The modern-day microwave oven is worlds apart from what it used to be when it was first invented. Nowadays, over the range microwaves are good for more than just warming food. You can use them to defrost and actually cook several different foods from scratch, plus there’s the clock mechanism on it that allows you to use it as an alternative clock when you’re in the kitchen.
If you’re in the market for a new over the range microwave, then you’ll love our selection of this year’s best options. To come up with this list, we took into consideration the venting options offered by each model, as well as wattage, efficiency of exhaust fans, power levels etc.
Read on to find out which over the range microwave ovens you should look out for when shopping for a new model.
Best Over the Range Microwave 2018
Samsung Stainless Steel Over-the-Range Microwave – Best Warranty Cover
Samsung has made a solid effort with this microwave, and they were so confident about it that they included a 10-year warranty to cover the magnetron. In case you’re wondering, the magnetron is an important component of the microwave that’s so expensive that you’d be better off buying a new microwave than replacing it on your own. So kudos to Samsung for providing a warranty for it.
With that said, this microwave is rather lacking in very essential features like sensor cooking for example, and you can’t perform a lot of the basic functions on it that you’re used to. For example, this microwave doesn’t allow you to switch the turntable on and off, and it doesn’t give you the option to turn off the sound either.
- It’s backed by a 10-year warranty to cover the magnetron
- Looks nice
- Easy to install and operate
- There’s no sensor cooking
- Doesn’t last long
LG LMV2031ST Over-the-Range Microwave – Best Design
First of all, the LG LMV2031ST is available in two sizes, of which we have chosen to review the larger unit.
Now, the first thing to note here is that this sleek and beautifully designed model is actually very budget-friendly, and boasts sturdy stainless steel design with trendy glass doors to boot.
This is one of those microwaves that you can just use out of the box because installing it is as easy as connecting it to a power source, and operating it is also very easy.
We do have a few complaints about certain design aspects of the microwave, such as the tinted glass doors that make it hard to see the food inside, and to make matters worse it’s dimly lit as well.
The good news is that it will cook your food really fast and well, while the removable rack and turntable offer a lot of room for you to cook even large meals comfortably.
- Beautifully designed with stainless steel and glass exterior
- Convenient handle
- It has just the right wattage
- Offers superior ventilation
- There are a lot of convenient one-touch buttons that are helpful as well
- Dim lighting and tinted windows make it difficult to see the food without opening the door
- Be warned; this unit is quite noisy
Magic Chef – Most Spacious Model
Although this over the range microwave from Magic Chef is nothing to write home about when it comes to the aesthetic design, it does have a lot of useful and convenient features.
For example, it offers 10 power levels, comes with a hood light and it’s super easy to use because of the clearly marked controls. You’ll also find that it has plenty of space to cook large dishes and it’s excellent at defrosting.
The installation process is thankfully simple, and it’s very cost-effective as well. Just don’t expect this unit to last you a lifetime though, because some of the components are a bit flimsy. But then again this microwave is so cheap that you can purchase three of them for the price of one really good-quality unit.
- Very roomy
- Easy to install and use
- Excellent at defrosting and cooking
- The design is quite underwhelming
GE PVM9005SJSS – Best Value for Money
GE is a trusted and prestigious brand that’s well-known for their reliable kitchen appliances. Although pricey, their products are of really good quality and can last for years without causing any problem. The good news is that GE has continued their commitment to excellence with this PVM9005SJSS model from their ‘Profile’ range.
Not only is this unit reasonably priced when compared to other GE appliances but it’s also very spacious with a 2.1 cubic feet interior that can fit generous amounts of food. This means that you can comfortably cook your casseroles and bake food for your family without a problem.
You’ll also be glad to know that the turntable can be turned on and off as you wish, while the dual-rack design makes for even more space to fit large dishes.
The PVM9005SJSS model features a very efficient sensor system with a convection cooking option too!
- Excellent performance
- Very affordable for a GE unit
- Runs quiet
- Efficient venting system
- Super easy to operate
- Provides a nice assortment of pre-settings choose from
- Installation can be a bit challenging for some
Frigidaire FGMV176NTF Stainless Steel – Best for Ease of Use
For those home cooks who’re more concerned with versatile functionality over size, this Frigidaire FGMV176NTF model is an option worthy of your consideration.
It doesn’t have a lot of cooking space like the other models but it still hits above the 1.6 cubic feet mark, and it has 9 power levels and all the preset buttons that you’re used to.
However, what really sets this unit apart from the competition is its multi-stage cooking functionality, which means that you can literally set your preferred power level and cooking time in advance so that it automatically adjusts itself. This eliminates the need for constantly having to come and adjust the microwave yourself while it’s cooking things like lasagna and desserts.
This Frigidaire microwave oven also features quick time settings, auto-reheat and defrost, as well as a super powerful auto-start hood that rivals even the latest Whirlpool model.
The only flaws that we could identify on this over the range microwave is the loud beeping sound it makes when it’s done cooking the food, and the components don’t look durable or sturdy at all.
- Really affordable
- Easy to use
- Offers lots of space
- Quite challenging to install
Sharp R1874T 850W Convection Microwave – Best Overall Design and Built
If you’re looking for a microwave oven that’ll allow you to use the convection mode regularly without a hitch, then this high-end unit from Sharp could be just what you’re looking for.
That’s because it has a four-way convection heating system, which is complemented by a three-way ventilation system as well, making it ideal for avid bakers that want something compact and easy to use.
Just keep in mind that you’ll only have 1.1 cubic feet of internal space to work with, so you won’t be able to make really large batches of food with this microwave. And the texture of the interior is a bit grainy so it might not be the easiest to clean.
With that said, there are still plenty of admirable features on this oven including a nicely designed exterior with simple yet elegant lines that make it a beautiful addition to any kitchen counter. Then there are the conveniently placed controls as well, which make it super easy to operate.
- Well-made with thoughtful design
- Runs quiet
- Easy-to-use interactive display
- Excellent performance
- Lots of pre-settings to choose from
- Small cooking space
- Installation can be a bit tricky
Whirlpool WMH31017HS – Best for Practicality
Whirlpool has really taken it back to basics with this model, which is an ideal option for those sensible cooks out there who just want something that’s practical and easy to work with.
First of all, it offers 10 power levels with 1.7 cubic feet of space which is plenty of room to cook your favorite dishes, while the 3 presets are also sufficient to pop some corn, bake a potato or make a pizza.
It also offers reheating, melting and defrosting options as well, all of which are clearly displayed in the simple yet effective digital display.
Whirlpool also gets brownie points for including a two-way speed hood fan that works so efficiently that you won’t even notice its lack of power most of the time.
- Outstanding cooking power at 1,000 watts
- Nice selection of pre-settings
- Features a resilient and long-lasting stainless steel frame
- Comes with a venting system and turntable
- Easy-to-use digital display panel
- The two-way speed hood might not be enough for you if your cooking requires that you burn the food in any way