The microwave oven is having a resurgence as households turn to the ‘ping dinner’ to help save money on energy bills.
A recent news story in The Guardian, based on the latest findings by market research firm Kantar, highlighted how almost one main meal a week is now cooked primarily with a microwave in the UK.
Kantar found usage rose 8% compared with last year.
Cheaper, easier meals – from warming canned soup, pasta or frozen vegetables to “nuking” a ready meal – are replacing baking or roasting using an oven or dialling up a takeaway, analysts at Kantar said.
It estimates 100m more meals are now cooked using a microwave compared with 2019.
Britons bought 5.4% more microwaves in the first three months of this year than in the same period a year ago, according to market analysts GfK.
Nathan Ward, the business unit director at Kantar, said: “With household budgets being squeezed, people are looking to save however they can, including through cooking. Energy prices have been rising quickly and it seems many have turned to microwaves as a cheaper alternative to hobs or ovens.
“In particular, we’re seeing a growth in people microwaving their veg, as they look to consume their five a day on a budget. There’s also been an increase in people opting to eat cheaper, easier meals such as soups and canned pasta, saving money by heating them in the microwave rather than on the hob.”