Convection Oven Or Conventional Oven?
Do you have a range with an added convection oven? Do you use it and do you like it? I bought my new range on sale a few months back. It was almost the same price with the added convection oven as the ones were without. So I figured what could I lose, I would still have my usual conventional oven and a bonus convection oven.
Last week one of my followers, Joni , knew that I purchased a new range this year that was both a convection oven and a conventional oven. Joni asked me what I thought of the convection oven. Keeping in mind that I have cooked for over 40 years in a conventional oven, I reluctantly had to tell her I have not tried the convection oven yet. I told her I would give it a try this weekend and I did.
I decided to make our favorite roast recipe and I used the convection oven to bake it. I read that I should lower the temperature by 25 degrees compared to the conventional oven. Then it said to cook it 25% less time. The time to cook my roast was 45 minutes less time than I usually do, I liked that!
The roast smelled wonderful as it was cooking as it always does. I went to check it at the specified time and it was done. At first I thought it was over done because the color of the roast was almost black on top, but it wasn’t burnt. Maybe the herbs turned black because of the convection cooking, I’m not sure. When I took the roast out of the pan it was strange reddish color on the bottom, but it was done. The potatoes and carrots looked like they do cooked in the conventional oven, but dryer.
I sliced the roast and it tasted the same as cooking it in the conventional oven. The potatoes were completely cooked and they tasted good. The carrots that weren’t in the beef broth, did not cook properly. They weren’t raw, but they weren’t completely tender.
Below is what the roast looked like after I cooked it in the convection oven. I would not serve this to guests. Even though it tasted good, it did not look good, it was dryer and the carrots were not cooked properly. The meat seemed tougher but maybe it was just the roast.
My opinion of the convection oven is this. I think the energy saved with the lowered temperature is a good thing. I think the fact that it cooks in less time is a good thing. However, I think the quality of food was not worth the investment of a convection oven. I want my food to look and taste the best I possibly can make it and this was not it!
Tell me what you think. Do I need more practice cooking with my convection oven? Do you find cookies, cakes etc. work better? Let me know.
We have a free standing convection oven and the only thing we use it for is chicken wings!! 😂💜
Well I assume it makes fantastic wings then! 🤣😂🤣
I too have both, and use them both. I have a similar opinion as you. I like my convection oven, but I am perfectly OK with my conventional oven too. I think it is all a matter of what you are used to.
Right Jeanne! I think for me, I have perfected the conventional oven and rarely does anything not turn out exactly as it should. After over 40 years I’m not sure I could perfect the convection oven like I have the conventional oven. I can’t remember the last time I have ruined food and I hate to start now. I will try cookies next time I use it just to see how they turn out.
I think I have gotten used to my convection oven. I actually use it quite a bit now, but it take some getting used to, 🙂
That’s interesting to know about a convection oven. I’ve only known of one other person who had one, and she didn’t like it either. It came with the house she bought, but she soon replaced it. It’s good to get your detailed analysis.
I am told it does a great job with cookies. One of these days I will get brave and try it. I just hate wasting food when I know it turns out perfect cooking with my conventional oven. I will have to try it for the grandkids and not something like Christmas cookies. A lot of money to cook cookies though. I still think it’s not worth it!
I love the convection for baking, not so much for cooking. Maybe try it for cookies next time and see what you think?
Thank you I didn’t want to ruin my Christmas cookies so I didn’t use it. I will give it a try. I really wondered how it would work with a roasting pan that has a lid but it did affect it. Have you ever tried a cake?
Yes! I generally make sheet cakes with it on and reduce my time by a third but not the temperature.
I wondered why the temperature would change just because the air is moving. Everything I read said to use 25 degrees less temperature. Thanks again!
Maybe I’m wrong, but I don’t. I’ve never had bad luck keeping it the same and just lowering my time. I did mini bread loaves in 40 minutes tonight.
OK Thank you for your expertise!!!
Any ruined cookies can be shipped to Washington state. I’ve got your back.
Hahahaha I will keep that in mind Jim!
Go for more experimenting. I use both, even combining a 10-minute convection finish at the same temp setting as the conventional bake for the Monday loaf of bread I bake for my week.
I would never have even thought about doing it that way. Thank you!!!!
That’s 10 minutes at the end after 35 minute conventional bake – on the bread.
Another reason I bought top and bottom elements for my 33-year old conventional oven – Spare elements… ‘Cause it works great and I’m not giving up on it!
Most ovens in the UK are convection so I’ve never really used anything else. I think that you just get used to them in time. They are better for baking as the heat is more evenly distributed. I’d cover anything that needed to be in for more than 2 hours to reduce drying caused by the fan and I’d normally go for 25 degrees C less than conventional oven and same cooking time. Some of the older Delia Smith recipes have conversions on them so worth looking up as they are extremely reliable.
Thank you Tabula! Sounds like I need to do more experimenting with it. I won’t experiment for a special occasion or company though until I can figure it out…lol
I’ve found convection cooking to work better for breads and “quicker” items like frozen foods and fresh fish. I’ve cooked a couple of roasts and turkey breasts in the past and think the time ratio factor to conventional ovens is a crapshoot, and I don’t want to HAVE TO stay that close to the oven while preparing a meal.
Thank you Felicia! I will be experimenting with it and hopefully I will find something I will like to use it with.
I haven’t tried a roast, but I prefer the convection method.
Thank you GP!!!
My home-based micro-bakery would not have been possible without a convection oven. I usually baked 4-6 medium-sized loaves on two tiers, rotating pans and tiers after half the baking time.
But I have used the convection mode for almost everything I bake, anyway, for many years. For environmental reasons and for more even browning.
For every new range I got I had to adjust baking temperatures and/or baking times, adding 10 degrees with one oven, and deducting 5 degrees with another (besides the 25 degrees less for convection).
It also depends on the quality of your oven, baked goods don’t dry out if your oven is well enough insulated (crusty breads need steaming, anyway).
It’s really a matter of trying what works best for you.
Thank you Karin! I’m curious why you need to rotate the pans? I thought because of the air flow that wasn’t necessary. I want to try sweets and bread before I give up on it. I may try another meat but maybe one that doesn’t cook with a lid like this roast does. Maybe that will help.
Even with air flow, the baked goods on the lower tier will be often a bit less browned. That might not happen with commercial convection ovens, but residential ones are usually not quite as accurate.
Thanks for sharing your experiment. I have a new oven with a convection oven. I have not tried it. I’m with you. If it isn’t broken why fix it? 😊 I may try it now when I bake. I will let you know how it goes.
Awesome! I had one follower say she doesn’t like cooking meats in it but loves baking cookies. Can’t wait to see what you think Lena!
About cookies in convection oven — I’d recommend trying a batch yourself first before baking your beloved Christmas cookies. I started at 270 degrees which was too low. 295 degrees was better but it still took the normal amount of time to bake as in conventional oven. After I got finished I realized my oven has a convection converter. When I put in 350 and pushed the converter button the oven went to 300 degrees. Also it didn’t matter if I used a Teflon cookie sheet or an Air bake. Hope this helps with your Christmas baking. Merry Christmas! 🎄 Lena
OMG!!!!! I just looked at my range and it has a converter too! When I made my roast I just pushed the convection oven and temperature I wanted. You have made my day Lena!!!!!! I will wait till after the holidays but now I can’t wait to try again! Thank you SO MUCH!!! ❤️❤️❤️
You are welcome! Oh, and the cookies were better on the Teflon.
I’ve never had a convection oven, but was thinking on one. After reading and seeing how your roast turned out, I’ll probably stick with a conventional one. Thanks for sharing, Diane.
Thank you for your comment KT! There are more negative responses than positive ones regarding the convection oven. You are very welcome!
I experimented with the first one I had and got good results but decided in the end that conventional seemed more reliable.
Thank you Angela. That seems to be the overall response.
My husband loves it (he’s the cook in the family). What he raves about most is the events of the cooking. I also recall that care needs to be taken in the cooking vessels used. Our best experience comes from being able to cook more than one thing at the same time and both cooking properly.
I’ll see if I can get more info from him. My own experience is limited to chicken (I use the roast feature) where it’s perfect every time. Hubby handles the beef.
That’s supposed to say “evenness” of the cooking.
I got it…lol
Well it sounds like I need to do more experimenting! If he has any good advice I’d love to hear it. Thank you!
He added that you can generally lower the temperature a tad because of the even dispersion of the heat. I’ve tinkered with the length of time as that generally changes, too. Keep at it as I discovered my chicken to be less dry.
Awesome thank you Jonetta! Tell your hubby thanks too!
Thanks for the shout-out Diane! (I haven’t bought a new stove yet, was just scouting out options, but many of the newer ones seemed to have the convection option, often for the same price). And thanks for being brave and trying it out! The shorter cooking time would be appealing for me as my stove cooks slow, but not at the expense of flavor. It reminds me of my InstantPot, fast but not flavorful, and yet some people swear by theirs.
YES!!!! Perfect comparison Joni! I used my instant pot only twice for the same reason! You’re welcome!
Diane, I thought I might give my Insta-Pot another try as I finally found a cookbook specific for the Instat-Pot Mini, and I love soup this time of year. When I got mine 2 years ago I was trying to adjust recipes for the 6qt to the 3qt and it didn’t translate well. I’m going to give it another try in January, but I hate the thought of it sputtering and spewing all over my new kitchen!
You have to sputter and spew eventually. Let it happen once and it will get easier. You don’t want to go hungry…lol After all, you didn’t want that gorgeous kitchen just for looks!
When I made a cream based soup in it the first year, (and I tried about 6 different kinds of soup), it spewed all over my cupboards, which I didn’t care about as they were so old. I think I might move it to the laundry room and let it cook in there!
Wow that’s crazy! I didn’t know you meant that much! I think I would cut the top and bottom off of a box and set it a few feet away, but around the pot!
Thanks for this post Diane. I have wondered about convection ovens.
You’re welcome Carla. Don’t just go by my opinion though. Give me a day to approve all the emails about it and you may learn more.
I will check back.
I don’t use it. I know people love it for baking. I was never a baker. I am a cook. But over the years I am learning how to bake and did not want to add the convection setting to the equation. I know I did try it without success years ago.
I totally understand Bernice. After all these years of using a conventional oven I have it perfected. I can’t tell you the last time a recipe hasn’t turned out exactly like it is suppose to. I really don’t feel like starting over with the convection oven, however, I do want to try cookies with it.
Let us know how the cookies come out. 💕💕
Good to know Diane …
Mine came with a convection option, but I’ve never used it. Has always seemed to “iffy.” Low temperatures in an enamel coated cast iron Dutch oven works best for me!
I still want to experiment with it but I can’t see it winning over my conventional oven.
I’m a little late with my comment, but for what it’s worth I think you should experiment with it some more. I have an oven that does both and I’ve found that convection is ideal for baking and convention is good for something that needs a longer cook time, like a roast. I used to have a purely convection oven, though, and never noticed a problem cooking anything with it. It does take a bit to get used to new temperatures and cooking times, though. Stick with it–I think you’ll end up really liking it 🙂
Thank you for your advice Aspasia! I definitely will try again after the holidays. I don’t want to mess up any of my holiday food….lol
Yes–definitely not the best time for experimenting! 🙂
I am going to make pork roast and sauerkraut with it on the 1st! I already warned my mother in law as I always have her for dinner on the 1st….lol
I’m sure it’ll turn out great, but I’ll wish you luck anyway 🙂 All the best in the new year!
Thank you!!! ❤