Finding the best small microwave for your kitchen can sometimes be a challenge. Small microwaves provide a lot of features, such as multiple cooking modes, adjustable controls, and a variety of power levels.
They also come with a lot of special features like delayed start, weight-based cook options, defrost options, and sensor cooking. You can quickly prepare a meal or snack for your family with these microwaves.
Microwaves vary in size. Countertop microwaves, which are great for small kitchens, typically range from 1.5 to 2 cubic feet in size. Built-in microwaves range from 2.5 to 3 cubic feet. However, microwave size isn’t everything. I have evaluated microwaves based on how easy it is to clean the interior, how easy it was to program the microwave, and if it has digital displays. Here are my picks for the best microwaves for small spaces.
Things to Consider
Now you have to search for the best microwave for small spaces. Before buying a microwave, you have to identify the number of people you live with at home. If you have a family, you need a bigger microwave. If you’re living alone, you need a microwave that has the ability to cook small dishes.
People living in apartments need to look for microwaves that are small in size. The capacity that a microwave has depends on its cubic feet. The cubic feet are indicated on a microwave oven’s rating label. Your family size, cooking needs, and available space will be the major factors in determining the best microwave oven for you. You will have to find out how much height and depth you have left in your kitchen after installing the microwave.
- Capacity: Look for microwaves with one or two racks to meet the needs of families and single cooks.
- Easy-access controls: Microwaves with large buttons and a clearly labeled dial are easier to use than ones with small buttons and a dimmer dial.
- Ease of cleaning: Microwaves with removable glass and easy-to-clean door racks help to avoid spills.
- Ease of use: Look for models with intuitive controls and large buttons with pleasantly tactile feedback.
- Countertop-size: For cabinet or pantry storage, I preferred microwaves that are less than 18 inches wide and 13 inches deep.
- Depth: 12 inches is an acceptable depth for most countertop microwaves, but shallower models won’t fit standard dinner plates.
- Microwave wattage: Microwave wattage varies from 700 to 2,000 watts. The higher the wattage, the faster you can reheat food, and the longer some features, such as popcorn or baked potato, will take to cook. I prefer 1,000-watt models.
Best Affordable Microwaves Under $100
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BLACK+DECKER EM720CB7 Digital Microwave Oven with Turntable Push-Button Door, Child Safety Lock, 700W, Stainless Steel, 0.7 Cu.ft
The BLACK+DECKER EM720CB7 700-watt microwave has a very large interior — 0.7 cubic feet — which makes it easy to accommodate large casserole dishes and dinner plates. The roomy interior includes a turntable with 10 removable glass plates and a control panel with easy-to-read buttons, all designed to make cooking faster and easier. The large 10-cup glass jug adds extra capacity.
BEST ALL AROUND – BLACK+DECKER EM720CB7 Digital Microwave Oven
- Large capacity
- Easy to use
- Child lock
- Easy to clean
- No auto cook
- No defrost
- LED digital display with easy-to-read control panel
- Large 10″ turntable
- Child safety lock
- 10 power settings, clock and kitchen timer
- 30 Seconds Express Cooking
- Large 17.3″ x 13.0″ x 10.2″ capacity
- UL approved. One year limited
Farberware Classic FMO07AHTBKJ 0.7 Cu. Ft. 700-Watt Microwave Oven with LED Lighting, Brushed Stainless Steel
The Farberware Classic FMO07AHTBKJ 0.7 Cu. Ft. 700-Watt Microwave Oven with LED Lighting is a mid-range option, offering power, a large capacity, and plenty of cooking flexibility. This compact microwave is optimized for speed and efficiency, letting you prepare meals and snacks in a snap. It has a roomy interior, as well as several useful options, including 10 power levels and multi-stage cooking. It uses a LED display and a clock with kitchen timer that lets you keep track of time while the easy-view interior LED lighting lets you keep an eye on cooking. The microwave has a child safety lock function for added security, and its brushed stainless-steel front and handle help give it a stylish, elegant look.
BEST COMPACT – Farberware Classic FMO07AHTBKJ Microwave Oven
- Light and compact
- Sleek design
- Smooth operation
- Convection cooking
- 2-2.5 lb. capacity
- 1.25 cu. ft. interior
- 700-watt power output
- No power indicator
- No exterior controls
- Classic Black Color
- Child Lock Function
- LED Interior Lighting
- Easy-to-Clean Interior
- Rear Defrost
- Rear Tempered Glass
- Built-In Clock
The Farberware Classic 0.7 Cu. Ft. Microwave Oven with LED Lighting is designed for quick and convenient cooking. The 700-Watt oven offers 10 power levels, 6 one-touch cooking programs, and 30-second express cooking. The interior space also features an interior light, a turntable with a diameter of 10.6 inches, and a defrost by weight. This unit measures 12.9 x 11.9 x 8.2 inches and weighs 11.2 pounds.
Galanz GLCMKA07BKR-07 Microwave Oven, LED Lighting, Pull Handle Design, Child Lock, Retro Black, 0.7 cu ft
The Galanz GLCMKA07BKR-07 microwave offers plenty of power to cook quickly, and it’s reasonably attractive. It has six power levels, and I found the 700 watts to be more than adequate for reheating leftovers, heating soups, or cooking frozen pizzas. It’s also a nice size for countertop use. The glass turntable isn’t super attractive, but it should prevent food from drying out as much in the oven as it does on the Galanz GLCMKA07BKR-01 above. Although it’s a bit pricey, this microwave has some useful extra features, including a digital clock and timer with a 30-minute alarm, a 360-degree rotating glass turntable, and an interior light and child lock. The opening and closing door buttons are a little on the small side, and the light button is on the small side, too. But otherwise, the GLCMKA07BKR-07 is a good value for the money.
BEST EASY TO USE – Galanz GLCMKA07BKR-07 Microwave Oven
- Easy to operate
- Good heat preservation
- Child lock
- Precise interior light
- Child lock
- Easy to clean
- Overheats quickly
The Galanz 0.7 Cu.Ft, 700 Watts Microwave Oven With Lighting Pull Handle delivers excellent performance at an attractive price. Its five power levels permit a wide variety of cooking tasks, and the 360-degree rotation ensures even heating. The 0.7 cu ft interior is large enough to accommodate a standard dinner plate, and the LED interior light makes it easy to check on the cooking progress without opening the oven door. Easy-to-read LED controls make cooking intuitive, and the oven’s interior light, child lock, and anti-tip base round out the list of great features.
COMFEE’ EM720CPL-PM Countertop Microwave Oven with Sound On/Off, ECO Mode and Easy One-Touch Buttons, 0.7 Cu Ft/700W, Pearl White
The EM720CPL-PM is a great little microwave. The microwave is small and light, but still has a decent sized volume. It doesn’t have a turntable, but comes with glass turntable and pan. It comes with a manual, but no recipe book. The control panel is designed to be easily read and programmed, and it comes with two defrost options (by weight or by time). It works very well, heats up foods quickly and has easy to use control panel. The EM720CPL-PM uses less power and has minimizing standby power by turning on ECO mode. Overall, the EM720CPL-PM is a good countertop microwave.
BEST ECO FRIENDLY – COMFEE Countertop Microwave Oven
- Features ECO mode, which saves up to 75% energy
- Easy One-Touch buttons
- Compact, sleek, and easy-to-clean design
- 0.7 cu ft capacity
- Cord holder
- Not ideal for large-volume cooking
- No turntable
- Easy-Care Stainless Steel Finish
- One Touch Buttons
- ECO Mode
The 700-watt COMFEE EM720CPL-PM microwave oven is a sleek, sleek-looking countertop model with a 0.7-cubic-foot interior and 11 power levels. It comes with a 1-year warranty and is simple to use. It performs well, too, and cooks food quickly.
How to Choose the Best Microwave Oven for your Individual Needs
With so many brands and models available, it can be confusing to choose a good microwave. Microwave in a basic home kitchen is useful for reheating leftovers and making popcorn. However, depending on the brand and model, a microwave can do so much more.
First, you should make a list of features and accessories that suit your needs and requirements. Next, you need to evaluate your budget and check with your landlord or building manager to see whether you need to get permission to install a microwave.
No two kitchens are the same. So when it comes to choosing a microwave oven, you need to pay serious attention to what your household cooks and eats. If you’re a keen cook and like to braise meat, you’ll want to look for a food-safe microwave. If you like to whip up a quick risotto or instant soup, then you’ll want to find a model with a spacious interior. If most of your meals are quick and simple, then you probably won’t need a super large interior.
Before you go shopping, measure the space where you plan to put the oven. Take the time to determine if you have sufficient clearance under the microwave. Ideally, you should not be able to reach over the front of the microwave when loading and unloading it. Also, think about how you plan to store your groceries. Some microwaves come with retractable shelves, which come in handy for storing cooked rice or pasta.
Microwave ovens offer a quick and convenient way to heat food or cook food. They come in all shapes and sizes, allowing you to find one that’s perfect for your household.
Before you purchase a microwave oven, though, you should first determine what size you need. Microwave ovens come in many different sizes, ranging from 0.6 cubic feet to 1.8 cubic feet. Generally speaking, a 1.2 cubic foot to 1.8 cubic foot model will work for most households.
Larger microwaves also provide more cooking power. If you’ll be cooking a lot of dishes at once, it is best to invest in a larger microwave. However, if you are cooking small meals or warming up leftovers, a slightly smaller model is sufficient.
Different Types of Microwave Ovens Available on the Market
Microwave ovens are one of the most widely used kitchen appliances and are used widely by most of households. Microwave ovens have become as essential as traditional ovens.
There are many types of microwave ovens available. Microwave ovens are classified into two major categories, convection microwave ovens, and standard microwave ovens.
Microwave ovens are very important appliances in your kitchen. Types of microwave ovens available on the market are:
- Over-the-range microwave ovens (OTRs) are designed to fit above a gas or electric range. They come in different sizes and can be installed over a countertop, under a cabinet, or hood.
- Under-the-range microwave ovens (UTRs) are designed to fit under a narrow cabinet like a range hood. They come in different sizes and can be installed under the countertop, below or over a cabinet, or over a range.
- Wall-oven or built-in microwave ovens (BIs) are designed to fit inside the counter area of a wall oven. They come in different sizes and can be installed under a cabinet, on a countertop, or inside a wall.
- Combination microwave ovens (OCs) are microwave ovens that can be installed in between two types of ovens. They are designed to be installed between two ovens like a combination oven/range, or they can be paired with a wall oven. They come in different sizes and can be installed under a cabinet, on a countertop, or inside a wall.
- Countertop microwave ovens (COs) are designed to fit on a small countertop and can be installed on a countertop or inside a drawer. They are available in different sizes.
How a Microwave is Different from an Air Fryer
Microwaves are convenient because they are compact and can be hidden in a kitchen cabinet or drawer. However, they cook food unevenly, and they tend to produce splatter, steam, and odors. Air fryers have the ability to cook food more quickly than microwaves, without sacrificing taste and nutrition. Air fryers are easy to clean and store. The air fryer basket can be removed for cleaning.
Microwaves and air fryers are both food cooking devices. They can help you achieve your desired food taste and maintain the nutritional value of food. However, they have some differences.
Microwaves, through the years, have gained popularity. Nowadays, it is widely used in homes. But, microwaves send a microwave signal to food to penetrate the food. Microwaves usually cook food from the inside out.
An air fryer, on the other hand, uses frying technology. Instead of heating up your cooking material, an air fryer cooks food from its outer skin. The air fryer circulates hot air and circulates it around the cooking material.
For oven baking: An oven generally needs the preheating process, the baking process, and any gaps or cooling down process. A microwave only needs to do the baking process, and there is no need for preheating or cooling down.
Advantages of Microwave Ovens
Microwave ovens are best known for their ability to cook food rapidly. What you may not know is that they are actually used for quite a bit more than preparing snack foods and meals.
Here are just a few of the ways you can use a microwave oven:
Warming small items: Tired of having cold leftovers for dinner? Microwave ovens can heat food up quickly. You can heat up microwave-safe bowls and containers that keep your food warm and ready to eat for seconds.
- Steaming: Some microwaves have special steam vents that can be added to the top of the oven. This lets you steam food, making it a great way to prepare dishes like steamed vegetables, fish, or even rice.
- Drying: Using a microwave as a dehydrator is easier than using the oven or stovetop because it is fast and you can dry food more quickly than you can by heating it. Certain foods (like fruits) need to be dried low and slowly to prevent excessive shrinkage, but meats and vegetables can be dried quickly.
- Cooking rice: If you got a meal with rice as the centerpiece, microwave rice can be a great option. Microwave rice cooks in a fraction of the time, making it a great time saver.
Microwave ovens have undergone substantial changes over the years. They are now not only capable of cooking food, but they’re also capable of baking various items.
Microwave ovens are king when it comes to cooking. They are fast, easy to use, and energy efficient. Microwave ovens cook food quickly and are safe to use.
One of the advantages of microwave ovens is that they are smaller than regular ovens. You can use them in places where space is at a premium. The ovens are also safer to use since they are ovenproof; you can operate them even if you are wearing clothes that are flammable.
Microwaves also called microwave ovens or microwave oven ovens, are one of the most versatile kitchen appliances you can buy. Not only are they able to heat food, but they can also cook, defrost, and thaw food in half the time. Microwaves use electromagnetic waves to heat food rather than using heat, which makes them safe for cooking food in plastic containers.
- Speed: Microwaves are able to heat food in only a minute, compared to 10-20 minutes for conventional ovens.
- Safety: Microwaves use electromagnetic waves to cook food, which means they don’t pick up, distribute, or retain any unhealthy odors from your food.
- Convection: Some microwaves have convection cooking functions, which are designed to distribute heat evenly throughout your food.
- Convenience: Many microwaves have preset cooking times, which are often up to 30 seconds shorter than a regular oven.
- Cost: Microwave ovens can typically save you up to 30% off of your electricity bill each month.
Using microwave ovens is easier, quicker, and cheaper than traditional cooking methods.
Number of microwave ovens in use in the world
The statistics listed below tell much about the microwave oven’s global growth and penetration.
Worldwide, an estimated 2.6 billion microwave ovens are being used. The top five countries (United States, China, Japan, India, and Germany) account for some 57 percent of the world’s microwave ovens.
Professional Kitchen Use
Microwave ovens, too, have found their way into professional kitchens. Many fine restaurants, hotels, and other fine eating establishments use them to prepare vegetables, entrees, desserts, and other foods.