Over The Range Convection Microwave Guide

Are you currently in the market for a space-saving, over-the-range convection microwave for your kitchen? If so, you have come to the right place.Here we have reviewed several of the most popular and feature-loaded convection microwaves currently available, and highlighted the pros and cons of each appliance. We have also included a Convection Microwave Buying Guide, in which we have outlined and explained the various things you should look for when purchasing one of these ovens.

Last update on 2020-09-20 at 11:51 / Affiliate disclaimer / Images via Amazon Product Advertising API

Toshiba EC042A5C-SS Convection Microwave with Sensor Cooking Function

For the convenience of microwaving and the precision of convection cooking you really can’t beat the Toshiba EC042A5C-SS Convection Microwave.

The appliance includes a great sensor cooking function—a function that can sense the temperature of your food and adjust the cook time automatically.

The microwave has an attractive stainless steel finish that will look great over your range; and the automatic menu for roasting, baking and defrosting makes this Toshiba microwave one of the most intuitive and intelligent of its kind.

Pros

  • Easy to Use. With one-touch automatic functions the Toshiba EC042A5C-SS Convection Microwave with Sensor Cooking Function is very easy to use.
  • Large Capacity. The Toshiba microwave has a very large capacity that can handle even your widest and tallest cookware.
  • Three-year warranty. The confidence the Toshiba Corporation has in this microwave is reflected in the three-year warranty.

Cons

  • Limited power. In the microwave portion of the oven, the Toshiba EC042A5C-SS Convection Microwave with Sensor Cooking Function lacks the power of similar machines.
  • Can get hot on top. Users have complained that there are exterior hot spots at the top of the microwave.

Emerson 1.5 Cu. Ft. Microwave with Grill

With 1000 watts of convection power and 1300 watts of grill power the Emerson 1.5 Cu. Ft. Microwave with Grill is very powerful indeed.

The microwave features 11 different power levels and 9 pre-programmed recipes for easy use; and the glass turntable, which rotates slowly as the food is being cooked, makes for even temperatures and a better microwaving experience.

Pros

  • Great capacity. With 1.5 cubic feet of capacity, the Emerson 1.5 Cu. Ft. Microwave with Grill is one of the largest microwaves on our list.
  • 9 Pre-sets. The 9 pre-set or pre-programmed recipes on this microwave make for convenience and ease of use.
  • Powerful. With 1000 watts of convection power, the Emerson 1.5 Cu. Ft. Microwave with Grill is more than effective at cooking a wide variety of dishes.

Cons

  • No rack included. The Emerson 1.5 Cu. Ft. Microwave does not come with the grill rack included.

Cuisinart CMW-100 1-Cubic-Foot Stainless Steel Microwave Oven

The Cuisinart CMW-100 1-Cubic-Foot Stainless Steel Microwave Oven comes with 1,000 watts of power and 1 cubic foot of interior space.

The microwave includes easy-to-use touchpad controls in vivid LCD color; and the 25 pre-programmed settings and 10 power levels make the appliance very versatile to use. The microwave also comes with 8 presets with serving size options; a multi-stage cooking operation; and 2 convenient defrost functions. The glass turntable keeps the cooking even and regulated; and the product comes with simple-to-follow instructions and a color recipe book.

Pros

  • Many settings. The Cuisinart CMW-100 1-Cubic-Foot Stainless Steel Microwave Oven comes with 25 pre-programmed settings among other functions.
  • Multi-stage cooking. The multi-stage cooking on this microwave allows you to set it once to both defrost and cook, or to cook and warm.
  • Aesthetically pleasing. With its brushed chrome exterior, the Cuisinart CMW-100 1-Cubic-Foot Stainless Steel Microwave Oven will look great in any kitchen.

Cons

  • Smaller Capacity. At only 1 cubic foot of interior capacity, the Cuisinart CMW-100 1-Cubic-Foot Stainless Steel Microwave Oven is smaller than other reviewed models.
  • Rack can move. According to at least one reviewer, the rack on this microwave has a tendency to shift during cooking.

Over the Range Convection Microwave Buying Guide

When setting out to purchase an over-the-range convection microwave oven, there are many things you should look for and a lot of factors to consider. To help you select just the right convection microwave for your needs and preferences, below we will outline and explain some of these considerations.

Visibility

When we speak of visibility in terms of your microwave we are actually talking about how well you can see into the appliance when your food is cooking. Most traditional microwaves do not pass the visibility test, but since a convection microwave also allows you to bake for long periods at a time, you will need one that casts enough light on your dish to properly allow you to gauge the doneness of your upcoming meal.

Easy to Use

A good convection microwave oven should have easy to use controls. Instead of always having to set the time when cooking things like eggs, popcorn or an even a complete meal, these controls should allow one-button functionality that automatically set the oven to a pre-prescribed time and temperature. Ease of use also translates to a good instruction manual. Make sure that the microwave oven you purchase has an easy to read instruction manual with colorful diagrams that help you understand the functionality of the oven.

Microwave Temperature

If you have ever used more than one microwave, you probably already know that the high or top temperature of these appliances can vary from one oven to the next. For that reason, it’s important you purchase a microwave oven with a high top setting—one that will allow you to cook things like frozen meals and snacks fast without having to defrost them first.

Cleaning

Cleaning a microwave can be a laborious task, especially when food and dirt particles become wedged in lines and crevices on the appliance. When purchasing your next microwave, check to make sure there are no gaps or holes on the inside of the oven, or seams, crevices, or other openings on the outer part of the machine. These can be magnets for food and grease, making it impossible to get the appliance truly clean.

Also, some microwaves have grill elements that are built into the roof of the microwave. These can also be a bear when cleaning your kitchen. Instead, you should look for a microwave with a seamless design and a non-stick coating that is easy to wipe clean. While microwaves made from stainless steel can look great in any kitchen, they don’t exactly lend themselves to easy cleaning, as they tend to gather fingerprints.

Note: Some manufacturers have begun introducing catalytic liners that are very easy to clean.

Size

We don’t have to tell you that microwaves come in different sizes. The real question is: what size do you need? This will depend on the size and height of your cooking dishes and the number of people in your family. Some over-the-range microwaves tend to be a little shorter and narrower than traditional microwaves, so bring one of your dishes in when shopping to test its fit within the inside of the machine. When considering size you must also include the clearance the microwave needs on each side for proper ventilation. According to experts, you must leave about 5 centimeters on each side of the microwave, 10 centimeters of space behind the appliance, and roughly 15 to 40 centimeters of space at the top of the machine.

Automatic Functions

Automatic functions can help you take the guess work out of cooking with your new convection microwave. Instead of having to look up the proper time for each dish you plan to cook, warm or defrost, you can use the automatic functions. These functions include prompts in which you enter the type of food and its weight. From there, the microwave will automatically calculate the perfect time required to cook it.

Quick Start

The quick start button on a microwave is a pre-set button with a pre-set time, usually one minute or 30 seconds. These quick start buttons are great for warming up coffee, cooking frozen snacks, warming up last night’s pizza and more. With a single press of the button the microwave will start and “ding” when the 30 seconds or minute has expired. And if the item is still not hot or warm enough? Just press it again to repeat the cycle.

In-Cooking Time Adjust

A feature on many modern over-the-range convection microwaves is the in-cooking time-adjust function. This function allows you to increase or decrease the programmed time on the microwave without having to stop the machine. Perfect when cooking items that take 30 minutes or more, this time-saving function allows you to manage the cook time as the food is still being cooked.

Delayed Start

The delayed start is one of the newest and most convenient functions on a convection microwave. This function enables you to program the microwave to start at a pre-programmed time. This is ideal when you are cooking many items at once in the kitchen and you fear you will forget to start something amid the chaos. At Thanksgiving, for example, when cooking can be frantic, the delayed start can be an absolute lifesaver.

Sensor Cooking

The newest and most technologically advanced improvement in many of today’s newer microwave ovens is sensor cooking. This function, which takes automatic functions to a whole new level, enables the microwave to actually measure the vapors emitted during the cooking process, and adjust the proper cook time, up or down, based on those vapors. The ideal way to ensure all your foods are cooked to perfection, sensor cooking should be a must when buying a new convection microwave.

Multi-Stage Cooking

Another state-of-the-art function now included on many of today’s newer convection microwaves is multi-stage cooking. With this convenient function you can set the microwave to perform multiple cooking tasks in a pre-planned order, such as defrost, cook and warm, all by setting the appliance’s controls a single time.

Other Features and Functions

Finally, there are a few other features and functions you should look for when purchasing an over-the-range convection microwave. They include a child-lock safety function, which temporarily deactivates the microwave; a kitchen timer you can use when cooking things in another oven or on the stove; and a cooling fan to regulate the inside temperature of the microwave both during and after cooking.

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