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Commercial Oven Buying Guide

1 Sep 2020, 12:24 PM

Commercial oven buying guide

The commercial oven is one of the most important pieces of kitchen equipment in the commercial kitchen. You may be starting out in the catering industry and wondering what type of oven would best suit your needs. You may run a well-established restaurant chain and want to be well informed about any new developments in commercial cookers. No matter what type of restaurant you run, the oven will be used every day, so you need to choose the right types to suit your business needs.

Below we share information on the different types of commercial ovens that are available, how they are best used and their major benefits.

Oven Ranges

The oven range is one of the most common ovens in the commercial kitchen. Oven ranges have a large internal cavity that is useful for cooking big joints of meat and roasts. This type of oven is also useful for pastry chefs as it can cook large batches of pastries and cakes. The top of this cooker features either an electric hob or gas burners. Some may also incorporate a griddle.

Oven ranges offer flexibility and versatility of cooking, as you can use the hob and oven at the same time. They save much-needed space in the small commercial kitchen and can also save time as you are not running from hob to oven when cooking.

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Convection Ovens

Convection ovens tend to be compact so they save space. They are sometimes called a fan oven as there is an internal fan that helps to distribute the heat evenly throughout the oven. On the whole cooking times are reduced and on average this can be as much as 25 percent. One huge benefit is that you cook on a much lower heat and when cooking meat you should notice less shrinkage.

Some convection ovens can run from a 13 amp plug, making them suitable for use in event catering. Another benefit of using this oven is that it doesn't matter what shelf you place food on, as everything will cook at the same speed and consistency. Meats are also browned more consistently because of the constant airflow.

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Combination Ovens

The combination oven uses convection, steam, or a combination of the two. So what you get is two ovens in one. If you wish to use a combination oven in your commercial kitchen then you will need to have access to the mains water supply for the steam oven, plus a good extractor fan to get rid of the steam. The oven will also need to be installed by a professional and it is always best to have a site survey, in which an engineer will take a look at your kitchen to make sure that a combination oven can be installed safely.

The combination oven is hugely versatile as it can steam, roast, fry, stew, bake and braise food all in the one oven. Meat is also well browned as the heat is evenly distributed. The commercial oven will save space in the kitchen as you won't need additional bulky items.

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Pizza Ovens

When you use this type of commercial oven you place food onto rollers that then slowly moves under the heating element. The pizza oven is most often seen in food halls, takeaways and pizzerias, as they quickly cook food. This oven isn't just for pizzerias as they can be used to cook burritos and pies.

The major benefits of the pizza oven are that it is very easy to use and that food is cooked evenly. Additionally, pizza ovens can also be stacked, allowing you to cook more than one pizza at any one time.

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Cooking Centers

Cooking Centers combine conventional cooking appliances into one functional unit, such as boilers, pressure cookers, deep fat fryers, tilting pans and more. They can be a fantastic space saver and exceptionally versatile allowing you to cook different dishes completely independently and in bulk.

One of its main advantages is with their modern technology food can be cooked to perfection with little supervision making them perfect for very busy kitchens.

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Barbecues

This type of commercial oven is usually used where a customer can see it, in front of house, or at a catering event. The barbecue would make a welcome addition to your main oven, and if customers will be watching you cook, it can be a good marketing tool, as customers can both see and smell their food as it cooks. The barbecue has been designed to cook the meat quickly and in bulk while ensuring that the food keeps piping hot after being cooked.

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Cook & Hold Ovens

As the name suggests this commercial oven allows you to slowly cook food and to then leave it in the oven, which keeps it at the correct temperature until you are ready to serve. These ovens allow you to cook in bulk and you can even cook overnight due to the slow cooking technology. They are also great space saving cookers as they are usually very compact.

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