How to Remove Burnt Smell from a Microwave?


A burnt smell in the microwave can be unpleasant and persistent, causing discomfort every time you use the appliance. Removing the odor involves more than just masking it; you need to clean and neutralize the source. This guide provides detailed steps to eliminate burnt smells from your microwave using various techniques, ranging from cleaning solutions to natural deodorizers. Implementing these methods ensures your microwave smells fresh and remains hygienic.


How to Remove Burnt Smell from a Microwave:

What Are Effective Methods?

Initial Clean-Up:

What Immediate Steps Should You Take Following a Burnt Incident?

Addressing the burnt smell begins immediately after the incident.

Turning Off and Cooling:

Safety First:

Unplug and Cool: Turn off and unplug the microwave. Allow it to cool down completely before attempting to clean it. This prevents any risk of burns or electrical shock.

Removing Burnt Food:

Clear the Interior:

Dispose of Debris: Remove any burnt food or debris from the microwave. Use a dry paper towel or cloth to clear out loose particles. This step is crucial to prevent the smell from lingering.

Deep Cleaning:

How Can You Thoroughly Clean the Microwave to Remove Odor?

Deep cleaning is essential for eliminating the source of the burnt smell.

Soapy Water Solution:

Basic Cleaning:

Warm Soapy Water: Mix warm water with a few drops of dish soap. Dampen a sponge or cloth with this solution and wipe down all interior surfaces of the microwave, including the walls, turntable, and ceiling.


Stubborn Stains:

Scrub Thoroughly:

Tough Spots: For stubborn stains, let the soapy solution sit on the affected area for a few minutes before scrubbing gently with a non-abrasive sponge. Rinse the sponge frequently to avoid spreading grease and grime.

Vinegar Steam Method:

Natural Cleaner:

Vinegar Solution: Fill a microwave-safe bowl with one cup of water and add one cup of white vinegar. Microwave the bowl on high for 5-10 minutes until it comes to a boil, then let it sit with the door closed for another 10 minutes. The steam from the vinegar helps loosen any caked-on food and neutralizes odors.

Wipe Down:

Post-Steam Cleaning:

Clean Interior: Carefully remove the bowl and wipe down the interior of the microwave with a clean cloth. Ensure you remove any residue left by the vinegar steam.

Baking Soda Paste:

Effective Deodorizer:

Baking Soda Mix: Create a paste with baking soda and water. Apply the paste to any stubborn, burnt areas inside the microwave. Let it sit for several minutes before scrubbing with a sponge. Rinse well and wipe dry.


What Natural Ingredients Can Neutralize Burnt Odors Effectively?

Using natural deodorizers can significantly improve the smell inside your microwave.

Lemon Water:

Citrus Freshness:

Lemon Solution: Cut a lemon in half and squeeze the juice into a microwave-safe bowl filled with one cup of water. Place the lemon halves in the bowl as well. Microwave the solution on high for 5-10 minutes. The steam and citrus oils help break down food particles and neutralize odors.

Leave Inside:

Extended Effect:

Overnight Solution: After microwaving, leave the bowl inside the microwave overnight with the door closed. This allows the lemon vapors to continue neutralizing any lingering smells.

Activated Charcoal:

Absorbent Material:

Charcoal Bags: Place activated charcoal bags inside the microwave and leave them for several hours or overnight. Activated charcoal is highly effective at absorbing and neutralizing odors.



Fresh Air:

Air Out: Leave the microwave door open for a few hours or overnight to allow fresh air to circulate and naturally dissipate any remaining burnt smell.

Coffee Grounds:

Aromatic Absorbent:

Coffee Bowl: Place a bowl of dry coffee grounds inside the microwave. Close the door and let it sit for several hours or overnight. Coffee grounds absorb odors and leave a pleasant aroma behind.

Maintaining Freshness:

What Regular Maintenance Practices Can Prevent Future Odors?

Preventive measures can help maintain a fresh-smelling microwave.

Regular Cleaning Routine:

Consistent Maintenance:

Weekly Cleaning: Incorporate a regular cleaning routine, at least once a week, to prevent the buildup of food particles and grease. Wipe down the interior with a damp cloth after each use to keep it clean.

Cover Foods:

Preventive Measure:

Cover Dishes: Always cover dishes with a microwave-safe lid or vented cover when cooking or reheating food. This prevents splatters and spills, reducing the chances of food burning and causing odors.

Use of Paper Towels:

Simple Solution:

Absorb Splatter: Lay a paper towel over bowls and plates to catch any splatters. This minimizes the mess inside the microwave and maintains cleanliness.

Charcoal Filters:

Odor Control:

Replace Filters: If your microwave has a charcoal filter, replace it regularly according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. This helps maintain proper ventilation and odor control.


Professional Solutions:

When Should You Consider Professional Help for Odor Removal?

Sometimes, professional intervention may be necessary for stubborn odors.

Persistent Smell:

Expert Assessment:

Professional Cleaning: If the burnt smell persists despite your best cleaning efforts, consider contacting a professional appliance cleaning service. They have specialized tools and cleaners designed to thoroughly deodorize and sanitize microwaves.

Inspection for Damage:

Check Components:

Technical Issues: A persistent burnt smell might indicate internal damage or malfunctioning components. Have a professional technician inspect your microwave to identify and fix any underlying issues.


Alternative Methods:

What Other Techniques Can Help Remove Burnt Smell from a Microwave?

Additional methods can be employed to combat tough odors effectively.

Vanilla Extract:

Pleasant Aroma:

Vanilla Bowl: Place a few drops of vanilla extract in a microwave-safe bowl with water. Microwave the solution for 2-3 minutes. This method imparts a pleasant, sweet aroma while neutralizing odors.

Essential Oils:

Natural Fragrance:

Oil Solution: Add a few drops of essential oils like lavender or eucalyptus to a bowl of water. Microwave for 2-3 minutes. The natural fragrance of essential oils helps mask and neutralize unpleasant odors.

Newspaper Method:

Absorbent Paper:

Stuff with Newspaper: Crumple several sheets of newspaper and place them inside the microwave, with the door closed, for a few hours or overnight. Newspaper is surprisingly effective at absorbing odors.

Vinegar and Baking Soda Combo:

Power Duo:

Combined Strength: Combine vinegar and baking soda for a powerful cleaning and deodorizing solution. Place a bowl of vinegar inside the microwave and another bowl with baking soda. Close the door and let them sit overnight. The combination helps neutralize even the most stubborn odors.


Eliminating a burnt smell from your microwave involves a combination of thorough cleaning and effective deodorizing techniques. Starting with immediate cleanup and progressing to deep cleaning methods like using vinegar steam and baking soda ensures that the source of the smell is tackled. Utilizing natural deodorizers such as lemon, activated charcoal, and coffee grounds, combined with regular maintenance practices, helps maintain a fresh-smelling microwave. For stubborn odors, professional help may be necessary. By following these comprehensive steps and adopting preventive measures, you can ensure your microwave stays clean and free from unpleasant smells, enhancing your overall kitchen experience.