Top 5 Best Over Range Microwaves 2021:
Is your kitchen tiny?
Are you having trouble finding a microwave oven that’ll fit?
Are you just looking for a microwave that won’t clutter up your kitchen space?
If the answer to any of the questions above was yes, then you need an over the range microwave oven (also known as OTR).
These kitchen appliances are becoming ever more popular because of one simple fact: they save space. The time of bulky microwave ovens cluttering up your precious kitchen space is over. By mounting this kitchen appliance on the wall, you’re getting lots of valuable space that can be used for more useful stuff.
What’s more, some of these microwaves can also serve as hood assemblies. That’s like killing two flies with one stone! Not only can you quickly defrost your food and make delicious meals, but you can also keep your kitchen odor-free when you use the kitchen stove!
Unfortunately, buying the best over the range microwave oven isn’t as simple as you think. You must factor in a whole slew of factors such as dimensions, wattage, additional features, and many others. Not to mention how easy it is to get lost in a sea of samey models from unknown Chinese manufacturers.
Thankfully, you’ve got us! We’ve done the research, so you don’t have to! In this article, we’ve compiled a list of five best OTR microwave ovens on the market. And as a bonus, we’ve also compiled a short buyer’s guide that’ll equip you with all the necessary knowledge for hunting the best model for your needs.
5 Best Over The Range Microwave Ovens In 2021: Detailed Reviews
Here are our top five picks for five best over the range microwave ovens you can find on the current market. We included both low-end and high-end models, so you get a clearer picture of what to expect. And, who knows, maybe one of the models showcased below is just what you’re looking for!
1. GE JNM3163DJBB – Editor’s Choice
As is the tradition, we start the list with the best product. GE JNM3163DJBB may be a bit underpowered when compared to other models out there. However, it offers lots of space, it’s incredibly easy to install, and it won’t burn a hole in your wallet.
GE microwave comes with a capacity of 1,6 cubic feet and is designed to fit into a 30-inch cabinet space. For such an affordable model, this is quite a lot of space. In fact, there are quite a few mid and high-end microwaves that don’t offer this much capacity.
As we mentioned before, with on 950W of output, this OTR microwave is a bit underpowered. But that doesn’t mean it’s useless. Quite the contrary, it’s more than capable of handling all cooking tasks, and it comes with a dozen power levels.
When it comes to additional features, it comes with a 2-speed CFM venting system, you can turn on or off at your convenience. You’ll also find the auto and defrosting modes more than useful.
The installation is straightforward. Just bolt in the mounting plate that comes with this microwave and attach the microwave. The whole installation process won’t take more than 20 minutes.
Our only gripe with this product is that it only comes in black color, which doesn’t mix well with all kitchen designs out there.
- Easy to install
- 1,6 cubic feet capacity
- Easy to use
- Available in only one color
2. Frigidaire FGMV176NTF – Runner Up
Looking for an OTR microwave, and you have an unlimited budget? Yes? Well, then you might be interested in our second pick!
Frigidaire is a well-known manufacturer of high-quality kitchen and household appliances, and its FGMV176NTF is no exception.
The first thing that’ll draw your eyes to this OTR microwave is its design. While not that different from the rest of the competition, the mix of stainless steel and plastic will fit in with just about any kitchen style, especially if you own an induction stove.
Just like our first pick, this over the range microwave oven can fit a 30-inch cabinet space. Unfortunately, it’s a bit of pain to install because it’s quite heavy. And since it’s a bit longer than most of its competitors, it will protrude slightly, but that won’t affect the overall appeal.
FGMV175NTF offers 1,7 cubic feet of cooking space and draws 1000W of energy. While 1000W might not be much, it’s more than capable of cooking anything you throw inside it. You get to choose between 9 power levels, and it also comes with sensor cooking function. This function allows you to quickly find the right setting for the food you’re trying to cook.
On top of all this, Frigidaire FGMV176NTF features a 2 speed 105/300 CFM fan that runs completely silent.
- Offers ample cooking space
- Attractive design
- Silent running
- Sensor cooking function
- Difficult to install
3. Sharp R-1514 – Best Mid-Range OTR Microwave Oven
Sharp R-1514 is an over the range microwave oven that’s designed for those that are looking for a quality product but are on a tight budget. While it might not be a looker, this microwave oven offers ample cooking space and features that make it worth the money.
R-1514 OTR microwave offers 1,5 cubic feet of cooking space and can fit a 30-inch cabinet space. Even though it has ample cooking space, the widow is quite small. In fact, this microwave looks like something from the 90s, so don’t expect it to catch any attention.
Thankfully, the design is the only “bad” thing about this product. This over the range microwave comes with a turntable mechanism that sports s 14.13-inch platter. The turntable will speed up the cooking time immeasurably, which is useful for those that are always in a hurry.
When it comes to power, R-1514 draws a 1000W of energy. It features 11 smart and easy sensor settings for all the most popular microwave foods. And if you’re looking for more control, 5 auto-touch controls allow you to fine-tune the settings.
And if that wasn’t good enough, this over the range microwave is almost entirely silent when turned on.
Our only issue with this product is that it’s a bit difficult to install because it’s very cumbersome.
- Decently priced
- Silent running
- Comes with a turntable mechanism
- Easy to use
- Difficult to install
- Boring design
4. Samsung ME18H704SFG – Best Value
Samsung doesn’t just make phones and TVs. This company is well-known for manufacturing a whole range of kitchen appliances, including over the range microwave ovens. ME18H704SFG is an excellent low to mid-range microwave that offers quite a few nifty features.
Even though it’s quite cheap, this microwave offers a whopping 1,8 cubic feet of cooking space. This is more than enough to cover all your cooking needs! On top of that, the inside is built out of durable ceramic enamel. This material is both scratch-proof and easy to clean. Whether it’s grease or leftover soup, you’ll be able to clean up the mess in a couple of swipes with a damp cloth.
The exterior is built out of stainless steel that’s fingerprint-resistant. We love this feature because there’s nothing worse than greasy fingerprints on a stainless steel surface.
When it comes to power, this OTR microwave sucks up 1000W of energy. On top of that, it comes with a whole slew of cooking sensors and other features like auto defrost and auto reheat.
For ventilation, ME18H704SFG utilizes a 300 CFM fan with powdered charcoal and grease filters. No matter what’s cooking on the stove below, you can rest assured this microwave will filter it out.
Unfortunately, this product doesn’t have the best quality control, so don’t be surprised if it dies unexpectedly.
- Easy to clean
- 1,8 cubic feet of cooking space
- Superb ventilation
- Easy to use side panel
- Not the best quality control
5. GE PVM9005SJSS – Best Large Capacity Over The Range Microwave Oven
If you have ample space and are looking for an OTR microwave that offers ample space, keep on reading.
GE PVM9005SJSS offers a whopping 2,1 cubic feet of cooking space. This is more than a space to cook a meal for an entire family! The best thing about it is that it’ll fit a standard 30-inch range cabinet space. This does mean it is a bit tall, but that won’t negatively affect the style of your kitchen.
Power-wise, this machine draws 1050W of electricity. This is just 50W more than other products we showcased in this article, but it’s more than enough to heat up just about anything you throw inside it. On top of that, you get to choose between 10 power levels and standard features like auto defrost and timer function.
The exterior on this over the range microwave is built out of stainless steel that’ll easily fit in with most kitchen styles. If you own an induction stove, this microwave will perfectly fit in!
The ventilation is just as fantastic as the rest of this machine. Three-speed 400CFM venting system runs almost entirely silent and comes with a charcoal filter that’ll filter out grease like it’s nothing.
Our only gripe with this product is that it doesn’t have a backlit control panel. This makes it a bit hard to operate in the dark.
- 2,1 Cubic feet cooking space
- Superb ventilation system
- Easy to use
- Competitively priced
- The control panel isn’t backlit
What Is An Over The Range Microwave Oven And Why You Should Buy One?
You may ask yourself why you would buy an over the range microwave oven instead of a regular microwave?
The answer is simple. Because of its position in the kitchen, an over the range microwave oven will save you a lot of space.
When it comes to the design and setup, there are basically two types. The first one is that you can move the microwave from one place to another, and the second requires permanent placement.
Over the range microwave oven works just like a regular microwave. You can reheat food, grill, and bake with it.
But, there is a fantastic feature that makes an over the range microwave different from a standard microwave.
Not only will an over the range microwave oven save you space in the kitchen, but it also works as a vent hood for your stove.
These microwaves can work just like a stove-top ventilation system. Smoke, steam, and cooking odors will be effectively removed, and at the same time, you can bake something in the microwave.
So, if you buy this type of microwave, you’re effectively getting two products for one.
5 Factors You Should Consider Before Buying An Over The Range Microwave Oven
Before you make your final decision, here are five factors you should consider when buying an over the range microwave oven.
- Over the range microwave ovens come in dimensions like standard microwave ovens. The smallest models usually fit over the 24-inch size range, and larger models go up to a 30-inch range.
- The height of these microwave ovens is around 16 inches.
- You should choose the dimensions according to your needs and free space over your stove.
- There are many designs and models on the market, so you’ll surely find an over the range microwave oven that perfectly fits between your kitchen cabinets.
- A bigger over the range microwave oven model is the best choice since you can put plenty of food in it. But if you don’t have much space over your stove, a smaller model will do the job just fine.
- There are low profile over the range microwave ovens on the market that will perfectly fit in small spaces.
- The average capacity of these microwaves is around 1.5 to 2.0 cubic feet.
- Choose the capacity of the over the range microwave oven depending on the available space for installation.
- If you have plenty of available space, the bigger the model, the better.
- Note that you should also consider the height of the microwave. A 16-inch high model will allow you to chook two meals at the same time.
3. Venting System
- The built-in venting system in an over the range microwave oven is definitely its best feature.
- There are three options when it comes to the venting system.
- The first option is an integrated, fully vented system. This system works so that it forces the air outside through the available ducts.
- A ductless system is the second option. Unlike the fully vented system, a ductless system has a charcoal filter inside.
- So, instead of forcing the air outside, it sucks the air in via the charcoal filter. Once the air is filtered, it’s circulated back into your kitchen.
- The third and the best option is an over the range microwave oven with both interior and exterior venting capabilities.
- The venting capacity of these microwaves is measured in CFM (cubic feet per meter). We recommend you choose an over the range microwave oven with a venting capacity of at least 300 CFM. Everything under 300 CFM won’t be powerful enough.
4. Control Panel
- You may think that the control panel isn’t an essential factor to consider, but it is.
- Since an over the range microwave oven is placed above your stove, it would be better if the control panel is placed on the bottom. If the control panel is placed on the side, it could be hard to reach, especially if you’re not tall.
- If you prefer a modern design, more than the traditional, there are over the range microwave ovens with a control panel that is hidden behind the door.
- When it comes to the settings, it’s just with a standard microwave.
- The more automatic setting features an over the range microwave oven has, the better.
- Make sure you choose a product with all the essential settings like soften, defrost, and preset cooking menus. It will make cooking much easier and take out the guessing of when the food is perfectly cooked or defrosted.
- You can also get an over the range microwave oven with sensor settings if you invest a bit more money. The sensor settings can detect the steam that is emitted from the food and automatically adjusts the perfect time, power, and temperature.
Best Over The Range Microwave – Final Word
Before we let you go, let’s do a quick recap.
If you’re looking for the best over the range microwave oven, look no further than GE JNM3163DJBB. Not only does this machine offer ample cooking space, but it also features a decent ventilation system, and it’s quite affordable.
For those that don’t care about the budget, we recommend you pick up a Frigidaire FGMV176NTF. This is one of the best high-end over the range microwaves on the market! It comes with a powerful ventilation system, ample cooking space, and it runs completely silent. And, of course, we can’t forget the superb sensor cooking options.
For those that are a bit strapped for cash, we recommend you get the best mid-range OTR microwave on the market, Sharp R-1514. Even though it features a dull exterior, it makes it up with ample cooking space, excellent ventilation, and useful features.