Sure, we wipe down the outside on a regular basis while we’re freshening up our kitchens (we do… don’t we?) – but sometimes, the inside is a whole different story. I’ve seen microwaves whose insides are as sparkling as an operating room, while there are others whose innermost regions resembled something more like the inside of a cave with globs of who-knows-what forming stalactites and stalagmites upon the floors and ceilings, while the walls are caked with some sort of oozy grease-like substance.
Of course the easiest way to keep that microwave in tip-top shape is to just wipe out the splatters when they happen – but sometimes, we don’t notice them until long after they’ve happened and by then, they’re stuck on. Even if your microwave looks pristine on the inside, I’ll bet it could still use a freshening up now and then. Here are some tips to help whether you own the cave or the surgery suite.
Steam is our friend – Fill a bowl halfway with water, add a wooden chopstick or toothpick (to prevent dangerous super-heating of the water) and if you’ve got some lemon around, add a few slices. Zap it on high for about five minutes and when it’s done… do nothing (for now, anyway). Wait about 10 minutes for the steam to loosen any stuck on splatters. Remove your bowl and with a clean cloth or paper towels, wipe down the insides (don’t forget the ceiling!) – if you need some additional scouring power, use the scrubber side of your dish sponge (as long as it’s a Teflon-safe scrubber), dip it in the lemon-water (watch out, it may still be boiling hot!) and put a little extra elbow grease into it!
Break out the Soda – Baking Soda, that is! If you’re still having problems getting any stuck-on stuff off, repeat the water-heating step and then make a paste with baking soda and some of your lemon water (the water will be hot – be careful!) use this to help with your scrubbing efforts!
Slice up some Citrus – When your microwave is sparkling clean, slice up some citrus peels and microwave them for about half a minute. The oils in the citrus will leave your microwave as fresh as a summer day! (As a bonus… after you’re done with those citrus peels in the microwave – put them down the garbage disposal & run it… the fresh smell of citrus will fill your kitchen too!)
If you have a glass turntable, run it through the dishwasher.
Opening that microwave and seeing the inside sparkling clean is a wonderful thing – plus you don’t have to worry about a stalactite falling into your coffee!!
Helpful hint: Does your microwave have a residual burned popcorn smell? Try putting 2Tbsp. Of coffee grounds in a mug with ¼ cup of water and zap it on high for two minutes. The smell of the coffee will neutralize the smell of the burned popcorn!