Written by Rick

What do the symbols on my microwave mean?

Your microwave is full of symbols, but what do they actually mean? Below, we'll discuss the most common signs. This way, you can easily check whether you're dealing with the steam, grill, or fan function. If the symbol you're looking for isn't listed, take a look in the manual of your microwave.


Draw microwave

You can use the microwave setting to quickly defrost or heat up food. Other than that, the microwave is very suitable for boiling vegetables and potatoes. If you boil those in a microwave, you need far less water than you would in a pan. This way, the vitamins in the food are retained, and you won't pour them out with the water.


Thawing microwave

With the defrost mode, you can defrost products without heating them up. Quickly defrost a slice of bread for breakfast, or minced meat for a pasta sauce. If you use the defrost mode on your microwave, you have to select the weight, after which the microwave activates with the right wattage and defrost time.


Icon Crisp function microwave

With this function, you can make crispy oven fries or give your pizza a crispy crust. The crisp function only works in combination with a crisper bowl or crisper dish. The extra-hot dish heats the bottom, while the grill is aimed at the top of your dish. You can use the crisp function to speed up the cooking process, so you'll be able to serve a crispy dish quickly.

Fan oven

Icon hot air function microwave

A fan is the hot air function sign. In this mode, the microwave uses a fan to distribute the heat evenly throughout the room. The advantage of this is that you can bake relatively quickly. This position is less suitable for baking cakes, but for example an oven dish is fine.


Icon steam function microwave

The steam function on a microwave steams vegetables in a steam tray. Fill this container with water and then put it in the microwave. In this way you prepare vegetables without losing taste, vitamins and structure.

Full grill

Icon large microwave grill

With this you switch on the entire grill. You use this stand when you start grilling a griddle. You also use the grill for gratinating a dish and for preparing meat, fish or vegetables. The grill is not recommended for preparing really thick cuts of meat. When you try to grill too thick, you will notice that it is difficult to cook the inside without burning the outside.

Part grill

Icon small grill microwave

You use the small grill in the same way that you would use the large grill, only for smaller quantities. In this case, you you use a part of the grill. Check carefully which part it is, so you can place the dish in the right spot. It's usually the middle of the grill.

Pizza setting

Icon of microwave oven

The pizza position is often a combination between the convection oven and the heating element in the bottom of the microwave. The extra heat from below ensures that your pizza gets a tasty crispy bottom. The pizza position can of course also be used for other dishes that require extra heat from below.

Lower heat

Icon under-heated microwave

Under heat, all heat is generated by a heating element in the bottom of the microwave. You use this stand for example for au bain-marie or to bake a dish. But even with dishes that are baked at a high temperature, this stand is useful. With this stand you ensure that the bottom of a pizza or cake gets well warm without the top burning.

Upper heat

Upper heat

Use upper heat for cakes of which the crust has already been baked and the filling still needs to be baked. Think, for instance, of an apple pie. If you only use the upper heating element, you can prevent your cake from getting a black crust.

Fan grill mode

Icon circulating grill microwave

When you choose for circulation grilling, your oven will alternately switch on the grill and the fan. In this way, the microwave blows the hot air around your dish every so often, and larger pieces of meat and fish will also be well cooked. If you would only use the grill for larger pieces of meat and fish, you run the risk that the outside burns and the inside is still raw.

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