Some features to consider include:
- Child lock. This is an important feature that prevents children from playing with the microwave oven and hurting themselves.
- Quick keys. These allow for quick adjustments to your settings – at the touch of a button. In the same breath as quick keys are shortcut keys. These help make it easy to cook popular foods, again, at the touch of a button.
The best way to ensure you get one of the best microwaves available is to go for trusted brands. But sometimes, these brands also mess up and make a model that is sub-par.
So how do you avoid these “lemon” models?
Easy! By reading reviews like this one. So let’s cut to the chase and look at 6 of the best microwave ovens you should consider adding to your kitchen.
6 of the Best Microwave Ovens to Consider for Your Kitchen
Ready to get cooking? Microwave cooking that is. Then let’s get you one of the best microwave ovens on the market.
The Panasonic NN-SN936B
If you are looking for a microwave that is large enough to afford you the flexibility you need to prepare your favorite dishes without cramping your style, the Panasonic NN-SN936B microwave oven is it.
This is a massive 2.2 cubic foot microwave oven that comes with an impressive 1250W of power to complement the size.
Besides being larger than life (not really) the Panasonic NN-SN936B also has the added advantage of having inverter technology included. The DC inverter technology means the microwave oven heats things seamlessly, eliminating any dead zones that cause food to cook unevenly.
And coming with 1250W of power, you can expect this microwave to heat and cook food super-fast. If you’re simply warming a cup of coffee, it’s best you stick around.
When it comes to defrosting your food, the defrost settings work extremely well, together with every other function on the microwave.
The Panasonic NN-SN936B is one amazingly easy-to-use microwave that will certainly fulfill the biggest promise every microwave oven sets out to bring to the table – convenience. And if you think you have to pay through the nose for such power, capacity, and functions, you’ll be surprised to know it’s available for an affordable price.
Power and performance earn the Panasonic NN-SN936B 5 stars.
The Panasonic NE-1054F
Still on Panasonic (they do make some of the best microwave ovens after all), if you are looking for a commercial grade microwave oven (without a turntable) then I’d strongly suggest you opt for the Panasonic NE-1054F commercial microwave oven.
The Panasonic NE-1054F is a 1000W 0.8 cubic foot stainless steel microwave oven that definitely won’t win any beauty awards but will certainly win awards for doing what it does best – heating and cooking food.
As already mentioned, the Panasonic NE-1054F doesn’t come with a turntable, and this, surprisingly, is a good thing as it cooks food evenly without the need for a carousel.
According to Panasonic, the microwave oven “rotates the energy” instead of the food. Apart from superior cooking, another advantage that this technology brings to your counter is that it makes the microwave oven easier to clean. Speaking of cleaning, the entire inside of the Panasonic NE-1054F oven is a smooth surface that only needs a wet sponge to clean. Talk about convenience!
When it comes to controls, you won’t find an easier to use microwave oven than this one as it features 10 preset settings and 10 programmable memory pads on its touch control panel. But that isn’t the coolest part about the touch control keypad. The coolest part is that it also comes with braille (I know right?) to make it more accessible and easy to use.
And because this is a commercial grade microwave, you can expect high-quality durable materials that will make this one of the longest-serving microwaves you’ll probably feature in your kitchen.
For such a great microwave oven, set aside $$$ to bring this baby home. Despite being on the more expensive side, the Panasonic NE-1054F still gets a solid 5 stars.
The Breville Quick Touch Crisp
The Breville Quick Touch Crisp is a microwave-grill combi that has all the features you need to exercise your culinary chops.
Because the Breville Quick Touch Crisp is an inverter microwave, you can expect nothing but evenly cooked results. This is one smart microwave oven that will help you cook as it features smart settings that know the right power level and time you need to prepare any dish. This microwave is so smart it even knows when to switch to grill when it’s needed.
The Breville Quick Touch Crisp also features a built-in pre-heat pan and a 1000 Watt grill element that work well together to ensure your food browns well and comes out crispy too.
And if you’re wondering why it’s called the “Quick Touch” it could be that it allows you to do so much at the touch of a button. This is because the Breville Quick Touch Crisp has 18 cook and grill menus, 7 reheat menus, 4 defrost menus, and 2 melt and soften menus.
That’s definitely a lot of things you can do at the quick touch of a button. With all these features (not to mention the good looks), this is one microwave oven that is definitely worth its asking price.
This gets 4/5 stars.
The Samsung MG14H3020CM
If you’re looking for a modern looking conversation starter, you won’t go wrong with the Samsung MG14H3020CM microwave oven.
As with all things Samsung, this microwave oven looks premium and ultra-modern, making it a perfect for every kitchen – even yours. But the Samsung MG14H3020CM is not all about looks, it’s also a very functional microwave/grill combi – and a good one at that.
With a 1.4 Cu. Ft interior and a 950 Watts power rating, features some super to use settings such as the Auto Cook setting with 10 power levels.
A ceramic plate that comes included also helps as it improves the crispy finish of your grills. With this microwave oven, you can practically cook anything – well not really, but this microwave affords you a wide range of food you can cook in it.
The only downside with the Samsung MG14H3020CM is actually one of the major factors that contribute to its beauty – the mirror finish. This makes it a bit difficult to keep an eye on your dish.
But other than that, this is one of the best microwaves you can invest in, especially with its affordable price tag. A great microwave spoilt by the poor view of the inside, losing it one star to settle at 4/5 stars.
The GE JVM3160RFSS
If you are looking for the best over the range microwave oven, the GE JVM3160RFSS microwave oven will definitely not disappoint.
Over the range microwaves are not at all like your standard microwaves. Apart from being generally larger than other microwave types, over the range microwave ovens also feature air flow fans underneath their base that serve the purpose of clearing smoke off stoves.
As for the microwave cooking part, the GE JVM3160RFSS is a 1.6 cubic foot beast that has a power rating of 1000 Watts. This basically means you can easily cook large dishes efficiently without the fear of having some undercooked portions as this microwave has plenty of power to evenly heat the huge cavity.
You’ll find options galore in this particular microwave oven too, including the ability to switch the turntable off, detailed defrosting options, and automatic power settings just to name a few.
For an affordable price, this stainless steel microwave oven definitely gives great value for the money.
Definitely a 5-star microwave, thanks to its large capacity and great functionality.
The LG LCS0712ST
For the best compact microwave oven, the LG LCS0712ST microwave oven is definitely one of the best microwave ovens to fit in a tight kitchen.
Because of its small size, you won’t find as many functions in this microwave as you would in other larger sized microwave ovens.
Despite being a 700 watts and 0.7 cubic feet, this petite microwave oven comes with 10 power levels (rare for a microwave oven of its size) and a number of one-touch buttons to make your life in the kitchen much easier.
Coming in at an average price, the LG LCS0712ST definitely deserves a place on the best microwave ovens list.
The LG earns itself 5 stars for packing more power in its petite frame than most microwaves of its size.
Let’s Get Cooking
Ready to get that new microwave your kitchen desperately needs? Choosing one need not be a daunting task, not with this list anyway. So go ahead, pick the best microwave oven that suits your kitchen (and pocket) and let’s get cooking.