How to Clean a Microwave

Learn how to clean the inside of a microwave oven using items commonly found in your kitchen

Person using a sponge to wipe down microwave

Cleaning a dirty microwave oven can seem like a tedious task. Food splatters, stains and lingering odors can all impact the performance and affect the taste of your favorite warm foods and drinks. Below, we’re detailing three simple ways to clean microwave ovens of all sizes.

What You Need

1
Use a Surface Cleaner
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• Open the microwave and remove the glass tray and turntable support ring. Set it aside while you clean the interior. 
 
• Lightly spray a non-toxic all-purpose cleaner inside the microwave and turn it on for one to two minutes. Let the interior cool for a moment, then use a damp sponge to wipe down all the sides and corners, including the door and top. Opt for an abrasive cleaning sponge or scouring pad to help remove tough stains and messes.

• After scrubbing the inside, leave the door open while you clean off the glass tray and turntable support ring with soap and water. 
 
• Let everything fully air-dry before reassembling and closing the door.

Tip: If you don’t have a non-toxic all-purpose cleaner readily available, diluted dish soap or an ammonia-free glass cleaner are great alternatives.

2
Use Vinegar
Use Vinegar

• To thoroughly clean a microwave with vinegar, dilute with one cup of water (1:1 ratio) in a medium-sized, microwave-safe bowl. 
 
• Place the bowl inside of the microwave, then turn it on for five to 10 minutes, keeping an eye on the bowl to make sure it doesn’t boil over. Leave the bowl in the microwave for a few extra minutes after the timer goes off to give the steam time to spread throughout the microwave, making spills and splatters easier to remove. Use a cloth towel or oven mitt to remove the bowl from the microwave. 
 
• Remove the glass tray and turntable support ring. Clean it separately after you wipe down the interior with a clean towel or sponge. Rinse the cloth and repeating as needed. 
 
• Let everything fully air-dry before reassembling and closing the microwave door.  

Tip: Add a few drops of essential oils or lemon juice to the vinegar mixture to weaken the odor.

3
Use a Lemon
Use a Lemom

This option requires one whole lemon and a spoonful of water. 
 
• Leave the glass tray and turntable support ring inside the microwave and cut the lemon in half. 
 
• Place both halves on the tray with the peel side up and the citrus side down. 
 
• Turn the microwave on for one to two minutes or until the inside gets steamy. 
 
• Open the door and wipe down the interior with a cleaning cloth or sponge. 
 
• Let everything fully air-dry before closing the microwave door.

4
Microwave Cleaning Tips
Microwave Cleaning Tips

• Remember to wipe down the door handle, buttons and all other exterior parts. 

• To prevent food buildup, clean your microwave often and wipe food splatters as soon as they happen. 

• Place the glass tray and turntable support ring in the dishwasher for a deeper clean. 

• High-powered microwaves take less time to create steam, so monitor the lemon or vinegar mixture carefully. 

• White vinegar can be swapped for apple cider vinegar, depending on what you have on hand in your kitchen.