Your microwave position might not be the biggest concern for many, but for those with a small kitchen, it can be of grave importance. If your kitchen already has appliances like a fridge or a stove, you might ask yourself where to put the microwave.

If you have a small kitchen, you can consider placing your microwave inside a cabinet or drawer. There are options of over-the-range microwaves that can save you lots of space, and a compact microwave can even fit on the counter or built-in to your kitchen island.

In this guide, we cover the importance of finding the correct space for your microwave. We also discuss different options where you can position the appliance. Lastly, we recommend suitable microwaves for small kitchens.

The Importance of Putting Your Microwave in the Correct Place

It’s always best to keep your kitchen clean so that you can have a healthy and hygienic life. We also need to cook to eat, and doing all that in a small kitchen is already hard.

Now, where the microwave goes might seem unimportant compared to other issues. However, it needs to be in a place where it won’t bother you while you do all you need to do in the kitchen.

There are many places inside your kitchen where you could place your microwave. They can go in a drawer or cabinet or even over the range. It also needs to be in a place to allow you enough space to use and access it easily. Avoid placing your microwave around the area you store your food or right next to the fridge, as the microwave can negatively affect both. 

Whichever location you choose, you have to keep in mind that it needs to be in an area of easy access for everyone. Overall, the best place to put it will depend on the style and space of your kitchen.

Built-in microwave in a small kitchen.

8 Ideas on Where to Place Your Microwave in a Small Kitchen

Here are some ideas on where to place your microwave if your kitchen is small.

1. Below the Counter

If you don’t have much space in your kitchen, you can consider replacing a drawer with a microwave cabinet.

It will allow you to have your microwave on hand without taking away any of the kitchen’s space. However, you should avoid this idea if you have small children as it could be dangerous for them.

Suppose you are remodeling your kitchen or starting from zero. In that case, a microwave-ready base cabinet will cost you the same as a drawer.

2. Integrated Into Cabinetry

Integrating your microwave into the cabinet is a great option that allows you to customize the height for better reachability. However, it might be too far from a counter, so it is not the most practical option.

An integrated microwave can also be a bit expensive, but if you can afford it, go for it.

3. In a Spare Cabinet

Placing a microwave inside a spare cabinet is a do it yourself option.

To make it work, you only need a microwave that can fit inside any of your cabinets. Choose a cabinet you do not use, choose a microwave that can go inside, and you’ve solved the problem. However, it might be challenging to access if the cabinet door gets rusty over time.

Consider calling an expert to wire the cabinet so that you can use the microwave. Although, you can also do it yourself if you have the tools and knowledge.

Note: Check your microwave instruction booklet to see if the cabinet will provide enough ventilation. If not, this option won’t be a good idea for you.

4. Over the Range

If you don’t have much space to work with, then placing your microwave over the range can be the solution. It is useful, but perhaps not the most attractive option. If the microwave is set too high, it might be difficult for everyone to access it.

Over-the-range microwaves are not the cheapest options, but they are easy to install and are quite useful.

5. Combined With a Wall Oven

If you don’t have enough space and want to build your kitchen from scratch, we recommend a wall-oven-microwave combo. It gives you a good display of both appliances, and it is space-efficient.

You can buy a microwave-wall-oven combo or just a wall oven and use a kit trim to place the microwave above it.

6. In an Appliance Garage

If you have the option, an appliance garage can give you the right space to not only put your microwave but other items like blenders or toasters. Using an appliance garage will ensure that your microwave and other appliances are always easy to reach.

You can turn any part of the counter into an appliance garage, and it is a good investment if you can afford it.

7. On the Island

If your kitchen is small but has an island built into it, then using that space for the microwave can save you a lot of time and effort. Kitchen islands are useful for many reasons. Using yours to place your microwave will allow you to save space in the cabinets to store essential kitchen items.

You can also place the microwave in one of the island’s drawers, but it might be too low for easy access.

8. Built-In With a Trim Kit

If you choose a low spare cabinet or a drawer, you can make your microwave blend better with the kitchen by adding a trim kit. A trim kit is an easy-to-install metal ring that fills the space between the microwave and the cabinet.

Microwaves for Small Kitchens

When it comes to microwaves, there are thousands of options with different power levels and sizes. However, if you have limited space, then you should consider getting a compact microwave.

If you are looking for a compact microwave, there are some excellent options on this list.

  • Whirlpool 0.5 Cubic Feet 750-Watt Countertop Microwave – Whirlpool’s compact microwave is an efficient choice if you have a small space to work with. It is small, but gives you the same power as a regular size microwave. This model is also suitable for quick heatings and comes with a +30s button, has enough space for a dinner plate, and won’t take any more space from your kitchen than necessary. Note: It comes with a lock button if you have small children that like to play with the kitchen appliances.
  • Daewoo Retro 0.7 Cubic Feet 700-Watt Countertop Microwave – The Daewoo Retro is stylish and efficient, and its unique color (mint green) will make your kitchen stand out from the rest. It is compact and powerful, as it powers up to 700 watts. It also offers a child lock, and it is relatively easy to use and install.
  • Panasonic 1.2 Cubic Feet Microwave – Panasonic compact microwave has 1200 watts of power. It comes with a GeniusSensor that can adjust its settings for different food types. It also comes with a child lock, delay start option, and preset menu items. It also comes with the Keep Warm feature, which maintains your food warm until you are ready to eat.

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The place you’ll place your microwave must be of easy access and functionality. You should avoid placing it near cabinets with food or close to the fridge.

If you have a small kitchen, then a cabinet or drawer could be the best solution. Use a trim kit if you want the microwave to blend with the kitchen’s style. Over-the-range microwaves are another great option as it gives you two appliances for the space of one.

Overall, make every bit of space count and go for the best option on your budget.

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