If you like the convenience of a microwave but always feel frustrated by the results, a speed oven might work for you. These ovens preheat quickly and cook fast as well.
Wondering about what speed ovens are? Well, these are compact ovens that cook faster than a standard wall oven. They combine microwave, convection and grill element to reduce cooking time significantly.
And guess what, even with the faster cooking, your food won’t lose color or become tasteless.
You can operate a speed oven on a single mode if required. These appliances also come with preset baking and roasting programs that yield great results.
So, can a speed oven replace a regular oven? The answer is yes. These appliances reheat quickly and can replace your regular oven as your day-to-day cooking device.
Speed ovens make a good investment. Their versatility is the latest evolution in oven technology.
Want to learn more about these kitchen masterpieces? Keep reading.
What’s a Speed Oven?
A speed oven is an innovative appliance that combines microwave and convection technology for faster cooking times. Manufactures have actually boosted the power of this cooking device through convection.
Radiant heat and impingement cooking further hasten up the cooking process.
And because these units come in a compact size, you can use them anywhere a regular microwave could fit. These ovens don’t require a hood as they come with a catalytic converter that makes them ventless.
These ovens usually operate via a menu-based control panel. Other features include pre-programmed options, temperature and time settings and a “favorites” feature that helps you save recipes according to temperature and time.
The cooking functions of these units include roasting, baking, broiling, crisping, toasting and dehydrating.
Speed ovens come in several models, colors (stainless steel, black and white) and cooking modes. Their features range from air-based technology to pre-programming controls.
The average size of these units is roughly 30 inches, but this varies depending on the model.
How a Speed Oven Works
To understand how a speed oven works, we need to breakdown how heat is applied to the food being cooked:
- Temperature – A speed oven operates at 260 to 270 degrees C.
- Impinged air – When using a speed oven, hot air is usually forced into the unit’s cooking chamber through impingement plates in the top or bottom of the oven.
- Impingement plates are a series of small holes that distribute the hot air evenly in the chamber and to your food.
- Infrared radiation – The heating element that heats the air in a speed oven radiates infrared energy naturally. And in some models like the Bullet and Copa, there’s an additional IR element located at the bottom. It radiates heat to the unit’s underside, just like a grill.
- Convection – The oven’s heat convects heat to the food being cooked naturally regardless of the speed of the air. It allows food to cook just like in a convection oven.
- Microwave – The microwave function in a speed oven works like a regular microwave oven.
A speed oven uses a combination of the above-listed heat sources to cook your food fast.
Speed Oven vs Regular Oven
Although steam and speed ovens have some similarities in functionality, the two have different uses.
Speed ovens are primarily designed to give you rapid cooking results without the rubber-like finish of a microwave. Your food won’t get soggy, ice-cold in the middle, tough or devoid of texture with this oven.
On the other hand, steam ovens provide nutrient-rich food thanks to steam’s unique benefits.
The two ovens intersect with their ability to use traditional convection cooking to offer you extra cooking power.
This means that if you don’t want a conventional microwave, you can get a speed oven that will give you microwave features together with a full-fledged convection oven.
And with a steam oven, you can prepare 3 to 4 dishes at a go without mixing the flavors. It’s actually the best for preparing fish and vegetables.
Pros and Cons of Speed Ovens
Advantages of Speed Ovens
- Food is cooked faster.
- Concurrent cooking helps improve moisture retention in your food
- Boast programmable controls that lower the time spent cooking
- Require no hood
- Requires less skilled labor as they are programmable
Disadvantages of Speed Ovens
- Small cavities limit the number of meals you can prepare at a go.
Maintenance of Speed Ovens
The combination of microwave and hot air helps cook food quickly in a speed oven but can also grime and grease just as fast.
You, therefore, need to clean the appliance regularly (daily) if using it every day. Split the process into 2 stages for the best results.
In the first stage, you need to clean the internal surfaces and coat them with an oven guard protector. It would be best if you did this before switching the oven on.
Then, when you’re done using the unit, use a non-caustic oven cleaner to clean your oven at the end of the day. The cleaner breaks down the protector to remove all the grime and dirt.
Once clean, wipe the oven with a wet cloth to eliminate any residues.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Are speed ovens worth it?
Speed ovens boast several advantages, thus very much worth it. They cook food fast and without destroying the flavor or texture of your food, perform various cooking functions and can also fit in tiny spaces.
Q: Can you use foil in a speed oven?
Avoid using metal lids, foil, plastic covers, wax paper, plastic wraps or parchment paper in a speed oven. Use Corningware, clear glass pyrex and other oven-safe utensils only.
Q: Can a speed oven toast?
Yes, a speed oven can toast, roast, bake, crisp and even brown food.
Q: Is speed bake the same as convection?
Speed bake is a convection-based technology that allows you to cook meats, bake bread and pastries faster than conventional ovens.
Q: Why are speed ovens faster?
Speed ovens are faster than regular ovens because they transfer heat to the food being cooked more efficiently, reducing cooking time. These ovens are actually up to 10 times faster than conventional ovens.
Q: What can you cook in a high-speed oven?
Fast speed ovens are usually used for finishing pre-cooked food and fast reheating. They are not suitable for preparing raw, greasy proteins like sausages, bacon or burgers as these create excessive smoke and grease.
Q: What cookware can you use in a speed oven?
The cookware to use in a speed oven needs to be of reasonable thickness and good quality. If possible, always use the trays supplied with the ovens.
You can also use ovenproof ceramics and Pyrex.
Q: What’s the difference between a speed oven and a microwave?
A speed oven uses convection heat, microwaves and sometimes infrared radiation. Microwaves use radioactive waves for cooking and can result in loss of food moisture.
Q: Can you cook a turkey in a speed oven?
Although you can’t fit a turkey in a speed oven since (it’s much smaller than a conventional oven), you can still cook, bake, crisp, defrost and reheat anything in this appliance.
Q: Do speed ovens toast bread?
Yes, speed ovens toast bread.
Q: Can you use a speed oven as a microwave?
Yes, you can use a speed oven as a microwave as these appliances come with a microwave function.
Q: Can an oven be both convection and conventional?
Yes, an oven can be both convection and conventional if it originally is a convection oven. You just need to switch off the fan to turn it into a traditional model.
Q: Can a microwave replace an oven?
A microwave can never replace an oven. Although it comes with the function of an oven, it can’t carry out the tasks of an oven.
The current of electricity, air and heat in a microwave doesn’t allow more rounded cooking that you can achieve with a regular oven.
Q: Can a convection oven replace a regular oven?
You can replace a regular oven with a convection oven by turning off the fan in the convection oven.
Speed ovens provide exceptional cooking results hence worth trying out. If you’re looking for speed and versatility, these appliances don’t disappoint.
They offer a wide range of menu items, fit in tiny spaces and don’t require a hood. With this kitchen appliance, you can also roast, toast, broil, bake, crisp and brown food items.
We believe that you now know that you can replace a regular oven with a speed oven for fast and exceptional cooking results.