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best microwaves

The Best Microwaves in 2021

Author: Joanna Davis

Home & Kitchen Expert

The microwave has become an irreplaceable device for many households. For this reason, our excellent team has created a leaderboard that contains the best models. At the same time there are also ratings for weight, heating types, turntables and other gadgets.

AmazonBasics Microwave bundle with Echo Dot

AmazonBasics Microwave bundle with Echo Dot
1,353 Reviews
AmazonBasics Microwave bundle with Echo Dot
  • This bundle contains the Amazon Basics Microwave and the…
  • Now it’s easier to defrost vegetables, make popcorn, cook…
  • Automatically reorder popcorn when you run low and save 10%…
  • Compact size saves counter space, plus 10 power levels, a…
  • Alexa is always getting smarter and adding new presets.

Toshiba EM925A5A-BS Microwave Oven

Toshiba EM925A5A-BS Microwave Oven
19,410 Reviews
Toshiba EM925A5A-BS Microwave Oven
  • Stylish black stainless steel with timeless design; Rated…
  • Pre-programmed menu for 6 popular foods like popcorn, pizza,…
  • One touch start – quick access to start the microwave from 1…
  • Equipped with power-saving Eco mode, sound on/off option and…
  • 900 watts with 10 power settings, clock, and kitchen timer

Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven

Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven
33,236 Reviews
Toshiba EM131A5C-SS Microwave Oven
  • Stylish Stainless Steel with easy-to-clean interior, with…
  • Pre-programmed sensor menu for optimum heating of popular…
  • One touch popcorn button and two defrost settings – custom…
  • Equipped with power-saving Eco mode, sound on/off option and…
  • 1100 watts with 10 power settings, clock, and kitchen timer

BLACK+DECKER EM720CB7 Digital Microwave Oven

BLACK+DECKER EM720CB7 Digital Microwave Oven
9,075 Reviews
BLACK+DECKER EM720CB7 Digital Microwave Oven
  • Pre-programmed buttons for popcorn, potato, pizza, frozen…
  • 700 Watts with 10 power settings, clock and kitchen timer,…
  • Large LED digital display, easy-to-read control panel, child…
  • Push-button door release for easy access
  • Dimensions (W x D x H): 17.3” x 13.0” x 10.2”

Farberware Stainless Steel Countertop Microwave Oven

 Our Pick
Farberware Stainless Steel Countertop Microwave Oven
9,192 Reviews
Farberware Stainless Steel Countertop Microwave Oven
  • Spacious & stylish: with 1.1-Cu. feet Of cooking capacity, a…
  • 6 cooking programs: Auto cooking programs (popcorn, potato,…
  • Express cooking: Cook your leftovers with just a touch of a…
  • Digital clock: Easy-to-read LED display lights up the…
  • Child lock: Lock the control panel using the child safety…

Panasonic Microwave Oven

 Our Pick
Panasonic Microwave Oven
5,244 Reviews
Panasonic Microwave Oven
  • PANASONIC COUNTERTOP MICROWAVE OVEN CYCLONIC INVERTER: This…
  • INVERTER TECHNOLOGY WITH TURBO DEFROST: patented Inverter…
  • LARGE FAMILY SIZE: This countertop microwave with 16. 5-inch…
  • SMART COOKING SETTING: Built-in automatic sensor adjusts…
  • FOOD WARMING FEATURE: This Inverter microwave keeps soups,…

COMFEE' EM720CPL-PMB Countertop Microwave Oven

 Our Pick
COMFEE EM720CPL-PMB Countertop Microwave Oven
11,871 Reviews
COMFEE EM720CPL-PMB Countertop Microwave Oven
  • Stylish (black) stainless steel finish, compact size: 0.7…
  • Mute function, settings, clock, kitchen timer, child safety…
  • One touch express cooking function with 1-6 minutes and…
  • Energy Saving Eco Mode: Minimizing 50% standby power by…
  • Bright digital display, easy-to-read control panel, interior…

Panasonic Microwave Oven NN-SN686S Stainless Steel Countertop

 Our Pick
Panasonic Microwave Oven NN-SN686S Stainless Steel Countertop
7,200 Reviews
Panasonic Microwave Oven NN-SN686S Stainless Steel Countertop
  • Panasonic Microwave: This 1200 Watt high power, 1.2 cubic…
  • Inverter Technology with Turbo Defrost: Patented Inverter…
  • Compact Design: This countertop microwave with 13.4 inch…
  • Smart Cooking Settings with Genius Sensor: Built in…
  • Keep Warm Feature: This inverter microwave keeps soups,…

Galanz GLCMKA07BER-07 Microwave

 Our Pick
Galanz GLCMKA07BER-07 Microwave
8,238 Reviews
Galanz GLCMKA07BER-07 Microwave
  • 700W With 6 Variable Power Levels Galanz 0.7 Cu.Ft, 700…
  • Interior Light & Child Lock Interior Light For Checking The…
  • Defrost & Led Display For All Your Frozen Foods, Defrost By…
  • 360°Rotating Evenly Heating 360° Heating And Rotation Of…

Farberware Classic FMO11AHTBKN Microwave Oven

 Our Pick
Farberware Classic FMO11AHTBKN Microwave Oven
9,192 Reviews
Farberware Classic FMO11AHTBKN Microwave Oven
  • 1000 watts of cooking power and 10 power levels allow you to…
  • 1 through 6-minute Express Cooking quick start controls and…
  • 6 One-Touch cooking functions for popcorn, potato, pizza,…
  • Defrost by time or weight; Digital control and led display…
  • Removable rotating glass turntable; Keypad Lock prevents…

Frequently Asked Questions: Microwaves

What is a microwave?

A microwave is an additional device in the kitchen in addition to the stove and oven, which enables food to be heated up and defrosted more quickly, as well as to cook and cook it. The important thing is the water in the food, without which the microwave oven would hardly be able to function.

The design of the devices is mostly adapted to the needs of households. Therefore, both floor-standing, built-in and built-under devices are available. There are also combined variants, e.g. models that are both microwave and grill.

The technical structure of a microwave and its power are based on a magnetron that generates microwaves through a waveguide and guides them into the cooking space. This must be metallically sealed so that the microwaves do not get out of the device while the magnetron is supplied by a high-voltage transformer and the changing supply voltage there triggers current pulses.

In short, this means that a magnetron converts electrical current into microwaves, and the microwaves are distributed in the device with the help of a wave stirrer. There is also a fan that cools the magnetron and dries the cooking space with the heat generated.

The performance of the device is also carried out at intervals, so that the magnetron always works at full power, the regulation is set by the user himself. A device that runs with 1,200 watts, but is switched to 600 watts for the cooking or thawing process, then works alternately with the entire radiant power and none at all, i.e. an intermittent idle. The power specification, which can be set manually, remains the specification of the average energy per time.

Since the power of the magnetron must always be absorbed, which is the case with the food to be heated, the microwave should not be switched on without any contents. This could damage the device quickly, since the back reflections of the magnetron are not picked up anywhere and a three-dimensional pattern of “hot spots” is generated, which also ensures that different amounts of energy are given off to the food, which is why it also overheats can.

This in turn compensates for the turntable on the floor in the microwave, but food always has a different water content or salted food warms up faster than fatty foods. In addition, the food is covered by a protection, also to prevent splashes.

The power levels can be set according to the following conditions:

  • In the low range, between 90 – 180 watts, foods are simply thawed or certain foods are cooked particularly gently and over a longer period of time.
  • The middle range, approx. 300 to 400 watts, is suitable for continuing to cook certain dishes or for simply warming them up.
  • The higher range between 500 and 700 watts is ideal for cooking and cooking. Liquids can also be heated up quickly.
  • The highest level of 1,000 to 1,200 watts is basically unnecessary and shouldn’t be used.

The power of 600 watts is sufficient to prepare or cook the food normally. If the setting is too high, the food can become dry, burned on the outside and raw on the inside. This is partly due to the fact that the radiation from the microwaves always comes from the outside in, in order to warm up or heat up food. The average performance is therefore sufficient.

The weight also plays a role here and the automatic weight control is part of the microwave program, so that the optimal type of preparation can be determined and set using the weight of the food.

Most microwave ovens have additional symbols and names that indicate which type of food is suitable for which power level. The information here can only be viewed as guidelines and may vary by 10 percent. The power level should therefore be set a little lower or the time should be set shorter, the food should be cooked later if necessary.

Likewise, the performance decreases somewhat over time. Older devices become weaker and the setting must then be extended by a few minutes. Shorter cooking times can save energy and time, especially compared to conventional cooking on the stove.

How does a microwave work?

During the activity of the microwave, electromagnetic field energy is converted into thermal energy. Decimeter waves, also called microwaves, are absorbed. The waves have a wavelength that is about 10 centimeters, i.e. one decimeter. Hence the alternative name.

Food or materials in general are set in motion by microwaves in their water molecules. These are not constructed symmetrically, but have different charges at different points. In this alternating field generated in the microwave, each molecule then swings back and forth quickly. This movement creates heat.

So dishes are heated differently than by infrared radiation or heat conduction. While infrared radiation also triggers oscillations of the molecules, so that a trembling movement occurs around the atomic nucleus, when microwaves hit the molecules with an electrical dipole moment, which is a spatial separation of the charge, a rotation of the dipole is caused. More precisely, this means that the molecules of water are electrically unbalanced in their natural state.

A water molecule consists of hydrogen and oxygen, whereby a different charge is present, only the oxygen atom is negatively charged. Therefore, there is an electrically charged field in the vicinity of the water molecules and the alignment of this field occurs in a new arrangement. Because of their negative charge, oxygen molecules always point in the direction of the positive charge that comes from outside.

So it is possible that the water molecules that are present in the food are rotated by the radiation of the microwaves. Electric alternating fields become active, change the direction and the charge of the molecules, which causes the water molecules to rotate in this process. The friction naturally creates heat and thus the food is heated up.

About 65 percent of the electrical energy absorbed is converted into microwave radiation by a microwave device. The rest is waste heat, which is why only the food itself is heated, not the dishes or the stove itself. The surroundings are also not exposed to this heat.

What should I look out for when buying a microwave?

The acquisition of a microwave requires a few preliminary considerations so that the device also fulfills its purpose, fits perfectly into the kitchen and becomes a practical kitchen helper.

Information about the necessary power, price, handling, size and task of the microwave should make the search a little easier and narrow it down. It is also important to decide whether a combination of microwave and grill or oven makes sense. Further considerations are the use, i.e. how often the device is used, whether only small snacks are prepared or the microwave is in constant use.

The thawing of the food requires no device that also includes a steamer or has hot air.
Basic requirements for the purchase could then concern the following topics:

Size

First of all, the question of volume must be clarified. This determines the size of the microwave as well as the content that fits inside. The information about the capacity of the devices is given in liters.

The cooking space, which holds between 17 and 20 liters, is sufficient for just defrosting and warming dishes. Such devices are particularly suitable for smaller kitchens or when there is simply a lack of space. The size of the microwave itself is then around 45 x 30 centimeters.

However, if you are preparing larger meals and the microwave is used more often and replaces many a cooking process, then the volume should also be slightly larger and around 25 liters. The size of the cooking space always determines the heating time and power consumption. A turntable is therefore useful. In this way, the food also fits into the microwave oven to a larger extent.

Is it a combination device to replace the oven, a minimum volume of 30 liters is necessary, as different grill inserts or trays fit into it. Equally important is a turntable of the same size, which exposes the food to a balanced ratio of heating.

Especially with built-in or built-in microwaves, the dimensions and size should be tailored to your own kitchen unit. In the case of free-standing devices, the length and width of the device do not play a significant role, but it should be noted that the larger the device, the more space it takes up.

Material

A microwave with a plastic housing is widespread and one of the most common designs in the cheaper range. The production costs are low here, which is why the price is also lower. Most of the time these are white and don’t look particularly beautiful, but they serve their purpose quite normally.

Cleaning is a little more difficult than, for example, with devices made of stainless steel, but damage is more difficult and scratches are not a problem. Microwaves made of stainless steel are not only of higher quality in terms of workmanship, but of course also look more elegant. The price for this material is correspondingly higher, as the costs for the design and the equipment also flow into it.

Performance

Although the power basically no longer plays a role from a certain watt level, higher quality microwaves or combination devices are always equipped with a high number of watts. Of course, these also consume more electricity and then bring 1,000 to 1,200 watts with them, which then do not have to be used to the full. Basically, a device with a wattage of 800 watts is sufficient and the food can be cooked even at 500 watts.

Here it can be stated that the power or the higher number of watts is not a decisive indication of the quality of the microwave, but only shows and limits the range of power.

Hobby and professional cooks use a microwave always at 600 watts. Special functions alone require a higher performance, but the functions of such devices are matched to the performance ratio.

Built-In vs Countertop Microwaves

A microwave should no longer be missing in any household. You save a lot of time and money with this kitchen appliance. You can prepare many different meals with one micro wool in no time. In direct comparison with the stove, you also save electricity costs by using a microwave. Whether for defrosting food, heating dishes or liquids, a microwave has become an indispensable device for many.

Would you like to buy such a kitchen appliance for the first time or your old microwave has had its day? Due to the diverse selection of models, you may be faced with a difficult decision before buying. Well-known manufacturers of kitchen appliances offer many different microwaves in their portfolio. In general, however, a distinction must be made between two types:

  • Built-in microwave
  • Countertop microwave

Whether you have a built-in or a freestanding microwave is entirely up to you. Both variants have their advantages and disadvantages. In addition, of course, how the kitchen is set up. If you already have a built-in refrigerator and stove, a built-in microwave may be a better choice due to the overall appearance. If you have enough space in the kitchen, a free-standing microwave can be the ideal decision. One thing is certain, however, a microwave belongs in every kitchen.

To make the purchase decision easier, you will find some advantages and disadvantages for both variants below:

Advantages of a countertop microwave:

  • lower acquisition costs and usually a much larger selection
  • No time-consuming installation necessary – power cable into the socket and the free-standing microwave is ready for use

Disadvantages of a countertop microwave:

  • some models take up a lot of space in the kitchen

Advantages of a built-in microwave:

  • very space-saving
  • no dirt on the work surface

The disadvantages of a built-in microwave:

  • more expensive than free-standing microwaves
  • installation is usually only possible by a specialist

As already mentioned, you make the purchase decision alone. It is very difficult to answer which variant is the most sensible and best decision. First and foremost, the choice also depends on the size of your kitchen. Then there is personal taste. When it comes to built-in appliances, you usually don’t have as extensive a selection as with a free-standing microwave.

If it is a small kitchen, you should opt for a built-in appliance. You will certainly not want to sacrifice your valuable work surface space for another kitchen appliance. Another important point is also the need.

Microwaves are very practical and useful kitchen gadgets. However, they are also used differently. If you use a microwave to warm up or prepare food every day, you will make a different purchase decision than if you only use the microwave occasionally.

Conclusion
In summary, when buying a microwave you can choose between a built-in or a floor-standing device. Once you have made this decision, you are still spoiled for choice between numerous manufacturers. The range is almost limitless, especially for floor-standing devices.

In the field of built-in appliances, the various manufacturers have also been catching up for years. If an old device breaks, it is usually the more sensible decision to opt for a free-standing microwave for reasons of cost. When it comes to flexible and immediate use, this model variant is also recommended. In the area of design, built-in devices certainly look more stylish.

If you need more information or are still unsure, you can take a closer look at the numerous test reports. In a personal consultation with a specialist, you will learn many other advantages and disadvantages of the individual variants.

Regardless of which type you ultimately choose, a microwave has almost become an indispensable kitchen appliance. You can heat up and serve food in just a few minutes. Microwaves are also ideal for thawing. You will certainly not want to do without the services of a microwave in the future, regardless of whether it is free-standing or permanently installed.

Differences

As you now know, there is a free-standing version of a microwave and a microwave that is built into the kitchen unit. The differences are less in the area of function, rather the two models differ optically. If you have a large kitchen with enough space, in most cases and from a financial point of view, a free-standing microwave is recommended.

Such a microwave looks very chic in a spacious kitchen and you also have a very extensive selection available. You can enjoy the following advantages with a free-standing microwave:

  • many different sizes
  • extensive choice in terms of design
  • countless color variations to choose from

Countertop Microwaves

You hardly enjoy these advantages with a built-in microwave. Would you like a white, black or green microwave? Do you want to go with the fashion trends and have a colorful and eye-catching microwave? If you answer yes to these questions, then freestanding microwaves are the perfect choice. Another advantage is that you can place the free-standing variant flexibly. Whether you have a fixed place for this kitchen appliance or occasionally want to redesign the kitchen, with this model variant you have a free hand.

As is well known, a built-in device always remains stationary at the place of use. You will also find a microwave that fits harmoniously into the overall picture. Whether you are a single household or a large family, you will find a visually appealing and functional free-standing microwave for every purpose. A built-in microwave always has a fixed size and this fact can lead to minor problems in some situations.

Another very positive aspect is that you can simply unplug the microwave if necessary and take it with you on a trip. Do you like to travel by motorhome? So why buy two kitchen appliances? Easily take the free-standing microwave out of the kitchen. Do you have a small party room in the basement and would like to serve your guests warm meals? With a free-standing microwave, you can enjoy a variety of advantages in terms of handling and operation.

Built-In Microwaves

However, a built-in microwave is also preferred in many kitchens. The biggest advantage is that this variant fits perfectly into the overall picture. The practical installation in a cabinet ensures that no space is lost on the work surface. Experts always recommend a built-in appliance, especially for smaller kitchens.

Other Differences

The aforementioned deviations are actually the only ones that are actually noteworthy. When it comes to quality or the function of the individual devices, you do not have to accept compromises with this or the other variant. Probably the biggest disadvantage of built-in microwaves should be mentioned that they are far more expensive and in the event of a defect it is not so easy to replace the device.

However, take a look at the test reports of the individual models on the Internet and then decide for yourself. In terms of quality and durability, both models can be recommended without reservation. Microwaves have a lifespan of more than 15 years.

Of course, only if you use kitchen appliances well and conscientiously. Microwaves do not require extensive care and maintenance.

The Advantages of a Microwave

The energetic efficiency of preparation in a microwave starts with 250 grams of the food to be prepared or 250 milliliters of liquid. In terms of energy expenditure, it is therefore more economical to warm up the dish in a microwave oven under these conditions than, for example, in a pot on a normal hob.

Today, the microwave has become a popular and widely used household appliance. According to Statista, over 73% of households own a microwave. This means that household appliances for quick food preparation are more popular than dishwashers (71.5%) and almost as popular as coffee machines (84.7%).

Such numbers are not surprising, as the microwave is used for far more than just warming up and preparing food. You can even really cook with them. Microwaves are just so practical and have so many advantages.

The quick and easy way to prepare meals

Even eggs can be cooked in the microwave in a double boiler. There is no easier or faster way to prepare your breakfast egg in the morning. Because if the alarm clock has not rang on time and there is hardly any time for breakfast, then you are happy when the microwave does its job and the breakfast egg cooks in a few seconds.

In today’s hectic everyday life, the quick and uncomplicated preparation of meals and meals has simply become a must. this is where the microwave comes in. Because with it you can even cook and prepare fresh vegetables with pinpoint accuracy in the garden bag and bag.

With little effort, you can quickly cook healthy and tasty in the microwave … even several side dishes at the same time. Since the microwave now has numerous additional functions, such as steam cooking, grill or oven, every recipe for the small household appliance is easy.

It just tastes good in the microwave! You can even bake in the small kitchen all-rounder.

Operation at the push of a button

No matter what you want to cook and how you want to prepare your lunch or dinner with the microwave. Using microwaves is so easy that even small children can enjoy them to the full. You also don’t have to worry about whether the meat will be cooked to the perfect core temperature. It is simply cooked perfectly. This is ensured by modern microwave technology.

Save time and have more time to enjoy

The microwave is quick and easy to cook … that’s how you save real time. Time in which you can then enjoy your meal. The focus shifts from preparing food to conscious enjoyment … and this can be quickly and easily lost in hectic times. But not with the microwave. Because instead of standing in the kitchen for hours and preparing food, men and women only spend a few minutes waiting until a tasty and delicious meal can be served.

Versatile in use

Whether to warm up leftovers from the day before or to prepare your own meal – with today’s microwaves you can really cook, cook, fry, grill and even bake anything. Whether pizza, cake or cooked vegetables – the microwave has the right setting for every meal. It is a multifunctional device with which men and women, especially with an integrated steamer, can conjure up new culinary delicacies.

Steam cooking is currently considered to be the most gentle way of preparing food, especially vegetables. This way, all the essential vitamins and nutrients remain in the steamed vegetables and are not overcooked. Thus, preparing food in the microwave is not only varied, but also particularly healthy.

Conclusion

Such a microwave changes the way you cook and eat. It brings numerous advantages in your own household. You can cook varied and healthy with her … and all in incredible times. Because vegetables only need 3 to 5 minutes to steam cook, while in the pot they should simmer for up to 20 minutes.

With the numerous extra functions and setting options, cakes, pizzas and roasts can also be prepared tasty and easily with the microwave. In addition, the food on the plate or the drink in the cup can be prepared and heated directly without the need for additional cookware becomes. Cleaning and washing up are therefore less frequent, and use also saves a lot of additional work.

Of course, the convenience and speed of the microwave compared to the stove are an asset to the household.

The significantly lower energy consumption is just as advantageous.

Types of Microwaves

Of course, there are qualitative differences between the various devices due to the different types and models. A stainless steel microwave is different from a plastic one. There are also devices that are equipped with automatic programs and thus make preparation a lot easier. Not only is an optimal result achieved, but the device can also distinguish itself when, for example, has to be switched between grill and hot air. Or it has a display indicating when the food has to be turned or turned.

This frees up more time for other things while cooking, as you don’t have to check how much the dish has been warmed up or cooked. The devices also differ considerably in terms of performance, with a higher performance always entailing higher power consumption, although the maximum performance does not have to be fully utilized. Usually the power range is between 700 and 1,000 watts.

Solo Microwave

This model is a simple device that stands free in the kitchen, independent of a cupboard or stove, so it can simply be placed on a table or kitchen shelf, a work surface or on another device. The design of the kitchen itself is also more individual. Such devices are usually the first choice for small kitchens, as they hardly take up space and are excellent at warming and defrosting.

At most, it must be ensured that no smaller objects are placed on the microwave, e.g. a towel or cooking rag to prevent overheating.

Stainless Steel Microwave

Stainless steel as a housing for the microwave is one of the higher quality materials and an eye-catcher for the modern kitchen. The glossy color of these microwaves can be combined with other household appliances or the refrigerator, and is also very easy to care for and heat-resistant. The material scores with durability and can hardly be damaged or scratched.

Built-In Microwave

This variant is a useful addition to the stove and oven, not only to save time while cooking or to warm up something quickly, but also to be able to defrost, heat or cook all food and drinks. This is very energy-saving, especially with smaller dishes, and is worth considering when buying.

Built-in devices are not free-standing, but are adapted to the kitchen cell, so that they are individually coordinated and planned. The built-in microwave is usually bought with the new kitchen unit and can thus be fitted in directly.

However, it is also possible to have the device installed later. Compared to the substructure microwaves, which are embedded in the cabinet body, built-in devices are completely connected to the cabinet, but are still adequately ventilated, which is necessary in order not to damage the device. Many built-in devices are also standard versions for certain kitchen units, therefore coordinated with one another and therefore suitable for many variants.

Under Cabinet Microwave

This type of microwave belongs to the harmonious design of the kitchen and is usually part of the basic equipment of such. Here, above all, emphasis is placed on the appearance and space is saved. With the built-under microwave it is of course imperative to ensure that it can also be built-under.

While the microwave is embedded in the body of the kitchen cabinet, the ventilation ducts must always be located above the device so that it does not overheat or be damaged in any other way. That means the note “can be built under”.

Undermount kitchens are primarily available from suppliers such as “Sharp”, “Siemens” or “Bosch”. It is important to ensure that the manufacturer uses suitable brackets to install the device in the kitchen, as well as a proper connection of the electricity, i.e. a nearby socket.

Combination Microwave

These models are devices with various additional functions. Since the invention of the microwave, devices have improved greatly in terms of their functions and performance. Retailers have adapted the demands to the needs of people and households.

With these devices, food is not only heated or defrosted, but the combination microwave can also be used like a normal stove or oven. So for example, you can also prepare a simple pizza that is still crispy in the microwave, but requires less time and effort than preparation in an oven.

Combination microwaves are therefore differentiated once again in their additional functions:

Microwave with Oven

This function basically eliminates the need for a stove or oven, as it offers the same conditions. The purchase of a device with this function is particularly advisable as a space-saving alternative, but can also enrich the fitted kitchen as an improved model compared to the simple microwave.

Microwave with Steamer

The preparation of vegetables in particular requires a gentle process in order to preserve all vitamins and trace elements. It also tastes better if it is not cooked through but cooked with steam. Eastern or Asian dishes are very often prepared using steam cooking.

A distinction is made between steam cooking at ambient pressure and pressure steam cooking. The first variant exposes the food to steam from boiling water, the cooking temperature being around 100 degrees Celsius. The latter variant is a closed system, with the boiling water causing a constant increase in pressure and a temperature of around 120 degrees Celsius. This enables shorter cooking times.

Gentle preparation is possible because hot steam flows onto the food and surrounds it on all sides. As a result, the water-soluble nutrients are retained, including minerals, vitamins and the like.

Under these conditions, several layers can be prepared at the same time in the microwave with steam function. This combination variant is an important addition to the oven.

Microwave with Air Fryer

This function can be used like an oven. Smaller dishes in particular can be prepared faster and better in terms of effort and energy consumption using microwaves with hot air. No additional dishes such as a saucepan or pan are required, there is no washing up, and there is no need to preheat a stove.

With the hot air function, the food turns out just as well as in the oven. Desserts, cakes or a hearty roast can also turn out perfectly this way.

Convection Microwave

While the heat in a microwave with hot air is generated by a ring heater in the device, the circulating air function ensures sufficient top and bottom heat, which is distributed by a fan. This function allows food to be prepared a little faster and saves energy.

Depending on the type of dishes being prepared, a distinction must be made between hot and convection air. Circulating air removes moisture from the food. Vegetables or casseroles, i.e. dishes that are in a casserole dish and are covered, are ideal for the function.

Microwave Accessories

In addition to the glass or turntable, which is already a standard feature in the microwave, a grill grate is also suitable if the microwave is to be used as an oven.

The turntable ensures that the dishes are heated evenly and is therefore decisive for the capacity of the cooking space. Thanks to the beam path and the balanced turning process, the microwave can work effectively because only the food on the turntable is actually heated.

The turntable is also useful for saving energy, is made of glass or ceramic and is about 5 centimeters thick. It lies on a turnstile in the microwave.

Even if the turntable is made of glass and forms a base, the food to be heated should not be placed directly on it, but in a container provided for this purpose or on dishes suitable for microwave use. The turntable is easy to clean because it can be removed once and is also dishwasher-safe.

Based on the volume of the cooking space and the turntable, a decision can be made as to how large the container or vessel for heating the food can be.

Angular shapes should be avoided, as the food must be freely movable during the turning process and must not hit the walls. This would significantly disrupt or even damage the operation of the device.

The grill rack enriches the preparation of fish and meat dishes. It is placed in the interior of the microwave and works like a baking sheet or wire rack.

Microwave Alternatives

As alternatives to a pure microwave as an independent compact device, integrated compact ovens can be understood, which in addition to their main function of baking also have other functions integrated, so i.a. the initial function of the microwave, the warming up of food, as well as the form last integrated into the microwave, steam cooking. With such compact ovens, which also handle grilling, steaming and warming up food, you no longer need a separate microwave. Because the functions of the microwave are integrated in such a compact oven.

This saves space and only has to worry about cleaning a kitchen appliance. As a rule, all combination devices can be an alternative to the microwave; even if it applies here again that the microwave combines more than all other kitchen appliances. If such other combination devices have integrated the warming up of food as a function, one can say that they are alternatives to the microwave. Because once the microwave was primarily and exclusively intended for reheating food.

The fact that other functions such as baking, grilling and, ultimately, steam cooking have been able to establish themselves in it is due to modern technology and the numerous clever minds that are developing with the advancement of the microwave as a kitchen aid and appliance.

The newly invented Dialog oven is supposed to be a real miracle. He relies on cooking technology in a very special and new way. But it’s not enough to compete with the microwave, is it? The microwave was once invented to warm up food. The fact that it can now also cook vegetables and other foods is an additional cooking performance that sets the appliance apart from other kitchen appliances.

Mieles also focused on cooking when developing their Dialogue oven. Because we know: cooked food is more nutritious and full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants … at least more than if you cooked the same food in a water bath or baked it in the oven.

The steamer cooks your food in a gentle and time-saving way. As in the microwave, you can even cook meat and tomatoes at the same time … without losing any of the ingredients in terms of taste or quality. Somehow the microwave can do that too, can’t it?

Conclusion
Alternatively, you can also prepare your meals with a stove, oven and grill. But you don’t have to. Because the microwave is the combination device that combines all functions and cooking options. That’s why there are no real alternatives for the device. It is itself the alternative and combination of all known cooking and preparation methods. The only real alternative can be considered combi-bach ovens that also take on the heating function. 

But what about the grill function on these devices? How about cooking? Only when these preparation methods are also included in the combi kitchen appliance can one speak of an alternative to the microwave … and then actually only because there is a lot more space in the oven format than in the rather small, compact microwaves.

The steamer, on the other hand, is an interesting gimmick and especially those who like to eat cooked food can rely on an additional kitchen appliance. However, the device is not a real alternative to the microwave.

Last product update on 2021-09-24 | Source: Amazon Affiliate