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Dec 28, 2005 04:51 PM

Dumb oven question

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There are two racks in my oven and I'd like to know if the temperature is the same for both or if the lower rack is hotter because it's nearer the flame. TIA.

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    Hungry Celeste

    Depends on the oven, and it's not a dumb question. In my oven, the lowest rack tends to brown more on the left side rather than the right, while the middle/upper levels seem to be heated evenly. I keep a pizza stone in the bottom of the oven to help even out the temp (helps keep it hot during my frequent oven peeks).

    5 Replies
    1. re: Hungry Celeste

      I think it also depends on whether it's a gas or electric oven. Electric: the top rack gets hotter.

      1. re: Annie M

        I would agree. Have a gas oven and I know the bottom rack is hotter as the gas is right there.

        1. re: Annie M

          Are you sure? Many electric ovens have their main heating element hidden underneath the bottom. You would definitely get burned bottoms if you cooked on the lowest rack of my electric oven. Are you saying that your oven only broils from the top?

          1. re: Steve

            I have a gas oven but my daughter's electric oven has the heating element on the top and that is also where you put things that you are broiling.

            I guess not all electric ovens are made the same....

        2. re: Hungry Celeste

          Hey, my (gas) oven is a lefty too!
          Noticed it when I baked 2 pans of cookies side by side (usually place pan in center of rack) and the ones on the far left were slightly more brown.

        3. j
          JK Grence (the Cosmic Jester)

          The area closest to the heating element will be the hottest part of the oven. This is why most things are best cooked so they are centered in the oven; too close to the bottom of the oven and your cookies will have burned bottoms.


          1. Why not purchase an oven thermometer and test the tempertures in the various places unique to your oven?