Panasonic NN-SN67KS Review
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|Pros||Excellent heating, great with frozen foods, large capacity||Excellent at defrosting, convenient||Good at defrosting meat||Easy to use, relatively inexpensive, excellent with prepared frozen items||Good at reheating, does well with premade frozen foods|
|Cons||Expensive, so-so at defrosting||Large, expensive||Not the most convenient to use, heating performance could be better||Struggled to defrost the ground turkey||Didn't defrost frozen turkey well|
|Bottom Line||Offers unmatched performance for heating frozen food, and is one of the better products available for heating food evenly, without annoying hot and cold spots||An excellent all-around product with a large capacity, this model has convenient features and is exceptional at defrosting||This product pairs average results with an average price, failing to stand out from the competition||This product had mixed results overall, failing to distinguish it all that much from other products||This larger product did decently well but we don't think it quite matches the performance of the top-tier models|
|Rating Categories||Panasonic NN-SN67KS||Toshiba EM131A5C||Panasonic NN-SB458S||Toshiba EM925A5A||Black+Decker EM031MB11|
|Frozen Foods (30%)|
|Ease of use (10%)|
|Specs||Panasonic NN-SN67KS||Toshiba EM131A5C||Panasonic NN-SB458S||Toshiba EM925A5A||Black+Decker EM031MB11|
|Wattage||1200 watts||1100 watts||900 watts||900 watts||1000 watts|
|Size||1.2 cu. ft.||1.2 cu. ft.||0.9 cu. ft.||0.9 cu. ft.||1.1 cu. ft.|
|Dimensions (WxHxD)||20.7" x 12.3" x 15.8"||20.5" x 12.8" x 17.1"||19.1" x 11.5" x 14.8"||19.2" x 11.5" x 15.9"||20.2" x 12.1" x 15.6"|
|Internal Dimentions (WxHxD)||14.4" x 9.9" x 13.9"||15" x 9.5" x 13.1"||13.9" x 8.1" x 12.4"||13.7" x 8.7" x 12.3"||14.5" x 9.1" x 13.9"|
|45 Sec Heating Temp Rise||78 F||111 F||89 F||89 F||83 F|
Our Analysis and Test Results
This product is the perfect microwave for frozen food fans, and a strong performer across the board. We love how it was much better than competing products at heating most food items evenly, avoiding hot and cold spots. It's one of our recommended kitchen appliances and earned a Top Pick Award in our comprehensive best microwave review.
Our heating metric comprised 40% of each product's final overall score. We broke this metric down into five different subtests, creating heat maps, testing speed, and rating how each microwave reheated different foods.
Heat Map Test
To create a heat map, we spread a layer of marshmallow creme onto parchment paper matching the dimensions of the turntable tray and heated this on high for two minutes. Then we checked for temperature variation spots, noting any burned areas or areas that were still cold. This test makes up 35% of the Heating score.
The Panasonic NN-SN67KS did impressively well in the heat map test. We looked at both the top and the bottom, which was visible through the parchment paper, to get a good idea of how evenly it was cooked. The marshmallow fluff showed no notable burnt or undercooked spots.
Heating Speed Test
For this test, which comprises 20% of the Heating score, we placed a 125 mL beaker of room temperature water in the center the microwave, and heated it for 45 seconds on high. We then measured the water temperature.
The Panasonic NN-SN67KS didn't deliver great results here, only raising the temperature of the water by 78.1°F after 45 seconds of heating, which was slightly below average.
Many of us regularly use microwaves to heat leftovers. In this metric, we heated a plate of sausage links, green beans, and mashed potatoes, noting temperature differences after running the microwave on. This test accounted for 15% of the Heating score.
We were unimpressed with the results here. This Panasonic appliance produced significant temperature variations between the food and didn't heat them all that much, performing comparably to microwaves with much lower power outputs.
The ability to heat soup to the appropriate temperature accounted for 15% of the Heating score. Most microwaves we tested performed quite well in this metric, and the Panasonic NN-SN67KS was no exception.
For the remaining 15% of the Heating score, we zapped two pieces of pizza according to the microwave's instructions, then measured the temperature of each slice with a laser infrared thermometer.
The Panasonic NN-SN67KS shined brightly here, heating the pizza quickly and evenly, which proved to be a difficult task for many microwaves.
The Panasonic NN-SN67KS really earns its keep when it comes to heating packaged frozen items. In this test, which makes up 30% of each microwave's final score, we assess cooking performance with a Hot Pocket, a frozen burrito, and a single-serving lasagna. Using a set of digital kitchen thermometers, we compared the temperatures between zones to assess even eating of each frozen food item after cooking according to the instructions.
This microwave delivered one of the best results of the entire group, evenly heating up the frozen burrito, Hot Pocket, and individual serving of lasagna above the required serving temperatures when following the manufacturer's instructions.
The frozen burrito was heated pretty evenly, with only an average of 7°F of a temperature difference between the left, right, and center regions of the burrito. This appliance did even better with the Hot Pocket, with our thermometers only reading an average difference of 3°F between the three regions.
Many microwaves struggled with the frozen lasagna, but this Panasonic was the best out of the group when heating this packaged meal. We calculated an average temperature discrepancy of 9°F between the 6 different zones, with the largest difference being 18°F between any one zone. There were a few areas that fell a little short of the requisite 165°F but we think just a bit longer in the microwave would have remedied that.
Using a one pound block of frozen ground turkey, we defrosted it according to the microwave's defrosting instructions. We then scraped off the thawed meat and weighed what was left over to determine how much meat was still frozen. If any turkey was prematurely cooked, we docked points. Defrosting accounted for 20% of the final score.
Regrettably, we weren't thrilled with the Panasonic NN-SN67KS's performance when defrosting the frozen block of ground turkey. Around 2/3 of the block was defrosted, with the remainder staying very frozen. It also has some areas that seemed to be fully cooked, despite heeding its notification to flip the turkey over halfway through heating.
Ease of Use
Ease of use made up the final 10% of each microwave's overall score. We assessed presets, function buttons, timers, and lighting, among other things. The Panasonic NN-SN67KS had an above-average showing here.
We appreciate how easy it is to use this product. It has a +30 seconds button, and it stayed put on the countertop, never sliding around when we hit a button or opened or closed the door. The presets also seem to be quite effective, with the popcorn button microwaving a bag of popcorn almost to completion without burning it and leaving only a few unpopped kernels.
Should You Buy the Panasonic NN-SN67KS
If you are looking for a microwave oven that can heat frozen foods better than any other, and deliver even heating across most food items, the Panasonic NN-SN67KS is an ideal purchase. It is a workhorse oven with a large capacity and is quite easy to use. While it is more expensive than most competing ovens, it makes up for that by delivering more even heating and better frozen food performance than any competing product.
What Other Products Should You Consider?
The Panasonic is one of the larger microwaves, and it may be too large for some kitchens. If so, then the Toshiba EM131A5C is a top-performing oven and a bit less expensive too. It's nearly as good as the Panasonic when it comes to frozen foods, and offers good defrosting.
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