Most Reliable Microwave: Buyer’s Guide + [Reviews 2022]

Are you wondering how to get your hands on the longest-lasting microwave? That’s simple; you have to find out which is the most reliable microwave brand. Easier said than done, though. Most big brands manufacture microwaves, and most of them inspire trust.

To help you out, I scoured the market and found the most durable microwaves. Wondering which they are? Check them out below.

What is the Most Reliable Microwave Brand?

Identifying the best microwave brands is often challenging, mainly because some of the most trusted kitchen appliance brands manufacture questionable microwaves. This is the case for a few big names; nevertheless, you can’t go wrong with any of the brands below:

  • Bosch
  • Cuisinart
  • GE Appliance
  • Frigidaire
  • Samsung
  • KitchenAid
  • LG
  • Panasonic
  • Whirlpool
  • Magic Chef
  • Sharp
  • Oster
  • Commercial Chef
  • Toshiba

Which Microwave Type is Best for Home Use?

It is hard to tell which microwave type is best for home use since everyone has different needs. In broad lines, convection microwave ovens are the most versatile, allowing you to cook more elaborate meals than standard microwaves.

Combination microwaves are an excellent choice for those who have a small kitchen. These microwave ovens combine the benefits of a standard oven with those of a microwave. You can use them to bake, roast, braise, and reheat or keep food warm.

In addition to the various functions, you should also consider the size and installation requirements.

If you’re short on counter space, a built-in or over-the-range microwave could be your best bet. A small countertop microwave, on the other hand, is a better choice if you’re on a budget.

Microwave drawers are an excellent choice for a small yet luxurious kitchen. They are more expensive than standard or built-in microwaves, but worth it if you’re after the unhindered performance.

Convenience is another thing you must consider. Do you need pre-programmed cooking functions or would you rather have full control over the settings? Commercial microwave ovens with no turntable generally have no functions, but last longer. Ovens with many pre-programmed options can help you leave the guesswork out of the game.

On top of everything, you must also consider the power requirements and output. If you live in an urban area, you may not be overly concerned about the power input. However, the number could make a difference if you get electricity from a power generator.

The power output is just as important. In a nutshell, the more power the microwave oven has, the faster and better will it cook your meals.

Other things you might want to consider include:

  • Child safety lock
  • IoT and connectivity capabilities
  • Self-cleaning function
  • One-touch buttons
  • Removable turntable

What are the differences between standard, grill, and combination microwaves?

When it comes to the nitty-gritty of things, you’ll have to choose between standard, grill, and combination microwave ovens. Check out their pros and cons below.

Standard microwave oven

This is the most common type of microwave. You can use it to heat, reheat, or defrost food, but beyond that, it can’t do much. For instance, it can’t bake or roast.

A standard microwave oven is called so because it only uses microwaves to heat food. The waves heat the water molecules inside the food, heating it from inside out.

This type of microwave is ideal if you just need it for basic functions such as defrosting or reheating. You can only use this type of oven with microwave-friendly containers made of glass, ceramic, or special cardboard and plastic.

Standard microwave oven advantages:

  • Easy to use
  • Cheap

Standard microwave oven disadvantages:

  • Few cooking options

Grill microwave oven

These microwave ovens come with all functions seen in standard models but also incorporate a grill rack that adds up to versatility.

You can interchange between grill and microwave as needed, to cook a wider variety of meals. The grill rack is generally made from a type of metal that’s safe to use in your microwave oven. This implement allows you to grill burgers, sear meat, brown or grill foods, and even make delicious microwave pizza without the soggy crust.

Microwave grill ovens are pretty common but more expensive than standard microwaves. They are also more powerful and generally have larger capacities.

Grill microwave oven advantages:

  • More cooking options
  • Higher capacity
  • Higher power

Grill microwave oven disadvantages:

  • More expensive
  • Higher power consumption

Combination microwave oven

The microwave ovens labeled as combination work as a traditional, convection oven and microwave oven in one. They tend to be larger and have more functions and settings than the standard and grill microwaves combined.

Most units come with timers that can be programmed up to 60 minutes or more, a variety of power level and temperature options, as well as numerous pre-programmed cooking settings.

In such a microwave oven, you can grill, bake, roast, sear, and braise foods, in addition to heating and defrosting.

Like standard microwave ovens, the combination ones emit microwaves to heat your food evenly. They also produce heated air that allows for added functions such as baking and roasting. Combination ovens usually include a grill function.

Combination microwave oven advantages:

  • Two cooking methods
  • Multiple cooking functions
  • Cooks faster and more evenly

Combination microwave oven disadvantages:

  • Pricier than standard or grill microwave ovens
  • Could be harder to use

How to Choose the Most Reliable Microwave?

Choosing the most reliable microwave is often challenging, especially if you don’t have your priorities right. Here are a few things to check before buying.

Brand

Have you chosen one of the trustworthy, good microwave brands? While no-name microwaves could be a pleasant surprise, I wouldn’t recommend taking the risk. Appliances from the established brands are generally safer, longer-lasting, and benefit from better after-sales support.

Type

What do you need the microwave for? If you only need one to defrost chicken or reheat leftovers – and maybe prepare a hot drink or two – a standard microwave would suffice. These units are cheap yet reliable, albeit you won’t be able to cook anything impressive in them.

A grill microwave oven is ideal for students and young professionals who mostly use it for defrosting, reheating, and making popcorn, but who want to cook a more elaborate meal now and then.

Combination microwaves are perfect for families living in smaller spaces. They allow you to cook anything you want while saving you some countertop and cabinet space.

Capacity

The capacity generally goes hand in hand with the type of microwave oven you buy, but not always. Sometimes, you’ll have to consider the size of your household.

Standard microwaves with a capacity of one cubic foot or less are generally ideal for singles and couples. Families up to four would benefit from a capacity of at least 1.2 cubic feet. For larger households, you should get at least 1.6 cubic feet.

Design

Where do you want to place your microwave and how big is your kitchen? You can choose from built-in microwaves, over-the-range models, countertop microwave ovens, and even microwave drawers.

Cooking settings

Are you looking for a no-frills appliance or would you like all the bells and whistles? Microwaves with fewer cooking settings are more affordable, but if you’re the busy type and don’t want to lose yourself in guessing power and time settings, pre-programmed cooking functions may be more up your alley.

Extras

In addition to everything above, you should also consider the extras. These generally include:

  • Popcorn and pizza buttons
  • Sensor cooking (calculates the power and time automatically based on the vapor coming from your food)
  • Removable turntable and carousel or turntable off button
  • Child lock
  • Mute button

Most Reliable Microwave Reviews


1. Bosch HMD8451UC 800 24″ Stainless Steel Microwave Drawer

Perfect for those with little to no counter space, the Bosch HMD8451UC is an excellent choice for a fancy kitchen or people with accessibility problems.

Bosch-HMD8451UC
View On Homedepot

The under-the-waist installation makes it easy for disabled people to access and use it. This microwave drawer oven has standard functions, but still includes pre-programmed settings for easier cooking.

Why I love it

Bosch
Streamlined design

This microwave oven has a sleek design that integrates successfully in all kitchens. The control panel is intuitive and easy to use.

Sensor cooking

Like most Bosch microwaves, this one boasts sensor cooking. You can simply place your food inside the oven and press the start button. The appliance will calculate the right cooking time and power automatically to prevent overcooking.

Automatic open and closing

Opening and closing the microwave drawer is easy even when your hands are full, thanks to the one-touch open and close buttons.

What could be better

Aftersales support

All Bosch microwaves come with solid warranties, but the customer support isn’t the most helpful or responsive.

Power

This microwave oven only outputs 950 watts, which is on the lower side considering its price tag.


2. Cuisinart CMW-200 1.2-Cubic-Foot Convection Microwave Oven with Grill

If you don’t have a high budget but want a reliable microwave, the Cuisinart CMW-200 is an excellent choice.

Cuisinart-CMW-200
View On Homedepot

The oven outputs 1,000 watts and features nine pre-programmed cooking settings for easier operation. Sensor cooking options also allow you to cook food to perfection without worrying about power and cooking time.

Why I love it

Multiple cooking functions
Cuisinart-reliable-microwave

With this microwave, you can roast, bake, reheat foods, and more. Not only does it feature convection cooking, but it is a combination microwave oven.

Read Next: Smallest Microwave Drawer in 2022 : [Top Picks & Reviews]

Cooking sequences

Don’t you hate it when you have to switch between cooking functions manually? This microwave oven makes things easy. You can program sequences of up to three cooking functions. For instance, you can defrost, bake, and broil a casserole with a simple touch of a button.

Recipe book

Cooking in a microwave is challenging if you’re a beginner. Cuisinart knows that, that’s why this microwave oven comes with a recipe book to help you get started.

What could be better

Convection baking

While this microwave oven has a convection baking option, it doesn’t have the power of a standard convection oven. Thus, baking in it could be challenging.

Door hinges

The overall build quality of this appliance is excellent, but the door hinges are made of thinner plastic and feel flimsy.


3. GE JNM3163DJBB 1.6 cu. ft. Over-the-Range Microwave

An over-the-range microwave oven is an excellent choice if you want to save counter space and take advantage of the wall space at the same time.

GE-JNM3163DJBB-microwave
View On Homedepot

It can successfully replace the range hood, getting rid of cooking odors for you. A 1.6 cubic feet capacity makes this oven perfect for mid-sized to larger families.

Why I love it

Ease of use
GE-JNM3163DJBB

This GE microwave has an intuitive control panel and is very easy to operate. With a power of 950 watts, it is an excellent choice for defrosting, reheating, and cooking basic meals.

keypad
Venting system

The incorporated range hood does a great job removing odors, steam, and smoke from food. The 300 CFM vents have two speeds, and the hood also includes a light.

Turntable off button

This function allows you to use the microwave with rectangular trays that wouldn’t fit otherwise.

What could be better

Pre-programmed options

While not a real drawback, it is a nuisance that the display only shows the cooking setting number rather than the food name when using the pre-programmed options. Unless you want to learn the settings by heart, you’ll have to constantly open the door to check which code corresponds to which food.

Noise level

The range vents are loud, and the acoustic signals when the cooking cycle is over are also pretty loud.


4. Cuisinart CMW-100 1-Cubic-Foot Stainless Steel Microwave Oven

Cuisinart-CMW-100
View On Homedepot

This microwave oven shares some similarities with its CMW-200 version, but it doesn’t have as many functions. It is a standard microwave perfect for defrosting and reheating, but it has no convection cooking or grilling function. Nevertheless, it is a great choice for anyone on a budget.

Why I love it

Lots of pre-programmed settings

In addition to eight cooking programs, this microwave oven features 25 pre-programmed settings that make operation a cinch.

Power levels

Ten power levels and 1,000 watts of power make it easy to find the right level for anything, from defrosting to cooking to reheating.

Design

This appliance has a beautiful design that integrates beautifully in modern and vintage style kitchens alike. The stainless steel finish adds a stylish touch.

What could be better

Build quality

While this microwave oven is excellently built overall, it has some flimsier plastic components that won’t last a lifetime.

Timer increments

Setting the right cooking time could be hard sometimes. The oven doesn’t have 1-second increments, which means some foods could be overcooked if you don’t pay attention.


This over-the-range microwave is more expensive than other ovens in this category but impresses with 11 cooking settings and 11 power levels.

FRIGIDAIRE FGBM19WNVF
View On Homedepot

It has a capacity of 1.9 cubic feet, which is perfect for larger families. I also like the sleek design that suits modern kitchens.

Why I love it

 FRIGIDAIRE FGBM19WNVF 30" Gallery Series
Design

This microwave oven is incredibly stylish. Its full-size door enhances the visual appeal, giving it a luxurious finish. I also like the touch control panel at the bottom of the unit that allows for easy operation.

Range hood feature

Like the GE, this microwave oven has a range hood feature. The 400 CFM vents remove the odors and steam effortlessly.

Sensor cooking

This function makes it easy to cook, defrost, or reheat foods without worrying too much about the right cooking time and power.

What could be better

Smudge-proof finish

Allegedly, this appliance has a smudge-proof stainless steel finish, but in reality, it gets smudged easily. Wiping off fingerprints and cleaning it is easy, though.

Functions

For the price, I would have expected more functions and settings.

Most reliable microwave comparison table

 Bosch HMD8451UCCuisinart CMW-200GE JNM3163DJBBCuisinart CMW-100FRIGIDAIRE FGBM19WNVF
Capacity1.2 cu. ft.1.2 cu. ft.1.6 cu. ft.1.0 cu. ft.1.9 cu. ft.
TypeStandardCombinationStandardStandardStandard
DesignDrawerCountertopOver the rangeCountertopOver the range
Max power950 watts1,000 watts950 watts1,000 watts1,000 watts
Power levels1010101011
Cooking programs696811
Price$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

How long should a good microwave last?

As a rule of thumb, good microwaves should last for about 7-10 years. Some higher-end microwaves last longer, while lower-end units may have a shorter lifespan. However, you should still expect about five years of reliable use from all units.

Final thoughts

Getting the most reliable microwave is crucial if you don’t want to spend money on a unit that will only last for a few years. I hope this guide can help you find the best microwave oven for you.

About Justin Schwartz

Justin Schwartz is an experienced editor and food blogger based in New York. He focuses on healthy eating and living. When he’s not acquiring and publishing cookbooks, you can find Justin sampling food in New York’s restaurants or trying new recipes in his kitchen.

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