cleaning microwave

6 Microwave Cleaning Hacks That Actually Work

Cleaning the microwave can be a daunting task, especially when it’s covered in splattered food and mysterious smells.

But fear not, with a little elbow grease and the right techniques, your microwave can be sparkling clean in no time.

Here are six hacks for quickly and easily cleaning your microwave.


1. Vinegar and Water

clean microwave with white vinegar

  1. Start by removing any large pieces of food or debris from the inside of the microwave. Use a damp cloth or sponge to wipe away any crumbs or loose bits of food.
  2. Next, fill a microwave-safe bowl with 1 cup of water and 1 tablespoon of vinegar. Place the bowl inside the microwave and heat it on high power setting for 3-5 minutes. The steam from the hot water and vinegar will help to soften any stuck-on food and make it easier to wipe away.
  3. Leave it to cool down for 5-10 minutes. The steam will be very hot, so it could burn you if you open the microwave straight away.
  4. Once the steam has done its work, carefully remove the bowl from the microwave (it will be hot!). Remove the glass plate and turntable, cleaning these separately in the sink with soap and water.
  5. Use a sponge or cloth to wipe away any softened food and stains inside the microwave. Pay extra attention to any particularly stubborn spots, and use a scraper or toothbrush to gently loosen and remove them.
  6. Wipe down the top bottom and sides of the microwave with a damp paper towel or cloth. Don’t get any water in the vents, as this could cause issues with the functioning of the microwave.


2. Bicarbonate of Soda

cleaning microwave oven with bicarbonate of soda

Bicarbonate of soda, also known as baking soda, is a great cleansing tool, especially for microwaves. Not only will it clean your microwave, it will also get rid of any smells.

  1. To remove any lingering smells or odours, mix 1/2 cup of bicarbonate of soda with 1/4 cup of water, which will create a paste.
  2. Using a cloth or sponge, spread the paste onto the inside of the microwave, making sure to cover all surfaces.
  3. Let the paste sit for 5-10 minutes, then wipe it away with a damp cloth. The bicarbonate of soda will absorb any odours and leave your microwave smelling fresh and clean.
  4. Dry the surfaces with a clean towel to prevent streaks, and your microwave will be sparkling clean and ready to use.

Alternatively, you can add the same mixture to a microwave-safe container and place on the glass plate inside the microwave.

Switch on the microwave on high heat for 5 minutes. This thick steam will break up the food deposits and remove any smells.


3. Washing Up Liquid

This is a great option because you’ll usually have washing up liquid soap in your kitchen. It’s very simple and takes almost no time.

  1. Combine a few squeezes of washing up liquid with some warm water in a bowl.
  2. Soak an old sponge in the bowl.
  3. Remove the turntable and glass plate from the microwave. These will have to be cleaned separately in the kitchen sink. This can be done with the washing up liquid and warm water that you have already prepared.
  4. Use the soapy sponge to work at the grease and grime inside the microwave. Use a circular motion, making sure you’ve covered right from the top to the bottom of the microwave. Again, make sure you don’t get any water in the vents, as this will cause damage to your microwave.
  5. Keep scrubbing until you’re satisfied. Then, use a damp cloth to rinse off the washing up liquid.
  6. Lastly, dry using a paper towel. Replace the turntable and glass plate.


4. Melamine Foam Sponges

clean microwave with magic eraser

Melamine foam sponges are also referred to as magic erasers or magic sponges, and they are just that.

These work very well for removing grime from the inside of your microwave. You can buy big packs of them very cheaply, making them an ideal addition to your cleaning equipment.

  1. Remove the turntable and glass plate from the microwave. Wet the melamine sponge to make it foam up.
  2. Use circular motions to clean the inside of the microwave.
  3. On the tough stains, use the sponge to create a large amount of foam over the stain, and then just turn on the microwave for a few minutes at high heat.
  4. Let it cool, and then use the sponge again for the last touches.
  5. Use a dry paper towel or cloth to wipe away any excess foam.


5. Wet Towel

clean microwave with small wet towel

If you’re feeling lazy, try this approach. It’s definitely not as effective as the other methods, but it still deserves a spot on the list.

  1. Wet a small towel.
  2. Place it on the glass plate in your microwave and heat it for 2-3 minutes.
  3. The steam will loosen the bits of food. Once cooled, you can then either use the towel or a different cloth to wipe away the stains.


6. Lemon and Water

Cleaning a Microwave with Lemon

You’ll be glad to hear that this method requires no scrubbing. All you need is a lemon and a bowl.

  1. Fill the bowl with about 3 cups of hot water.
  2. Slice the lemon and add it to the water. You can also use lemon juice.
  3. Microwave the bowl of lemon and hot water for about 3-5 minutes.
  4. The steam from the bowl will loosen food bits on the inside of the microwave, whilst the lemon will give it a fresh smell.
  5. Leave it to cool for at least 5 minutes after the timer has gone. Remove the bowl from the microwave. We recommend using oven gloves as the bowl will be very hot!
  6. Finally, use a cloth to wipe the inside clean. 


Keeping Your Microwave Clean

clean microwave

The best hack is to continually clean your microwave as you use it, so the food bits don’t build up. Follow these tips to have your microwave looking new, forever:

When you’re heating food in the microwave, place a cover over it. This can be a paper towel, or a special microwave cover. This will prevent the foot – especially oils such as butter – from splashing everywhere.

Make a habit of wiping down your microwave whenever you clean your kitchen.

Try to limit the amount of greasy food you heat in the microwave. Bacon and other oily foods will leave your microwave looking very dirty. When you do heat these food items, just give the microwave a quick cleanse afterwards to prevent the grease solidifying.

Cleaning the outside of your microwave will also make it look better. Simply spray the outside with your regular detergent, or use equal parts vinegar and water. Let it sit for a few minutes. Next, use a wet cloth or sponge to wipe everything down. Repeat these steps as needed.

Cleaning the microwave may not be the most exciting chore, but with these simple steps, you can quickly and easily get your microwave looking and smelling like new. Happy cleaning!