How To Get Burnt Smell Out Of Microwave?

Undoubtedly, the microwave is the most loved cooking appliance worldwide because of its versatility and ease of use. Though, it needs regular maintenance and cleaning to work perfectly. 

Microwaving food items like popcorn, fish, macaroni, and cheese is very easy, time-saving, and convenient. However, a slight negligence can result in a foul-smelling microwave with strong splatters. 

This burning odour and greasy splatters are hard to tackle, mainly when you have a brand new microwave and you want to keep it clean for longer. 

Well, you don’t have to worry. You can get rid of this nasty burning smell and splatters with some everyday household items available in your kitchen. 

Things you need to clean the microwave 

Instead of using harsh chemicals in the microwave to clean stains and get rid of the burning smell, you should consider some readily available ingredients at home. 

The ingredients you need for cleaning the microwave are as follows; 

  • Microfibre cloth 
  • Vinegar 
  • Lemon 
  • Baking soda
  • Container
  • Water 
  • Paper towel 

Method of cleaning 

For cleaning the microwave, all you have to do is; 

Simple cleaning

Step 1

  • Take a cup of water in a microwave-safe container. 
  • Put the container in the microwave and heat for 2-3 minutes. 

The steam of boiling water helps clean the greasy stains and pieces of burnt food inside the microwave. 

Step 2 

  • Remove the turntable from the microwave and wash it with a soapy solution to eliminate greasy stains. 
  • Dry the turntable and place it again in the microwave. 
  • Wipe the interior of the microwave thoroughly with a damp cloth. 
  • If the stains are tough, you can use the rough side of a wet sponge. 

If your microwave has a stainless steel interior, wipe the interior in the direction of the metal’s grain. 

Step 3 

  • Use a paper towel to dry the interior and leave the door open for a few hours. 

If you are satisfied with the cleaning process and do not feel a nasty smell in the microwave, do not proceed to the next steps. If not, then follow the steps written below; 

Vinegar and lemon juice 

Vinegar and lemon have a robust acidic smell that helps fight and eradicate the burning smell of foods in the microwave. 

For making vinegar and lemon solution; 

  • Take a cup of water in a microwave-safe container and add a tablespoon of lemon juice. 
  • Mix the solution and add one tablespoon of vinegar. 
  • Microwave the solution for 5-7 minutes. 
  • Leave the solution in the microwave for a few minutes more. 
  • Remove the container and wipe the interior with a paper towel or microfiber cloth.  

If you don’t like the smell of lemons, you can use slices or orange juice to make the solution. 

With baking soda 

Baking soda is a potent agent that aids in getting rid of foul smells. If your microwave still has a burning smell even after a thorough cleaning process and using lemon & vinegar solution, try baking soda solution for having a long-lasting pleasant smell. 

  • Take a cup of water in a microwave-safe container.
  • Add one tablespoon of baking soda to it. 
  • Stir the solution well. 
  • Put the container in the microwave. 
  • Microwave the solution for 5 minutes. 
  • Leave the solution in the microwave for 15 minutes more.
  • Remove the container and wipe the interior.

You can leave the baking soda container in the microwave overnight for effective cleaning and long-lasting odour. 

Other methods of cleaning microwave to get burnt smell out 

Some people do not like the smell of citrus fruits, and some hate the strong odour of baking soda. If you are one of them, you can switch to other interesting ingredients for cleaning purposes. 

Vanilla extract with water 

You can use vanilla extract to clean the stubborn stains of foods inside your microwave and to have a fresh smell that stays longer. 

To make a vanilla solution, take half a cup of water and add one tablespoon of vanilla extract. Stir the solution well. 

Put the container of vanilla solution in the microwave, heat it for 5-7 minutes and leave it for at least 20 minutes inside. This boiling solution will produce steam which softens the greasy stains. 

Remove the container from the microwave and wipe the stains with a damp towel. The strong and pleasant odour of vanilla extract is an excellent option to eradicate the nasty burning smell of the microwave. 

Nail polish remover 

Nail polish remover is a great way to get rid of greasy stains of burnt foods and their horrible smell. 

  • Take an acetone-free nail polish remover and some cotton balls.
  • Soak the cotton balls and rub them on the stains. 
  • Take a microfiber towel. 
  • Dip it in a soapy solution to wipe the nail polish remover inside the microwave.
  • Let the microwave dry for a few hours. 

Please make sure you completely dry the microwave before using it because a bit of carelessness can turn dangerous. 


Berries are a great option to eliminate the foul smell in the microwave and the kitchen. Instead of using one type of berries, use mixed berries to have a solid and pleasing fragrance. 

Take a microwave-safe container and put mixed berries in it. Cover the container and place it in the microwave. 

Heat the berries for 2-3 minutes. They will start melting and replace the awful smell of the microwave with a long-lasting, pleasant, fresh, and sweet odour.  


Coffee is an exciting ingredient, especially when it comes to cleaning. You can use coffee each time after microwaving to get the burning smell out of the microwave. 

Take a microwave-safe bowl and add 2-3 tablespoons of coffee. Add water to the bowl and stir the coffee solution well. 

Put the coffee bowl in the microwave and heat it for 10 minutes. Remove the container and wipe the interior with a microfiber cloth. 

Frequently Asked Questions 

Is it safe to use a microwave with a burning smell? 

Yes, it is entirely safe to use the microwave with a burning smell of food. Though, it is better to clean the microwave after every use because if you keep using it with a foul odour, it will become tough for you to get rid of it. 

If you feel a burning smell like wires and plastic, you need to replace your appliance as soon as possible; otherwise, it can cause fire or explosion. 

What tips should you follow for efficient cleaning?

Here are a few essential tips that help get rid of stubborn stains and the burning smell of microwaves. 

  • Clean the microwave after every use. 
  • Do not leave the burning smell in the microwave for longer. 
  • Do not use harsh chemicals to clean the microwave. 
  • Use lemon, vinegar, or baking soda to have a pleasant odour inside the microwave. 
  • If you don’t like vinegar or lemons, you can use berries and coffee. 

Wrap up 

If your microwave has a burnt smell and greasy stains, you need to do deep cleaning as soon as possible. 

Start with wiping the interior of the microwave. Take a microfiber cloth, dip it in hot water, and clean the greasy stains of burnt food. 

To get the burnt smell out of the microwave, you can use plenty of methods such as vinegar and lemon solution, baking soda, berries, coffee solution, vanilla extract, nail polish remover, etc. 

These methods are highly effective in eliminating the awful smell of the microwave and replacing it with an enduring sweet, pleasant, and fresh odour. 

About Carissa Taylor

Carissa is the founder and creator of the Gliving. With an emphasis on healthy eating and living, Carissa's recipes and food photography have been featured in various publications including the Food Network Blog, Huffington Post, TODAY Food, and more.