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Top 13 Microwave Shelves and Cabinets Ideas for the Kitchen

June 15, 2022 | Updated on: June 15, 2022

microwave cabinet over the cooktop

The microwave has evolved from a futuristic wonder to an everyday appliance since its creation in the mid-1950s. However, the popularity of this item isn't the only thing that has altered. The way it is placed in the kitchen has evolved in its own right as well. Microwaves were first placed on the counter, but they are now installed above ranges and incorporated into cabinets above and below countertops. Different designs of kitchen cabinets with a microwave shelf are starting to appear in various kitchens as home kitchens evolve too.

Designers and homeowners continue to find unique and interesting ways to store a microwave in their cabinet to make it easy to reach and convenient to use. If you are wondering where to put your microwave, here are kitchen cabinets microwave ideas you might want to adapt to your own kitchen space.

Microwave cabinets

above-range microwave cabinet

Perhaps the most common method of placing the microwave is through the cabinets. Kitchen cabinets for microwaves do not have doors and are not hidden in a cabinet microwave unlike microwave wall cabinets and a microwave cabinet with shelves. They are installed into the recessed area of the cabinetry and are provided with adequate ventilation and proper wiring. If you want a clean and straightforward type of kitchen, installing your microwave this way would be ideal. Here are other microwave cabinet ideas you might want to know to have more options. 

  1. kitchen island cabinets with microwave

Placing the microwave underneath the counter of a kitchen island is a great method to keep it at arm’s reach yet hidden from the countertops to free up some workspace. The extra trim around the microwave creates a great built-in impression, contributing to the kitchen's seamless aesthetic. If you really want to have a minimalist kitchen wherein all your appliances are hidden out of plain sight, then you might want to consider placing your microwave below your kitchen island.

  1. Under-The-Counter microwave kitchen cabinets

If you have a very tiny kitchen with no island, kitchen cabinets for a microwave might be installed beneath the main counters. Drawer-style microwaves are ideal for this use, although any model would suffice. This microwave arrangement saves countertop space while maintaining a clean, orderly appearance. We’ll talk more about drawer-style microwaves later on in this blog so keep reading.

  1. Built-in kitchen microwave cabinets

If you are still in the stage of planning for your kitchen renovation or construction, ask your contractor or designer about creating a built-in microwave cabinet or base cabinets for a microwave so you won’t have a problem with where to put your microwave later on. A lot of homeowners prefer built-in kitchen cabinets whether it is for microwave base cabinets or microwave cabinets with storage. It is the most ideal option because you as the homeowner have the freedom to suggest where you would like your microwave to be placed.

Kitchen Cabinets

  1. Microwave cupboards cabinets

Microwaves are frequently seen within top cabinets. This alternative frees up counter space and allows for easy reach to the microwave without having to lean over. If the exposed look isn't perfect for your area, try installing a door to cover it that complements the rest of the cabinets, or ask your contractor to build a microwave flush with cabinets.

  1. Microwave and oven combination

If cabinet storage is an issue you can create a built-in cabinet panel or kitchen cabinets for the microwave oven where you can place both the microwave and oven. Your oven goes at the base or the bottom of your cabinetry while above it is your microwave. This is a terrific method to save space while still having cabinets available for storage. A built-in microwave and oven are a great concept to modernize your kitchen. This alternative appears to be clean, contemporary, and trendy.

  1. Above-range cabinets with built-in microwave

An above-range microwave is one of the most popular microwave placements. This positioning also provides for plenty of countertop space without taking up too much overhead cabinet space. Microwaves installed above oven ranges should have a built-in ventilation system for when you cook on the cooktop.

  1. Microwave cabinets with hutch

A hutch is a term used to describe a certain style of furniture. The phrase is now commonly used to indicate a collection of shelves or cabinets that are stacked on top of a lower unit that includes a counter, drawers, or cabinets. Hutches are commonly found in workstations, dining rooms, and kitchen furniture. It is a type of microwave stand with cabinets because you can modify it and easily move it around your kitchen space.

  1. Kitchen pantry cabinets with microwave shelf

Pantry cabinets with microwave shelf are common in homes with large kitchen space and ample storage in the pantry. If you want to keep your microwave out of sight but still be able to use it, create a corner microwave cabinet in your pantry. You'll want to ensure sure your pantry has electrical outlets and a solid shelf that can support the microwave without tipping it over.

  1. Drawer microwave in lower cabinets

A microwave drawer is made to fit beneath a counter, in a lower cabinet, or under a kitchen island. This results in greater counter space increased practicality and an overall more contemporary aesthetic. These drawer-style microwaves have more functionality than a tabletop or over-the-range microwave oven, and they add a stylish aspect to your kitchen cabinets.

kitchen cabinets with built-in microwave and oven

 Pros and cons of Microwave Drawer Cabinets

There are pros and cons that come with owning a microwave drawer. It is important to know what these are so you can assess whether a microwave drawer is your best option.



Frees up counter space

No convection cooking

Functional and accessible

No turntable function


Not easy to install

Easy to open

A bit pricey

Sleek and stylish





Kitchen microwave shelves

microwave shelves in kitchen

In recent years, many people move away from traditional cabinetry and opted for more streamlined designs that are fit for contemporary and minimalist kitchens. Rather than closed cabinets, they prefer open shelves. Microwave oven shelves become common and several styles of kitchen shelves for microwaves start to emerge on the scene. Here are a few microwave shelves in kitchen design you might consider.

  1. Wall-mounted shelves for microwave

Microwaves are pretty compact and so you’ll have no problem fitting them in tiny nooks and wall-mounted shelves. A wall-mounted microwave shelf is typical in a minimalist kitchen. Many homeowners especially those who are living in small apartments prefer an open microwave cabinet shelf for their kitchen and would rather opt for a microwave wall shelf than closed traditional cabinetry.

  1. Shelves for microwave and toaster oven

If you have a longer shelf up on your wall, you can place your microwave alongside your toaster. This is called a combination microwave with shelves which basically implies that you can put a variety of small appliances on your open kitchen shelves with a microwave. It could be kitchen utensils or other kitchen accessories. 

  1. Microwave stands with shelves

Furniture like hutches and movable shelves are considered as kitchen furniture. Homeowners with small kitchen space use these types of furniture to optimize the space of their kitchen and create a practical workspace that’s easy to access and navigate. Movable shelves like these are useful for storing items like microwaves, blenders, toasters, and other small kitchen appliances.

  1. Microwave floating shelves

For kitchens with very limited counter space, create floating shelves for a microwave instead of placing them on your countertop. Floating kitchen shelves for microwaves are easy to install and it’s something you can DIY. Simply attach two floating shelves to the wall right above the countertop and slip the microwave between them.


Article by:

Valentina Melnikova - Lead Designer at Cut2Size

Office 403.366.7411

Hi there! I’m a millwork designer and an owner of a kitchen cabinet manufacturing company. With a team of professionals, I work on designing and manufacturing high-end millwork. Combining professional designing and manufacturing skills is what allows us to develop and translate our plans into a reality through our uniqueness and exclusive ideas. Our employees are highly skilled and creative thinkers that also utilize their professionalism and experience to take millwork to the next level. I’m very familiar with the industry and I take on each project from the design to the final product. With that said, if you’re looking for design advice or technician help, you’re in the right place.