Convection Oven vs. Microwave: Which One is For You?
Microwave ovens and convection ovens do the same thing, cook food. But the way these kitchen appliances go about it differs, and this has an effect on the results. While there are different types and models, the basic principles of how they work are the same.
How a Convection Oven Works
A convection oven has specially designed heating components and a motor fan to circulate air inside the cooking chamber. What you get is quicker, more efficient cooking compared to conventional ovens.
Convection ovens are ideal for baking, browning, grilling and roasting. It’s also perfect for caramelizing and anytime you want something crispy. With its built in fan, the oven can cook at a lower temperature and still distribute air uniformly and provide delicious results.
A convection oven has many uses such as cooking chicken, pizza, lasagna, brownies, kebabs, turkey and meats. It’s also great for boiling and heating liquids and making macaroni and popcorn.
Types of Convection Oven and Features
There are two popular types of convection ovens: the standard, three element convection oven and the European variant. The European or true convection oven has the extra heating element along with a fan. This extra heating element allows the unit to blow air and cook food evenly.
Convection ovens are more effective than your typical conventional oven because of the fan and elements. With this built-in feature, food is cooked faster even if the temperature is lower.
A single convection oven is equipped with a fan in the back. It doesn't come with a heating component, but the fan is going to help the radiant heat move along the cavity. This is the convection system found in most gas ranges.
A twin convection oven is based off the convection model and comes with an extra fan. The fans are horizontally set side by side, a though a few vertical configurations are available.
A dual fan setup provides superior performance if it is well-designed. A poorly made dual convection oven could cool the middle rack and result in uneven cooking. Thus you could end up with lighter colored baked food.
Some companies are now designing their own systems to further enhance cooking and baking. Some convection ovens for instance, have vertical blower fans to aid in air circulation.
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How a Microwave Works
A microwave utilizes radio frequency to heat fats and waters, causing molecules to vibrate and the temperature to go up, and it’s this method which cooks food. Microwaves are frequently used for reheating food.
A microwave oven is technically not an oven, but regardless of the name they’re very easy to use and dependable. They cook fast and it doesn't use up much electricity as as an oven.
While microwaves cook fast and suitable for those on the go, there are drawbacks. You don’t have much control over the cooking process, and the procedure removes some of the nutrients, something to consider if you are health conscious.
What is Convection Microwave ?
A convection microwave is a hybrid of the convection oven and the microwave, providing the benefits of both appliances. Unlike a regular microwave, a convection microwave doesn't heat food from the inside. It does so from the outside, producing a higher temperature.
A convection microwave provides cooking similar to a regular oven, but you get extra browning and crispiness. All you have to do is turn on convection mode and you will get the same results. Using a convection microwave you’ll be able to cook food the way you want it.
Microwaves can cook food even if they’re in plastic or glass containers. In contrast, a convection oven uses a heated air mechanism to grill, roast or brown food quickly.
Aside from convection, there are many other types of microwaves including countertop, commercial, built-in and over the range. The type to buy depends, so you need cooking style, so you have to consider your requirements.
Convection Ovens vs. Microwave Ovens
Convection ovens warm food faster than microwave or conventional ovens because of the way air circulates inside the cooking chamber. Thanks to the moving air, cold air is eliminated. The quick movement of the air also allows a convection oven to to run at a lower temperature. While a convection oven runs at a lower temperature it is still cooking the food.
As noted earlier, a microwave oven isn’t really an oven: it is food heating kitchen appliance. Unlike a convection oven, a microwave does not cook food the way a regular oven does as it focuses on heating.
The bottom line is that a convection oven is superior to most microwave ovens. A microwave oven is more suitable for heating food than cooking them. Furthermore, a microwave cannot reach the temperature which an oven can.
A convection oven is also superior to a conventional ovens because it doesn't need to use high temperatures. That being said, a microwave does offer benefits which many people may find useful.
The primary benefit of a microwave is you can use it to heat leftovers. You can do the same with a convection oven, but a microwave is easier to use. However, a microwave oven cannot be a substitute for convection ovens and vice versa.
If you want the best possible results when you cook, get a convection oven. Whether it is roasting, grilling or baking, you’ll get more taste and texture from these foods. For quality food, there’s no way a microwave or conventional oven can top a convection oven.
But if you’re in a hurry and want an easy way to cook food, you may be better off with a microwave. Some may prefer one over the other, but what’s important is you have a choice and can even have both.
For home use, it’s best if you have both: the convection oven to bake grill and roast, while you can use a microwave to reheat food and leftovers. If you’re running a food business or restaurant, you need to use a convection oven as it is quick and dependable. Combined with low side pans, you will get maximum performance and delicious food.