Microwaves provide a fast and reliable way to heat up your food; they are energy-efficient and economical for your home. This product has become more advanced over the period of years, often incorporating a grill or fan oven for extra cooking options, so their other advantage is that they’re perfect if you’re short of space. Whether you love to cook, rush to pull dinner together, or live on reheated coffee and frozen pizza, a microwave has become a kitchen essential.
Factors to consider before making a purchase
Capacities vary from about 17L to over 56L. If you’re after a family-size microwave consider at least a 27L size. This will have a larger turntable and more interior height so you can cook more than one dish.
Microwave power is measured in watts, and can range from 800W to 1100W. The higher the wattage, the quicker your food will cook.
Some models have Pre-set Programmes; for example, from cooking popular foods to reheating and defrosting, taking the guesswork out of cooking.
Child-proof doors are especially important on microwave convection units, where dishes may be extra hot when they come out of the oven. Child-proof doors can be locked and released using a keypad.
Dials ensure smooth and easy operation, allowing you to alter settings without interrupting the cooking. Exact timings are best set by touch and electronic buttons.
Microwave-safe trays, dishes or steamers – even an egg poacher – helps give cooking more versatility.
Automatic Cooking & Defrosting
The microwave considers the actual weight of the food, and works out the time needed to cook the food safely.
It is critical to have a revolving glass plate or turntable inside your oven to ensure even cooking. Most mid- and full-size microwaves have removable turntables. Some new versions also have rectangular trays that slide back and forth.
Types of Microwave
For sheer simplicity, a microwave-only option will heat up, defrost, steam and reheat food. Use it for ready meals, soup or vegetables – the options are endlessly convenient.
Microwave with Grill
These models demonstrate all the features of a standard microwave oven, but with the added convenience of a grill. This is ideal for grilling fish and meat, or simply crisping and browning the outside of your food. Also a great 2-in1 option for if you need to save on space.
Designed to fit seamlessly into cooking range, integrated models offer a designer look and free up work top space. They vary from compact to regular sized and often have a pull-down handle for easy and efficient access.
Acting more as a mini oven, this option uses a microwave, grill, convection oven and often a steam function. This could offer a solution to smaller kitchens with not much space for appliances, or simply just to provide more convenience.