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I test kitchen products for a living, and this bestselling $10 cover keeps my microwave splatter-free

It doubles as a colander and collapses to save space — 51,000 Amazon reviewers also say it's a 5-star buy.

Microwaves were designed with convenience in mind, right? But if that's the case, why are they such a pain to clean? You have to reach into a tight space and use a lot of elbow grease to scrape off whatever food residue got caked onto the sides. It's not fun, and frankly, I refuse to do it. Now, before you judge me for living with a filthy kitchen appliance, I'll have you know that I don't — and it's thanks to the Tovolo Microwave Cover. This Amazon No. 1 bestseller stops saucy explosions before they happen, and it even doubles as a colander. Not too shabby for $10.

If you've just about had it with the Jackson Pollock-esque food stains coating your microwave's interior, meet your new best friend. 

$10 at Amazon

As a former professional baker who now writes about kitchen products for a living, I've tested my fair share of cookware tools and gadgets. This is one I use multiple times a week, and believe me — it saves so much time and headache.

Made of heat-resistant, BPA-free plastic and silicone, the Tovolo Microwave Cover has a nifty collapsible design that allows it to fold down to under an inch thick. It'll hardly take up any space in your cabinets, but I actually leave it in my microwave at all times for easy access. Because it has small ventilation holes along the top, steam is able to escape, preventing my food from getting soggy as it heats up.

You can place the cover flat over a bowl, but it also pops up to three inches tall if you need more space over your food. In its expanded form, it can also be used as a colander, and cleaning it couldn't be easier — just put it in the dishwasher!

I have the medium cover, which fits over my standard dinner plates, but it also comes in a smaller and larger size.

the red microwave cover over a plate of food / the microwave cover being used as a colander for greens
It is a microwave cover? Is it a colander? It may be having an identity crisis, but I'm not complaining. (Amazon)

Don't just take my word for it: Over 51,000 Amazon reviewers also keep their microwaves clean with the Tovolo cover.

"I love silicone kitchenware in general because it stands up to heat so well," shared one happy buyer. "I use this cover for heating up any dish in the microwave and it has saved me a lot of money on paper towels!"

Another satisfied shopper who bought one for the office wrote: "I really dislike using community microwaves at the workplace because people don’t clean their food splatter after heating their food. I don’t like using dirty microwaves, so I decided to spend the few dollars on this to help prevent people leaving dried-up food spots in the microwave. So far, so good. I would rather rinse this cover every so often than scrub the inside of a microwave every day."

"I wish I had bought one of these years ago!" lamented a final fan. "My microwave stays absolutely pristine on the inside now. My only complaint is the handle is not very easy to get a hold of."

Now, which color will it be — gray, red or blue?

$11 at Amazon

Psst: If you ever do need to tackle a microwave mess, this little gizmo makes cleaning a breeze.

Tired of having to scrape caked-on tomato sauce off your microwave? Angry Mama to the rescue! All you do is remove her hair (sorry, Mama), fill her with vinegar and water, put her hair back on, pop her into the microwave, and heat her for five to eight minutes. While she's in there, the vents in her hair will release a mist of the water-vinegar mixture, which helps soften and release food buildup. Then you can simply wipe everything down, no harsh chemicals or intense scrubbing required.

$8 at Amazon

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The reviews quoted above reflect the most recent versions at the time of publication.