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Dulley's Money-Saving Tip #1033

Use microwave instead of range oven

(related column topic links - 870, 876)

For many foods that you bake, using a microwave oven instead of the range oven can yield big savings; however, the savings varies significantly among various foods. You can typically expect to save about two-thirds of the electricity on most foods and more on others.

For example, baking 1.5 lbs. of chicken in the range oven uses about 1.5 kwh of electricity. At 8 cents per kwh, this costs you 12 cents of electricity. Using a microwave oven uses only .5 kwh for a total baking cost of only 4 cents. It may not sound like much money, but over an entire year, it adds up to a substantial amount.

Baking breads and cakes shows the biggest microwave savings, about 80% on average. Baking heavy casseroles, like lasagne, show the lowest microwave savings of only about 15%. Therefore, if you like the way oven-baked casseroles taste, go ahead and use your big range oven, especially in the winter. If you air-condition in the summer, use the microwave whenever possible to avoid heat buildup in your kitchen.