Choosing a microwave for a tiny kitchen is difficult. Here question arise – how do I choose a microwave for a small kitchen? Every appliance must be compact and efficient due to counter and cabinet space constraints. A microwave that fits in your kitchen without crowding it is ideal. While size matters, don’t sacrifice cooking power or capacity.
You must balance size, features, and functionality to fit your demands. Even though smaller microwaves entail some compromises, technology has progressed enough to provide quality, convenient cooking. With wise planning and comparison research, you may choose a microwave that fits your meals and small space. When buying a microwave for small kitchens, this article covers the most important criteria.
How do I choose a microwave for a small kitchen? A Buyer’s Guide for Compact Cooking
Measure your space
First, assess your space before buying a microwave for a tiny kitchen. Measure the countertop height, breadth, and depth for the microwave. Measure any gaps between walls, corners, or other appliances for the microwave.
Measure the microwave’s clearance for ventilation and door opening. Typical microwaves need 3 inches of space on both sides and above. Some tiny microwaves can get by with less. When selecting models, check their product specs for clearance requirements.
To avoid buying a microwave that’s too big or too small for its space, measure carefully before shopping. Choose a properly sized microwave or a tiny microwave for a confined space. Taking time to measure will provide the optimum fit for your space.
Consider compact microwaves
Small kitchens benefit from tiny microwaves. With their small size, compact microwaves save counter and cabinet space. A full-sized microwave won’t fit in narrow spaces, but many compact versions are under 18 inches wide.
The advantages of a tiny microwave for a small kitchen include:
- Compact models maximize counter space.
- Small microwaves fit in corners, beneath cabinets, or on small countertops.
- Compact microwaves are lightweight and easy to move and install, weighing under 30 pounds.
- Special low-profile variants fit above 30-inch stove ranges.
- Cook well – Most compact models have enough power and capacity for daily use.
- Compact microwaves are cheaper than full-size ones.
Going tiny doesn’t imply compromising power or functionality with several alternatives under 1 cubic foot. Make sure the tiny size you chose will fit your family’s cooking needs by comparing the interior capacity.
Define essential features
When picking a microwave for a small kitchen, prioritize critical capabilities over nice-to-have options that take up room. Some things to consider:
- Large microwaves may have 1,000+ watts, although a 600–800W microwave may be enough. Cooking large amounts requires more electricity.
- Turntable size: Compact models have 10″ turntables, while larger models have 13″–14″. Check that it fits your cookware.
- Pre-programmed settings Many microwaves have popcorn, beverage, potato, and other preset buttons. It’s convenient, but a compact microwave may have limited interior and external panel area. I wonder if you need them.
- Inverter microwaves cook evenly with steady low power rather than pulsating high power. This feature is fantastic; however, it may be too expensive for a little microwave.
- Sensor cooking adjusts time and power based on humidity. Another handy function, but not necessary with limited space.
In a tiny kitchen, prioritize time and power level over complex features to acquire what you need while preserving space. Prioritize compactness, internal space, and easy controls.
Interior capacity check
When buying a microwave for a tiny kitchen, consider its capacity. How many items you can prepare or reheat at once depends on the internal cubic footage.
For a small kitchen, choose microwaves under 1 cubic foot. This lets you make one plate or reheat soup or pasta. Look for 1.5 cubic feet if you frequently cook or reheat for two. It may be too big for your space.
Measure the height, width, and depth of your open counter to estimate cubic footage. The microwave turntable should be at least 10–12 inches wide to accommodate standard dinner plates. Allow room above and around the dishes you wish to heat.
To fit plates and bowls, prioritize interior width and turntable size over capacity. A compact model with enough space for your dishes is better than a larger one with vacant space above.
Try heating a plate of food or a coffee mug at the store. Keep them from sitting at an angle or touching the sides when spinning on the turntable. The rotation should be unimpeded.
Before buying a microwave, check its inner capacity to make sure it fits your little kitchen. Avoid family-sized microwaves and opt for tiny versions with adequate space for one meal.
Look for adjustable shelves
Look for microwaves with adjustable shelves for tiny kitchens. Adjustable shelves let you arrange the inside to fit different-sized dishes and containers. This is especially useful in a compact microwave with little vertical space.
Adjustable shelves let you cook and reheat more in your compact microwave. You may raise shelves for higher bowls or mugs. Or lower shelves for shorter plates and cups. Some microwaves offer a third detachable shelf for greater flexibility.
Fixed-shelf microwaves use up room. Cooking may leave spaces above or below dishes. However, flexible shelves enable you to customize the configuration. Making use of the small space.
So check the shelf design when buying a microwave for a tiny kitchen. Models with adjustable, removable, or fold-down shelves offer the most flexibility. You may modify the shelving for dishes and cooking. Increasing microwave functionality in restricted spaces
Choose a microwave with an easy-to-clean interior for a tiny kitchen. A type with a smooth, continuous interior without fissures or seams is easier to clean.
Splatters and spills are common on microwave interiors. Food remains and grease can accumulate in hard-to-reach spots. Select a microwave with a stainless steel or ceramic enamel interior instead of plastic. This surface is smoother and prevents food from adhering.
Avoid turntables and internal racks with many food-trapping crevices. A simple interior makes wiping and cleaning easier.
Some microwaves have steam or self-cleaning functions. These loosen dried food and oil with condensation, steam, or heat. While not necessary, they can help keep the interior clean with little effort.
Choose a microwave with a smooth interior. This makes cleanup easy after each usage. Interior cleaning requires only a simple wipedown. A compact kitchen needs an easy-to-clean interior.
Think about ventilation
When buying a microwave for a tiny kitchen, consider ventilation. Microwave ventilation options vary:
- Over-the-range: The vent on these microwaves over the stove removes smoke, steam, and odours. These save counter space but need skilled installation and ductwork. Small kitchens that demand strong ventilation benefit from over-the-range microwaves’ high airflow fans.
- Countertop: Countertop microwaves with front or top vents are the smallest. They have low-airflow fans without ducting. Kitchen countertops are fine for occasional use but may not provide enough ventilation for everyday cooking.
- Built-in: Build a microwave inside a wall or cabinet. It saves the most space but requires specialized cabinets. Like countertops, built-in models have front vents and lower airflow. Consider whether you need more ventilation before buying a built-in.
Choose ventilation based on your cooking needs. Small kitchens with lots of cooking and powerful vents benefit from over-the-ranges. Countertop or built-in variants are smaller but offer less ventilation.
Check door clearance
You should make sure you can fully open the microwave door before buying it. This is crucial in a small kitchen.
Microwave placement should be measured. Most versions require 2-3 inches of side clearance. It will be wide enough to swing the door open.
Pulling the handle opens tiny microwave doors instead of swinging down. This style may just need 1-2 inches of side clearance.
Be mindful of overhead clearance. Check the product requirements for the door opening angle. Allow enough space for the door to open without touching overhanging cabinets or shelving.
Checking door clearance beforehand avoids annoyance. Nothing is worse than having new equipment you can’t use due to space. Proper measurement allows full internal access.
Comparing Top Models
Choose the best compact microwaves for small kitchens based on their features, capacity, and usability. Here are some popular choices:
microwave oven Toshiba EM131A5C-BS
Powerful 1100 watts, 10.6-inch turntable, easy-to-clean interior. The capacity is 1.2 cubic feet.
Cons: No vent or hood, no sensor cooking. Confusing controls.
Galaz 0.7-Cubic-Foot Retro Countertop Microwave
Pros: Retro design saves counter space. 6 auto cook menus, 10 power levels. An affordable price.
Low capacity at 0.7 cubic feet. No turntable. Door opens poorly.
Panasonic NN-SN936B Microwave Oven
Plus: inverter cooking for evenness. A genius sensor controls timing and power. 14 auto-cooker programs, 1250 watts
Cons: Pricey. Never-off turntable. Poor ventilation.
Farberware Classic FMO11AHTBKB Microwave
Pros: Affordable. 0.9 cu ft. Multistage cooking. Simple express cooking.
Cons: 700-watt power. Noisy fan. Interior grease-splatterprone.
Compare size, power, and usability to your budget to get the finest tiny microwave. Measure your kitchen first.