Here at the Strategist UK, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed products and single out the most convincing ones. (You can learn more about our rating system and how we pick each item here.)
And while we’ve written about home essentials before — including the best knife sets and the best toasters — here, we’ve rounded up the best microwaves, as praised by the most enthusiastic reviewers on Amazon.
Best-rated overall microwave
This model by Russell Hobbs is the best-rated on Amazon, with 1,328 reviews in total, 74% of which are five stars. This is a solo (or basic) microwave, best for reheating, defrosting, and cooking ready meals. It features a manual dial timer rather than a digital interface, which several reviewers say made it perfect for reheating or preparing ready meals. In fact, 159 people said it was easy to use, and it seems to be particularly popular with elderly customers. One reviewer said it was a perfect gift for their 90-year-old mother due to being easy to operate, while an 89-year-old customer said she found the dial especially useful, as digital microwaves could be confusing. There were 105 reviews in total saying this model was good value — in fact, it’s the least expensive featured in our roundup.
Best-rated grill microwave
A grill microwave features an internal grill that supplies its own heat source. One reviewer said that this microwave by Russell Hobbs was able to cook bacon better than their actual grill, while others mentioned it being able to make cheese on toast. The added grill feature means that the oven is capable of browning food, according to one reviewer, which makes food look more presentable and aesthetically pleasing. In total, the microwave has 668 reviews, with 353 of those being five stars. Though it currently retails at £70, 30 reviewers said they thought it was excellent value for money, though be warned — 17 reviewers found the beeping noises quite irritating.
Best-rated combo microwave
This combo model by Toshiba has 474 ratings, of which 76% are five stars. The combo microwave features a fan for convection heating, which, according to some of the reviewers, means it can bake cakes and roast meats as well as grill and reheat. One reviewer said it heated pasta and fish evenly and was also great at defrosting vegetables without turning them mushy. Overall, 83 reviewers said it was easy to use, with the simple instructions being one of the most written-about pieces of feedback. It’s also one of the larger models, being 25 liters in total (or 20% bigger than the Russell Hobbs compact model), so less suited for smaller kitchens.
Best-rated energy-efficient microwave
Toshiba also does a grill microwave, which comes with an energy-efficient functionality. It has the highest average review (at 4.6 out of 5) of all the ovens featured. Like the combo oven, it has 474 reviews, with 76% of them being five stars. The oven’s ECO mode, which turns off the LED display when activated, reduces standby power output by 50%, according to Toshiba. The microwave comes with five power settings and was described as powerful by 17 reviewers, even on the lower settings. This model is 23 liters in size, which 26 reviewers said was a selling point for them, as 20-liter ovens can often be difficult to use when cooking for a family.
Best-rated microwave with guarantee
The Swan Retro Microwave is available in nine different colours and has 1,736 reviews on Amazon. But what stands out the most is the fact it comes with a two-year guarantee. One in ten reviewers spoke favourably of the design, which comes with either a manual or digital interface, while 230 reviewers said the microwave was easy to use.
Best-rated compact microwave
At 17 liters in size, this solo microwave by Russell Hobbs is the best-rated smaller model. It comes in a cream colour and has both manual and digital interface options. It has 332 reviews in total, with 74% of those being five stars, and the compact size of it came up frequently. 24 reviewers in total said they appreciated it being smaller than other models because it was neat and didn’t take up much room. This model also comes in red and black, but 16 reviewers liked the more retro look of the cream model.
Best-rated microwave, toaster and kettle set
If you need the full set — that’s microwave, kettle, and toaster, Russell Hobbs does all three together for just over a hundred pounds. The set has 1,266 reviews, with 73% of them five stars. The microwave itself is a solo oven, but 25 reviewers say the basic model was easy to use and effective. Like the model we featured in our best-rated-kettles roundup, the kettle can boil water in 45 seconds, while the toaster is a two-slice model. 42 reviewers praise the stylishness of the coordinated set, from a woman buying it for her elderly mother’s new kitchen to a couple moving into their first home. The set is also available in cream, and the supplier notes that the three items may ship separately.
The Strategist UK is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Read about who we are and what we do here. Our editors update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.