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Ovens - How Many?

We're going to be renovating a kitchen. It won't exactly be my dream kitchen because of space and money, but I want it to be close. I love to cook and entertain. When entertaining, there just never seems to be enough ovens. I want a double wall oven and a microwave. My bf says that there won't be enough room because I need more cabinet space because I have so much "stuff" and I need the counter space. (he used to design kitchens). He suggested that I get a oven/range and a built-in convection/combination microwave. And when I'm entertaining, if I need a third heating appliance, I can bring up a microwave from the basement.

Do you think this will make me happy? I've never owned or used a convection oven. Do these double-duty things work well for what they're intended for? What do you guys do?

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  1. I think it's great that you have the opportunity to renovate your kitchen, and by all means, you should try to turn it into your dream kitchen if you have the resources. That said--do you really need a double oven? Most people, including a lot of chefs, make do just fine with only one in their home kitchens. It's definitely convenient to have more than one, but it certainly isn't necessary.

    As an extreme example of cooking and entertaining with limited space, check out this article:

    http://events.nytimes.com/mem/nycrevi...

    Obviously, most chefs (including the one from this article) would prefer to have much more space. But it's an interesting example of what may be achieved even within severe constraints.

    1. Don't forget that a decent toaster oven will take up a lot of slack..They're a real workhorse, great for sides, heating bread, sandwiches, even chicken, fish or a meatloaf if necessary.....I have a regular oven, a combo micro-convection + a toaster oven (a Cuisinart with convection) & never feel the need for more...

      1. I once lived in a studio apartment that had one of those microwave/convection combo deals...and that was all I had. Once I downloaded a manual and understood how to use it, I found it very useful and it worked quite well. That may be a good solution.

        There's also those dual-chamber ovens, but I always wonder if the larger chamber isn't big enough.

        1. Thanks for your comments. Glad to hear the convection/microwave works well. Maybe I also need to become a better planner so that not everything ends up having to be in the oven at the same time.

          1. I have a 40-inch oven/range made by Kenmore (sorry, I couldn't afford Viking). It is dual-fuel (gas range, electric ovens) and have two ovens. The larger one is just as big as a standard oven and the smaller one fits loaf pans and small casserole dishes. I find I use the smaller oven quite a bit - baking just a few cookies, baking small casseroles for two, heating up a loaf of bread, etc. When throwing parties, I do use both ovens (and most of the cooktop) which is nice as they can be set at different temperatures (and the larger can be used as a convection or regular oven). Also, if the large oven is on, both the side oven and the storage drawer get warm enough to use as "warming ovens".

            I also have a microwave/toaster oven combo, but I never use the toaster oven function as it takes too long. If you use the microwave often, I would just get a small one, or maybe one that mounts under a cabinet, but not a combo.

            My mom has a stand-alone convection oven that she keeps in the garage. She's cooked a turkey in it before, but she also brings it out for family holiday dinners.

            If you have the room for a wide oven/range, I would recommend it over dual wall ovens. If you really think you need two large ovens to use, maybe get a regular oven/range and a convection oven to store somewhere else.

            When baking a lot of dishes, you'd be surprised how many of them can sit for a while and then be throw in while the last dish is baking to warm up.

            3 Replies
            1. re: leanneabe

              No need to apologize, Leanneabe. Most people on this earth can't afford a Viking, myself included. Okay, maybe we could, but would rather give the extra $$ to our kids college fund or charity.

              1. re: leanneabe

                I think I looked at this same stove at Sears. I had the kitchen-to-die for in our old house, Viking included, but I don't think I'll buy another for the new kitchen we hope to re-do someday. I want at least 5 burners, but Viking doesn't have that in the space I need. I think 40" is as big as I can go. This stove looked really nice, and I was wondering if the smaller oven was big enough for what I need. Glad you use yours a lot. It looks like a great stove and 1/4 the price of my old Viking! When we re-do, I'll definitely get a Sub-Zero again, and I'm looking at dish drawers...they look great for entertaining, as well as doing small loads of dishes for just the 2 of us.

              2. Go for the full double oven. Don't muck with a tiny, mostly pointless side oven. If the bf thinks that you need the space for your stuff more, tell him that you'll keep some of your baking ware in the 2nd oven. If you're constantly moving it out, you've proved your point. If you're not, you still have storage space. It's not the every day I need it, but I go to my parents to cook the big holiday meals, and the double oven is one great incentive. I can't do the same for dinner parties.

                When we designed my folks kitchen, we moved the oven away from the work triangle of stove/counter/fridge. If you're baking, you don't need to check it every three seconds, and if you're broiling, the door is open, making it inconvenient to cook.

                I've been trying to convince my sister-in-law to put one into her kitchen design for the McMansion. She says that if her mother didn't need one in her tiny house, then she doesn't either. (Then why does she need a house that's four times the size of her mother's I wonder?)

                1. GE Profile (and there are other companies, too, like Maytag, though not recommended) make a range oven with one small oven and one full sized oven. They said they've found that people use the small oven more than the big one, for casseroles, cake, pizza, etc. If I had that, plus a microwave/convection, it would be enough. I don't know if I'd ever need two full sized ovens.

                  1. We got rid of a double-oven when we remodeled. I wanted to open up the kitchen and wanted more counter space. I cook a lot and host dinners and holidays. I replaced it with a 30in range and a combo micro/convection oven that we built in with a trim kit. I'm very happy with the combination. I have had to use the convection and it has worked out well. Our range is a slide-in. There are some free standing ranges that have a second oven but I couldn't fine one is a slide-in ad I didn't want a bigger range.

                    1. Thinks Too Much – like your name -- Hah – that’s a big problem of mine– I think too much so that I can never make a decision! It’s funny what you said because the house I’m buying and renovating was my parents’ house. And the small kitchen has an oven/range and a wall oven (not double wall oven (my error). My mother always used the wall oven to cook with and she used the other oven to store her pans and Pyrex (tons of Pyrex!). The kitchen is so small that when my parents finally bought a microwave, it had to be kept on a cart in the “formal” dining room (that looks nice). We needed both ovens during holidays and it was a pain to empty the oven. But, I’m going to be tearing down that wall between the dining room and kitchen and it will be one room, so I won’t need the kitchen table and chairs in the kitchen and can use that space. Planning to put the sink and dishwasher and more cabinets on that wall. And maybe I’ll put an island in the middle. I don’t think I’ll have the working triangle either. But, I heard that’s okay too these days.

                      chowser, I forgot about those ovens with the big and small oven. That may be the ticket – that and the microwave/convection. Then I’d have enough cooking vessels without taking up more space and have the extra cabinet and counter space.

                      Thanks, I’m getting some good ideas.

                      1. I have two ranges. One is electric and one is gas and I have to say that this is a wonderful combination. I have two ovens when I need 'em, eight burners and I also have a microwave. When you need two full-sized ovens, nothing else will work, and if you like to have dinner parties you might encounter this fairly often.

                        1. Go with the over the stove micro/convection combo. I've got the Sharp model and it is great. Got 4 kids, entertain all the time and just love having that convection in addition to an electric oven with gas cooktop. It is absolutely amazing how many times you will use it as an oven rather than heating up your larger one. Make sure you get a model that allows you to turn off the turntable so you can place larger dishes inside for convection use. Enjoy!!!!!

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: SallyCapeCodCat

                            Good point. Thanks for the turntable advice.

                          2. Check out the Kitchen Aid Superba line. I went with three piece stack, all individual units. A micro/conv on top, that has a quartz broiling element that you can use in combo with the m/w, over-priced but useful. In the middle is a conv. oven, once you start using the conv. feature you will appreciate it, and on the bottom a warming drawer. You won't use the w/d as much but it is nice for entertaining and smaller than having another oven.