A microwave is an amazing machine that can cook food in its own way. A solo or simple microwave is mostly capable of simple cooking, reheating of leftovers, and defrosting frozen food by extended microwave cooking time.
However, when baking cakes and baked goods, you usually need a convection mode. So which type of microwave oven is best for baking cake? Keep on reading to find out. However, here’s a quick spoiler—both an ordinary microwave and a special 2-in-1 microwave can bake cakes.
Which Type of Microwave Oven is Best for Baking Cake?
A convection microwave works best for baking cake because it has a convection mode that works quite like a standard electric oven or perhaps more like a convection electric oven. Yes, it requires preheating. Yes, it distributes heat better than a conventional oven due to its convection fans.
Yes, the best microwave oven type for baking cake is a microwave that doubles as a standard oven. On that note, you can technically cook those cookies or bake those baked goods when push comes to shove in a microwave. You just need at least a kilowatt of power and the right recipe.
Convection microwaves are best for baking cake due to their convection mode while pure microwaves require at least a kilowatt of power to allow for decent baking. The results tend to be subpar to ovens or microwaves with convection mode though.
Is It Possible to Bake Other Things Than Cakes on the Microwave?
You can bake many types of baked goods on the microwave aside from cakes. Search on Google and you’ll find recipes for mug cookies, mug brownies, or mug cakes using the microwave function. You can use ordinary recipes for baking cakes using the convection mode of a convection microwave though.
Mugs and cups work better as baking trays with microwaves compared to ovens and their use of convection/conduction heat. You can make literal cupcakes in the microwave using cups too. However, you need loads of watts to at least crisp those cakes and cookies.
You’ll also need to work around cake portions due to limited space. You have to cook your multi-layered cake layer by layer and the size of the cake is definitely limited to the capacity of your microwave oven.
Do You Need a Convection Function to Bake in a Microwave?
No. You can cook your cookie or bake your cake inside a microwave using a turntable solo microwave or flatbed commercial combo microwave with enough power. It’s especially workable with a grill microwave.
You can use the combo, convection, or grill mode to bake the baked goods. The thing is that you’re technically not using a microwave if you’re using it in convection mode. You can also switch between modes.
This allows quick cooking of the bread part of the cake while baking the outer layers. Combo mode allows you to bake and microwave the cake at the same time. You can’t use racks or grills while using this mode though.
How Can You Bake a Cake Using a Standard Microwave?
Some microwave cake recipes finagle with the nature of the microwave. They request you to quickly heat up the cake in incremental ways before you turn the cake to ensure even cooking (sometimes the turntable or the antenna isn’t enough).
To make a mug cake on a microwave, you need to prep the ingredients first for 5 minutes then heat all of it up within 1 minute and 45 seconds on a 1-kilowatt microwave. Doing it in a 700-watt microwave is tougher and can result in less-than-ideal results.
Convection microwaves work like conventional ovens when in convection mode, so you can use an ordinary recipe for baking cakes.
See more: What is the Best Microwave for Baking?
What are the Steps to Bake on Convection Mode?
A microwave on convection mode functions as a conventional oven with better heat distribution. An electric or toaster oven with convection fans works the same way.
Preheat the convection microwave 350°F. Go do it by going to convection mode, setting the temperature, then pressing start to get it in the right preheat temperature. During this mode, you can place the wire rack inside the microwave (metal is safe in convection mode).
Make sure the batter is ready before putting it inside your convection microwave. This is important because the device can only retain the temperature for 10 minutes before needing to get preheated once more.
Baking time should be in accordance with your recipe and your portions. Switching to the microwave function or combo function can cut down the baking time by 25 percent, with the preheated temperature helping with crisping or toasting the outer layer.
Once the cake is baked or the dough has risen, take it out of the oven. Let the cool down happen on the countertop or something. Don’t switch off the microwave, press the stop button instead.
What are the Types of Microwaves by Heating Method?
There are two types of microwaves according to the heating or microwaving method.
A turntable or glass disc microwave rotates the food in order to cook it. This makes it tougher to bake cakes in microwave mode because the heating is inside out rather than outside in. There’s also the issue of hotspots or uneven cooking which you can’t have when baking.
In our opinion, this is a serviceable way of baking cakes but using specific instructions from the recipe.
Further reading: What is Countertop Microwave? Things to Consider Before Buying
A turntable-free flatbed microwave uses a bottom-feed rotating antenna instead of a glass disc in order to microwave the food properly and evenly. The antenna is the one revolving around the food as it bounces around radiowaves instead of the food rotating around surrounding radiowaves.
In our opinion, this is a better microwave type for baking cakes.
When Push Comes to Shove
When all is said and done, a convection microwave oven is better than an ordinary oven when it comes to baking goods, toasting bread, or even crisping the outer layers of food.
Solo or mini microwaves with a standard light-duty power of 700 watts or less than a kilowatt can’t be used for baking. A little more power is needed to allow you to use recipes for microwave cakes, mug cakes, and so forth.
A convection, combo, grill, or 2-in-1 toaster microwave with medium-duty to heavy-duty power could double as a standard toaster or electric oven in order to make cookies and brownies as well as layers of cake.
- “Flatbed Microwaves vs Turntable Microwaves: Which Is Best?“, MyBudgetRecipes.com, Retrieved May 29, 2021
- “Choosing the Best Commercial Microwave“, WebstaurantStore.com, June 1, 2021
- “How to Bake a Cake in a Microwave“, BakewithShivesh.com, April 29, 2020