How To Clean Your Microwave Naturally with Just a Lemon

updated Sep 4, 2019
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(Image credit: Kitchn Video)

Have a messy microwave? Want to get it clean before the holiday — with minimal work? Not only is it possible to get a squeaky-clean microwave without using harsh chemicals in a spot where we also heat our food, but this is also hands-down the easiest way to clean a microwave.

That’s right — if you’ve been avoiding cleaning your microwave, this all-natural lemon trick is going to make you very happy.

How To Clean Your Microwave Naturally with Just a Lemon

What You Need

  • Small microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup
  • 1 lemon
  • Clean, dry dishtowel or cleaning rag


  1. Measure the water: Measure about 1/2 cup of water into a measuring cup or bowl.
  2. Add the lemon: Slice the lemon in half and squeeze the juice into the water. Drop the lemon halves into the bowl.
  3. Microwave for 3 minutes: Place the bowl in the microwave. Microwave on high power for 3 minutes so the liquid comes to a boil.
  4. Let stand for 5 minutes: Do not open the microwave door; the steam trapped inside will help loosen food gunk. Let stand for 5 minutes.
  5. Clean the microwave: Open the door and carefully remove the bowl with the lemons. If your microwave has a turntable, lift it out and wipe it clean. Wipe the inside of the microwave clean starting with the ceiling and the sides.
  6. Scrub the stubborn spots: If you come across stubborn spots that won’t easily wipe away, dip the corner of your dishtowel in the lemon-water and scrub until the spot comes away.
  7. Remember the door: While you’re wiping, don’t forget to wipe down the door.
  8. Replace the turntable: If you took it out, put the turntable back and you’re good to go — with a nice, clean microwave!

More on Cleaning and Lemons:

(Image credit: Joe Lingeman)