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Choosing an inverter microwave for your kitchen is a long-lasting investment because these are the future of countertop ovens. We selected the 7 best inverter microwaves out of the 16 we tested in order to help you through this choice.
All the microwaves we tried were exceptional, however, the Panasonic NN-SD975S was the most technologically advanced unit we ever tested, while we were pleased with the user-friendly design of the Farberware FMO11AHTBKJ.
As for the overall best inverter microwave, we selected a model that can satisfy the needs of the bigger part of the consumers, powerful and advanced, but also affordable. Which microwave could it be? You’ll find the answer below!
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The Best Inverter Microwaves Of 2021
Are you tired of finding cold spots in your food even after microwaving it for way longer than necessary? You’re not alone! That’s why some brand leaders in the market have introduced countertop microwaves with inverter technology.
How does inverter technology work? While the standard microwave releases heat in pulses, causing the famous cold spots, an inverter microwave releases a seamless stream of energy, so that your food is heated continuously and evenly.
Even though there isn’t a huge choice of inverter microwaves, it can still be hard to choose the right one for your needs, and that’s why we compiled a list of the 7 best microwaves with inverter technology of 2021.
Under each model, you will find a detailed description that includes the characteristics of the microwave and our personal experience with it, but if you still have doubts after reading our reviews, you can check out our final section on how to choose an inverter microwave.
- Large capacity
- Genius Sensor
- Keep Warm feature
- Great Turbo Defrost
- Tough buttons
The Panasonic NN-SN766S is a reliable kitchen appliance with a semi-vintage look and lots of interesting features.
For a long time, Panasonic inverter technology has led the market of microwaves, that’s why you can find many Panasonic microwaves with inverter technology and you can be sure you will get great results from any of them.
The Panasonic NN-SN766S in particular is really good for those who don’t like the flat keypads most microwaves have because the control panel of this model has real buttons that can also be kinda tough to push at times.
This could be a good microwave for people who are slightly visually impaired, although be warned that it doesn’t beep much, in fact, it only beeps once when the cooking’s done and there are no reminder beeps.
Of course, inverter heating is one of the strongest points of the NN-SN766S, but we believe this microwave is especially good for families because it has 1.6 cubic feet of internal capacity and a power of 1250 watts.
That’s why if you come from a microwave with a slightly lower wattage (even just 1000 – 1250 watts) you need to be careful not to overcook your food until you’re familiar with the new settings.
Cooking with this microwave is really easy thanks to the Genius Sensor: the sensor measures the amount of steam released during cooking, and automatically adjusts power and remaining cooking time based on the type of food.
On top of that, if you cannot serve or eat your meal right away, this microwave offers a Keep Warm feature: just leave your dish in the oven and when you’re ready to serve it, it will be as warm and delicious as if you just finished cooking it!
The first thing that surprised us about this microwave upon opening the box is how actually “short” it is. We’d say the measurements on the box were quite accurate, as this model doesn’t take much space height-wise, so it may not fit some of your tallest kitchenware like travel mugs or Thermos.
Despite not having a loud beeper, this is not a silent microwave. It isn’t noisy to the point of being annoying, but both the glass turntable and the microwave in itself do make some noise while working.
We chose the Panasonic NN-SN766S as the best inverter microwave of 2021 because it’s a solid and multifunctional machine that is easy to use and remains fairly affordable for the quality it delivers.
- Pizza oven
- Cyclonic Wave
- Turbo Defrost
- Delay Start and Timer
- Dial control
- Weak interior lighting
It shouldn’t surprise you to find several Panasonic models in this list, because Panasonic microwaves with inverter technology were the first to appear on the market and the brand has had years to develop new and improved technology.
That’s the case for the Panasonic NN-SD975S, which is a microwave for those who don’t just want an inverter microwave, but the best of the best technologically advanced microwaves currently on the market.
In fact, the NN-SD975S doesn’t simply use inverter technology, but a new and improved function called Cyclonic Wave. How is it different from the seamless stream of energy that inverters produce?
It’s simple: in Inverter Cyclonic Wave microwaves, heating happens through 3D waves of energy that are more precise, ultra-efficient, and can heat even food with complicated textures to perfection.
When we tested this model we didn’t really notice a big difference from the average inverter mode when heating liquids or simple foods, but when we tried the Cyclonic Wave with pizza, vegetables, or other textury foods, we realized just how useful this technology can be.
Another smart choice from the design team of this microwave was to put a dial knob on the control panel. Despite being considered old-fashioned, a rotary dial is easier and faster to use and control, especially for people who aren’t really tech-savvy.
Through the rotary dial, you can control cooking time/weight and the Sensor Cook menu, which automatically adjusts the parameters of the microwave in order to deliver your food when it’s perfectly heated/cooked.
The Panasonic NN-SD975S has a capacity of 2.2 cu. ft., which makes it the perfect microwave for large families, but an even better asset for all pizza lovers. Thanks to its large pizza oven, this microwave allows you very versatile cooking that covers all of your possible needs.
For a microwave of this size, 1250 watts of power may seem a little low, but consider that higher wattage also means higher chances of overcooking your food. Generally speaking, 1200 watts is a good power outage for the average home microwave.
The only downside of this microwave is the interior light of the oven, which is weaker than we expected for the size of this unit. It might be hard to see inside the oven at night, and you might need to use the flashlight on your phone.
We don’t feel like shooting down this model for this issue alone, because it’s a great microwave that will most likely revolutionize your kitchen experience.
- Easy to operate
- Great for popcorn lovers
- Bright oven light
- Quick heating
- Quiet beeper
- Door release button
Tired of the same old silver, stainless steel microwaves? Panasonic has a microwave for everyone, in fact, the NN-SN936B stands out from the rest thanks to its sleek, total-black design (it also has a white counterpart).
The best feature of this microwave is its control panel: it’s really intuitive, has a smart design that is easy to understand and use even without reading the manual. Despite the white lettering over the black background, we didn’t find the panel hard to read. Both the numbers and letters stand out, although the lettering is a bit on the smaller size.
The Panasonic NN-SN936B specializes in popcorn. It has 3 different popcorn levels and since we’ve used its popcorn function a lot, we can confirm that this is the ideal microwave for popcorn lovers. Your movie nights will never be more delicious!
Although modern microwaves can almost replace you in the kitchen, it is nonetheless important to keep an eye on the food inside the oven, especially the first few times you use a new microwave that you don’t yet know.
The Panasonic NN-SN936B makes it really easy to check on your food thanks to the bright light inside the oven. This is a very important feature, especially at night.
The oven of this microwave has a capacity of 2.2 cu. ft. with a 16 ½ inch turntable, which means there is little you cannot fit inside this unit. With its 1250 watts, this inverter microwave is powerful enough to fulfill your craziest cooking needs.
What we loved about the NN-SN936B is how quickly it heats and cooks. We made a comparison with an average non-inverter microwave using a glass of milk.
While the non-inverter microwave took around 4 minutes to heat the milk (and it was only lukewarm for the most part), Panasonic inverter technology only took 1 minute and 50 seconds. And the milk was warm throughout.
Let’s move to the bad stuff: this microwave is really silent. It works silently, and the beeper is quiet as well, with no reminders beeps, so you need to pay attention and remember that you have food left in the oven.
Another sour note is the mechanism of the door. We feel like the door release button has quite a cheap feeling, and a door handle would have probably been a better choice for this model. Sometimes it also doesn’t open easily and you need to pull it open.
Apart from these issues, this unit comes with an inverter oven, a Genius Sensor, and a Keep Warm feature — among all its other functions — while remaining a microwave under 200$. It is worth every buck!
- Pizza oven
- Genius Sensor
- Keep Warm feature
- Hard to read control panel
- Loud fan
If you’re looking for something smaller and cheaper, for example, a microwave that you can bring along during your holidays, or one you can fit into a boat or a van, the Panasonic NN-SN686S might be the inverter microwave for you.
This model has been a bestseller since it first came out in 2016. Although a big part of the population has gotten into inverter appliances only recently, Panasonic has been developing inverter microwaves for more than 30 years, and the NN-SN686S is one of their most loved models.
The reason is soon revealed: this microwave is a good starting point for anyone who hasn’t used a countertop microwave with inverter technology before. It’s simple, easy to operate, and easy to clean, with an intuitive control panel that is multifunctional, yet kept minimal and accessible.
The Panasonic NN-SN686S has a capacity of 1.2 cu. ft and 1200 watts of power. It’s smaller than the previous microwave but remains a unit with a reasonable pizza-sized oven.
You wouldn’t imagine how powerful it is just from the size. In fact, this microwave is very compact and lightweight. It can be moved around easily, or carried along with you.
The inverter oven takes the cold spots out of your food, while the Genius Sensor takes all calculations out of your cooking process, finding the most appropriate settings by measuring the steam your food produces.
In case you cannot eat right away, you can use the Keep Warm feature to maintain the food at the right temperature until it’s ready to be served. All of these functions guarantee that your meal is always top-notch.
However, when mentioning the various functions of this microwave we cannot leave out the 3-Level popcorn setting and the Turbo Defrost. Both of these functions work flawlessly and might just be the best features of this microwave.
Of course, every machine has its flaws. In the case of the Panasonic NN-SN686S its strongest point is also the weakest somehow: the control panel is well-designed but it can be hard to read because of the light colors used for both background and texts.
The fan can also be fairly loud while running, but it doesn’t happen all the time. It is otherwise a quiet microwave, it doesn’t have a loud beeper and there is no reminder beep either, so we wouldn’t recommend this unit for elderly people.
The NN-SN686S remains a really intuitive and safe machine, even for children, so it would be perfect to introduce your kids to the world of inverter microwaves.
- Sensor Cook
- Soften and Melt options
- Door handle
- Easy to clean
- Fast heating
- Loud beeper
When looking for a kitchen appliance it’s easy to just trust the big international names, be it Panasonic, Sharp, Samsung, or GE microwaves. Farberware has been in the business for more than a century, yet it’s not always the first name that pops up in our mind when we think of a microwave.
The Farberware FMO11AHTBKJ might just be able to change that. This is a machine that was perfectly designed to become an irreplaceable helper for your kitchen.
This microwave has a relatively low wattage, with just 1100 watts that won’t leave a big footprint on the environment, but at the same time are powerful enough to heat or cook whatever you may need.
The oven has a capacity of 1.1 cu. ft. so it’s a bit on the smaller size and might not be the best choice for a big family, but it could be the ideal size for your office, bedroom, or for a small kitchen.
Why best design? Well, first of all, the Farberware FMO11AHTBKJ looks great in any environment thanks to its stainless steel design and black paint finishing. It’s sleek and elegant, and not to mention extremely easy to clean.
But what we liked the most about the design of this model is how user-friendly and smart it is, starting from the mechanism to open the door. While many modern microwaves include a release button, this one uses the good old door handle.
Since this unit feels very sturdy and compact to the touch, a door handle is certainly the best choice to complete this reliable design, because it’s hard to break and it’s easier to use.
The control panel is also well-thought-out: it’s very intuitive, with the inverter menu on top, the Sensor Cook menu below, and the keypad at the bottom. The various controls are as simple as you read them and the LED display is in a bright blue color.
The Farberware FMO11AHTBKJ has two special controls for Softening and Melting foods like butter or similar. We were really eager to try this out and we must admit we were completely satisfied with the results. Butter comes out perfectly softened, not hard, not liquid, but a perfect balance in between.
The only flaw of this product is the five loud beeps at the end of the cooking process, but it could also be really useful for some customers, so we didn’t feel like deducting points for this.
- Convection Oven
- Air Fryer
- FlashXpress Broiler
- Combo cooking
- Sound On/Off
- Dial control
- Fingerprint magnet
If you ever need a microwave that can take your place in the kitchen, the Panasonic NN-CD87KS is the answer you’re looking for. There is little this smart microwave cannot do and it could probably work in place of your traditional oven as well.
What sets the NN-CD87KS apart from other inverter microwaves, it’s that this unit is a 4-in-1 Home Chef that includes Convection Bake, Air Fryer, and FlashXpress Broiler options.
On top of having 4 different cooking methods in one single appliance, you also have 2 different options to combine these methods: Convection + Microwave and Broil + Microwave.
The Air Fryer will soon become your new favorite way of frying your food because it is much more effective than deep-frying, and not to mention, healthier.
This microwave is also a Convection Bake oven, which means it can reach temperatures as high as a traditional oven and you can use it to bake and cook as you would with a traditional oven as well.
The oven has a capacity of 1.2 cu. ft. with a 14.2’’ turntable, and operates with an output of 1000 watts. While having a lower wattage than the other microwaves in this rank, it also means that the Panasonic NN-CD87KS will allow you to save something on your energy bill.
Since it needs to carry out different functions, this unit needs to be a solid machine. Indeed, with its 39.1 pounds of weight, this is not a microwave that is easy to move around, and you can be sure it won’t budge easily.
You can set weight, cooking time and the Sensor Reheat through the smart dial knob, quick and easy to use. In order to reheat your food with this microwave you just need to place the food inside and push the “Sensor Reheat” on the knob: the Genius Sensor will automatically detect the right settings!
The NN-CD87KS boasts a stainless steel design all over, which is very pleasing to the eye, but also a real fingerprint magnet.
This issue is most noticeable on the release button for the door, which we found ourselves cleaning at the end of every day because it was so quick to get dirty, especially when you’re using the microwave while doing other chores.
We recommend this microwave to all those who look for a countertop microwave with inverter technology that could also substitute their traditional oven.
It’s perfect for families and it’s much easier to use than a traditional oven, however, it’s quite pricey so you might want to buy it only if you’re sure you can make good use of it.
- No touchpad
- Large oven
- Rotary dial control
- Sensor Cook
- Sensor Reheat
- Poor lighting inside the oven
If you thought it would be hard to find a multifunctional inverter microwave under 150$ think again because Galanz has you covered.
The Galanz GEWWD16S1SV11 is an ExpressWave Sensor Microwave Oven with patented inverter technology. A big name for a simple concept: this microwave is extremely versatile, fast, and accurate in its cooking.
Thanks to its Sensor Cook and Sensor Reheat, it’s impossible for your food to be over-or undercooked with this microwave. It really takes out all the guessing from the cooking process, you just need to place the food in the oven and let the microwave do the rest.
This microwave makes the best of its 1100 watts (not too powerful, but far from weak at the same time) and has a large oven that measures 1.6 cu. ft. despite remaining fairly smaller than many models of the same capacity.
There is much to love about this microwave, starting from its 6 Sensor Cook programs (rice, fish, corn on the cob, fresh vegetables, oatmeal, ground meat) and 7 Sensor Reheating programs (frozen pizza, mac, and cheese, pasta, rice, chili, frozen entrée). The inverter oven guarantees great results, especially for defrosting.
You can control the Galanz GEWWD16S1SV11 through the rotary dial, an old-fashioned yet ever-smartest way to set your microwave. It’s quick and easy, and also prevents one of the most common problems with keypad microwaves: wearing out the pads.
Its stainless steel design is elegant, eye-catching, and visually appealing, not to mention it will fit in any type of environment like it’s always been there. However, we found the decision to paint the interior of the oven black questionable, because it makes it really hard to see inside.
How to choose an inverter microwave.
Every inverter microwave uses the same technology, so choosing an inverter microwave is not different from choosing a non-inverter microwave.
In both cases, it’s fundamental to take into consideration our personal needs, which don’t just include our cooking needs, but also the space we have to place the microwave, and whether it’s a microwave for our kitchen or another place.
Microwaves today have many functions, but just a few of them usually determine whether this or that microwave is made for us or not.
The first specifics we look at when looking for a new microwave are the most basic ones, the ones that are common to all microwaves, like capacity and wattage.
Why should you look at these in particular and what are you looking for exactly? We’ll explain it in detail below!
Capacity is usually a deal-breaker specific for most people, because it affects the overall size of the microwave and also, in some cases, its price.
A person who lives alone won’t probably need a 2.2 cu. ft. oven like the Panasonic NN-SD975S or the Panasonic NN-SN936B, while at the same time a family of four will probably struggle with a 1.1 cu. ft. microwave like the Farberware FMO11AHTBKJ. There are exceptions, of course, but that’s exactly why you need to take into consideration your personal cooking needs.
It’s also fundamental to take the available space into consideration, take measurements of your space, and look at the size of the microwave carefully.
Even though it’s rare, consider that sometimes the measurements you find written in the specifics might not be precise, so always make sure you have a few inches more than necessary or, if you buy the microwave in person, take the measurements at the store.
The first thing you need to know about microwave wattage is that the watts you see written on the box (1000, 1200, 1250, etc) are the amount that is needed by the whole microwave to operate (display, keypad, turntable etc). Simply speaking, the wattage consumed from your power grid.
The watts used to solely heat the food will be considerably less: in a 1200 watts microwave, 800-900 watts are probably the real heating power.
However, this doesn’t mean that you can use a 1200 watts microwave in a place (on a boat, for example) where it’s recommended to keep the wattage under 1000. You might get into real trouble, so always make sure you know the limit of your power grid (or battery).
Another common mistake is to believe that higher wattage means a better microwave. It usually just means shorter cooking time, but even then, if you’re not careful you will probably burn your food more easily with 1250 watts like the Panasonic NN-SN686S than 1000 watts like the Panasonic NN-CD87KS.
This doesn’t mean you always have to go for low-wattage microwaves, but it is something to think about before you make your purchase.
No matter the inverter microwave you will choose, you can hardly make a bad decision and if you keep in mind our useful tips, you’re guaranteed a happier and smarter cooking life!