PROS / This compact microwave reheats pizza faster than any other microwave we tested.
CONS / It does not have a reheat button to cook food with sensors.
VERDICT / The GE JES1145SHSS is a small but mighty microwave that cooks food quite evenly and is especially good for pizza.
For a small microwave, the GE JES1145SHSS packs a powerful performance. It's one of the best compact microwaves we tested because, in spite of its small size and low wattage compared to the two top-ranked microwave ovens, it holds its own in cooking food completely and quickly. This mini microwave even outperformed all of the other microwaves we tested in the pizza button test, which is one of the reasons we gave it the Top Ten Reviews Bronze Award.
Like the other top-rated countertop microwaves on our list, the GE aced the first test of its ability to quickly and thoroughly cook a frozen macaroni and cheese meal. We followed the directions on the back of the box and cooked it for a total of 3:30 minutes. The temperature of the meal when it finished cooking was 171 F, which is above the recommended minimum temperature of 165 F.
We also cooked a kids' frozen meal with mini corn dogs and other compartments of food. After following the instructions on the box, we recorded the temperature of each corn dog. One near the center only registered at 145 F, so we cooked the meal for another 30 seconds, which was plenty of time to bump the temperature of the colder corn dog up to 175 F. Overall, this compact microwave performed better than most of the others we tested.
Although the GE microwave is smaller than the two roomiest microwaves in our lineup, it can still fit a big mixing bowl, a tall glass or a standard dinner plate with no problem. This is also the only microwave in the top three that includes both a 30-second button and a Quick Cook function. These buttons make it faster and easier to just pop something on the turntable and choose 30 seconds or a couple minutes to melt butter, boil water or reheat leftovers. However, it is missing a sensor reheat button, so you have to guess at the time your leftovers need and monitor your food to make sure it doesn't overcook.
This GE compact microwave, like most microwaves today, includes popcorn, pizza and potato buttons. We tested all three to determine which one performed the best in our lineup. The GE performed well in each test.
You can press the popcorn button three times to choose the closest size to the popcorn bag you have: 1.75, 3 or 3.5 ounces. We chose the 3-ounce option, which had the popcorn popping for 1:45 minutes. At the end of the cycle, we found a few slightly burned kernels and 17 unpopped kernels. Although this wasn't the best result, this GE outperformed the majority of its competition in this area.
We cooked a potato in this microwave for six minutes, which is the average time it takes to cook a standard-sized russet potato in a microwave. The pizza slice test was the most impressive, though. We reheated a slice of pepperoni pizza in the GE using the pizza button. One slice cooks for 40 seconds – the shortest time for the microwaves we tested. After this, the pizza's temperature registered at exactly 165 F, which was just what we were looking for.
In addition to these standard presets, the GE includes buttons for a beverage, a dinner plate and a frozen vegetable. This gives you a good variety, though some other microwaves include even more food settings, such as ones for fresh vegetables and frozen entrees.
Help & Support
This GE compact microwave only has a standard warranty of one year to protect your purchase. If you find that your microwave has any defective parts, including the magnetron, you can send it back to GE for a free repair or replacement.
The GE website gives you several support options, including FAQs, a downloadable user manual and many ways to connect with a customer support specialist. You can email support anytime or chat live with an agent during business hours Monday through Friday. Phone support is available from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. EST Monday through Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays.
In spite of its smaller size and lower wattage, the GE JES1145SHS outperformed some of its bigger and more powerful competitors in some tests. Although it's missing the convenience of sensor reheating, it includes several handy preset buttons to help you cook efficiently and other features to place it among the best compact microwaves.