A good looking microwave that provides all of the basics, the Samsung Glass Front 23 Litre Solo Microwave MS23T5018AE is a good choice if you want a microwave only. It does have quite a few functions that I’d be very unlikely to use, which makes it a bit harder to use than rivals. Still, cooking performance is good.
- Good amount of space
- Good cooking results
- Good price
- A lot of programmes don’t seem that useful
- Slightly fiddly to use
- TypeThis is a microwave only product.
- PowerThere’s a maximum power setting of 800W.
The Samsung Glass Front 23 Litre Solo Microwave MS23T5018AE is a pretty basic microwave model when compared to the many other options from Samsung.
Nevertheless, it still has some intelligent features that aim to take the guesswork out of microwaving. Here are my thoughts.
Design and features
- Available in a range of colours
- A big range of automated programmes
- Basic microwave controls
Stylish and modern looking, the Samsung Glass Front 23 Litre Solo Microwave MS23T5018AE is a countertop microwave that will look great in most kitchens. The neat white glass front panel of my review models elevates this above bog-standard microwaves, and alternative colours are available.
There’s a standard glass door, which can be a little hard to see through, although I could get a general sense of how well my food was cooking.
Inside there’s 23 litres of space, which is enough to fit in a standard dinner plate. I didn’t particularly want more cooking space. As this is a microwave-only product, there’s only so much food you can cook. More space makes more sense with microwaves that double up as convection ovens or grills.
The basic settings are easy to use in this mode. Tap the Microwave button to cycle through the power settings (800W, 600W, 450W, 300W, 180W and 100W), then tap OK and use the cursor keys to select a cooking time. Tap Start and off the microwave goes, with the neat option of being able to hit Start again to add 30 seconds to the cooking time.
So far, so normal, but the Samsung Glass Front 23 Litre Solo Microwave MS23T5018AE also has some automatic modes. Quick Defrost, is there to get the right settings for defrosting common items.
There are five numbered programmes to choose from (meat, poultry, fish, frozen vegetable and bread), with the programme menu printed on the inside of the door. With a programme selected, you just select the weight of the food and off you go.
The remaining automatic programmes may not be so useful. For example, the Home Dessert option has 10 options for the likes of walnut pound cake and chocolate mug cake. The recipes to use are only printed in the full manual, available on Samsung’s website, not the quick start guide. To be honest, these settings feel like a guide of what can be done in a microwave, as opposed to anything essential.
Similarly, Auto Cook is quite limited. The 10 programmes are limited to set amounts of food, such as 125g of brown rice, or 250g of sliced carrots. Again, the information on how to prepare the food is only printed in the full manual, so you’ll need to download this if you want to prepare the amount of food suggested.
Keep warm is potentially useful: it runs a gentle programme to keep freshly cooked food hot, before it’s time to serve it.
Finally, there’s the Deodorization programme, which is used to remove foul smells from the microwave’s cavity. This could be handy if you have microwaved fish or other smelly foods.
- Reheats well
- Good cooking results
I started off by using the automatic defrost option to defrost four slices of bread. Halfway through cooking, the microwave beeped and paused as a prompt to flip the slices of bread over. At the end of the cooking time, as you can see from the thermal image below, the bread was defrosted with a couple of cold patches.
Feeling the bread, it was noticeably cold to the touch, but not frozen. This level of defrosting would be fine for toasting, but if I was making sandwiches, I’d leave the cold slices for 10 to 20 minutes to warm up.
Next, I made a jacket potato. There’s no automatic mode for this, so I used my normal cooking method: I washed the potato, then pricked it with a fork, and then cooked on full power for 10 minutes (five minutes, either side). The potato was thoroughly cooked through.
Finally, I reheated cold rice in the microwave. This came out nicely cooked, with heat evenly distributed.
Should you buy it?
You like the style and want a microwave only: This model is nice to look at and provides all of the basic features you’ll need.
You’re on a tighter budget: Similar-sized microwaves with similar options can be had for less.
The Samsung Glass Front 23 Litre Solo Microwave MS23T5018AE is a good looking and straightforward microwave, which cooks well. It does have quite a few programmes that I wouldn’t use regularly, which makes the control panel a little confusing. If you want just basic cooking, the cheaper Russell Hobbs Scandi Digital microwave may be a better choice. If you want more features, check out my guide to the best microwaves.
How we test
Unlike other sites, we test every microwave we review thoroughly over an extended period of time. We use industry standard tests to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever, accept money to review a product.
Find out more about how we test in our ethics policy.
Used as our main microwave for the review period
We use a thermal camera to see how well the microwave can defrost frozen bread, using the defrost setting and any automatic programmes.
We cook a baked potato using just the microwave setting and, if available, another using the combi setting.
If there’s a grill option, we toast bread to see how evenly it cooks.
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There’s 23 litres of space, which is enough for a regular dinner plate.