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Panasonic combi 4-in-1 microwave oven

Panasonic combi 4-in-1 microwave oven NN-CS89LBBPQ

With microwave, fan convection, grilling and steam functions, this is a versatile and sophisticated countertop gadget. Read our full review.

Our rating 
4.5 out of 5 star rating 4.5
£429
Pros: technology at its best, steam for healthy cooking, flatbed
Cons: confusing instruction book

Panasonic combi microwave oven 4-in-1 summary

The Panasonic combi microwave arrives in an alarmingly large box, due partly to the extensive amount of packaging to protect it in transit. The oven itself is also big – those with small spaces look away now. This microwave is the largest and, at 24 kg, the heaviest, we tested, but with its flatbed and heating elements tucked away, you can make the most of the generous 31-litre cavity.

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Set up was easy, including fitting the water tank and drip tray. We were ready to dive in, but negotiating the instruction book is not easy, with a breathtaking 12 combi cooking options and 36 auto programmes to figure out. We found it best to work through it section by section, and, once digested, this is a super-easy-to-use microwave.

Read our full round-up of the best microwaves to buy

How easy is the Panasonic combi microwave oven 4-in-1 to use?

A full touch panel screen is large and simple to follow; tap the function you want, press start, and away it goes. For the size and power of the machine, we were surprised by how quiet it is in use. We had a couple of minor irritations – we needed to open the door to check how things were progressing inside as the interior light is dim, and, once done, you must press start again, which is easy to forget.

The two-level cooking created by the glass, wire and enamel shelf makes the Panasonic the most regular oven-like microwave. The three shelves can be juggled around depending on the function used; the wire and enamel, though, must not be used on classic microwave functions (use only on the grill or fan convection settings).

Results

We had several choices for defrosting and cooking our chicken breasts. We used auto-defrost for perfect thawing and opted for the 1300w steam function for cooking. They were a little hard at the first attempt. Round two and a shorter cooking time heralded remarkable results – they were soft and cooked through. As expected, the oven’s interior gets very wet following the steam function and needs a thorough wipe after use.

We baked two large potatoes on auto-cook – the skin was beautifully crisp after 12 minutes, but the flesh was still a little hard. An extra two minutes sorted that. Even 14 minutes for two big potatoes is rapid, making this economical to use as well.

Conclusion

The Panasonic is the only 4-in-1 microwave we’ve tested, with its microwave, fan convection, grilling and steam functions. It is large and expensive but would easily make the perfect replacement for a regular oven and microwave, and comes with a super valuable steam function. So if you have the space and the need, you can’t go wrong with the Panasonic. We loved it.

Panasonic combi microwave oven NN-CF87LBBPQ specifications
Capacity: 31-litres
Wattage: microwave 1000W
Dimensions: H391mm, W500mm, D43.7mm ‎
Extras: flatbed and inverter technology

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