Angry Mama Microwave Cleaner: Does It Really Work?

The microwave steam cleaner has been a viral hit. But does it actually work? The ATK Reviews team puts it to the test.

Published Mar. 20, 2022.

She’s not happy. You left tomato sauce splatters and coffee sploshes all over the inside of your microwave and now she has to clean it up. This grumpy ginger-haired, plastic doll–woman with her grimace and arms akimbo is called the Angry Mama Microwave Cleaner. The kitchen gadget—which costs about $9—has been a viral sensation, and it promises to whip your grubby microwave back into shape. But does it work?

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Following instructions, I yanked off her flippy red bob and then her entire head, and filled her torso with about ¼ cup distilled vinegar, ¼ cup tap water, and a spritz of fresh lemon juice. There are fill lines on her bright blue dress, but they’re very hard to see unless you hold her up to the light.

Then I replaced her face and hair and set the Angry Mama in the microwave for seven minutes. Steam poured from the top of her head as she revolved, glaring at me through the window every time she came around on the turntable. I backed up involuntarily and waited.

Angry Mama Microwave Cleaner

Product Claim: "Remove the head, add water, and vinegar, then microwave for about 7 minutes, and voila."

After waiting another two minutes to let her cool down, I reached in and retrieved the Angry Mama, using her elbows as handles. The interior of the microwave dripped with vinegar-y condensation, which I wiped off with paper towels, leaving everything gleaming. I used the few teaspoonfuls left in the Angry Mama to wipe down the touch screen and window, and we were done. She worked like a charm.

Still doesn’t look happy about it, though.

She’s cute, no doubt. But do you actually need to bring all that negativity into your microwave? I poured the same proportions of distilled white vinegar and water (¼ cup each) and a squeeze of lemon into a measuring cup and ran the seven-minute routine again, with the same results. (Be sure to wait at least two minutes to let the water in the measuring cup to cool.) My microwave has never been so clean or fresh. 

So if you want the adorable reminder to clean the microwave, by all means, pick up an Angry Mama, but you can also do without. Just don’t tell her I said so.

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