11 Places to Put the Microwave in Your Kitchen

Discover where one of the most important appliances goes best in a variety of kitchens – we are talking about the microwave, of course!

By Carly Kilpatrick


Everybody has a microwave in their kitchen, right? Well, almost everybody, as the United States Government has suggested that over 90 percent of homes contain at least one microwave, making it one of the most common home appliances outside of a refrigerator.  People are busier than ever, working longer hours and commuting further, so sometimes (oftentimes) they need to heat a meal up in a hurry. Enter the microwave, as fast and effective as anything on the market when it comes to making meals on the go.


You’re going to want to make sure everything flows smoothly from the stove to the fridge to the sink. For this reason, don’t overlook the placement of the microwave next time you’re renovating or redesigning your kitchen. Different spots are going to work better for different people – we don’t all have the same amount of space or the same layout. But, on the whole, these are some of the 11 places to put the microwave in your kitchen that are widely considered to work the best.


On the Countertop

This is far and away the most common spot to see a microwave in a modern kitchen. It easily stays within the natural triangle flow of the kitchen, while remaining within easy reach during times of cooking. It’s the most simple and convenient, and many kitchens don’t have fancy built in cabinetry to store their microwave, so the countertop suits them just fine.


However, there are a few downsides to placing your microwave directly on the countertop. For one, it takes up valuable space that could be used for other things, making your kitchen less space efficient.




Over the Stove

Placing the microwave above the stove is a great way to consolidate cooking appliances and save space. It’s so convenient and common that many units come like this together, built-in for added simplicity and efficiency. It can also really help streamline the cooking process, as everything is within arm’s reach. If you don’t happen to have a built in be careful that the microwave isn’t directly above the stove, as this can cause ventilation problems in your kitchen.




Under the Counter

If you consider your counter space sacred, then you might want to consider under the counter, as it’s one of the best places to put the microwave in your kitchen for those trying to create as much space as possible. This can be a bit problematic for taller and older homeowners, as they will have to do a good deal of bending – and be cautious of small children because they can likely reach it. But, overall it is one of the better locations in any kitchen.





Appliance Wall

Appliance walls used to be incredibly popular in kitchens, especially during the 60s and 70s. It allowed space for two ovens, which was key when cooking and entertaining large parties. The set-up is one of the most efficient places for a microwave, as it sort of just blends right into the natural fabric of the kitchen. However, it is not the cheapest option, as all the extra wiring and cabinetry required can be too costly for some homeowners.




In a Drawer

You might find your microwave works best hidden away in a drawer, as the microwave isn’t the most attractive of kitchen appliances. If you can spare the drawer space, this might be the exact option you’ve been searching for. Some newer model microwaves even come built to be placed in drawers, so they fit nicely and open at the top for ease of use.




In a Cabinet

This is also a great option for homeowners that don’t like the visual of a microwave in their kitchen – hide it in a spare cabinet! It shouldn’t be too hard to find one that is the right size, and as long as you have an outlet running to your cabinet, you should be all set. For many, one of the best places to put the microwave in your kitchen is somewhere where it’s out of sight when not in use.




Hidden in Pantry

Another variation on the getting your microwave out of sight and out of mind theme, is hiding it in the pantry. Of course, many homes don’t have the space for a walk-in or butler pantry, but if you do, you should really consider stashing the microwave there. It’ s also a great location because the pantry will be where all the snacks are, so you’re just a few short steps away from microwaving that bag of popcorn.




Wall Mount

A nice way to fit your microwave seamlessly into your kitchen is with a wall mount, or built-in cabinet for this specific purpose. The mount allows for easy access when you need to prep a meal, but it doesn’t get in the way of your workspace flow, it’s the best of both worlds. It can be an actual wall mount, or just a cabinet fit for this purpose, either way it’s one of the best places to put the microwave in your kitchen.




Angled in Corner

You are going to want to free up as much space in your kitchen as you can, but sometimes you just don’t have a ton of storage options. Angling your microwave so it fits nicely in a corner is a great way to utilize space. It faces out towards the rest of the room, so the ease of use is a major plus in this configuration. However, when put in a corner, there will be a bit of unused space behind the microwave, which is something you should think about when planning.




In the Island

Placing the microwave in the island is a great way to get it out of sight without making it impossible to reach. When employed this way, it helps you get extra utility out of your island, which is so often underutilized, and often just used as a random storage space. This will help free up the main cabinets for storing things you will actually need during the process of cooking, helping the kitchen flow more freely.





Above the Range

Similar to above the stove, placing your microwave above the range can have many benefits. This works eve better in a compact kitchen, saving space and making preparing meals easier. But, if the microwave is too high, it may be difficult for shorter homeowners to reach above the stove and heat something up. Even worse, they could get burned if the stove happens to be on at the same time. Still, it’s one of the most popular places you’ll see microwaves in kitchens.




Finally, never overlook the placement of the microwave next time you’re renovating or redesigning your home. Different spots are going to work better for some people, depending on space and interior design elements, but always try to situate it in a way where it flows with the rest of the room. Luckily, these are proven to be some of the best places to put your microwave in your kitchen, and surely one of them will work for you.


Images used with permission, courtesy of www.shutterstock.com

Next: Using Decorative Dishes in Your Interior Design