For quick reheating or cooking, a microwave is an essential kitchen appliance. The best microwave under $100 provides at least 700 to 1,100 watts of power and is the right size for your space. Keep in mind that a budget-friendly pick in this price range is going to be a countertop microwave, which is conveniently portable and simple to install, but won't free up counter space or provide ventilation like pricier over-the-range models can.
Both the size of your household and your available space will help you determine how big of a microwave you need. Always make sure to measure your available kitchen real estate to ensure a microwave's dimensions will work for your space. Then consider the unit's interior capacity. A compact to mid-size microwave oven (0.5 to 1.3 cubic feet) should serve one or two people, while a family of four or more would likely need a larger microwave oven (about 1.4 to 2 cubic feet).
It’s also important to note that a microwave with higher wattage can cook food faster to save even more time. Microwave wattage ranges from about 600 to 1,200 watts, but look for ones with at least 700 watts to ensure your food is cooked evenly. Larger and higher-wattage microwaves tend to be more expensive.
Microwaves can come with a lot of features, but if you’re mostly reheating food and making popcorn, you might be satisfied with a simpler appliance that lacks bells and whistles.Up to 10 power levels are common, and some microwaves will even have convenient buttons with automatic presets for popular options like popcorn, pizza, or quickly adding 30 seconds of cooking time.
With all this in mind, below are the best affordable microwave ovens, and there's one for every kind of kitchen space. Each pick is highly rated on Amazon with thousands of reviews.
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