Output power ranges from 1000 watts to 3200 watts. Sizes vary from capacity for (1) ó size pan to (2) full size 12″ x 20″ x 4″ deep pans, controls may be dial type manual or push button programmable.
In school foodservice 1000-watt ovens are used only for small item reheat. In the last few years, technology has progressed to where the 3200-watt oven is large enough and fast enough to be used for medium production requirements.
Microwave ovens use a “magnetron” to produce the microwaves that cause friction of the internal molecules of the food product, which causes heat to build and cooking to take place. The problem has always been to provide even heat throughout the food product for even cooking. The use of multiple magnetrons in conjunction with microwave “stirrers” that distribute the waves around the cavity have solved the old problems. The larger microwave ovens are excellent at steaming vegetables in their own juices by turning the juices into steam in a covered microwave-safe pan in very quick times, with excellent product results. This is especially applicable when water quality is very poor and scale build-up is a problem, or where drains and water are unavailable. Also, generally, microwaves do not need to be under a hood, which reduces costs associated with hoods or where hood space is not available.
Type and quantity of product to be cooked, available electrical outlets.
Be sure to see the unit demonstrated before specifying. Units vary greatly by manufacturer, size, output power, evenness of cooking and production capability. Consumer or home microwaves will NOT provide the production necessary for schools. They are also not NSF approved or UL approved for commercial applications. All microwaves are not alike. Be sure before purchasing.