Appliances

The 9 Best Microwaves Under $100 in 2020

Best Microwave Under $100

Photo: Toshiba

Any kitchen nowadays needs some specific appliances in order to qualify as being virtuous. A microwave is one such appliance and there are practically unlimited options to choose from in the market, depending on your needs.

However, with this wide variety, you also get a wide price range, which can go very high up. If you have a fixed budget to acquire your new unit, here are the best microwaves under $100 that you should consider.

9 Best Microwaves Under $100 – Review 

IMAGE

​PRODUCT

​FEATURES

Toshiba EM925A5A-SS

1. Toshiba EM925A5A-SS (With ECO Mode)

  • ECO mode for power saving
  • Defrost by time or weight and kitchen timer
  • Easy-to-use 6 one-touch preset functions
  • Premium stainless-steel finish
Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB

2. Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB (Best Affordable)

  • Affordable
  • 11 power levels
  • Cooking timer, auto defrost and time defrost
  • Express one-touch cooking for up to 6 minutes
Kenmore 70713

3. Kenmore 70713 (With Child Lock Safety)

  • Child lock safety
  • Small, compact size
  • Digital control panel with 6 auto-cook programs
  • Weight and time defrost functions

4. AmazonBasics Microwave (Voice-Controlled)

  • Works with Alexa voice control
  • Reorders popcorn automatically when you run low
  • Time and weight defrost
  • Kitchen timer and 10 power levels
Commercial Chef CHM660B

5. Commercial Chef CHM660B (With Rotary Controls)

  • Easy-to-use mechanical rotary dials
  • Time and weight defrost
  • 30-minute timer for adjusting the heating time
  • Tough and durable construction
Daewoo KOR-7LREM

6. Daewoo KOR-7LREM (Has Concave Reflex System)

  • Concave reflex system cooks faster and more evenly
  • Stylish retro design from the ’50s
  • Digital control panel with 4 auto-cook programs
  • Zero standby function for energy conservation
Farberware FMO11AHTBKN

7. Farberware FMO11AHTBKN (Large Capacity)

  • Large 1.1 cubic feet capacity
  • High 1000-watt power rating
  • 6 one-touch cooking functions
  • Memory function stores and recalls cooking settings
RCA RMW953

8. RCA RMW953 (Has Dishwasher-Safe Glass Turntable)

  • Removable and dishwasher safe glass turntable
  • Easy-to-use soft-touch control panel
  • 6 auto-cook menus
  • Speed defrost, cook and defrost by weight functions
Emerson MW7302B

9. Emerson MW7302B (Touch-Controlled)

  • Easy-to-use touch digital control panel
  • Removable glass turntable for easy cleaning
  • Time and weight defrost functions
  • Memory function keeps recent cooking settings

PRODUCT

1. Toshiba EM925A5A-SS

(With ECO Mode)

Toshiba EM925A5A-SS
  • ECO mode for power saving
  • Defrost by time or weight and kitchen timer
  • Easy-to-use 6 one-touch preset functions
  • Premium stainless-steel finish

2. Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB

 (Best Affordable)

Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB
  • Affordable
  • 11 power levels
  • Cooking timer, auto defrost and time defrost
  • Express one-touch cooking for up to 6 minutes

3. Kenmore 70713

 (With Child Lock Safety)

Kenmore 70713
  • Child lock safety
  • Small, compact size
  • Digital control panel with 6 auto-cook programs
  • Weight and time defrost functions

4. AmazonBasics Microwave

(Voice-Controlled)

  • Works with Alexa voice control
  • Reorders popcorn automatically when you run low
  • Time and weight defrost
  • Kitchen timer and 10 power levels

5. Commercial Chef CHM660B

(With Rotary Controls)

Commercial Chef CHM660B
  • Easy-to-use mechanical rotary dials
  • Time and weight defrost
  • 30-minute timer for adjusting the heating time
  • Tough and durable construction

6. Daewoo KOR-7LREM

(Has Concave Reflex System)

Daewoo KOR-7LREM
  • Concave reflex system cooks faster and more evenly
  • Stylish retro design from the ’50s
  • Digital control panel with 4 auto-cook programs
  • Zero standby function for energy conservation

7. Farberware FMO11AHTBKN

 (Large Capacity)

Farberware FMO11AHTBKN
  • Large 1.1 cubic feet capacity
  • High 1000-watt power rating
  • 6 one-touch cooking functions
  • Memory function stores and recalls cooking settings

8. RCA RMW953

 (Has Dishwasher-Safe Glass Turntable)

RCA RMW953
  • Removable and dishwasher safe glass turntable
  • Easy-to-use soft-touch control panel
  • 6 auto-cook menus
  • Speed defrost, cook and defrost by weight functions

9. Emerson MW7302B

 (Touch-Controlled)

Emerson MW7302B
  • Easy-to-use touch digital control panel
  • Removable glass turntable for easy cleaning
  • Time and weight defrost functions
  • Memory function keeps recent cooking settings

1. Toshiba EM925A5A-SS – Microwave Under $100 with ECO Mode

Toshiba EM925A5A-SS

Photo: Toshiba

  • Power Rating: 900 watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Capacity: 0.9 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 10.6 inches
  • Dimensions: 19.2 x 15.9 x 11.5 inches

Toshiba’s EM925A5A-SS starts us off, and it features an ECO mode, which helps is power conservation so as to result in reduced power bills in the long run.

That said, this microwave is rated at 900 watts with 10 power settings for heating up different types of food. Additionally, it has a built-in kitchen timer, as well as defrost by time or weight, which gives you a lot of versatility in terms of use.

If that is not all, you get one-touch starts for 6 preset functions, which are popcorn, beverage, dinner plate, potato, pizza, and frozen vegetable.

All these are set on a digital control panel with a clearly labeled keypad that is easy to use. More features include an interior LED light and a premium stainless-steel outer finish that looks very good.

You also get a large 10.6-inch diameter glass turntable, but this component is not dishwasher-safe. Instead, you need to wipe it using a damp cloth or wash it in hot soap and water outside. Also, the microwave is relatively costly as compared to the rest.

Pros:

  • ECO mode for power saving
  • Defrost by time or weight and kitchen timer give you multiple use options
  • Easy-to-use 6 one-touch preset functions
  • Premium stainless-steel finish
  • Interior LED light shows you the heating progress at a glance

Cons:

  • Relatively expensive
  • The glass turntable is not dishwasher safe

2. Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB – Best Affordable Microwave

Sharp Microwaves ZSMC0710BB

Photo: Sharp

  • Power Rating: 700 watts
  • Power Levels: 11
  • Capacity: 0.7 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 10 inches
  • Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.2 x 12.8 inches

If you are on a very tight budget, Sharp Microwaves’ ZMC0710BB is an affordable solution that you can consider and despite this, it has a 700-watt output, which is still quite fast, with 11 power levels.

Other than that, this microwave is equipped with a timer for cooking, time defrost and auto defrost (weight defrost), thereby giving you multiple use options.

You also get popcorn, potato, frozen vegetable, pizza, beverage and reheat express one-touch settings, which cook for up to 6 minutes max.

More features include a convenient “+30 sec” key for instant start and increasing the heating time by 30 seconds, a 10-inch diameter ceramic turntable that is large enough to hold a full-size dinner plate and availability in black and white color options so as to suit your kitchen’s décor.

Combined, these features make this the top-rated microwave under $100. However, this it does not have an ECO power-saving mode and also lacks a convenient voice control feature.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Multiple power levels (11) give you more control over the heating process
  • Cooking timer, auto defrost and time defrost
  • Express one-touch cooking for up to 6 minutes
  • Convenient “+30 sec” key for instant start and increasing the heating time

Cons:

  • No voice control feature
  • Lacks a power-saving mode

3. Kenmore 70713 – Microwave with Child Lock Safety

Kenmore 70713

Photo: Kenmore

  • Power Rating: 700 watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Capacity: 0.7 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 9.65 inches
  • Dimensions: 17.7 x 10.2 x 12.52 inches

Coming in a 0.7 cubic feet size capacity, this product is equipped with child lock safety so as to prevent accidental opening and accidental starting by your curious little one. All you need to do is to press the stop button for 3 seconds until you hear a beep sound.

The unit also has quite a compact size that is specifically designed for small kitchens, dorm rooms, office break rooms and the like. Additionally, it is available in 3 colors (stainless steel, black and white) so as to suit different kitchen décor.

On the controls, you get a digital control panel that has 6 auto-cook programs, clock function and a numbered keypad for keying in the settings.

Other features include weight and time defrost functions, and the availability of a larger 0.9 cubic feet option, just in case you need a bigger cooking space. However, there is no voice control of power-saving feature for this unit.

Pros:

  • Child lock safety prevents accidental opening and starting
  • Small, compact size
  • Digital control panel with 6 auto-cook programs
  • Weight and time defrost functions
  • Available in a 0.7 and 0.9 cubic feet size capacity

Cons:

  • Lacks an ECO power-saving mode
  • No voice control feature

4. AmazonBasics Microwave – Voice-Controlled Microwave

  • Power Rating: 700 watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Capacity: 0.7 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 10 inches
  • Dimensions: 17.3 x 10.1 x 14.1 inches

AmazonBasics’ microwave stands out from the rest because it works with Amazon’s Alexa, thereby allowing you to combine the microwave with an Alexa (echo) device so as to add hands-free voice control. However, this echo device is not included in the pack.

Once bought though, Alexa’s quick-cook voice presets make it very easy to control the microwave instead of using the buttons on the digital control panel. On top of this, Alexa keeps learning and adding new presets so as to expand your capabilities.

Another advantage you get with this microwave is its Amazon Dash Replenishment technology, which automatically reorders popcorn when you run low while saving 10% on the orders.

Other features include time and weight defrost, 10 power levels and a kitchen timer. However, the unit only has a popcorn auto-cook program on the digital control panel. Instead, it relies on Alexa to learn of new presets from the internet.

Pros:

  • Works with Alexa voice control
  • Reorders popcorn automatically when you run low, with a 10% saving on the orders
  • Time and weight defrost
  • Kitchen timer and 10 power levels

Cons:

  • Requires an echo device for hands-free voice control
  • Only 1 auto-cook program on the keypad

5. Commercial Chef CHM660B – Microwave Under $100 with Rotary Controls

Commercial Chef CHM660B

Photo: Commercial Chef

  • Power Rating: 600 watts
  • Power Levels: 6
  • Capacity: 0.6 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 9.5 inches
  • Dimensions: 17.75 x 12.5 x 10.25 inches

Instead of a digital control panel, Commercial Chef’s CHM660B is fitted with mechanical, rotary dials for control, making it an obvious choice for those looking for simplicity in use.

With these controls, you get time-&-weight defrost functions for multiple uses in the kitchen, 6 power levels and a 30-minute timer to adjust the heating time.

However, there is no LCD screen built-in to the control panel for viewing the remaining time and the unit’s relatively low 600-watt power rating means it heats the food much slowly, even at the highest power level.

On the bright side, this microwave has a tough and durable construction, with an easy-grip handle at the front. It also has a removable 9.5-inch diameter turntable that is dishwasher safe for easy maintenance.

Pros:

  • Easy-to-use mechanical rotary dials
  • Time and weight defrost
  • 30-minute timer for adjusting the heating time
  • Tough and durable construction
  • Removable and dishwasher safe turntable

Cons:

  • No LED screen
  • Low 600-watt power rating means slow heating

6. Daewoo KOR-7LREM – Microwave Under $100 with a Concave Reflex System

Daewoo KOR-7LREM

Photo: Daewoo

  • Power Rating: 700 watts
  • Power Levels: 5
  • Capacity: 0.7 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 10 inches
  • Dimensions: 12.7 x 17.6 x 10.6 inches

Though very costly, Daewoo’s KOR-7LREM features a concave reflex system, which gives a more efficient emission of microwaves so that the food can be cooked or heated faster and evenly.

Other than that, the microwave’s design is also something to talk about because it has a stylish retro design from the ’50s, giving it a classic, vintage look.

Despite this, the unit features a digital control panel, with 4 auto-cook programs, two way defrost and a zero-standby function for energy conservation.

More features include 5 power levels with a maximum of 700 watts, protective child safety lock and 3 color options to choose from, which are mint green, red and cream white. However, no grill is included for cooking up meat.

Pros:

  • Concave reflex system cooks faster and more evenly
  • Stylish retro design from the ’50s
  • Digital control panel with 4 auto-cook programs
  • Zero standby function for energy conservation
  • Protective child safety lock

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No grill

7. Farberware FMO11AHTBKN – Large Capacity Microwave Under $100

Farberware FMO11AHTBKN

Photo: Farberware

  • Power Rating: 1000 watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Capacity: 1.1 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 12.4 inches
  • Dimensions: 16.54 x 20.2 x 12.03 inches

If you are looking for a large microwave, Farberware’s unit should be your go-to option because it has a 1.1 cubic feet capacity.

With this large capacity, you get a 1000-watt power rating, which means your food will be cooked very quickly, and 10 power levels to select from.

Also included are 6 one-touch cooking functions (popcorn, potato, pizza, dinner plate, frozen vegetable, and beverage), defrost by time or weight for versatility in use and a memory function that stores up and recalls the settings instantly.

Other features include a child safety keypad lock mechanism and a removable rotating 12.4-inch glass turntable. However, there is no voice control functionality for easy use and no grill for cooking up meat.

Pros:

  • Large 1.1 cubic feet capacity
  • Cooks quickly due to its high 1000-watt power rating
  • 6 one-touch cooking functions
  • Memory function stores and recalls cooking settings
  • Defrost by time or weight

Cons:

  • No voice control feature
  • No grill

8. RCA RMW953 – Microwave with a Dishwasher-Safe Glass Turntable

RCA RMW953

Photo: RCA

  • Power Rating: 900 watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Capacity: 0.9 cubic feet
  • Dimensions: 19 x 15.5 x 10.85 inches

Maintaining cleanliness in your microwave is important and RCA’s RMW953 simplifies this for you by having a removable and dishwasher-safe glass turntable.

This unit is also easy to use because it has a soft-touch digital control panel with 6 auto-cook menus, a digital clock and kitchen timer. You also get a cook by weight function while speed and weight defrost take care of your frozen foods.

Other features include child safety lock protection, an end of cycle audio signal to prevent you from forgetting about the food inside and a 900-watt rating with 10 power levels.

However, there is no voice control feature or ECO power-saving mode built-in.

Pros:

  • Removable and dishwasher safe glass turntable
  • Easy-to-use soft-touch control panel
  • 6 auto-cook menus
  • Cook by weight, defrost by weight and speed defrost functions
  • End of cycle audio signal ensures you don’t forget after heating is complete

Cons:

  • Lacks voice control
  • No power-saving mode

9. Emerson MW7302B – Touch-Controlled Microwave

Emerson MW7302B

Photo: Emerson

  • Power Rating: 700 watts
  • Power Levels: 10
  • Capacity: 0.7 cubic feet
  • Turntable Diameter: 10 inches
  • Dimensions: 17.3 x 13.2 x 10.2 inches

Emerson’s MW7302B rounds up the list and it features a touch-controlled digital control panel that features time and weight defrost buttons, 6 auto cooking menus and a memory button among many others.

The unit also has a 700-watt power rating with 10 power levels, and this combines with a 99-minute&99-second digital timer to give you manual control over the heating process for more precise cooking

Other features include a removable glass turntable for easy cleaning, child safety lock for protecting against kids starting or opening the microwave and there is a 0.9 cubic feet option, just in case you want a larger size.

On the downside, this microwave lacks a grill, as well as a voice control feature.

Pros:

  • Easy-to-use touch digital control panel
  • Available in 0.7 and 0.9 cubic feet capacity options
  • Time and weight defrost functions
  • Memory function for keeping all the recent cooking settings
  • Removable glass turntable for easy cleaning

Cons:

  • No grill
  • Lacks voice control

How to Buy the Best Microwave Under $100

How to Buy the Best Microwave Under $100

Photo: Farberware

1. Power Rating

When choosing a microwave, the first thing to check is the power rating or wattage. The higher the wattage, the faster the cooking.

Generally, it is recommended to get one with at least a 700-watt rating; don’t go lower than 600. Anything less than that will not be as effective. 

2. Power Levels

Having considered the maximum power, the next thing to check is the power levels. Unlike presets, power levels give you more control over the cooking process, with the maximum level being the hottest.

According to Trusted Reviews, using a 1000-watt unit with 5 power levels as an example here is a breakdown of these levels.

Level 1 (Very Low)

Usually 100 watts and below, this level is ideal for defrosting large pieces of meat such as chicken or turkey, or keeping food warm.

Level 2 (Low)

Going from 100 to 400 watts, this level is still ideal for defrosting, as well as softening butter, cheese, chocolate, and ice cream.

You can also use this level for slow cooking, such as in simmering rice or baking fruit cake, which should take about an hour – an hour, 20 minutes.

Level 3 (Medium)

With a rating of 400 – 500 watts, this level is ideal for simmering, gentle cooking and baking. It is also suitable for dense foods that require a longer time to cook such as beef, and ensures the meat remains tender without drying.

Level 4 (Medium-High)

Rated at 500 – 800 watts, this setting is good for heating leftovers, cooking dense food such as meatloaf or grilling meat. You can also use this to bake a sponge cake.

Level 5 (High)

This fast cooking 800 – 1000-watt level is suitable for anything with high-water content such as soup, hot drinks, and canned food. It is also ideal for cooking pasta, fish, poultry, vegetables, and ground beef.

Basically, the more the levels, the better because you get more control over the cooking process since the wattage is split much further.

3. Capacity

Measured in cubic feet or liters, the larger the capacity of the microwave, the better. This is because a larger one is able to accommodate more food inside.

4. Presets

Most microwaves come with 6 presets for one-touch operation in warming up the most common foods. These are popcorn, beverage, dinner plate, potato, pizza, and frozen vegetable, and the more they are, the better.

However, some advanced units such as the one from AmazonBasics has a voice control feature, and instead of having a keypad with all the presets, the system learns the presets from the internet, then gives you more options to use.

The only problem with this is that it is quite cumbersome to set up for first use. But in the end, it gives you lots of voice presets, which makes voice control slightly better.

5. Extra Features 

Just like accessories, extra features give you more value for money. Therefore, look for things such as child safety lock, memory function, timer, LED display, etc.

6. Budget

Even though all these microwaves cost less than $100, some are more expensive than others. It is recommended to check for the features that you want first, then pick the most affordable unit from your narrowed down list.

Conclusion

Microwaves have definitely revolutionized modern kitchens in the way that we cook or warm food because saving on time and energy.

However, some microwave models are highly-priced and even though they may contain multiple features, some of these might not be practical depending on your needs.

There are others though that are reasonably priced such as the ones reviewed above. That said, after reading through, you should be in a better position to pick the best microwave under $100 that suits your needs.

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