We all know that microwaves are super helpful when it comes to reheating leftovers or even cooking a super-easy 3-minute meal. However, they can get quite messy over time. Think food splatters, spills, and lingering smells. These things can make your microwave oven a breeding ground for grease, stains, and bacteria. However, cleaning it often can keep those little messes from turning into big ones.
Do Clean It Often
This shouldn’t be news to most of you: You should be cleaning your microwave a lot more often than you should be right now.
While there really isn’t a golden rule on how often you should clean the microwave, we recommend you to clean it at least once a week, or when there are obvious splatters spraying the interior. Depending on how often you use it, it’s just much easier to quickly wipe the microwave after each use instead of days, or even months later. Plus, wiping or cleaning your microwave regularly can prevent leftover messes from adding flavor to the foods you might heat up later.
Now, let’s see just how easy it is to clean your super-dependable microwave!
How To Clean the Inside of a Microwave
As mentioned above, the mixture of unpleasant splatters and rancid smells can leave your microwave looking pretty rough. To easily clean your microwave’s interior and turntable, follow this easy guide step-by-step:
- Combine 1 cup water and lemon, lime or orange slices. Then, be sure to squeeze juice from the fruit slices into the water in the microwave-safe bowl. If you have white or apple cider vinegar in your pantry, you can try combining a few tablespoons into the bowl.
- Place the bowl inside the microwave and turn it on high power for several minutes until the water mixture boils and the window steams up.
- Let everything inside cool for 5 minutes before opening the door. Then, remove the bowl and wipe the inside clean with a sponge.
Use Non-Toxic, Food-Safe Cleaners
If you trust your microwave to heat the things you eat, we think you should clean it in a food-safe way. When cleaning your microwave, You don’t want any residue or after-taste left behind that could circulate in the microwave the next time you use it. That’s why we recommend you to use something non-toxic.
In fact, it’s really easy. Just start using a piece of microfiber cloth and plain water. Simply wipe down everything inside with the wet cloth. Then, leave the cloth on the turntable, and turn your microwave on for one minute. The steam created by heating the towel will loosen the hardened grease. Then, let the cloth rest in the microwave for three minutes. Next, scrub the inside with a non-toxic cleaner, and consider your job done!
Or Just Use What You Have
While there are plenty of great cleaning products available in your local supermarket, you don’t really have to buy a special cleaner to keep your microwave fresh, because dish soap can also do the trick. Just thoroughly scrub the interior with a sponge. Do note that this is best done after using the damp cloth method mentioned above.
How To Remove a Burnt Smell (or Any Strong Smell) Out of the Microwave
Think of that time when you burnt your popcorn in the microwave. The smell probably comes back as soon as you turn it back on. This is why it’s best to get rid of the burnt smell right away.
For light odors like spicy food with a strong aroma, simply air it out by leaving the microwave door open, or place a bowl of baking soda inside with the door closed to absorb the smells.
For strong odors like burnt popcorn, clean any leftover residue, and place an odor-absorbing gel inside until you use it again.
Don’t Forget the Exteriors
Remember, it isn’t just the inside that counts when cleaning a microwave. Remove splatters and grease from the microwave’s exterior with these simple tricks.
- Clean the entire door — Clean all the edges, both sides with a sponge dampened with water and dipped in a little baking soda. Wipe with a damp cloth or sponge to rinse.
- For a greasy window, clean with a 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water. Rinse and wipe dry.
- For heavy grease build-up, wipe your microwave door down with an all-purpose, grease-cutting cleaner (think Mr. Muscle) or a sudsy mix of dish soap and water. Try not to spray electronic controls with cleaner to avoid damage.
Also, remember to clean the keypad or the knobs, too. Just simply wipe it with a lightly damped microfiber cloth or a cloth dampened with warm water mixed with dish soap while you’re at it.