Features

’Waves of the Future

Eleven hot new microwaves
By Ellen Sturm Niz
March 09, 2010

Since Amana touted its first Radarange as “The Greatest Discovery Since Fire” in 1967, the microwave oven has become a ubiquitous kitchen appliance. While only 1 percent of American households had a microwave in 1970, today the appliance is included in more than 95 percent of American kitchens.

A Raytheon engineer accidentally discovered microwave-cooking technology in 1945 when he noticed a chocolate bar melting in his pocket while working on a magnetron for radar sets. The first microwaves produced in the late 1940s weighed more than 600 pounds and measured more than 5 ft. tall, but by 1967 Raytheon introduced the countertop-size Amana Radarange, which became the first popular home model. Designed to be attractive to busy housewives—with an elegant look and knobs shaped to fit a woman’s hand—the microwave made preparing meals easier and faster. Plus, cooking was safer: Moms could teach their kids to cook without the danger of using the stove.


Amana Radarange Microwave

An early model of Amana's Radarange countertop microwave.


Sales of microwaves exploded in the 1970s and ‘80s, jumping from 40,000 units sold in 1970 to 1 million by 1975 and 10 million in 1985. Today, microwaves are as much a part of a kitchen’s design plan as a stove and a refrigerator.

Offered at a variety of price points, sizes and styles, and featuring a multitude of features and functions, today’s microwaves are designed for everyone from the bachelor who heats up frozen dinners to the mother of three who cooks a day’s worth of healthy meals. Check out these new and popular models to find the latest “greatest discovery since fire.”


[1] LG Electronics Over-The-Range Microwave with Warming Lamp

LG Electronics' new Over-The-Range Microwave Oven (model LMVM2085ST) with warming lamp technology ensures optimal mealtime temperature without compromising capacity or design. Cooking performance is enhanced by dual turntables, which move from side to side and can accommodate a rectangular dish up to 15 in. long. A round, rotating 12 11/16-in. turntable for smaller dishes also moves from side to side. Humidity-sensing technology determines when food is cooked and automatically turns the unit off. The warming mode can be set at a desired temperature for up to 90 minutes, keeping food warm by using a radiant heat source—not microwave technology. For more information, visit LGUSA.com.
LG Electronics Over-The-Range Microwave with Warming Lamp
[2] Kenmore 1.2-Cu.-Ft. TrueCookPlus Countertop Microwave

The Kenmore TrueCookPlus Countertop Microwave cooks food easily, safely and to perfection every time. Simply enter the TrueCookPlus code found on most frozen and packaged foods, which indicates recommended cooking times, into the microwave keypad, and the microwave handles all the cooking details. Design highlights include easy-to-read, user-friendly green LED controls, which add a contemporary, high-tech look. Its rounded cavity fits larger items, adds versatility and is easy to clean. Six auto-cook buttons allow for easy and convenient time and power selections. Child lockout enhances security and peace of mind, while 1,200W and 10 power levels provides versatility and high performance. For more information, visit Kenmore.com.
Kenmore TrueCookPlus Countertop Microwave
[3] Whirlpool Velos SpeedCook Oven

The Whirlpool Velos SpeedCook Oven is a large-capacity over-the-range appliance with an interior cavity measuring 2 cu. ft. While it provides the conveniences of a traditional microwave, a combination of quartz and halogen light and g2 SpeedCook technology provides the ability to grill, brown and even bake in a fraction of the time. Plus, a heating coil provides the option of convection cooking. It also features a TruCapture ventilation system, which draws away cooktop steam and odors through multiple filters using a four-speed exhaust fan, helping the home’s overall cooling while improving indoor air quality. A large turntable and a bi-level cooking rack provide additional time-saving benefits. For more information, visit InsideAdvantage.com or call 1 800 952 2537.
Whirlpool Velos SpeedCook Oven
[4] Bosch 300 Series Over-The-Range Microwave

Bosch’s 300 Series Over-The-Range Microwave (model HMV3051U) offers a 1.6-cu.-ft. oven capacity and a large 13 1/2-in. glass turntable with 1,000W of microwave power and 10 power levels. Convenient features include a potato program for perfectly baked potatoes, reheat and defrost settings that automatically determine power level and cooking time, and a popcorn program that ensures a fully popped bag of popcorn by entering the bag size. Easy-to-read LCD controls also offer quick settings for one-, two- or three-minute cooking times at 100 percent power. The unit is also equipped with a two-speed 300-cfm vent with two 30W lights for bright cooktop illumination. Available in stainless steel or black, the microwave is design-matched for use in combination with Bosch ranges or cooktops. For more information, visit Bosch-home.com/us or call 1 800 921 9622 to request a catalog.
Bosch 300 Series Over-The-Range Microwave
[5] Sharp Insight Pro Microwave Drawer Oven

Sharp’s Insight Pro Microwave Drawer Oven now offers an increased interior capacity while the exterior footprint remains the same as previous models. Its new 1.2-cu.-ft. interior is tall enough to hold a 20-ounce takeout cup of coffee and wide enough to fit a 9-in. x 13-in. oblong dish comfortably. New convenience options to the 1,000W oven include expanded Short Cut options such as a “Warm” function for heating syrup for pancakes and dessert sauce for ice cream, and a “Beverage Center” that instantly warms and heats liquids, such as coffee or water for tea or soup. The unit offers a “Keep Warm” function that maintains the serving temperature for up to 30 minutes, and “Soften” and “Melt” features to assist with frequently performed cooking tasks. Sensor Cook settings and defrost options have been expanded to include brown rice and sweet potatoes, while defrost options are now available for boneless and bone-in poultry. Available in black, white or stainless-steel finishes, it also features an Easy Open handle or one-finger Open and Close buttons. For more information, visit SharpUSA.com or call 1 866 RANGE99.
Sharp Insight Pro Microwave Drawer Oven
[6] Electrolux Built-In Oven with Drop Down Door

The Electrolux Built-In Oven with Drop Down Door (model EW30MO55H) features Wave-Touch Controls, Multi-Stage cooking options and Sensor-Cook options. With Wave-Touch Controls, one simple touch activates the control panel, showing all the cooking options. After you make your choices, all but the options selected will fade away. Multi-Stage cooking options include four settings to ensure any dish requiring multiple cooking stages is optimally prepared. Twelve Sensor-Cook options automatically adjust the amount of time needed to complete the cooking. For more information, visit Electroluxappliances.com.
Electrolux Built-In Oven with Drop Down Door
[7] Frigidaire Professional 1.8-Cu.-Ft. Over-The-Range Microwave

Frigidaire’s Professional Over-The-Range Microwave features Effortless Reheat at the touch of a button and more than 40 settings specifically designed for warming chicken nuggets, baking potatoes, softening ice cream, melting butter and more. A Keep Warm setting keeps food warm until everything is ready, while Sensor Cooking allows the microwave to automatically adjust power levels and cooking times to perfectly cook a variety of items. The microwave’s SpaceWise Rack creates more room to facilitate cooking multiple dishes at once, while its stainless-steel surface has a protective coating that reduces fingerprints and smudges. For more information, visit Frigidaire.com.
Frigidaire Professional Over-The-Range Microwave
[8] Miele M 8260 Microwave Oven (Chef Series)

This built-in 900W microwave oven from Miele features 11 automatic programs and memory setting for programs consisting of up to three stages. Its self-explanatory electronic controls offer a user-friendly selector switch for times and power outputs and light-touch push buttons for additional functions. An automatic “Keep Warm” function keeps food warm when left in the microwave. A Clean Touch Steel exterior provides a layer of glass on top of the stainless to help resist fingerprints and scratches, and eliminates the need for special cleaners. For more information, visit Miele.com.
Miele M 8260 Microwave Oven
[9] Gaggenau BM 281 Fusion Oven

Gaggenau’s BM 281 Fusion Oven is an innovative convection microwave oven that combines the even heat distribution of convection cooking with the speed of a microwave, bringing professional cooking capabilities to the home chef. Utilizing the company's Innowave technology—real microwave settings with variable energy outputs—the BM 281 Fusion Oven is able to save energy while penetrating food to its core: dishes will never be cooked on the outside while still frozen within. For more information, visit Gaggenau.com/US_en/home.do.
Gaggenau BM 281 Fusion Oven
[10] GE Spacemaker Grilling Oven

GE has combined 1,200W of grilling power with an over-the-range microwave oven to create the Spacemaker Grilling Oven. Auto Grill offers preprogrammed settings for chicken breasts, pork chops, hamburgers and more, while Manual Grill gives the chef control over the settings. Combo Grill alternates between the grilling element and the microwave element for fast results. Whichever setting is selected, the oven features a special grill pan that absorbs heat to help cook food quickly and thoroughly. The unit also offers microwave options to speed up meal preparation. A wide selection of convenient settings simplifies cooking, with controls to protect delicate foods, gently melt chocolate or caramel and handle foods like cream cheese or frozen ice cream without scorching. Three defrost options for frozen foods assure quick, even results. A scrolling, two-line display provides cooking tips and oven instructions. Available in stainless steel and color models, the Spacemaker features a large hearth window and a brick-red interior. For more information, visit GEconsumerandindustrial.com.
GE Spacemaker Grilling Oven
[11] Amana Stainless-Steel 1.7-Cu.-Ft. Over-The-Range Microwave

With 10 power levels and 1,000W of cooking power, this Amana Over-The Range Microwave (model AMV2174VAS) features sensor cooking that monitors humidity and automatically adjusts the cooking time accordingly for better results. Auto Cook options heat frozen entrees, beverages, bacon and instant rice with the touch of a button. Popcorn, Baked Potato, Pizza Slice and Vegetables programmed pads offer one-touch sensor-monitored cooking convenience. A roomy interior holds large serving dishes or a pair of plates with the help of a wire rack. For more information, visit Amana.com.
Amana Stainless-Steel Over-The-Range Microwave
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