Depending on the specific model of RV you use, your built-in microwave may be seriously out of date. While this usually isn’t a safety concern, they can take forever to heat up your food. What’s more, they usually ruin your food once they’ve finally finished the job.
If you bought your RV several years ago, or opted for a slightly more affordable model, you might be surprised by how far the technology for RV microwaves has come in the past several years. Modern ovens are fast, energy-efficient, and produce food you might actually want to eat.
This page details our top picks for the best RV microwaves available on the market. We’ve considered features, capacity, wattages, and other elements to find the best of the best. We also touch on some of the most important things to keep in mind when shopping around.
Read on to learn more.
The Two Main Types of RV Microwave Oven
Before we go any further, it’s worth getting to grips with the two main types of microwave that exist. Each variant serves a slightly different purpose, so it’s important to understand the difference before spending your money.
“Range” is referring to your stovetop here. These microwaves are ideally suited for smaller RV kitchens and are designed to fit above most built-in stovetops. They’re typically installed directly in the wall and come with the majority of smaller RV specs.
Part of what allows these microwaves to remain so compact is the ventilation design. The main unit and ventilation system are usually integrated, saving a whole lot of space. If you don’t want to take up a bunch of room with your oven, consider an over-the-range option.
Can you guess where these microwaves go? Yep — on the countertop. They normally use rubberized feet to stop them from sliding around and can sit on any flat surface that can support their weight.
This option usually comes with a bit more capacity so they’re a great choice for people who regularly microwave larger volumes of food when camping. If you don’t like the sound of dealing with a more complicated installation, we recommend opting for a countertop model.
You can usually just slap one on your counter, plug it in, and get cooking.
Best Convection Oven Microwaves for Your RV
This section contains our top picks for the best microwave ovens available in 2021. We’ve trawled through online reviews, opinion pieces, and comparison sites to come up with our own curated list.
Our main considerations have been size, wattage, price, and feature set. If you’re still confused about what to look for in a new RV microwave, be sure to check out our buyer’s guide further down this page. It’s full of our tips and tricks for making the right decision.
This easy to use countertop model combines handy features and great performance with a seriously compelling price tag. While there are more powerful options on the market, the overall balance of price and features here really caught our eye.
Wattage: 1100 watts
Dimensions: 17.14 x 20.51 x 12.83 inches
Capacity: 1.2 cubic feet
Extra features: smart sensor, easy-clean interior, ECO mode.
The so-called “smart sensor” on this option immediately caught our attention. It’s designed to take the hassle out of tweaking your power levels and cook times. Just let the microwave do the guesswork for you. While it’s not a miracle worker, it seems to do a pretty great job of cooking your food well.
The large digital display and straightforward UI of the EM131 will be a breath of fresh air if you’re used to older, less intuitive RV microwaves. After a long day of trekking or fishing, the last thing you want to do is mess around with an oven that doesn’t want to just work.
For late-night camping snackers, it’s possible to disable the “done” alert on this microwave. You’ll be able to heat up your food without disturbing your other campers. There are plenty of pre-configured cooking settings to choose from with this Toshiba.
From one-touch popcorn, to a quick defrost setting, this thing can handle practically anything you throw at it. The 10 available power settings do a great job of adapting to different foods and required temperatures on the fly.
Keep in mind that Toshiba offers a 1-year limited warranty for this model so you’ll have to look into extensions if you want coverage for longer.
- Great price
- Smart sensor for automatic power levels
- Straightforward display and controls
- Can be muted
- It’s a little bulky
- It’s speedy but could be quicker
This countertop KitchenAid option gets a lot of things right. It delivers excellent cooking quality and will gently heat your meals to perfection. One of the worst things about cheaper microwaves is that they can basically ruin your food. Not so with this guy.
Wattage: 1100 watts
Dimensions: 18 x 15 x 13.88 inches
Capacity: 12 inches
Extra features: special interior coating, full-size oven performance, pre-programmed settings
This option is a little more pricey than some of the competition, but it delivers an exceptional level of cooking performance. You’ll be able to do much more than just heat your food up with this thing. Expect results that are basically the same as with a conventional oven.
If your RV spec didn’t include a two-burner stovetop and oven, this is an excellent choice in our opinion. The 12-inch capacity has more than enough room for 1-2 people and its pre-programmed power settings can handle a broad range of requirements.
Everything from your bagels to your roasts will come out great. There are four variants of this KitchenAid available, each one more expensive than the last. The main advantage of the more premium models is that they come with an increased number of cooking options.
The most expensive variant uses a “CeremaShield” coating that’s non-stick for effortless cooking with far less cleaning necessary. One thing to keep in mind is that this KitchenAid is quite a heavy unit. One it’s installed, this shouldn’t be an issue, but it’s worth knowing in case you plan on carrying or repositioning your oven often.
With a one-year, hassle-free warranty and a standard of cooking that will remind you of home, this is a great option if you’ve got the cash to splash.
- Excellent cooking results
- Premium model uses a non-stick coating
- Plenty of room
- Great for RVs that don’t have a kitchen
- It’s quite pricey
This over-the-range model from Sharp packs an adjustable ventilation system, quick-action cooking, and impressive performance into a compact, stylish package. If you have the time and experience necessary to handle an installation, this is a great option.
Wattage: 850 watts
Dimensions: 29-15/16 by 16-11/32 by 15-9/32 inches
Capacity: 1.1 cubic feet
Extra features: adjustable ventilation, smart sensor, 2-color display
With any over-the-range RV microwave, the ventilation is going to be an important aspect to consider. Each RV is different and will therefore handle ventilation a little differently. The three position options for ventilation that come with the R1874T are great to see.
The vents can be set to either a horizontal, vertical, or ductless configuration. This level of versatility makes this one of the best RV microwaves we’ve seen in 2021. Like the Toshiba countertop option earlier on this list, this microwave uses smart sensors for easy cooking.
Gone are the days where you have to guess the right setting and cross your fingers that everything will cook properly. You can now rely on your microwave to do the thinking for you! For a more hands-on approach to your settings, the interactive display is a joy to use.
It uses 2 colors and makes it easy to tweak your power and timings to your heart’s content. With 1.1 cubic feet of space, this thing should have plenty of room for most meals and snacks. If you have an RV that could use a few space-saving items, this is a safe bet in our opinion.
Depending on where you buy this microwave, you may be able to take advantage of Sharp’s legendary utilities warranty. This offers significantly more coverage than the competition so it’s worth checking out.
- Space-saving over-the-range setup
- Adjustable ventilation system
- Smart sensors
- 2-color interactive display
- A little less powerful than some others
This rugged countertop microwave should be able to withstand a fair bit of abuse while you’re on the road. Its tough, no-nonsense design also offers an excellent standard of cooking. With both microwave and grill functionality, this thing can do it all.
Wattage: 1000 watts
Dimensions: 21.20″ L x 19.00″ W x 12.20″ H
Capacity: 1.2 cubic feet
Extra features: includes grill, rugged design, multi-defrost settings
This is an amazing RV microwave oven, especially if you rely on frozen meals a lot when camping. With not one, but two individual defrost functions, the CMW-200 can prepare your meals with a higher level of sophistication than most.
Add this to the fact that it comes with a dedicated grill function too and you’re looking at a seriously compelling package. We’re big fans of this one. This won’t be useful for everyone, but this Cuisinart model even comes with its own recipe book.
It’s actually got some fairly good ideas in there which may come in handy when inspiration fails you on the road. Another thing we love about the CMW-200 is that its interior is designed to stay odor-free and easy to clean.
There’s nothing worse than stinking out your RV with just one meal. Designs like this one go a long way in minimizing this issue. The included cooking stand that comes with this model provides a handy extra surface to maximize your available cooking space.
With the CMW-200’s 1.2 cubic feet capacity, you’ll have plenty of room to prepare all your favorite meals. If you need a capable RV microwave that can stand up to the rough and tumble environment of RV life, give this one a try.
- Rugged design
- Grill included
- Multi-defrost options
- Odor-free interior
- Cuisinart’s customer service could be better
The built-in design of this capable little microwave will save some RV users a ton of space. If you’re already feeling a little cramped on your trips, this one is well worth considering. If you can deal with a minor install process, it’s a fantastic piece of kit.
Wattage: 900 watts
Dimensions: 19 x 14 x 11 inches
Capacity: 0.9 cubic feet
Extra features: compact design, even cooking, quick-adjust UI
This thing is built with space saving in mind. With just 0.9 cubic feet of capacity, it comes with a little less room than most. While this may put some buyers off, others will appreciate the amount of space this can gain them in their smaller RVs.
The smaller footprint of the MW912BWDK works in tandem with its built-in design that slots it right into the wall. The result is significantly more counter space and fewer bulky items lying around your RV.
Don’t let the size of this one fool you either — it’s still more than capable of rustling up some delicious food. In just one tap, you’ll be able to cook a broad range of foods from popcorn, to pizza, to your favorite beverages.
The 6 pre-programmed settings that come with the MW912BWDK do a great job of handling the most common RV snacks. The one-touch electronic controls are also refreshingly easy to navigate when manually setting timings and power levels.
With reliable, even cooking, a compact design, and a control system that’s a breeze to use, this is one of our favorite RV microwaves in 2021.
- Compact design
- Reliable, even cooking
- Great control system
- Might not have enough capacity for some
This option from Daewoo boasts an intelligent interior design, powerful cooking performance, and satisfying tactile buttons. It’s an excellent countertop solution in our opinion. It should perform very well for you wherever you are.
Wattage: 900-1500 watts
Dimensions: 20.2 x 15.8 x 12.2 inches
Capacity: 1 cubic foot
Extra features: honeycomb interior for better cooking, tactile buttons, stainless steel
The honeycomb interior of the KOC-9Q4DS is pretty impressive in our opinion. It’s designed to reflect microwaves intelligently and boost cooking results. You’ll enjoy up to a 15% improvement to overall cooking performance with this microwave.
This is a versatile oven that can handle a ton of different settings and food types. With a power range of 900-1500 watts and 10 different cooking modes, you’ll be throwing out feast after camping feast!
After you’re done cooking up a storm, the easy-clean setting on the KOC-9Q4DS should come in handy. Just put a small bowl of water inside your oven, choose the steam clean setting, and let your machine do the rest.
Your oven will stay clean and cooking-ready for years to come with just a small amount of regular upkeep. One thing that can damage RV microwaves over time is poor heating designs. The fan system on the KOC-9Q4DS does a great job of mitigating this issue.
After each cooking cycle, they intelligently kick into action and bring your oven’s temperature back down to safer levels.
- Intelligent honeycomb design
- Large power range with 10 settings
- Great cleaning function
- Cooks a touch too slowly for our tastes
You may be wondering why it’s even worth looking for a more premium microwave option; many RVs come with a built-in oven that seems to work just fine. However, there are several reasons why we feel it’s a good idea to check out what’s available in 2021.
Microwave features, prices, and results have come a long way in the past few years. They can pack more punch than you might expect.
If your RV is a little older or smaller, your built-in microwave probably takes forever to heat anything up sufficiently. This used to be an unfortunate compromise of fitting a smaller unit into a vehicle with less space available.
These days, compact ovens still have more than enough power to get the job done quickly. A microwave upgrade can shave a significant amount of cooking time off each meal.
The stereotype with microwave cooking is that it overcooks your food and spits out a dry, dull mess. While this is certainly true of less versatile machines, the options on the list above are designed to deliver a much higher standard of cooking than you might be used to.
With grilling options, smart sensors, and general design improvements over the past few years, you don’t need to worry nearly as much about cooking issues anymore.
This is especially true if you opt for an over-the-range model. Many smaller RVs can quickly start to feel cramped if you cram in too many extra machines and gadgets. A well-designed built-in microwave or compact countertop oven can save you a ton of space when camping.
Even several inches can make a world of difference if you’ll be bringing the kids and all their extra gear.
Poorly designed and older microwaves tend to do a pretty poor job of managing the heat they generate. Without proper ventilation or insulation, the rest of your RV can soon warm up and smell of the food you’re heating. With more recent models, ventilation and odor prevention have come a long way.
Take the Cuisinart oven on this page for instance. It’s designed with an anti-odor interior that will help keep your RV smelling fresher for longer. The last thing you want is to stink out your vehicle, especially when camping in larger groups who have to share the space.
In our opinion, the options listed above represent fantastic value for money. That said, they’re far from the only ovens out there that are worth your money. For this reason, it’s important to get to grips with the kind of things you’ll need to keep in mind if you’re hoping to find a good deal on your own.
This section is designed to take the head scratching out of finding a good RV microwave.
Higher up on this page, we discussed the two most common types of RV microwave you’re likely to encounter when shopping. In case you need a refresher, we touch on them again below:
- Countertop microwaves — sit on your countertop and require no special installation
- Over-the-range and built-in microwaves — usually involve some form of installation process and electrical tinkering
While both options have the potential to serve you well, it’s worth thinking twice about over-the-range options if you don’t know how to install them. There are usually plenty of tutorials and user guides online, but be sure to double-check how easy it is to install any specific model you consider.
If you take the “easy” route and go with a countertop model, pay close attention to its external dimensions. Don’t get distracted by models that you just don’t have the counter space for.
The capacity of a microwave is sometimes also referred to as the “internal dimensions”. Either way, it describes how much stuff you’ll actually be able to fit inside. If you’re a family or a group larger than 2 people, it’s probably best to avoid a capacity lower than 1 cubic foot.
If you plan on using your microwave a lot, this just might not be enough room to get everything cooked efficiently. Remember that raw dimensions aren’t always the only thing you’ll need to consider.
Some models, like the Cuisinart oven on this page for example, include an oven-safe stand that provides an elevated surface for extra food.
Features like these can significantly boost your available capacity, so being savvy to them when shopping can prove useful.
The maximum power of your RV microwave is another important factor to consider. There’s no use buying up a shiny new machine if it doesn’t come with the juice you’ll need to cook all your camping food.
A range from around 800-1200 watts is usually a pretty safe bet, but some models can go up to 1500 or higher. Don’t be too quick to dismiss options with wattage on the lower end. They sometimes make use of clever design tricks to make the most out of every last watt.
The Daewoo oven on this page is a great example of this. It uses a honeycomb design for its interior that boosts overall cooking performance by up to 15%.
Another important power consideration is the number of different cook settings you’ll have at your disposal. A microwave that doesn’t make it easy to quickly adjust your power across a broad gamut of levels is best avoided.
This is especially important if you plan on defrosting or reheating leftovers with your oven.
Some of the best microwaves on the market come with some surprisingly sophisticated cooking options. Smart sensors are a prime example of what we’re talking about here.
Back when microwaves were simpler and less efficient, you’d have to manually input your power settings and timings to adjust for the different foods you planned on cooking. This process works but it basically involves quite a bit of guesswork.
With more modern ovens, like the Toshiba and Sharp offerings mentioned above, it’s possible to rely on intelligent sensor technology that configures your settings for you on the fly. If you regularly cook lots of different food types, this kind of feature is a must in our opinion.
Other cooking options to keep in mind are the pre-configured settings that come with most ovens. Any oven you buy should come with at least 5 built-in settings, but many of the best RV microwave ovens offer 10 or more.
The ability to quickly press just one button to cook your meal with settings that won’t ruin it can be an absolute Godsend. Check out our options above to get started.
Now that we’ve covered the bulk of features you’re likely to encounter, it’s worth taking stock of what you actually need your oven to do for you. The clearer you are about which features are essential to you, the easier it will be to make the right decision.
Plenty of models out there offer fancy features designed to catch the eye. If you can actually see yourself using them then go for it. Otherwise, it’s best to stick to more reasonable ovens that will still perform very well.
If you haven’t already, double-check the power system of your RV and make sure any microwave you consider will be compatible. This is especially worthwhile if you like to camp “off-grid”.
More power-hungry options can seem compelling at first glance, but they can chew through your reserve power if you’re not careful. The more clued up you are about how much power your RV can handle, the easier it will be to find an oven that fits.
Watch out for microwaves that are advertised as “RV-ready” but don’t actually come with the durability you’ll need on the road. Camping usually involves a higher level of foot traffic and carelessness than in a conventional kitchen.
For this reason, it’s important to buy a model that will keep working for years to come. Tough metal or plastic exteriors can do a great job of standing up to a fair bit of abuse. The Cuisinart model on this page has a particularly rugged design. Check it out.
Ask yourself how much you’re willing to spend on a new microwave. It’s not the most glamorous purchase in the world, so it’s a good idea to set boundaries for yourself early on. As a general rule of thumb, options that are below $50 probably aren’t the best idea.
The price point may seem appealing, but they’re far less likely to perform as well as you need them to. What’s more, their durability can be pretty questionable at best. You should expect to pay between $90-$200 for a decent model that’s modern enough to go the distance.
All of the options listed above deliver on this front.
As mentioned higher up on this page, over-the-range microwaves are only worth it if you know how to install them. We outline a very brief overview of what this process looks like below.
If you’re still left scratching your head after reading this section, you have two options:
- Hire a professional to handle the work for you
- Check out this incredible overview from the YouTube channel Tool Craze.
- Remove your old microwave model
- Switch off power to the unit
- Carefully remove elements like the trim and other securing brackets
- Ease the unit out and disconnect from your electrical system
- Fit the trim and other pre-config elements to your new oven
- Carefully connect your new oven to your electrical supply
- Ease the unit into its new space
- Reconnect the power
We hope this page has helped you begin to narrow down your search. Remember that it always pays to do your own research before pulling the trigger. No one knows your requirements better than you do.
Use our buyer’s guide and tips above to get started with your own search. Set a reasonable budget and list of “must-have” features for yourself when shopping. It can make it much easier to eliminate dud options quickly.
Whichever microwave you pick, we hope it serves you well. Happy camping!