Your goal in purchasing top rated microwaves is to purchase the right microwave for your home/apartment that will fit your available space and for it to perform the right cooking function for you.
Choosing your new microwave can be an adventure into wattage and cubic foot capabilities. You may not know that your microwave had memory capabilities that can remember how much time and power that it takes to warm your mom’s favorite pasta recipe.
You could be looking for a microwave just to get the job done, or you could be looking for a microwave that senses how the job should be done. You’re going to need microwave wisdom to help you with the purchase of the right microwave for you.
Who Should You Buy a Microwave
Microwave technology hasn’t changed much in the last 50 years, but how we use them has evolved. Where we used to cook full meals with them, today their uses have changed somewhat. Today we use microwaves for simpler tasks like warming leftovers, making popcorn, or rewarming a cup of coffee or hot chocolate. If you want the convenience of cooking or reheating without firing up your oven (which puts a lot of heat in your home) then a microwave is the right choice for you.
How Do Microwaves Work
Every microwave contains a magnetron, which generates microwaves. These microwaves are then directed into the ovens cavity where they bounce around rapidly swinging the polarity of charged molecules in foods (water, fats, sugars) generating heat. The metal mesh on the door keeps the microwaves from escaping the oven and cooking you.
Microwave ovens don’t heat food the way a conventional oven does by heated air. They heat the food by using microwave energy to cause the molecules of water and other simple molecules in the food to rapidly vibrate, which generates internal friction at the molecular level, heating the food from within.
That’s why microwaves can heat things so quickly and they are so good at steaming vegetables in their own juices. They do not rely on transferring heat from the air to the food. The downside of this is that microwaves are not delivered evenly within the oven. This is why food is often placed on rotating turntables within the ovens so that the microwaves will evenly reach all the food present. But even with this rotation you may find that some spots in your food are hotter than others.
If you are worried about standing too close to a microwave, don’t be. The level of radiation emitted by microwave ovens is very low. The FDA also has strict regulations covering microwaves.
Where Will Your Microwave Go? DO You Have Enough Space?
A new microwave can have a every memory function available, but if it is too large to fit your available space then it won’t be the right fit. Make sure that you check the cubic feet of every unit you are considering and check it dimensions to make sure that it will fit your available space.
For smaller kitchens you probably want to consider either countertop models or over-the-range models which are suspended over the range or cooktop. More compact microwaves have internal capacities of 1.0 cubic feet or less. The larger units have capacities of 1.2 cubic feet or larger.
Power or Wattages Does Matter
Often times when reading microwaveable dinner menus you will notice different cooking times depending on the wattage of the microwave to be utilized. For higher wattage microwaves, the cooking time will be less.
A microwaves ability to heat food fast comes down to its wattage which increases the power of the unit. The compromise to this comes in the form of higher energy usage, larger unit footprint and cost.
Microwaves in the 1000 to 1250 watt range can handle the cooking requirements of almost all meals. The higher cooking wattages will result in your meals being cooked more evenly and at faster rates.
If you are concerned about food reheat taste and quality then you should look for units with a wattage of at least 1100. If speed is your desire then you want to think about units with higher power.
Microwaves Have a Memory
What if, your microwave could predict what you are going to reheat and automatically sets its power level and timing accordingly? That’s what shopping for microwaves in 2019 looks like and we are ready to help you find the right microwave.
Even microwaves for around $100 offer menu presets that you can use to cook your favorite meals.
This will add the convenience of having a microwave that knows exactly how you like your favorite menu items cooked or reheated.
Defrost Options & Two-Stage Cooking
One of the most convenient features of a microwave is its ability to defrost frozen food without cooking its internal temperature.
One of the nicest features of the two-stage cooking process is that it allows you to cook meals that have two different power settings and times without having to stand near the microwave and reset the unit. This allows you to set both power levels and times and to walk away from the microwave until the meal is completed.
Units with the dual cooking feature are not priced at the bottom end of the scale, but they are priced at around the $250 price point
Choosing Your Microwave
As you can see from the above writings, there should be a considerable amount of thought given to picking top rated microwaves that are going to perform the tasks that you require of it. Armed with your new knowledge, happy shopping!
OK, You’ve decided you need a microwave, what are the steps you should consider for your purchasing decision
- Where is the microwave going to go? Is it going on the countertop, under the cabinets above the stove, on a shelf built into the cabinets (as a built-in) or is it going to be placed on a cart? These questions will help you decide the appropriate size and type to purchase.
- What power or wattage levels do I require? It is now known that microwaves with wattage levels of 1000 to 1250 will provide you with the best cooking experiences and results. Remember, the higher wattage levels will cook more evenly and faster, with the downside being increased power costs.
- Do you want a microwave with a memory? Remember todays microwaves can have features that will Remember items you normally cook and with the touch of a button will automatically cook or reheat your meal perfectly. These units will normally cost around the $100 price point.
- What do you want in defrost options and 2-stage cooking? Remember, todays microwaves can thaw frozen foods without cooking them. They can also perform 2-stage cooking where your meal is cooked at 1 power level and time span and then cooked at another level and time span all in one setting with you returning to the oven only to retrieve your meal. These units are priced at around the $250 price point.