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How to Clean a Microwave Inside and Out with Lemon and Wipes

When it's time to clean your microwave, use Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes to disinfect the outside, and lemon to clean the inside. Wipes are the easy way to clean all your kitchen appliances.

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By Mary Gagliardi
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Forgetting to put a cover on the food you microwave guarantees hard to clean splatters on the inside of the microwave. Since you shouldn’t use commercial cleaning products inside a microwave, it’s nice to know that heating lemon quarters in water will loosen the baked on spills for you to easily wipe away.

Once the inside is clean, use Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes to clean fingerprints, grease and food stains from the outside of the microwave and all your other kitchen appliances. 

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Microwaves need special attention

The products that easily wipe away grease and grime on the outside of the microwave and other kitchen appliances can’t be used on the inside. But lemons can when they’re heated in a little water, which a microwave allows you to easily do. Use this hack to keep your microwave free of greasy spills, splatters and stains.

Save the wipes for the microwave exterior, along with the outside of the refrigerator door and handle, dishwasher, range and exhaust fan. Don’t forget to wipe down rubber seals on the doors of kitchen appliances like your dishwasher, too.

Gather your supplies

Steps to clean a microwave

  1. 1

    Cut the lemon

    Use the knife and cutting board to cut the lemon into quarters. Set the lemon slices in the bowl.

  2. 2

    Add the water


    If your microwave has a turntable, leave it in place while heating the lemons and water.

    liquid pouring from glass container
  3. 3

    Heat the lemons

    Use high power to heat the lemons for at least 3 minutes. When the microwave stops heating, wait 5 minutes before opening the door.

  4. 4

    Wipe the inside

    Use the hot pads to carefully remove the bowl with the lemon water before wiping out the inside with the paper towels. Remove any racks and wipe them down, and be sure to wipe under the carousel tray. 

  5. 5

    Hand wash the carousel tray

    After cleaning all the surfaces on the inside of the microwave, hand wash the carousel tray in hot soapy water. Rinse thoroughly and wipe dry before placing back in the microwave. 

  6. 6

    Wipe down the outside

    Finish by using Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes to clean the outside of the microwave, including the handle and the control panel. 


    Use lemon-scented Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes to complement the scent of the lemon.

Frequently asked questions

Can you heat the lemon water again if the inside is really dirty?

Yes. If you haven’t cleaned the inside of your microwave in a while and the stains are really baked on, you will need to repeat heating the lemon water and wiping out the inside a few times to get it clean.

Is it safe to use Clorox® Wipes inside a microwave?

We do not recommend this; only use Clorox® Disinfecting Wipes to clean the outside of the microwave. Any time you use a disinfecting wipe on a food-contact surface, a potable water rinse is required before using the area for food prep. Microwave interiors are very difficult to safely rinse thoroughly with water, so that’s why the inside of a microwave is not a recommended use site for disinfecting wipes.