Convection ovens and conventional ovens – to the layman, these two might seem virtually identical. However, you would be amiss to assume so as a convection oven offer several advantages that are not present, or even possible with traditional microwave ovens.
An Introduction to Microwave Convection Ovens – What Makes Microwave Convection Ovens Special?
The most notable difference between the two is that convection microwave ovens are equipped with an extra feature: the built-in fan. This built-in fan within the stove is utilized to optimize cooking. How so? First off, microwave convection ovens, and convection-type ovens in general, are designed to cook food evenly, faster. Moreover, they are considerably more energy-efficient compared to conventional ovens.
#1. Cooks Food Evenly
This is where the built-in fan comes to play. Unlike traditional ovens that have specific "hot spots" that experiences faster and hotter temperatures in comparison to other parts of the range, a convection oven uses the fan to circulate the hot air inside the unit. This helps keep the temperature inside the oven evenly throughout the cooking process. This also the main reason why convection ovens are ideal for roasting.
#2. Faster Cooking Process
Compared to traditional ovens, a convection oven has proven to be 25% faster in cooking food because of the hot air circulating technology that it uses.
#3. More Energy Efficient
As noted earlier, convection ovens can cook food at a 25% faster capacity than your standard oven and microwave oven. This does not only equate to shorter prep time when cooking, but it also means you will be using significantly less energy than you would when cooking with a conventional microwave oven.
#4. The Drawback of Microwave Convection Ovens
Of course, a convection oven is not always the best option for your cooking needs; specifically, it is not ideal for baking. This is the disadvantage of using a range with convection features – it is not designed to handle recipes that require a delicate touch, such as baking bread, cake, and other pastries. This is because the circulating hot air will most likely hinder the dough from rising correctly - leaving you with a flat and rather dense batch of cupcakes.
If you can, choose an oven that offers both convection and conventional functionalities. This type of range will cover all the bases and be an excellent tool whether you are preparing roasted chicken or baking a delicious batch of cupcakes. Also, convection ovens offer exceptional browning quality of food and can deliver crispiness that standard ranges can't match up.
Now, with the built-in fan that helps evenly distribute the heat inside the oven, compounded with its electromagnetic radiation heating, makes the microwave convection oven one of the complete kitchen appliances that should cover all your baking, roasting, and heating needs.
Editor's Quick Picks
Don't have time to go through our complete list of recommended microwave convection ovens?
No worries, as we have listed the three highly recommended entries right here for your convenience!
Customer's Favourite Pick: Toshiba EC042A5C-BS Countertop Microwave oven with Convection
Overall Rating: 4.2/5
Packed with advanced features that enhance convenience and cooking experience to new heights. The Toshiba EC042A5C-BS Countertop Convection Oven is a great product for those who want the very best that this price range can bring.
Budget Pick: AmazonBasics Microwave, Small, 0.7 Cu. Ft, 700W, Works with Alexa
Overall Rating: 4/5
While relatively small, the Amazon Basics Microwave Oven is an excellent pick for bachelors and bachelorettes who needs a reliable and affordable microwave convection oven for quick food preparations. Also, this microwave oven comes with Alexa Voice Control functionality which is a nice touch and will fit nicely into the modern, Smart device operated households of today.
The 3 Best Microwave Brands To Expect in the Market Today
When it comes to microwave ovens, it is best to look for five specific brands. These manufacturers have proven their worth in this particular market and most, if not all, of their products are well-worth the investment. To help further narrow down your search, make sure to include these brands in your shortlist, as well:
Cuisinart: Cuisinart offers a wide range of products that include kitchenware appliances to cutlery. You can always expect high-quality material and build with this brand.
Panasonic: Panasonic microwave ovens provide a wealth of advanced features and come in a wide variety of sizes and design. They also offer microwave ovens in a broad price range to ensure everyone will be able to afford one.
Toshiba: When it comes to delivering a wide range of microwave ovens that cover the entire price range spectrum and model, few can touch Toshiba’s extensive catalogue. Simply put, if you want feature-rich, affordable, and sturdy ovens, Toshiba should always be at the top of your list.
The 6 Best Microwave Convection Ovens Reviews in 2020
Now, for those who want more in-depth, versatile, and variety with their choices we have compiled 6 of the best microwave convection ovens that we found in the market today. The six entries of microwave convection ovens were chosen based on overall customer feedback, sales, and our exhaustive tests with each product. So, without further ado – let us begin.
#1. Panasonic Microwave Oven NN-SN966S Stainless Steel Countertop
- Huge Capacity (2.2 Cubic Ft.).
- Powerful (Up to 1250W Power)
- Inverter Technology delivers consistent and evenly distributed stream of power.
- Advanced Inverter Turbo Defrost speeds up defrosting time.
- Smart Cooking Settings, Keep Warm Feature with Genius Sensor included.
Let's start this list with an entry from one of the most well-known home appliance manufacturers in the world – Panasonic. When it comes to household products, Panasonic has always been one of the most trusted and that holds with the Panasonic NN-SN966S Microwave Oven. What makes the Panasonic NN-SN966S stand out is its versatile yet user-friendly cooking options. Despite having a wide variety of features, operating this microwave oven never felt overwhelming even if it is your first time using such an appliance.
Another notable aspect about this particular microwave oven from Panasonic is the generous 2.2 cu. Ft. interior space. While it does require a hefty 1,250 watts to operate, with its large size and flexible functionality, that is to be expected. This is a standout microwave oven indeed, and it doesn't even cost as much as you would expect.
Overall, this is one of the most well-rounded microwave ovens out there in the market. The SN966S is packed with cooking options and is designed to be as user-friendly as possible. It is also quite reasonably priced all things considered.
#2. Toshiba EC042A5C-BS Countertop Microwave oven with Convection
- This version owns a huge cooking chamber.
- It could reheat so well.
- This model is made from alloy steel.
- Flexible sound on/off option.
- One touch popcorn button. warm-hold function, power-saving eco mode, and child safety lock.
When it comes to budget-friendly quality appliances, Toshiba is undoubtedly one of the names that will keep sprouting up. This Toshiba Countertop Microwave Oven feels robust and well-built in comparison to other ovens within the same price range. It also comes with several advanced features to help improve the overall cooking experience as well as safety.
For example, this microwave oven comes with a child lock security feature and an automatic sensor. Also, there are LED lights installed within the range which lets you get a clear view of your food as it is getting cooked. Convenience is the name of the game with this Toshiba Microwave Oven, and it delivers everything you need in spades.
The Toshiba EC042A5C-BS Microwave Oven excels in its eco-friendly and energy-efficient design. The ability to mute the buzzer is a welcome touch for those who want some peace and quiet. Overall, with its highly affordable price tag and features, we do highly recommend this particular microwave convection oven for its all-around cooking capability.
#3. AmazonBasics Microwave, Small, 0.7 Cu. Ft, 700W, Works with Alexa
- The power is at 700W with 10 different levels.
- Can work well with Alexa (ability to add voice control & more). Alexa adds presets and this device is getting smarter.
- Great for reheating & defrosting.
- Automatically reorder popcorn when you run low and save 10% on popcorn orders.
Highly affordable and compact, the Amazon Basics Microwave is an ideal addition to any modern kitchen of a studio apartment. The compact design of this microwave oven makes for quite a discreet aesthetic and will only occupy a small space on your countertop.
The microwave itself offers pretty standard features and functionality. However, one element that it has going for it is with its Alexa voice control support. This allows you to control this microwave oven by voice command, which is incredibly convenient and ideal for those who live on the fast-lane.
For those who just need a way to reheat or defrost their food or cook ready-made food, this inexpensive microwave from Amazon Basics is a great option to take. Again, this is suited for light cooking only due to its small size.
#4. Cuisinart CMW-200 1.2-Cubic-Foot Convection Microwave Oven with Grill
Cuisinart is one of the leading names when it comes to kitchen appliances, and the CMW-200 Convection Microwave Oven shows exactly why that's the case. While this particular Cuisinart oven is considerably more expensive compared to traditional microwave ovens out there, it does have what most of its competition doesn't – flexibility and variety. This microwave convection oven can be used as a conventional microwave oven if you wish. This means you can use the Cuisinart CMW-200 for not only roasting but baking as well.
You can also use the CMW-200 for defrosting, reheating, grilling, and roasting. Testing the unit itself, we were able to achieve excellent browning with our roasted chicken and managed to deliver a delicious crisp that was a massive hit with the family. We did notice that it took a slight bit longer time to achieve that golden-brown result.
While a robust and excellent microwave overall, I do find the fact that the left side of the oven gets extremely hot, extremely fast to be quite problematic. I recommend carefully planning where you place the Cuisinart CMW-200 as the left side of the stove is an accident risk and might even damage close furniture.
#5. F.BLUMLEIN Steam Convection Oven Countertop 34Qt - 10 Modes wwith 24 Preset Menu
- Up to 10 Oven Functions.
- More extended steam capacity with its 37.2 ounces water tank.
- One-Touch control technology.
- Front-cooling system
- The alloy steel panels are convenient for touching as well.
The F. BLUMLEIN Steam Convection Oven is a high-end oven that comes with several functionalities making it pretty much an "all-in-one" cooking appliance. This convection oven is a multi-purpose beast with steam, hi-temp, grill, combi, sterilization, fermentation, and convection capabilities. It can also be used to defrost and reheat food. With its exceptionally high price tag, you would expect it to deliver high-end quality performance – in that regards; it does so incredibly well.
- Longer steam capacity. Most steam ovens offer around 80 to 120 minutes, while the F. BLUMLEIN pushes it to 180 minutes.
- Excellent heat dispensing technology and ensures that the heat stays inside the oven.
- Extra-large interior capacity that will accommodate large and multiple food.
- Comes with aComes with child lock security feature to ensure safety for children at home.child lock security feature.
- This is one of the most expensive microwave ovens in our list.
- Large and bulky design will be a factor for homes with limited space.
- Adjusting the temperature is easier and more precise with knob-style ovens.
With its feature-rich and substantial size, the F. BLUMLEIN Steam Convection Oven is an excellent choice for large families and individuals who enjoy cooking various types of recipes. That said, make sure you have enough space on your countertop and prepare to shell out some cash as this one comes with a steep price.
#6. DeLonghi EO241250M Livenza Digital Stainless Steel Countertop Convection Oven
The De 'Longhi Livenza Microwave incorporates a modern industrial design with its alloy steel exterior. The construction gives this microwave oven excellent durability and with its brushed steel finish, easy cleaning and maintenance as well. It is equipped with 'True European' convection which means it can cook up to 40% faster. The glass door also utilizes a heat lock system which means the heat stays inside while reducing total heat emission by as much as 50%. Also, the non-stick coating of the plates, trays, and interior of the oven means cleaning is quick and easy.
The De 'Longhi Livenza is a heavy-duty microwave oven with convection features. This makes it a highly appealing addition to any kitchen as it covers a lot of ground in terms of application. That said, it uses 700 watts, so don't expect it to cook exceptionally fast. Still, the 'True European' design helps balance out the lower power output and gives this microwave oven top marks in energy efficiency.
Microwave Convection Oven Buying Guide - What to Take Into Consideration?
Now that you are adequately acquainted with some of the best microwave convection ovens in the market to date, I think it is best to arm yourself with the necessary know-how when it comes to distinguishing what makes a quality microwave oven. This should help you avoid getting duped by fancy marketing lingo when you are shopping for a microwave oven.
- Microwave Oven Design
Let's get the aesthetic factor first. First and foremost, you would want a microwave oven that will fit into your kitchen's design perfectly. What you don't want is for this large kitchen appliance to stick out like a sore thumb. Pick a microwave oven design that you think will complement your kitchen and start from there.
- Microwave Wattage
In this regard, 1,000 watts is often the sweet spot. Of course, the more power (watt), the better as this means that you will be able to finish cooking your recipe faster. That said, more powerful microwave ovens are also quite susceptible to burning or overcooking food. Make sure you understand the level of wattage that your microwave oven can generate and adjust the timer accordingly.
FAQs About The Best Microwave Convection Ovens (Answered)
Q1: Why choose a microwave convection oven?
Since microwave convection ovens come with built-in fans that circulate the hot air inside, cooking is made faster, and food is cooked more evenly. This is ideal if you love roasting or prefer that scrumptious crispy finish with your food.
Q2: What is 'wattage'?
Wattage or watt is the total power output that the microwave oven can generate. The larger the number, the more power and the faster the microwave oven will be able to cook what's inside. You can find models that provide watts as low as 500. These models are typically underpowered and will take more time cooking your meals. Other models can ratchet up the power to over 1,200 watts. I would always look for microwave ovens that utilize 1,000 watts as these models will be able to cook food relatively fast.
Q3: How to approach cleaning a microwave oven?
It is always recommended to do regular cleaning with your microwave oven, primarily if you use it daily. Cleaning is relatively easy as all you need is a microwavable bowl, water, and a tablespoon of vinegar. Mix the 1 cup of water with a tablespoon of vinegar into the bowl and place it inside the microwave oven. Now, turn it on and wait for the mixture to evaporate, creating nice steam inside the range. Stop the microwave oven once the water and vinegar mixture starts boiling.
Remove the bowl and let the inside of the oven cool off before wiping it clean with a paper towel. As for the turntable, you can either wash it by hand on the sink or put it in the dishwasher (if it is dishwasher safe). For the exterior, use an all-purpose cleaning solution and spray it on a clean cloth and wipe it around the oven while making sure you avoid the venting system.
A microwave oven has become an essential part of any kitchen. However, a microwave oven that also has convection functionality? That pretty much covers all your cooking needs from roasting to baking. Use this article to determine the best microwave convection oven that fits your personal preferences. Hopefully, this article has helped you narrow down your options.