The Easiest Way to Clean a Microwave With Lemon

Introduction: Make Lemonade and Clean Your Microwave


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You can easily clean your microwave and make lemonade, at the same time. In this Instructable, Microwave oven will be called a Microwave.  I know Microwaves are different than Microwave ovens,just like drill motors are different than drills, but most people refer to them as drills just like most people refer to Microwave ovens as Microwaves.  (This should keep my Grandfather happy)


How to clean a microwave with vinegar

White vinegar is a potent cleaning agent, you can use apple cider vinegar also) and you can combine it with lemon for an even more intense clean.

Fill the microwavable bowl with 200ml of water and add two tablespoons of white vinegar. Place a toothpick into the bowl, shut the door, and run on high for five minutes. When the timer goes off, don’t open the microwave right away. Leave the door shut for a couple of minutes to let the steam continue to work. The steam will help loosen caked-on bits of food and the vinegar will help eliminate any odors.

When you open the door, be careful pulling the bowl out; it will be very hot. Remove the turntable tray carefully, it will be hot as well, and wash it in the sink in soapy, warm water or put it in the dishwasher if okayed in your microwave’s manufacturer leaflet. Using a damp cloth, sponge scourer or a magic eraser (available from Amazon), wipe down the inside of the microwave and watch the dirt come right off. Allow to dry with the door open.

It’s worth noting that you can also follow the same advice if you’re wondering how to clean an oven too! 

(Image credit: Getty images)

How to clean a smelly microwave

A smelly microwave isn’t a pleasant one, but whether you’ve been heating up spicy food or managed to burn something in there, there are ways to fix it. If you’ve followed the above methods to clean the inside, your microwave is likely smelling better already.

But if it’s just a smell you need to deal with, start by airing out your microwave by leaving the door open. Then add a small bowl of baking soda to your microwave when you shut the door. This will absorb the bad smells. For extra potency, add a few drops of lemon juice.

You could also try microwaving a small bowl of 2 tbsp white vinegar and 1 cup water for a couple of minutes. Then let the microwave air out. The vinegar will absorb the bad smells.

Ways to Clean Your Microwave

Apple Cider Vinegar

Thanks to its acidic nature, apple cider vinegar is an effective way to cut through old buildup inside your microwave. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Fill a Bowl. Combine equal amounts of water and apple cider vinegar in a microwave-safe bowl. Avoid filling it all the way to prevent any accidental spills.
  2. Heat. Set the microwave to a high heat and heat the vinegar solution for four minutes. As it heats, the steam will help to loosen the buildup within your microwave.
  3. Wipe. When the time is up, remove the bowl carefully in case it’s hot. Take a damp cloth and wipe the entire inside of the microwave. Make sure you get into the corners, top and underneath the turntable.

Baking Soda

If you’re noticing an unpleasant odor in your microwave, it’s time to deodorize. But how? We prefer to use baking soda since it effectively absorbs odors and creates a neutral environment. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Create a Mixture. Start by mixing three tablespoons of baking soda with a cup of water in a microwave-safe bowl. Mix it well to combine.
  2. Turn Up the Heat. Place the bowl in the microwave and heat for three minutes. As the baking soda heats, it will effectively loosen buildup and other splatters inside the microwave. It will also absorb bad odors, so you can enjoy a clean-smelling microwave.
  3. Wipe Clean. Remove the bowl carefully so you don’t burn yourself. Then use a damp cloth to wipe the inside of the microwave. Take the turntable out and give it a good wipe as well as underneath it.

Vinegar and Lemon

Vinegar is one of the most popular natural cleaning products you can find — it’s also one of our favorites. What you may not know about vinegar is that it also neutralizes odors and disinfects. It’s the perfect solution for a microwave. Here’s how to use it:

  1. Make a Solution. Mix one cup of vinegar, one cup of water and two tablespoons of lemon juice in a microwave-safe bowl. The lemon juice will provide additional grease-cutting power while toning down the strong scent of the vinegar.
  2. Wipe the Exterior. Use a small amount of the solution on a cloth to wipe down the exterior of the microwave, especially the handle. The vinegar and lemon will disinfect and remove any greasy marks on the outside of the appliance.
  3. Heat. Place the bowl in the middle of your microwave and heat for two minutes. The vinegar will release steam and quickly loosen buildup and kill bacteria.
  4. Remove. Take the bowl out of the microwave taking care not to burn yourself. Next, use a damp cloth to wipe the inside of the microwave. Then, remove the turntable to wipe underneath and around it.

Dish Soap

Dish soap is something we all have in our homes. It’s easy to use and can add a fresh scent to your microwave. Here’s how to clean your microwave using dish soap:

  1. Fill a Bowl. In a microwave-safe bowl, add two cups of warm water and one tablespoon of dish soap. Give it a good mix to incorporate.
  2. Heat in Microwave. Place the bowl in the microwave and heat for two minutes. If the water isn’t steaming, give it another minute or two.
  3. Wipe to Clean. Remove the bowl carefully from the microwave and wipe the inside with a damp cloth. Pay close attention to the corners and underneath the turntable.


Steam is a natural and effective way to clean and sanitize your microwave. For this method, all you need is warm water. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Fill a Bowl. Add two cups of warm water to a microwave-safe bowl. Make sure the water is on the warmer side, this will help to create steam quicker.
  2. Create Steam. Place the bowl in the microwave and heat for two to four minutes. Check to see if the water is steaming. Once it’s steaming, close the microwave and allow the bowl to sit for a couple of minutes. Because we’re only using water, it needs to sit for a little while to really work its magic.
  3. Remove and Clean After carefully removing the bowl from the microwave, take a damp cloth and wipe the inside. Remove the turntable as well to clean thoroughly underneath.


Lemon works effectively at cutting through greasy spills within a microwave. It’s also super easy to do and you’re likely to have everything you need right in your kitchen. Here’s how to clean microwaves with lemon:

  1. Add Water. Add one cup of warm water to a microwave-safe bowl. Cut a lemon in half and squeeze the juice into the bowl. Add both halves of the lemon to the water.
  2. Heat. Put the bowl in the microwave and heat on high for three minutes. Once it’s done, leave the bowl in the closed microwave for five minutes. This will give it a little extra time to work, giving you a better result.
  3. Clean. Take the bowl out of the microwave and use a damp cloth to wipe the inside. Remove the turntable as well and give it a thorough wipe.

Step 6: Microwave the Juice

Microwave the juice.  I like to run the Microwave for three minutes fourteen seconds, then move the container to the other side of the turntable, and run it for another three minutes fourteen seconds.  I then have a little chuckle to myself and think about circumference.

How to Clean Greasy Microwave Doors

It’s not just the inside that counts: Remove smudges and grease from the microwave’s exterior with these tips and tricks.

  1. Clean the entire door — edges, both sides and where it seals the oven — with a sponge dampened with water and dipped in a little baking soda. Wipe with a damp cloth or sponge to rinse.
  2. For a greasy window, clean with a 50/50 mixture of vinegar and water. Rinse and wipe dry.
  3. For heavy grease build-up and stuck-on splatters, wipe your microwave door down with an all-purpose, grease-cutting cleaner (like Mr. Clean Clean Freak Mist) or a sudsy mix of dish soap and water. Apply the cleaner with a cloth or sponge to prevent cleaner from getting into the vent holes. Scrub with a non-scratch pad (such as Scotch-Brite), if needed. Similarly, never spray electronic controls directly with cleaner to avoid damage. Always apply the cleaner to a cloth first, then wipe the controls.

Method 3: Lemon + Salt

Things you need:

  •    A tablespoon of salt
  •    Lemon juice
  •    A rough piece of cloth / Kitchen towel
  •    Microwave bowl

What to do?  

  1. Take 2 or 3 tablespoons of salt and squeeze a lemon in it.
  2. You are supposed to mix the amount of lemon juice and salt in a ratio that results in the formation of a thick paste.
  3. Add a little amount of water to dissolve the salt to make the solution more spreadable.
  4. Now apply the paste on the dirty areas where the spillovers are stuck.
  5. Let the paste work on the spots. This will not take more than 5 minutes.
  6. Gently brush off the paste and wipe it all off with the help of a rough piece of cloth. Instead of the cloth, you can also use kitchen towels. Both work well.
  7. Finally, spritz kitchen cleaning sprays on the tray, the glass part, and the door. Simply wipe with the help of a cloth.( this step is optional)

All three methods work well! You can choose a plan which suits you the best!


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