What every best Microwaves has:
- A handy selection of presets.
- Cooking sensors.
- A turntable on/off button.
Can you say fast? There are not enough adjectives for reviewers to praise the 1,200 watt GE JES2051SNSS's speed in heating food, defrosting and boiling water. Several owners say they've had to learn to adjust down the time they used to cook items in their old microwave, because this one is so much more powerful they ended up with overheated food. The sensor gets particular praise from experts and users, who say it's very accurate over a variety of foods, from microwave popcorn to baked potatoes. You don't have to worry about waking sleeping children when making your midnight snack, either, as it's reported as very quiet.
A plethora of presets. There are few other microwaves that have the wide range of features that the GE JES2051SNSS does. It has six one-button presets for popcorn, reheat, vegetables, potatoes, beverages and chicken/fish, which, as we noted, are reported to work uncommonly well. There are also buttons for express cooking for one to six minutes and an add 30 seconds button. You can cook for a crowd on the 16-inch turntable; large enough for a 9- by 13-inch pan -- great, users say, for larger casseroles. It also has a child lock, delay start, clock and timer, and you can use the timer even when the oven is in operation. One of reviewers' favorite features is a beeper volume control if you don't want to hear continual reminders that your food is done.
Couldn't be simpler. Of course, all of the presets make cooking with the GE JES2051SNSS a breeze, but it's simple to use the time cook features too, reviewers say. It's also reported as easy to clean, just wipe it down inside and out; there are no awkward corners or grooves to collect grime. The turntable is removable and dishwasher safe. ConsumerReports.org gives it an Excellent rating for ease of use. The push-button door latch is sturdy, but easy to open.
Be sure you have the counter space. The 2.0 cubic foot GE JES2051SNSS is big, there's no getting around that. Plenty of reviewers say they bought it precisely for that reason -- for large families, cooking for parties, or even to use in an office break room. However, we read a few reports from folks who didn't measure first and are now forced to work around this real estate hog during food prep. Still, it gets much praise for its appearance; we review the stainless steel version here, but it's also available in black and white and all three finishes get equally good reviews, it's just a question of which color best matches your décor. We did read a few durability complaints, but not enough to consider breakage issues to be a trend. There is no trim kit for this microwave, so it can't be used as a built in.
TheSweethome.com no longer tests or recommends large microwaves, but the GE JES2051SNSS was this site's previous pick as the best microwave for most people. Tim Heffernan and Jessie Kissinger note that they still like it, but that it's too large if space is at a premium. This is the larger version of their current pick, the GE JES1656SRSS, and they say performance is comparable.
The ConsumerReports.org website has ratings for nearly 80 countertop microwave ovens, including the GE JES2051SNSS. All of the microwaves are rated on heating and defrosting evenness, speed of heating, noise, ease of use and usable capacity. They are also ranked against each other.
The GE JES2051SNSS is the first microwave mentioned in this roundup of seven microwaves that were tops in testing at the Good Housekeeping Institute's Kitchen Appliances and Technology Lab. They call the GE's performance, "top of the charts," saying it performs well and is easy to use and clean.
In roughly 2,950 reviews, some that are unique to HomeDepot.com, some that are culled from the GE website, the three versions of this microwave, including the stainless steel GE JES2051SNSS, earn an overall rating of 4.6 stars out of 5; 94 percent of owners say they would recommend the microwave. Users like its wide range of features and ease of use. Many say it's quiet, fast and very versatile.
The GE JES2051SNSS receives more than 2,830 reviews at Lowes.com, though again many are drawn from the GE website. Users give the microwave 4.5 stars out of 5, and 93 percent of reviewers would recommend this microwave to a friend. Owners say it performs very well, with the sensor feature earning particular praise, as do its programming features. There are some durability complaints. Feedback for the black and white versions is available on their own product pages and both have equally good scores, although there are fewer reviews for the white version.