The LCRT2010ST's humidity sensor also proved more than up to the challenge. Our test potato was almost perfectly cooked. We only noticed one area that differed in temperature from the rest of the potato and only by 5°F.
The LG LCRT2010ST (MSRP $199.99) countertop microwave certainly is affordable, but some iffy results in our evenness tests and borderline unusable defrosting settings keep it from earning our highest recommendation.
Fortunately, the LCRT2010ST excelled in other areas, particularly when it came to sensor cooking. If you cook food on a sensor-based preset, you'll get flawless results. Also, TrueCookPlus compatibility opens up a code-based system that completely automates the cooking process of select pre-packaged microwave food.
If you like to press a button and let your microwave do the rest of the work, this LG will do the trick. But if you like to be in control of your cooking, look elsewhere.
No alarms and no surprises
Do you love rectangular stainless steel boxes? If you do, you'll love the LCRT2010ST.
Joking aside, LG has done little to separate this microwave from the herd, insofar as design is concerned. To that end it should look at home amongst your stainless steel appliances. You can put it on a countertop or install it in cabinetry, if you purchase an optional trim kit.
Like most microwaves, the LCRT2010ST seems designed with ease—and speed—of use in mind. The aforementioned TrueCookPlus lets users simply enter a code on a frozen food box. The microwave automatically selects a cooking time accordingly.
If you do make a mess, a round cavity wall and Easy-Clean surface makes cleaning less of an arduous process.
The LG LCRT2010ST is a little on the loud side. We measured sound levels as high as 51.8 dB from the microwave during normal operation.
Things fall apart, the center remains cold…
Depending on what you expect from your appliances, the LCRT2010ST is either the perfect microwave or a complete waste of space. Our tests revealed that the LCRT2010ST has some of the best sensor cooking and popcorn popping performance we have ever seen.
Our test popcorn was almost perfectly popped, and the frozen macaroni and cheese we cooked on a sensor setting was evenly cooked throughout, with no hot or cold spots.
Our high expectations were soon dashed by the LCRT2010ST's utterly awful evenness and defrosting performance. When using default, timer-based cooking settings, our potatoes emerged with hot and cold sections aplenty.
Meanwhile, the defrost setting failed to defrost our entire portion of ground beef, and it tended to overcook the edges as well. That's disappointing to say the least.
This is where the LG LCRT2010ST let itself down. We tested the microwave's default power settings by reheating a portion of macaroni and cheese. After the heating cycle ended, we measured a massive 20°F temperature variance between areas of the food.
The defrost setting fared better, but not by much. The setting was fast: it took only 5:50 to defrost a pound of ground beef. Unfortunately, once the cycle was complete a quarter of the food was still frozen, while the edges of the meat were overcooked. Provided you remove defrosted sections of the food as you go, this shouldn't be too much of an issue.
Don't tell it what to do
The LG LCRT2010ST works best when you leave it alone. Plug in a code or activate a sensor cooking mode, and it'll give you near-perfect food.
We appreciated its totally automated TrueCookPlus option, and a sensor that worked better than any instructions found on the back of a frozen pizza box.
But if you tell this LG how long to cook, it will likely disappoint. For a few dollars more, you could buy the Panasonic NN-SN973S, which pretty much excels at all types of cooking.
Meet the tester
Aside from reviewing ovens and cooktops, James moonlights as an educational theatre practitioner, amateur home chef, and weekend DIY warrior.
Checking our work.
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