The focal plane characterization of spot focusing horn antennas used for microwave NDE is presented using three experimental methods. Reflections from a metal sphere were analyzed in time domain to quantify the focal spot and spot size in the first method. In the second method, a rectangular waveguide padded with absorber was used as the sensor. Finally, graphene based miniaturized electric (E)-field sensor printed on photo paper using inkjet printing was used to measure antenna focal plane characteristics. The focal plane measured using the metal ball and waveguide techniques was within 5% of the simulated value. Higher error was recorded in focal spot measurement (≥25%) for the first two methods. The focal plane and spot size measured by the miniaturized E-field sensor was within 10% of the simulated antenna characteristics. The results indicate that the flexible printed sensor has better measurement accuracy and simple setup for field measurement. © 2019 The authors and IOS Press. All rights reserved.