How to Deodorize a Microwave

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It’s not hard to clean your microwave. In this post, I’m showing you how to deodorize a microwave quickly and easily.

microwave showing in a cabinet.

I think we’ve all been there, right?

Dirty microwave making you feel ick? One of the most unappetizing views is looking into a microwave splattered with food. It’s also a big pet peeve of mine.

I know for one that my kids aren’t the best at covering up the tops of plates and bowls before they microwave. Which inevitably leads to spaghetti sauce spray and food explosions everywhere. Gross!

But then again, they know that I will clean it up.

I’ve since invested in some smart microwave accessories to help contain the mess. More on than below.

Don’t sweat it. The dirty microwave, that is. No need to run out and buy a brand new microwave.

I’ve got a simple method for cleaning your microwave and it will take the stink out too.

This method only takes about 10-15 minutes, from start to finish.

Let’s get started.

Materials Needed

  • Baking Soda
  • Lemon
  • Microfiber Cloth or Paper Towel
  • Vanilla (or coffee grinds)

How to Deodorize your Microwave

Follow these steps below and you’ll have a clean microwave in no time.

Step 1: Remove the turntable and ring from the microwave

How to deodorize a microwave:  remove the tuntable from the microwave and wash in hot soap water.  Soak it if needed.

The first step is taking out the glass turntable in your microwave. And remove the ring it sits on too. It is so much easier to clean outside the microwave.

Transfer the turntable to your sink and wash in hot, soapy water. You can wash the ring too. If your glass turntable has caked-on foods, you can let it soak while you move on to step 2.

Step 2: Microwave Water and Lemon until Hot and Steamy

open microwave with lemon/water mixture in dish

Take a microwave-safe bowl or glass measuring cup (I use my Pyrex ) and fill it with a cup of water. Squeeze one lemon in there. The whole thing! Be generous – the lemon really helps with the smell.

Microwave your water/lemon mixture until it’s hot and steamy. For me, it’s about 2 minutes. You can leave it in there for about 5 minutes after. The steam will help soften any caked-on bits of food and the lemon helps with the smell.

Don’t dump your water – we will be using it soon. 🙂

Step 3: Sprinkle a load of baking soda in your Microwave.

cleaning out a  microwave with a microfiber rag and baking soda

Now that your microwave dirt is softened, we have to scrub it off. That’s what the baking soda does. Sprinkle a load of it in your microwave. Use a microfiber cloth or paper towel and just scrub the baking soda around your microwave. Yes, the baking soda will be dry.

The baking soda here does double duty. The grittiness of the baking soda removes dirt and debris so much better and easier than just a cloth. Baking soda also helps to absorb the odors.

Step 4: Wipe out the Baking Soda Scrub

Now you have a microwave covered with baking soda! After scrubbing, you should find that a lot of the food debris came off. We just need to wipe it all out. Yuck.

Grab your lemon water and dip in your cloth or paper towel. Use this to remove all the baking soda, dirt, stains and food debris.

You can also use this wipe down the exterior and don’t forget the inside of the door too.

It should be looking pretty good at this point!

Step 5: TWO WAYS to get the smell out of your microwave

pouring vanilla in a small dish

You can return your clean turntable and ring to your microwave. The lemon should have helped with the smell.

But…. let’s make it smell even better!

There are two ways to do this. One is using vanilla and the other way uses dry coffee grinds.

Let’s start with vanilla …

Take a small microwavable bowl or dish and fill it with vanilla. Microwave it until hot (2-3 minutes).

Leave it in your microwave for as long as you can – well, practically speaking. Try for at least 15 minutes, an hour or if you are doing this at night, leave it in there overnight.

Vanilla smells so good when it’s heated!

It will smell like you just baked cookies in your microwave.

put dish of vanilla in microwave
How to Deodorize your Microwave

Don’t want to use Vanilla?

Try coffee grinds. You don’t have to heat these! Just place a small bowl of fresh coffee grinds in your microwave. The grinds help absorb odors. I do this all the time in my refrigerator and it works magically!

By the way – this coffee grinds method works wonderfully for your refrigerator too. Takes the stink right out!

Step 6: Bonus Points – How to Shine up Stainless Steel Exterior

spray bottle with rubbing alcohol on countertop.

In my cleaning experience, I have found the best way to clean stainless steel is by using my magic Natural Disinfectant Spray with a lint-free cloth.

showing clean stainless steel microwave

You guys – it will be so clean and shiny after this! I used to also use Weiman Wipes, and I still like them. But more and more, I’m loving the spray method much better. It’s so much easier! And it will also take care of the germs that tend to linger on microwave handles and the number pads.

Microwave Accessories that Help you Keep it Clean

Now that our microwaves are clean – let’s try and keep it that way.

I swear by this microwave splatter cover. It’s dishwasher safe and collapsible for easy storage. Keep it right next to your microwave so you can pull it out when needed.

I also own a set of these silicone covers. They are super handy for covering bowls and also dishwasher safe.

These covers really help to contain the messes and are easy enough to just throw on when you know you need it. (Reheated spaghetti dinner, anyone?)

So there you have it! My easy peasy method for cleaning and deodorizing your microwave. Let me know how this works for you.

Check out my other cleaning posts while you’re at it…

Until next time!

xo Karen

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