The Value of the Microwave in the Restaurant Industry

Thursday, October 8th, 2015

microwaveBack in the day, seeing a microwave on the cook line or assembly area of a restaurant was considered bad form. I knew some folks that would judge the quality of a place by first looking for the existence of a microwave.

I think those days have passed. Seeing a microwave on the line is a normal occurrence. They offer speed and convenience. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want to go to a high-end fish house and see them throwing a handful of Gordon’s fish nuggets in the microwave to later throw on a fancy plate and charge me $100. No offense to the Gordon’s fisherman, but I don’t trust him in a high end kitchen.

One of the reasons that microwaves are less disheartening to see commercially, is the success they have in our home kitchens. There are many reasons for that, but it’s a 50/50 split between better frozen foods and better microwaves.

A simple, yet impactful, change in the microwave’s design is the carousel that rotates the product to provide for more even heating. Given the nature of microwaves, heating is often uneven. Rotating the product help foster even heating.

Convection microwaves are starting to get traction domestically. RV’s and houses are starting to see the convenience and flexibility these units can provide. They can even cook bread! They are fast and efficient.

All microwaves are not alike. Different technologies provide different functionality at different price points. To warm sauces, a $3,000 microwave would be overkill. In the same vein, using a low watt unit may not be suitable to every need. Check out our microwave buyers guide for some tips on finding the right unit for the right job. 

About Commercial Microwave Ovens

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

Commercial Microwave OvensIt’s the most wonderful time of the year… or at least the busiest! For many restaurants, the holiday season brings in lots of hungry families. Whether they’re tired from shopping all day or they’re in town for a family visit, they all come in to your restaurant ready to EAT – and fast! Many times, the quickest way to get the customers what they want is with a commercial microwave, and you’ve never needed it more than the holiday season.

Has your microwave picked the worst possible time to call it quits? Or are you just in need of an upgrade? Make sure you’re shopping for the right microwave oven for your needs.

Commercial Microwave Oven vs. Residential Microwave Oven

If you’re running a commercial kitchen, you might be tempted to save a few bucks and run up to the local small appliance store and grab a residential model. Be warned, there are a few reasons why the extra money is worth the investment! (more…)

Comparing Commercial Microwave Ovens and Conventional Ovens

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

Microwave ovens have been making life in the kitchen easier since 1947.  The invention of commercial microwave ovens takes this efficiency to the next level.  They operate as high-volume heaters, and they are designed to withstand long hours and extended use in a restaurant kitchen (unlike home microwave ovens).  Both home microwaves and commercial microwave ovens use electromagnetic energy to make the water molecules in food vibrate, thereby warming them.  Foods high in water, like fruits and vegetables, will cook more quickly, as will those high in sugars and fats, like bacon.  A conventional oven, on the other hand, uses heat to cook foods, rather than the electromagnetic waves that commercial microwave ovens use.

So when are commercial microwave ovens best for cooking, and when should you use a conventional oven instead?  Read on for answers and ideas from ShortOrder.

Commercial Microwave Ovens

Commercial microwave ovens are great for quick work in the kitchen when a long cooking time in the oven won’t do.  A commercial microwave oven has a much higher wattage than home microwave ovens, and must meet NSF sanitation standards.  They are often more energy-efficient than other cooking methods, as well.

Conventional Ovens

Conventional ovens have the advantage of being able to bake, roast, and broil, the drawback being that cook time may be significantly lengthened, contrasting the quick convenience of commercial microwave ovens.  Note also that there are two kinds of ovens: gas and electric.  A gas oven often produces a moist heat but very little ambient heat in the kitchen, while an electric oven produces a dry heat, which is more optimal for roasting.

How to Choose

If you are still unsure of which type of commercial appliance would be right for your kitchen, or you have chosen but don’t know which brand to pick, read the reviews ShortOrder customers have written about the products we carry.  Reviews of Panasonic microwaves, Amana microwaves, Bakers Pride Ovens, and more can all be found on

Commercial Microwave Ovens & Their Many Uses

Thursday, October 25th, 2012

Whether you are the head chef of a five star restaurant getting ready for this evening’s dinner service, or you are preparing lunches in a school cafeteria, the ability to quickly and efficiently prepare your food is a must. Having the best in commercial microwave ovens and knowing how to use them can make a great kitchen even better. We’ve outlined three of the most important uses of commercial microwave ovens below.

Knowing when and how to properly thaw frozen foods is one of the most challenging parts of cooking, mostly because, when done properly, it can take literally the entire day. However, if you use commercial microwave ovens like the Panasonic NE-1022F, thawing your ingredients can be a quick and painless process. Here are a few things to remember:

  • When in doubt, use your commercial microwave oven’s thawing button for best results. The Panasonic NE 1022F comes with 1000 watts of power, ensuring that your food will be cooked perfectly every time on any heat level you need.
  • Make sure to stop the microwave and check your food throughout the pre-set time. If the food is warm, let it stand for a few moments before turning the microwave back one to ensure that it’s only defrosting, and not cooking. Give foods like soups or purees a stir before continuing to ensure even heat distribution.
  • Remember, for safety’s sake, to cook whatever you’re preparing immediately after you defrost it.


Many people aren’t aware that steaming vegetables in commercial microwave ovens retains more nutrients than cooking them on the stove. For best results, add a little water, cover your dish with plastic wrap, and cook on high for a short amount of time. The Amana RC30S2 for example not only has 100 customizable memory settings, but 11 preset power levels designed cook your food perfectly whichever way you’d like it.

Another little-known trick for commercial microwaves is that they can reheat and re-crisp meals or snacks like fries or potato chips. The key is to place a paper towel or napkin on top of the plate of food. The napkin will absorb the moisture that makes the food soggy leaving it crisp and ready to eat in just seconds.
Whether you’re thawing chicken for dinner with the Panasonic NE-1022F steaming veggies with the Amana RC30S2, or using one of our many other commercial microwave ovens, Short Order has what you need to reheat, steam, defrost, and cook all of your food to perfection.

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