Best Microwave Ovens

Best Microwave Ovens 2018

Offering innovative features like grilling, steaming, and convection, today’s microwaves are the perfect way to make a quick and delicious meal for your family.

You can create gourmet food quickly and easily with the ability to evenly brown and heat. Plus, microwaves now come in a variety of designs and sizes, so it is easy to find the right model to suit your family’s needs.

When you are ready to start your search for the best microwave ovens, it is important to consider where you will put it. The cheapest options tend to be countertop microwaves that take up important counter space.

Microwaves that fit over your stove save space, but they take more work to install and are not as good at venting fumes and heat from your stove like a dedicated range hood.

Built-in microwaves tend to be more expensive requiring installation inside a drawer or against a wall, but they leave room for your range hood and keep valuable counter space open.

You also have the option of building a shelf for a countertop microwave, adding trim to make it look built-in, or hanging a microwave under a cabinet by purchasing a hanging kit.

No matter which option you choose, it is important to measure the space carefully so you get the correct size microwave and not something too large for the space. Plus, you want to make sure to allow space on the left for the microwave door to swing open.

Here are a few other considerations when looking for the best microwave for your family and a few reviews to help you start your search.

Considerations When Buying a Microwave

How Often Will You Use Your Microwave?

If you are like most people, your microwave will definitely get used when making microwave popcorn, but microwaves these days have many more innovative features than they used to.

Newer features include automatic settings for defrosting and reheating and one-touch cooking that can be used for oatmeal, soup, and various foods. These features can also increase the cost of a microwave, so it’s important to consider if you will actually use them or if you are better off with a more affordable basic model.

Some microwaves that have a convection feature that allows you to brown and bake like a regular oven can add an extra $100 to the price of a microwave, so it may not be worthwhile if you don’t need a second oven.

Try instead to focus on features like the shortcut key settings that you know you will use such as reheating coffee or melting butter.

How Much Room Will It Need?

Capacity is really important if you plan to cook or reheat large dishes, so you need to pay attention to the usable space inside a microwave and not just the stated capacity.

It actually can be useful to bring a large platter with you to the store if you are concerned about whether the microwave will be able to accommodate it.

How Noisy Is It?

These days, you will find that most microwaves are fairly quiet. There are few that are rated high for noise levels, but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t owners that complain about noisiness once they are in use.

If you can, listen to the microwave when it is running at the store to see if it has a sound level that you can tolerate in your kitchen.

How Much Power Will You Need?

Measured in watts, the power a microwave uses determines how fast your food will cook. A good rule of thumb is that your food will cook more evenly with a high microwave wattage.

Typically, microwaves come with wattage between 500 and 1000 with an average microwave at 700 watts having the ability to boil a cup of water in two minutes and thirty seconds.

Dorms often limit the wattage on a microwave, so make sure to check and see what is allowed before you buy one for your kid going off to college.

What Type of Ventilation Will Be Required?

Ventilation systems are features that are associated with over-the-range microwaves where it is taking place of a traditional oven hood. There are recirculating and external venting options, and you will want to go with the recirculating vent if you don’t have some type of outside exhaust available.

It is important to compare venting options when you are thinking about getting an over-the-range microwave. With different types of filters and multiple fan speeds, vents can have a variety of features to choose from including lights that will illuminate the top of your stove while you cook.

You will also want to think about the rating of the fan which is measured in cubic feet per minute which tells you how much air the fan is moving.

Types of Microwaves

Countertop – Available in a variety of sizes, countertop microwaves are often separated by size including full size, mid-size, and compact that relates to the measurement of its interior cubic feet.

Calculated by multiplying the width times height times length in inches, the cubic feet is then divided by 1,728. If you prefer the appearance of a seamless built-in, you can also purchase a trim kit to use along with your countertop microwave.

Over-the-Range –You will find that the majority of over-the-range microwaves are at least 1.6 cubic feet or more and come in a variety of sizes. This enables you to fit a 15-inch casserole baking dish inside it.

One of the best features of an over-the-range microwave is that it frees up counter space and includes a ventilation system that replaces a traditional oven hood.

This type of microwave requires installation since it is mounted on the wall and can require ventilation work.

Drawer – A drawer model also frees up counter space and comes in several different sizes. This microwave type pulls out from a cabinet and comes at an easy to access height so that you can stir items in the middle of the cooking cycles without having to remove them from the microwave.

Microwave Features

Preset Cooking Times

Preset cooking features are extremely handy as it only requires you to push a button to begin cooking. These buttons are designed to cook and defrost food for the best time, and you will often find buttons for popcorn, frozen dinners, potatoes, beverages, and pizza.

Preset Convection

For faster and more even cooking, preset convection is designed to blow heat around the food. If you have a microwave with this feature, you can make crusty baked goods and have the ability of a broiler to brown foods.


One of the more innovative features that have evolved in microwave ovens recently are the sensors that can adjust cooking times and power levels based on the steam it senses coming from the food.

Sensors automatically adjust how the microwave is cooking to provide optimal cooking and can even shut the machine off if the food gets too hot.

This handy feature is included in most new microwaves and allows you to defrost, cook, and reheat food precisely without worrying about constantly checking on it so it won’t burn.


Most people think of microwaves as one large empty area. These days, manufacturers have been maximizing the interior space and include racks that allow you to cook dishes at the same time.

Inverter Technology

Inverter technology was made to give you steady heat at a lower range providing a consistent percentage of power. Some microwaves can switch from low to high heat when you are warming something at less than 100{fffda5821221095244e1b4fc9990ad7bbd11aee727c166097361542a0a2fb25a} power.

Inverter technology give you the consistent temperature to make foods like poached fish and omelets better than if you were using a typical microwave.


A grill option will surround food with radiant heat searing the outside of food and preventing it from getting rubbery. Some microwaves also have a grilling feature that circulates warm air to make food crispy inside and out without adding oil.


A steam option gives you a handy way to quickly make food like vegetables and fish without adding fat but still keeping the food moist. This is a gentle cooking method that will let you poach eggs in your microwave.

Easy Clean Interior

Features like non-porous interiors are also available in some microwaves that are constructed of stainless or porcelain enamel. These types of materials make it easier to wipe up splatters and spills as well as foods that have become dried-on.

Rotating Turntable

A rotating turntable is another nice feature that is usually seen in today’s microwaves. As your food rotates, it will cook more evenly and you will have fewer cold spots and you won’t have to worry about stopping the cooking cycle halfway through to make any adjustments.

Some microwaves also include a turntable on and off switch in the event you have a dish that is too large for your microwave so you can turn the rotations off so the dish won’t get caught up on the sides.

Instant On Controls

Another very handy feature is having just one button that will add either a minute or thirty seconds of time to a cook cycle. Some of the best microwaves on the market also include instant on buttons that add between one and six minutes of time.

Child Lockout Safety Feature

These days, microwaves are coming out with child lockout features to stop kids from messing around with it. This feature lets you set up a code that you have to enter before you will be able to use the microwave. This lessens the possibility of anyone getting hurt and possibly starting a fire.

Durability and Reliability

For those of us that use our microwaves a lot, having one that is really durable is a necessity. Make sure to read microwave ovens reviews before you make your purchase so you can avoid getting stuck with a model that looks solid and well-built in the store, but falls apart after a short period of use.

Your average microwave should last you around ten to twelve years, so if you do plan on getting the most out of your microwave, do your research or you may end up replacing it a lot sooner.


Best Microwave Ovens Reviews

Hamilton Beach 1.1 Cubic Foot Microwave

Having an easy to use and convenient microwave is a great way to get through a busy week. The Hamilton Beach 1.1 Cubic Foot Microwave is a handy way to defrost frozen food or heat up dinner quickly for your hungry family. Featuring an output of 1000 Watts, the Hamilton Beach has ten levels of power allowing you to heat up a variety of foods with right intensity for each of them.

The Hamilton Beach Microwave includes an easy to read LED display and a touchpad that has six quick-set buttons. It also features a child safety feature that allows you to lock little ones out. Plus, it has a handy clock and timer feature that helps you manage your cooking time efficiently.

RCA RMW733 Microwave



When you are considering an RCA product, you know you are getting an affordable microwave that has a quality build. The RCA RMW733 comes with tons of features at a price you can afford. With a 700 watt output, you get ten power levels and up to six one-touch functions. It also includes a glass turntable that cooks food evenly and can be removed for easy cleaning.

The RCA RMW733 is perfect for dorm rooms, a home office, or at home. With its small footprint, it won’t take up any counter space in your kitchen which is also great for small apartments. This compact microwave has 0.7 cubic feet that can accommodate several different dish sizes.

Other features include weight defrost and express cooking options for quick and efficient food preparation results. Plus, the RCA RMW733 comes with an interior light for easy viewing, a digital clock and timer for additional convenience, and a child lock feature that helps keep your little ones safe from injury.

Sharp R309YK Microwave



For easy and worry-free cooking, the Sharp R309YK Mid-Size Microwave is a midsize oven that features 1000 watts of cooking power. With an 11 ¼ inch turntable, the carousel system will cook your food evenly while a child safety lock keeps your kids safe from injury. It also features five auto-cook options, a time and weight defrost function, eleven power levels, and four one-touch cooking options.

This smooth black microwave works with any kitchens décor featuring a premium design with a glass front. The LED digital timer and clock allows you to precisely and efficiently prepare meals while the easy to wipe clean electronic touchpad makes cooking easy. The included one-touch cook programs include dinner plates, beverages, frozen pizza, and popcorn.

GE 2.0 Cubic Foot Microwave



GE countertop microwave ovens are known for the sleek and clean exteriors, large capacity interiors, and the easy to use advanced touch controls. Providing a delicious home cooked meal in a fraction of your normal cooking time, the GE 2.0 Cubic Foot Microwave uses sensors to cook with that will automatically set the time and power based on the moisture level of the food.

This is an easy to operate microwave that utilizes electronic touch-pad controls allowing this versatile microwave to deliver 1,200 Watts of power. Bringing an efficient and effective cooking method to your home, the GE 2.0 Cubic Foot Microwave allows you to have easy control with the touch of a button. You can also easily add 30 seconds of microwave cooking time at any point while you are cooking without having to reprogram.

The GE 2.0 Cubic Foot Microwave also includes a lockout function as a safety feature for your family, and it has a rotating turntable that evenly cooks your food throughout the cooking cycle. There is even a kitchen timer that you can set to countdown a specific amount of minutes.

Hamilton Beach Red Microwave


Perfect for a busy family, the Hamilton Beach 1.1 Cubic Foot Microwave comes in a stylish red color and features an easy to read LED display. Easily defrost or heat up food with the Hamilton Beach’s 1000 watt output that features ten power levels allowing you to heat up a variety of food with the right intensity settings.

The Hamilton Beach also includes a lockout safety feature to help protect your kids from injury and a clock and timer for efficient dinner preparations. The touchpad also makes it easy to choose between the six quick-set buttons for the most popular settings.

Sharp ZR659YW Microwave


With user-friendly features, the Share ZR659YW Microwave is a convenient tool to help get dinner on the table using 1200 watts of power. Using innovative features like sensor technology, auto defrost, and One-Touch controls, it is easy and simple to reheat any of your favorite snacks, beverages, and food. Plus the carousel turntable system continuously turns your food during the cooking cycle to make sure it is cooked evenly.

Sharp Carousel is a name that has been trusted for decades to make a smart and innovative product. The guesswork is taken out of cooking with the Precise Cook Sensor Technology and the most popular cooking times are included in the One-Touch Start feature.

This is an extra-large 2.2 cubic feet microwave that is one of Sharps largest capacities. This is the perfect microwave for larger families and household that entertains a lot fitting casserole dishes and large serving trays. This microwave can also give you a built-in for a custom look that is easy to clean and includes a scratch-resistant glass door

Oster Compact Microwave


Providing performance that makes Oster legendary, the Oster OGH6901 Microwave has 0.9 Cubic Feet of space and 900 Watts of power that will quickly become a staple in your kitchen. Featuring ten power levels, you can easily control your food preparation allowing you to make a variety of food. You also get six smart-touch menu options that allow you to take the guesswork out of the right heating times and a rotating carousel turntable for even cooking throughout.

This is the perfect sized microwave if you have limited space on your counter or if you desire a microwave with a small footprint that can deliver high power. This is a stylish microwave with a black cabinet and stainless steel front that will work with any kitchen décor. It also features a scratch-resistant glass door and the inside easily wipes clean for simple maintenance.

The Oster also features a child safety lock system that makes sure that your child will only use the product under supervision. It also has an easy to navigate control panel that allows you to customize your microwave options by adjusting cooking levels and quickly adding 30 seconds to your cooking time.

Hamilton Beach 0.9 Cubic Feet Microwave


Featuring ten power levels, the Hamilton Beach 0.9 Cubic Feet Microwave includes 900 watts of power allowing you to cook a variety of foods to match your cooking style and tastes. It has an easy to read LED display and an easy to control touch-pad. This sharp design features stainless steel construction in red and a lockout feature for child safety.

The Hamilton Beach also includes one-touch cooking that includes buttons for frozen dinners, pizza, popcorn, beverages, potatoes, and reheating. It also includes a digital clock, a kitchen timer, and a cooking complete reminder. This product is designed to give you consistent heating results for great food every time.

Sharp ZSMC1442CS Microwave


If you are looking for a family-sized microwave, the Sharp ZSMC1442CS Microwave is the perfect choice for everyday cooking at 1.4 cubic feet. Not only can it cook and reheat, this microwave is specifically designed to give you the best popping results for the microwave popcorn leader, Orville Redenbacher. Although it excels at making the best popcorn, it also has 1000 watts of power that gives you the ability to quickly cook and reheat food.

This is an easy to clean stainless steel microwave with a modern design and a brushed finish that will complement any kitchen style. It also features auto defrost, a carousel turntable for even heating, and one-touch controls allowing you to do your cooking easier and faster.

With spacious capacity and innovative features, the Sharp SMC1442CS Microwave also gives you a handy “30 seconds” key to give you an instant start option. It also features Precise Cook Sensor Technology that will take any guesswork out of cooking as well as auto defrost for fast and precise thawing.

Sharp ZR559YK Microwave


If you are looking for a well-designed, full-size microwave, the Sharp Carousel R559YK is 1.8 cubic feet with 1,100 watts of power. Featuring a scratch-resistant glass door with 15 inches of glass, the Sharp Carousel also features a turntable for even cooking and a touch control panels with a kitchen timer, clock, and LED digital display. This is a family-friendly microwave that has an attractive appearance that will fit any kitchen’s décor.

The Sharp Carousel also features time-saving features like one-touch settings, softening options, and sensor cooking. The sensor cooking technology will determine automatically what cooking time is needed to get rid of guesswork to make cooking easier than ever.

The one-touch settings include popcorn, time defrost, beverage, and sensor reheat, and you can also easily add 30 seconds with a single key. The Sharp Carousel also includes ten power levels and includes five sensor cook programs featuring items like frozen vegetables, fresh vegetables, baked potatoes, fish/seafood, and frozen entrée.

Microwaves that are available today are definitely different from the type your mother used to cook with when you are growing up. With a ton of new innovative features, microwaves today can steam and grill food as well as sense when the time and temperature needs to be adjusted or the microwave needs to be tuned off. These are definitely machines that take the guesswork out of cooking.

There are a lot of considerations to make when searching for the best microwave ovens that go beyond the features. Make sure you know where you will be able to place the product and if it has any additional requirements like ventilation. Once you know what you are looking for in a microwave, you should have no problem finding one that is the perfect addition to your kitchen.

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