Whether you love or loathe cooking, a good oven goes a long way. If you’ve just moved home or need to replace your existing oven, choosing a new one can be surprisingly difficult. With today’s technology, ovens have a range of special features to help make your style of cooking easier such as dough proving for bakers or pizza base functions for those Italian lovers.
Special features aside, it is important to consider some of the basic functions on an oven before purchasing. First of all you will need to consider the size of oven you want and the space you have in your kitchen. Most single ovens will fit under a kitchen worktop, which is great for smaller families and kitchens, but if you want more flexibility when cooking, you may wish to opt for a higher capacity oven. A large oven is defined as around 65 litres or above, so if you have a big family that is something to consider.
For those who like to cook multiple things at once, double ovens allow you to cook at different temperatures and with different functions which is ideal for big Sunday roasts or Christmas dinners. With cooking big meals comes a lot of washing up, so the last thing you’ll want to think about is cleaning the oven, too. Many ovens now come with a self-cleaning function, which will help minimise any grease or residue from cooking for minimal effort. Failing that, we have rounded up our picks of the best oven cleaners to help you on that front!
So whether you’re looking for a basic oven or something to feed the five thousand, we’ve picked out some of the best ovens 2017 has to offer, with a range of functions to suit your kitchen and style of cooking. Ready, steady, cook!
1. AGA Masterchef XL 90 Dual Fuel Range Cooker
The ultimate country kitchen must-have, now with higher efficiency and lots of ways to cook
Best for: Energy-efficiency | Type: Electric with gas grill | Dimensions: H90.5 x W90 x D61cm | Capacity: 1x73L 1x67L
At over three times the price of the next most expensive oven on our list, this AGA is definitely on the expensive side, but if you’ve always wanted one of these famously lust-worthy ovens, the Masterchef XL is the one to get. It has a dedicated grill and tall fanned oven in addition to the main 73 litre oven, and five powerful hobs, so you can cook all manner of different foods at once. Plus, let’s be honest, it looks incredible. The one caveat — accepting the price — is the lack of windows, so you’ll have to be a pretty confident cook to get the most out of it.
2. Hotpoint Class 2 SA2844HIX
Our best oven for everyday cooking, with simple controls and a sleek design
Best for: Traditional under-counter | Type: Electric | Dimensions: H59.5 x W59.5 x D55.1cm | Capacity: 71L
Large enough to cook meals for a hungry family, but small enough to fit neatly under the kitchen counter, this Hotpoint Class 2 oven is a great buy for pretty much anyone. The impressive steam clean function means no wasted time scrubbing stubborn bits of burnt-on food, and its set-in design means it can fit either down low or at eye-level for easy checking, good news for those of us with bad backs or knees! It’s very easy to programme through the sleek touch controls, and even has a special dough-proving mode that’s ideal for keen bakers. Excellent value for everyday cooking, with a range of surprisingly high-end functions.
3. FLAVEL MLN10FRS Dual Fuel Range Cooker
Four compartments and an abundance of burners for maximum firepower
Best for: Big families | Type: Gas hob, electric oven | Dimensions: H90 x W100 x D60cm | Capacity: 2x58L
This slightly odd-looking range cooker might look like it takes some manoeuvring, but really it’s fabulously easy to use, and its four compartments make cooking different components of multi-part meals — or different meals for picky eaters — a breeze. With its whopping seven burners, including a really handy wok burner, it’s great for frying up a feast in a flash, and the separate grill, fan oven and conventional oven give you lots of choice. The only thing reviewers weren’t sold on was how low down the fan oven was to the floor, so we wouldn’t recommend it if you have bad knees or trouble bending.
4. Candy ACOM609XM Built in Electric Single Oven
A single oven with a surprisingly large capacity, perfect for pizza lovers
Best for: Pizza | Type: Electric | Dimensions: H59.5cm x W59.5 x D56.7cm | Capacity: 65L
This built-in single oven is a great little space saver, and an absolute bargain, to boot. At 65 litres, it has a surprisingly considerable capacity that’s just right for a couple who likes to cook or a family on the smaller end of the scale, and it’s easy-clean enamel and simplicity of use makes it a low-maintenance winner for everyone. What we really like about it, though, is its dedicated pizza mode, a little added extra that might seem frivolous to some, but may prove priceless for those in pursuit of the perfect crust!
5. Double Oven Stainless Steel (B170FP_SS)
This built-under double oven from Belling makes multi-tasking a breeze
Best for: Cooking at different temperatures | Type: Electric | Dimensions: H59.5 x W55 x 70.3cm
If you like the compact convenience of a built-under oven, but don’t want to compromise on functionality, this Belling double oven may well be the answer. It offers the best of both worlds with its flush out-of-the-way design and ability to cook at two different temperatures at once. Looking to slow-cook a joint of meat and blast some lovely crispy spuds for a roast? Done, all you have to do is set the time. Plus, the stainless steel finish is durable and easy to clean for real lasting power. There are no frills to speak of, but it’s useful, it’s powerful, and it fits in perfectly with even smaller kitchens.
Enjoy cooking on a smaller scale with our picks of the best slow cookers