How to Clean a Microwave Without Harsh Chemicals

Forty percent of single Americans and one in four couples admit to using their microwave for more than half of their cooking.

Thankfully for us, microwaves are durable appliances and can handle a heavy workload. In fact, the average microwave oven lasts about a decade.

Over time, however, food remnants get stuck on the inside of your appliance and unsavory odors creep in. The longer you wait to address the issue, the harder it is to get rid of it. Especially true of commercial microwaves which might be used during 40-50 covers per night.

You can clean a microwave regularly to prolong its life and make your life easier in the meantime.

Does the inside of your microwave remind you of a war zone or a science experiment gone wrong? Read on to learn a couple of all-natural microwave cleaning hacks that will freshen it up in no time!

Nuke Some Citrus

There’s a laundry list of things you should never put in the microwave. When your appliance gets dirty, lemon is the first thing you want to put in it, though most citrus fruits (including oranges and limes) will work too.

First, squeeze 1/4 cup of citrus fruit juice into a microwavable bowl. Then add another 3/4 cup of water, and go ahead and drop the peels in there.

Lay the bowl in your microwave and set the timer for 5-8 minutes. If you notice the liquid beginning to boil, bring it to a stop. Instead of taking the bowl out of the microwave immediately, leave the door closed for another 5 minutes.

Next, pull out the hot bowl while wearing an oven mitt. Put some water on clean cloth or sponge and scrub the walls of your appliance. Remove the ring and plate, and scrub them thoroughly as well.

Not only will this natural cleaning method help you rid your microwave of gunk, but it will also leave it with a much more pleasant smell.

Reach for the Vinegar

Don’t have any lemons, oranges, or limes lying around in your kitchen?

No worries, you don’t have run to the store to buy some. White vinegar is another excellent DIY microwave cleaner.

Start by filling a bowl with a cup of white vinegar and a cup of water.

However, make sure you don’t skip this next step: Place a wooden spoon or a toothpick in the bowl. This will help you avoid an explosion once the vinegar comes to a boil.

You’ll need to heat the liquid for 5-8 minutes and then leave it in there for an extra 5 minutes.

After removing the bowl, get to scrubbing. Feel free to use a nylon brush on stains that are harder to remove. If the situation is really bad, you may need to use this method more than once.

Finally, if you have an empty spray bottle, fill it with half vinegar and half water. Spray the mixture in the exterior of your microwave, including the handle. Finish things off by wiping everything down.

Final Thoughts on How to Clean a Microwave

Who knew freshening up your most precious kitchen appliance without using harsh chemicals was so easy?

As shown above, the safest and most effective way to clean a microwave involves using common items you can find in your home. Don’t forget to wipe down the handle too, because it’s one of the biggest hotspots for bacteria.

Do you have any unanswered questions, or are you looking to replace your microwave with a new one? If so, be sure to check out our microwave blog for more can’t-miss tips and product reviews!

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