This is our official list in search of the best countertop microwaves on the market today.
Highest Reviewed Countertop Microwaves to Consider
The countertop microwave is an essential appliance, and it’s great for pulling together a quick dinner. A modern microwave can cook frozen pizzas, reheat coffee or fry up bacon, and with some of the latest features, it’s easy to press one of the button presets and walk away.
The best countertop microwave is appealing because it’s portable enough to move around the kitchen and doesn’t need to be installed into cabinetry. Since they represent some of the smallest microwaves available, they’re perfect for college dorm rooms or small apartments, and they’re just as useful as larger models for making popcorn, frozen food and delicious treats.
When shopping for these products, it’s important to consider the wattage. Most countertop models use between 500 and 1,000 watts of power. A higher power rating is capable of cooking food faster, but in some cases, it can be too much for certain types of food, and the power setting will need to be turned down. It’s also important to pay attention to the cooking technology used by the microwave.
Some models use only convection heating, and others use a combination of technologies. Convection heating is simple, and it uses a small fan to circulate heat around the meal. The best countertop microwaves should have non-stick interior, and for convenience, they should have several task buttons for popular types of food. Below, there is a list of five of the top countertop microwaves available, and by selecting a product from the list, consumers can avoid choosing a product that will disappoint.
The Magic Chef looks like one of the smallest microwaves available, but it offers just as much cooking space as most competing products.
With a capacity of 1.6 cubic feet, it can accommodate a variety of meals, and to send heat deep into any type of food, it uses 1,100 watts of power. The Magic Chef comes with six pre-programmed cooking menus, which can be activated with a single touch.
It comes with three automatic defrost menus, and these features are great for thawing freezer items. For even greater convenience, this microwave has an automatic start function, and for maximum cooking possibilities, it offers 11 different power levels.
- Opens with a handle instead of a button
- Quiet operation
- Perfect for dorm rooms or apartments
- Control panel lighting is very bright at night
Here is another top model from Panasonic, and the NN-SN736B features patented inverter technology. With this powerful technology, the microwave receives a steady supply of power, and it will precisely cook most types of food.
When used at lower power settings, the Panasonic NN-SN736B doesn’t negatively impact the texture and flavor of the meal. A massive 1,250 watts of power are used to quickly cook through most meals, and the power level is high enough to handle frozen food.
This microwave is made with a capacity of 1.6 cubic feet, and although it features a smaller countertop design, it has enough room for large meals. The Panasonic NN-SN736B comes with 14 preset auto cook menu items, and these buttons are programmed for popular types of food. There is even a button for popcorn. This microwave features a membrane keypad, and for easier programming, it has five menu buttons. It offers 10 different power levels, and the push-button door release is convenient and easy to operate.
- High wattage for faster cooking
- Cooks faster and more thoroughly than other models
- Controls are easy to use
- Perfect for soup
- Door latch could be made stronger
When shopping for the best countertop microwave, you’ll see that the Panasonic NN-SD772SAZ is another top contender, and with a whopping 1,250 watts of power, it cooks faster than other products.
This microwave uses inverter technology, which provides an uninterrupted supply of cooking power. For faster defrosting, it comes with a Turbo Defrost feature, and an automatic sensor can detect your food and adjust the cooking power automatically.
Many other products don’t come with this advanced technology and require manual power adjustments. The Panasonic NN-SD772SAZ is also unique because it will keep your food warm if you get too busy and can’t rush to get the food out. When this feature is activated, the microwave will automatically deliver enough heat to prevent the food from getting cold. Although it has a capacity of only 1.6 cubic feet, this product offers more space than other models.
- Looks great
- Inverter power control works flawlessly
- Panels controls are easy to use
- 15-inch turntable offers plenty of room
- Display could be illuminated better
The GE JVM3160RFSS has a capacity of 1.6 cubic feet, and it uses 1,000 watts of power to cook the deepest parts of any meal. The defrost buttons allow for cooking based on time or auto, and the programmed power levels offer great results.
There is even a button that allows you to control the turntable operation, which is important for some types of food. The GE JVM3160RFSS is equipped with a two-speed 300-CFM venting system, and it’s capable of removing odors, steam and smoke from the cooking chamber.
This microwave is designed with durable materials, and since it’s made in the United States, you can trust the quality of the materials. Although it comes with several great features, this microwave is also designed to look good on any countertop, and the stainless-steel exterior can easily blend in with any décor.
- Doesn’t make a lot of noise
- Different audible signals make cooking easier
- Cabinet lights provide plenty of illumination
- Control panel markings are difficult to see in dim light
The Oster EG034AL7-X1 is a popular model, and with 1,000 watts of power, it can cook most types of food quickly and efficiently. It allows consumers to choose from 10 different power levels, which makes it easy to find the optimal power level for any meal.
For convenience, it features a 30-second Express Cook function, which uses the highest power setting to power through thick meals. The Oster EG034AL7-X1 also has a child lock, and it can prevent children from using it to start a fire.
This countertop microwave has three memory settings that allow for defrosting food by weight. With a mirror finish, this product has great aesthetics, and it’s large enough to fit most standard meals. It even has a grill for the meat products that people love. The Oster EG034AL7-X1 has a non-stick interior, and the interior prevents even the stickiest foods from getting stuck, which makes cleaning much easier.
- Memory settings for defrosting meals
- 10 different power levels
- Express Cook feature for busy people
- Not big enough for certain types of food
Final Say on Countertop Microwaves
With the best countertop microwave, cooking any meal becomes faster and more convenient. Not too long ago, consumers avoided using microwaves because they couldn’t cook as well as an oven.
They had trouble distributing heat evenly and operated with a single power level. Today, countertop microwaves are much smarter, and with advanced sensors, they take the guesswork out of cooking and reheating popular types of food. The products on this list are great for busy people, and they offer a level of convenience that is almost impossible to get from a traditional oven.