We used these important factors as our top criteria for selecting the best convection oven.
If you are ready to get cooking and cut to the chase, the Breville Smart Convection Toaster Oven scored high above the others in every category we researched. Because of this, it’s our top pick.
Convection Oven Comparison
Black & Decker CTO6335S
Hamilton Beach 31103A
Black & Decker CTO4500S
|120 – 450||115 – 400||120 – 300||150 – 450||150 – 450||120 – 500||100 – 500||250 – 390||125 – 450||100 – 450|
|18-1/2 x 16-1/4 x 11-1/4||18 x 12 x 20||16.1 x 12.1 x 18||22.5 x 18.1 x 14.6||21.8 x 12.4 x 14.5||23.3 x 18.1 x 15.5||21 x 16 x 14||14 x 19.4 x 10.4||18 x 15.5 x 10.75||20.1 x 16.3 x 12.6|
|Warranty||1 Year||3 Years||1 Year||1 Year||2 Years||5 Years||3 Years||1 Year||3 Years||2 Years|
Convection Oven Buying Guide
What is a Convection Oven?
We all need an oven, but imagine a new kind of oven that can reduce cooking time by 25%, and cooking temperature by 30%, all while saving you space and money. This is where the convection oven comes into play, and it’s versatile enough to not only cook, but also warm, roast, re-thermalize, and bake, all with one device. No doubt, you’re looking to buy a convection oven to make your life easier, and keep your kitchen cooler. We’ll discuss some features that will help you figure out which convection oven is right for you.
Also known as a fan-assisted oven or fan oven, a convection oven uses fans to circulate hot air that will cook your food faster than ever before. A traditional oven relies upon radiated heat and heating elements, whilst a convection oven will spread the heat to cook your food. When you’re looking for the right convection oven for you, you may stumble across a European convection, or true convection oven, and this is a model that has an additional third heating element that will heat the air as it exits the fan. This is a good feature to have.
- Uniformity: The reason that convection ovens work so efficiently is that they’re equipped with a fan that circulates the hot air in the oven around the food, and this creates a uniform temperature that will cook every surface of your food with identical heat. Most standard radiant ovens will allow air to move around the food randomly, and this will create some hot and cold spots. This means that you get food that is burnt and undercooked at the same time. With a convection oven you can be sure that the bottom of your food doesn’t get burnt to a crisp whilst the top is undercooked.
- Cook Anything: You can cook virtually anything in a convection oven with good results. You’ll find that things cooked in this appliance are much tastier, crispier, and juicier than with a standard oven. Since cooking time and temperature are much less, you’re going to see that the butter and flour of a pie crust and many other delicate baked goods are more flaky and delicious, and the skin of a roasting chicken is more brown and juicy. And, there are countless other foods that cook better in a convection oven, so you’re going to have a fantastic time experimenting with all your favorite dishes.
What utility are you running on?
It’s important to consider whether you should purchase a gas model or electric model. If you choose a gas model you’re still going to need an electrical connection to run the fan. And gas models generally require 1”or more of clearance around the sides of the pans for good airflow in the chamber.
Do you have the necessary hood and fire suppression system?
You need to be sure to check your local codes and also review the installation requirements of your model before purchasing. Make sure that you can accommodate the specific requirements of that convection oven to be able to use it safely.
As with any appliance, it’s important to compare various models before you make a purchase. Determine whether the model that you’re interested in is capable of preparing your favorite dishes, or restaurant and menu items. Different convection ovens are suited for different tasks, so it really comes down to finding the one that is geared towards your needs.
- Convenience: If you want all the convenience of a convection oven with less bulk, then a countertop convection oven is the solution for you. These devices are also great for concessions operations and off-site catering events. They’re incredibly easy to install and can hold everything from small cookie trays to half-size sheet pans.
- More Even Heating: There are three heating elements in a convection oven, along the top, button, and rear. The fan will force the heated air to circulate, so no matter where the food is in the oven, it will all receive the same level of heat. If you have separate pans of cookies, for example, they’re all going to be cooked the exact same way. You can place more food in the convection oven without fear of some parts being burnt and some parts being undercooked.
- Faster Cooking: A convection oven will speed up your cooking time. You can, in fact, get the same results that you would with a traditional oven and at a setting of 25˚lower than you would otherwise need. This is a great savings in energy costs, and reduces the overall time it takes to prepare a meal.
- Retaining Moisture in Meats: Because of how a convection oven works, you can retain the moisture in thicker cuts of meat. Due to the constant stream of heated air blowing across the surface of the food, you’re going to get a fine external crust while still maintaining internal moisture. Breads and pies also benefit from this effect due to circulating air that browns the outer layers. This is not as easy to pull off in a traditional oven, especially when it comes to cooking doughs and batters.
- Reduce the temperature of any recipe by 25 degrees.
- Also reduce cooking time by 25%
- Keep an eye on the food at all times. You’ll find that smaller batches of cookies may take just a few minutes less, however, larger cuts of meat can take up to an hour less.
- Choose baking pans with low sides for better air circulation.
- Use a low fan speed or pulse fan speed when cooking delicate items such as soufflés and muffins.
Owning a convection oven is the best way to increase the speed and quality of your cooking. With today’s countertop convection ovens, you’re able to get all the benefits of owning a convection oven without taking up a lot of space. When it comes time for you to find the right convection oven for you, it’s all about knowing yourself, knowing your kitchen, and knowing your cooking habits. Once you narrow down how it is you’re going to be using the oven, and how much space you have for it, then you’ll be well on your way to finding the right oven for you. There are so many out there to choose from, but you need not feel overwhelmed. After reading about the top rated convection ovens, and consulting the buyer’s guide, you should be ready to find the appliance that is perfectly suited to your unique needs.