If you’re a casual baker, you know the importance of correctly getting the ingredients and directions in a recipe. Baking is a science, after all, requiring careful planning and follow-through to ensure your creation comes out of the oven perfectly. One key element of successful baking is ensuring you have one of the best ovens for baking in your kitchen.
You can get all the ingredients measured correctly and everything mixed together to the perfect amount, but one of the final steps is taking your uncooked food to the oven. Then, the temperature must be precise to have it baked exactly as described in the recipe.
This is where the best oven becomes so important. An oven should be able to handle normal temperature and heat settings and maintain them over time. If you have a cookie that only needs 15 minutes in the oven or a complex creation that needs to bake slowly for over an hour, you want an oven that can handle the temperature differences.
We’ll go over the best ovens for baking, the types of ovens to look for, and other tips you need to know to bake, like one of the pros.
Types of Ovens
A single oven is the smaller oven model and is a great space saver for smaller kitchens and homes. A typical single oven measures about 45 cm in height and has one or two racks, still offering some space for multiple items to be cooked or baked.
This oven size is excellent for baking one dish at a time and keeps its temperature even throughout its smaller size. However, if you’re baking multiple foods, you must be patient, as you can only set the oven to a single temperature.
A double oven measures around 70 cm to 90 cm in height and can fit more and handle multiple functions at twice the height of a single oven. You can cook dinner while also baking dessert at the same time!
This larger model will take up more space in your kitchen, so it’s important to note if you’re looking for more space-saving solutions. A single oven is often the best choice for space, but double ovens might just be lifesavers in the kitchen if you can swing it.
Gas or Electric Oven?
When it comes to a gas or electric oven, the question may depend on what’s available to you. Gas ovens are becoming less popular in recent years due to the long-term health effects of burning gas indoors, and they are being banned in some places. A gas oven heats up quickly and provides an instant heat source, so your oven will be ready to bake in a few minutes. Your neighborhood may already have gas lines installed so that a gas oven could be more affordable.
However, since a gas oven heats up so quickly, the temperature is not often even throughout the entire oven. You may pull out your freshly baked pie and find one area more cooked than others because of how the heat is distributed in the oven.
Electric ovens are an ideal choice for baking because they have an even temperature and are less likely to spike up and down in temperature like a gas oven. An electric oven works through heated coils that heat up slowly, distributing heat evenly and providing less intense heat. Remember that an electric oven can have a drier climate than a gas oven, so watch your food doesn’t over-brown while baking.
If you haven’t got a gas line, an electric oven is also more affordable since it costs much less than a traditional one. An electric oven is the best for an even bake with a cheaper price tag.
What Makes a Perfect Bake?
Just what makes that perfect bake? Many aspects are involved with baking and cooking, like temperature, time, and ingredients. And, of course, it helps to have one of the best ovens for baking.
With temperature, it’s essential to remember how hot the oven will be when baking and the temperature of your working area. Some doughs need to be chilled before baking, while others need to be warm and soft to the touch.
Temperatures can change the chemistry of the raw dough, altering its final form once it’s in the oven. An overworked dough can fall flat and lose its desired texture, so follow the recipe instructions for any specific tips on preparing your dough and flour before it’s baked. Use the right baking pan with your baked goods, as some have different heat temperatures when in the oven.
Similarly, time is an aspect of baking that needs to be considered. Some bakes, like fruit pies, need the preparation of multiple ingredients, time for the dough to chill, and time to bake. Read the recipe before taking it on, so you know exactly how much time you’ll need to allot to finish baking.
Ingredients are the be-all and end-all of any baked good. The best ingredients ensure the best overall taste, so don’t skimp on the essentials. Fruits, jams, vanilla extract, and other ingredients should taste great because when it’s in your final product, that flavor will shine through.
There’s certainly a lot of stress that you can add to baking, but if you follow the recipe, you’ll usually end up with a great result. The perfect bake takes time, patience, and lots of practice. If you don’t get the recipe right the first time, or your baked goods turn out not-so-great, don’t fret. The perfect bake could be one more try away – baking is a learned skill, so keep at it!
Important Factors to Consider: Best Ovens For Baking
Before buying an oven, you must consider a few key features you’ll need the oven to perform. Think about how often you will use your oven and what you’ll use it for. If you’ll be primarily baking, what kind of oven will you need, and what features are you looking for? Where will the oven be installed in your kitchen? Some people prefer an oven under their stove for easy access, while others prefer a countertop oven or one installed at shoulder level.
Ovens today have plenty of features, so ensure you get the oven you need. Look for these key features:
- Interior light that provides good illumination
- Glass doors for an easy window into what’s baking
- A heating element that properly heats and cools down, distributing even heat throughout
- Wire racks for stacking
- A wide temperature range to fit all kinds of bakes
- Multi-functionality to handle baking, broiling, steaming, and more
- Self-cleaning functions
- Good-sized capacity to fit whatever you’re baking
If you plan on getting a new oven, the best oven and all the delicious goods you’ll be baking are out there for you. An electric oven is your best bet for baking. Look for special features that fit your kitchen and personal baking needs. For example, will you just be baking cake, or will you be baking bread, too? New models of smart ovens can even elevate your dishes and keep the temperature stable throughout the oven, ensuring an even, thoroughly-cooked pastry or bread. Happy baking!