Kitchen Cleaning

How To Clean Microwaves In Best Possible Ways

How to clean microwaves is a straightforward yet essential household task that ensures not only a cleaner and more hygienic appliance but also maintains its efficiency and prolongs its lifespan. Cleaning it is a simple task that can help maintain its cleanliness and functionality. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to clean a microwave:

Materials you will need:

  1. Microwave-safe bowl or glass measuring cup
  2. Water
  3. Dish soap or vinegar
  4. Microfiber cloth or paper towels
  5. Optional: Lemon or baking soda for deodorizing

Steps on How To Clean Microwave:

  1. Unplug the Microwave (Safety First): For safety reasons, make sure your microwave is unplugged or turned off before cleaning.
  2. Remove Loose Debris: Check the microwave’s interior for any loose food debris or splatters. Wipe out any loose particles with a dry cloth or paper towel.
  3. Create a Cleaning Solution:
  • For a soapy solution, mix a few drops of dish soap with warm water in a bowl or measuring cup.
  • Alternatively, you can use vinegar: Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar in a bowl or measuring cup. Vinegar helps to remove odors and stains.
  1. Steam Cleaning:
  • Place the bowl or measuring cup with the soapy water or vinegar solution in the microwave.
  • If you want to add a fresh scent, you can place a few slices of lemon in the solution or sprinkle a small amount of baking soda.
  • Microwave the mixture on high for 2-5 minutes until it starts to boil and create steam. The steam will help loosen food residues and stains on the microwave’s interior.
  1. Wait and Wipe:
  • After the microwave has finished steaming, let it sit with the door closed for a few minutes. This allows the steam to continue softening any stubborn stains.
  • Carefully remove the bowl or measuring cup (it will be hot) and use oven mitts or a towel to protect your hands.
  • Wipe down the interior of the microwave with a microfiber cloth or paper towels. Stubborn stains may require a bit of scrubbing with the cloth.
  • Pay extra attention to the ceiling, walls, and turntable area, as these are common places for food splatters.
  1. Clean the Door: Don’t forget to clean the inside of the microwave door. Use your cleaning solution to wipe it down and pay attention to the gasket and edges.
  2. Exterior Cleaning: Wipe down the exterior of the microwave with a cloth or sponge using mild soapy water or an all-purpose cleaner. Be careful not to get any liquid into the control panel or vent areas.
  3. Replace Turntable and Accessories: If you removed the turntable and other accessories, clean them separately and return them to the microwave once they are dry.
  4. Plug In and Test: Once you’re sure everything is dry, plug in the microwave, or turn it back on, and test it to ensure it’s working correctly.
  5. Deodorize (Optional): If your microwave had lingering odors, you can place a bowl of baking soda inside the microwave for a few hours to absorb any remaining smells.

Regularly cleaning your microwave will not only make it look better but also help it function more efficiently. Additionally, it helps prevent unpleasant odors and ensures the safety of your food when you use the microwave.

Homemade Solutions for Microwave Cleaning:

Homemade solutions for cleaning your microwave are effective and cost-efficient. Here are a few different options you can use:

Vinegar and Water Solution:

  • Mix equal parts of water and white vinegar in a microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup.
  • Place the bowl in the microwave and heat it on high for 5 minutes until it boils and produces steam.
  • Let it sit for a few minutes with the microwave door closed to allow the steam to soften and loosen food splatters and stains.
  • Carefully remove the bowl (it will be hot) and wipe down the interior with a cloth or paper towels. Stubborn spots may require a bit of scrubbing.
  • Lemon and Water Solution:
  • Squeeze the juice of one lemon into a microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup.
  • Add about half a cup of water to the lemon juice.
  • Microwave the mixture for 3-5 minutes until it boils and produces steam.
  • Let it sit for a few minutes with the microwave door closed, then remove and wipe down the interior.

Baking Soda Paste:

  • Mix 2-3 tablespoons of baking soda with enough water to create a thick, spreadable paste.
  • Apply the paste to the interior of the microwave, focusing on areas with stubborn stains.
  • Allow it to sit for 10-15 minutes.
  • Use a damp cloth or sponge to scrub the paste gently, removing stains and residue.
  • Wipe down the interior with a clean, damp cloth to remove any remaining paste.
  • Citrus and Water Solution:
  • Slice a lemon or orange into a microwave-safe bowl of water.
  • Heat it in the microwave for a few minutes to create steam.
  • Use the steam to soften food splatters and stains, then wipe down the interior with a cloth or paper towels.
  • Dish Soap and Water Solution:
  • Mix a few drops of dish soap with warm water in a bowl or measuring cup.
  • Dip a cloth or sponge into the soapy water and use it to wipe down the interior of the microwave.
  • Rinse the cloth or sponge and wipe the interior again with plain water to remove any soap residue.
  • Salt and Vinegar Scrub:
  • Sprinkle a little salt on a damp sponge or cloth.
  • Use the salted sponge or cloth to scrub away stains inside the microwave.
  • After scrubbing, use the vinegar and water solution or plain water to wipe down the interior.

These homemade solutions are effective for cleaning your microwave without harsh chemicals. They can help remove food splatters, stains, and odors while being safe for your health and the environment. Remember to use microwave-safe containers and follow safety precautions when heating solutions in the microwave.

What to Avoid While Cleaning Microwaves?

When cleaning a microwave, there are some things to avoid to ensure your safety and the appliance’s longevity. Here are common mistakes and things to avoid while cleaning a microwave:

  1. Using Abrasive Materials: Avoid using abrasive scrubbers, scouring pads, or steel wool on the microwave’s interior. These can scratch and damage the microwave’s surfaces, making it harder to clean in the future.
  2. Harsh Chemicals: Avoid using harsh or corrosive chemicals like bleach or ammonia for cleaning the interior. These chemicals can damage the microwave and leave behind harmful residues.
  3. Excessive Water: While it’s common to use a water-based solution for steam cleaning, avoid overfilling the bowl with water or other liquids. Excess liquid can boil over, causing a mess and potential safety hazards.
  4. Neglecting the Ceiling: When wiping down the interior, don’t forget to clean the ceiling. Food splatters and residues can accumulate there as well.
  5. Ignoring the Door: The inside of the microwave door can also get dirty. Avoid overlooking it during your cleaning routine. Be cautious not to let any liquid seep into the door’s electronics or controls.
  6. Forgetting the Turntable and Accessories: Remove the turntable, roller ring, and any other removable microwave accessories for separate cleaning. Neglecting to clean these components can lead to unhygienic conditions.
  7. Skipping the Exterior: Don’t forget to clean the exterior of the microwave. Fingerprints, smudges, and dirt can accumulate on the control panel and the sides of the microwave. Use a suitable cleaner to wipe down the exterior.
  8. Using Hot Containers: Avoid using containers or bowls that are too hot to handle when removing them from the microwave. Always use oven mitts or a towel to protect your hands.
  9. Unsafe Heating Containers: Be cautious when heating cleaning solutions in the microwave. Ensure that the container you use is microwave-safe and won’t release toxic fumes or crack under heat.
  10. Ignoring Safety Precautions: Before cleaning, unplug the microwave or ensure it’s turned off to prevent accidental operation. Follow safety guidelines to avoid burns or electrical hazards.
  11. Lingering Odors: If you’ve used strong-smelling cleaning solutions, make sure to air out the microwave afterward to remove any lingering odors before using it to heat food.
  12. Delaying Cleaning: Avoid letting spills and food residues accumulate. Regular cleaning is easier and more effective than dealing with stubborn, caked-on messes.

By avoiding these common mistakes, you can effectively and safely clean your microwave, maintaining its performance and keeping it in good condition.


One effective method for cleaning your microwave involves creating a homemade cleaning solution with common kitchen items. By heating a mixture of water and white vinegar or citrus juice in a microwave-safe container, you generate steam that loosens stubborn food splatters and stains. After letting it sit for a few minutes, you can easily wipe away the mess with a cloth or paper towels, leaving your microwave looking fresh and odor-free. Regular microwave cleaning not only helps maintain a sanitary kitchen but also prevents the buildup of odors and ensures the safety of your food when reheating or cooking in this kitchen workhorse.

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