Microwave Oven Buying Guide | How to select a Microwave Oven

microwave oven buying guideIn today’s busy lifestyle, Microwave ovens are one of the most convenient and comfortable cooking appliances that can keep up with your tight schedules. Not only can it pace up the tasks in the kitchen, the thing can be quite understanding if you want to multi-task. Especially for working women, a microwave oven is a boon in all sense; no bothering about cooking multiple times a day, convenient food re-heating, easy roasting, grilling and baking and what not! It benefits in terms of time, money (in long run) as well as efforts. Moreover, microwave cooking is way more healthy when put in contrast to several other cooking methods. Simply, it is a must have kitchen appliance.

Categories or Types of Microwave ovens

First, let us offer you a brief portrait of the types of microwave ovens you would find in the market.

  • Convection Microwave ovens are presently the most popular type of microwave oven, and for good reasons. These types of ovens incorporate multiple cooking modes in one unit. You can use such ovens to grill, bake and roast food.
  • The conventional or ‘solo’ microwave oven, on the other hand, can be explained as ‘primitive’ or basic level ovens. These can just be used for simple cooking purposes or re-heating cooked food.
  • Apart from these two, there is ‘Grilling oven’ that serves exclusive grilling purpose. Why grilling oven when you can get a griller or OTG itself? Well, you get the benefit of time and energy with grilling oven. Moreover, you can use Grilling oven for re-heating purposes as well.

Comparing Solo microwave ovens to Convection ovens

We can see that while solo ovens would come at relatively much lower costs and would not burst your budgets, they might not meet all the cooking requirements you have. They can be ideal if you are looking to buy the appliance for basic cooking and re-heating purposes. Also, if you have been working on a tight budget, Conventional ovens or Solo microwave ovens can be an ideal choice.

Talking about multi-purposing and convenience, Convection ovens are much more preferable. The advanced features, technology, multiple cooking modes and better usability that accompany convection ovens add several folds to the ease of cooking. This might cost you a bit higher- but you would sure find it worth it. Moreover, think of how much you might have to pay if you were to buy griller and oven separately. Plus, it wouldn’t take much space of your kitchen. Convection ovens can be the perfect choice for you if you have been looking for an oven that wouldn’t eat up much space of your kitchen and at the same time serves multiple cooking purposes like grilling paneer or chicken, or making kebabs, perfectly baking cakes, brownies and breads, baking out a crispy pizza etc. along with performing all the basic functions of an oven like re-heating.

Now that you know about the types of microwave ovens and their functionalities, deciding on which oven to buy and which is best microwave oven for you is your call!

Deciding on ideal Microwave oven size and capacity

The following points should help you decide on the microwave oven size that would suit you.

Family of 2-4 members

  • If you are considering a Solo microwave oven, 15-20 litres would be the ideal capacity of microwave oven to cook for your family.
  • If you are considering a Convection microwave oven or griller microwave oven, 21 to 30 litres would be ideal.

Family of 4+ members

  • 25 to 30 litres would be ideal capacity if you are considering a solo microwave oven for your family
  • In case you are looking for a grilling microwave oven or a convection microwave oven, the appliance with 32 litres capacity or above (depending on family size) would be required.

Microwave oven price range

Microwave oven price varies from company to company and for each type. Here is an average price range for buying microwave ovens in India.

  • Average price range for Solo Microwave oven: Rs. 5,000 to 8,000.
  • Average price range for Grill microwave: Rs. 7,000 to 12,000.
  • Average price range for Convection microwave: Rs. 14,000 to 24,000.

Features of microwave ovens

Described below are some microwave oven features that you can keep noted before you hop out for oven shopping. Go through these to enrich your ‘microwave vocabulary’!

Defrost:

This is a general microwave feature to handle defrosting and heating the frozen food items.

Child-lock:

Children have a strange habit of pressing whichever buttons they find interesting, right? Child-lock prevents exactly that from happening. Thus, you wouldn’t have to worry about little fingers interrupting the cooking.

Automatic defrosting

With this option, the appliance would itself set the defrost time on the basis of the weight of the food.

Automatic cooking:

The feature might not be available for all ovens. The option eases up your task- with this, you just need to select a food item from the options available, the appliance will handle the rest.

Sensor cooking:

With sensor cooking, the appliance automatically adjusts the power levels and cooking time by detecting the food moisture level and oven’s humidity.

Preheat:

Just like the word suggests, preheat feature allows you to make sure the microwave oven inside is hot enough to start cooking, as required in some recipes.

Timer:

The timer on Microwave oven lets you set the cooking time- not all food items are available on the auto-cook menu!

Safety tips for use microwave ovens

While using microwave ovens are quite easy and safe to a great extent, it should always be kept in mind that it is, however, an electronic appliance. It can function safely only when you use it correctly. Well that is a general and genuine rule, right?
1. Go through the user guide:
Seriously, do it. User guides are there for a purpose. User guides would have all the basic and in depth details as to the right way to use the cooking appliance and the dos and don’ts that go with it. So before you jump into experimenting with your brand new microwave oven, make sure you can control your excitement for a few minutes and go through the user guide.

2. Get your microwave maintenance occasionally:
You don’t expect your car to run perfectly if you haven’t taken the thing to service over a few years, right? The somewhat same principle can be applied on microwave ovens as well.

3. Use Microwave utensils:
Always use the right and microwave-safe plastic or glass utensils for cooking in the microwave. User guides would provide information on the types of utensils that can be used in the microwave. STICK to it. Also, don’t experiment putting metal stuff in there.

4. Use microwave gloves:
…If you love keeping your hands safe as much as you love the cake baking in there!

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