HOME > Chowhound > Cookware >

Discussion

Microwave / Convection Combo Oven - Any Good?

Recently l've been looking for both a toaster oven and a microwave to replace both of my ancient units. I was in an electronics store the other day and noticed they had a Panasonic Inverter Convection Microwave (NNCF770M) https://panasonic.ca/english/applianc...

It made me think that maybe I could replace both my old toaster oven and my old microwave with just this one oven. While looking at it in the store I noticed there was no spinning turntable, which made me wonder how evenly microwaved foods would turn out. It had heating elements above in the ceiling, but not below. It looked like it would broil and bake food relatively well though.

Has anyone here had any experience with a microwave/convection oven? (doesn't have to be Panasonic). If so, what has your experience been like? Would you recommend a combination appliance like this, or should I just buy a seperate toaster oven and microwave oven.

Thanks.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. We have a Panasonic convection/microware and are happy with it. It will not "toast" but is a great microwave and serves as a very uselfull second oven. That said, you can probably get a good microwave and a good small convection over for much less thn what we paid for the one unit that does both. Our unit does have a turntable which runs in both the microwave and backing modes.

    8 Replies
    1. re: LJS2

      Thanks. Do you know what Panasonic model number you have?

      1. re: Seitan

        i will check and post in a day or so

        1. re: Seitan

          its the genius model nncd9895

          1. re: LJS2

            Thanks LJ. I saw this one in the store as well. Instead of heating rods in the ceiling, it seems to have a vent on one side of the ceiling where the heat comes out. This seemed kind of odd.

            How do you find baking results in your model? With the heating vent on one side, does baking come out even? Does the rotating turntable make up for the fact the vent is on one side?

            1. re: Seitan

              My wife and daughter are the bakers in the family and they seem pleased with the baking ability. I have used it for caseroles and other side dishes. Everything cooks evenly. We checked out online reviews before buying. This Panasonic model got consistently good reviews and ratings. However as I mentioned earlier, you could buy a good microwave and a good convection oven for less than the cost of the Panasonic combo unit.

            2. re: LJS2

              Does anyone know where to get a little wire rack on feet like the one in the previous Panasonic model (994CS, I think it was)? Panasonic has been no help at all, and I have been able to find it only at a site in the UK. They might send one to me (I didn't ask), but if there were one available here in the US, I'd buy it like a shot.

          2. re: LJS2

            I went on the Panasonic site and couldn't find the model number you listed. Where did you purchase your combo and what was the price range? Really didn't think these existed anymore until I came across your review.

            1. re: Dkasper

              I couldn't get that model, because it had already been discontinued, so I looked at another one that seemed almost identical, except that it didn't have the metal rack for broiling. So I didn't purchase any of them.(Both models also are very large, and I wasn't sure I wanted to give up so much counter space.) It is possible that the model, or the one that succeeded it, still can be obtained. I know that Amazon carries lots of microwaves, including some with convection. That might be a good place to start, though there are occasional complaints about Amazon that people don't get what they were promised. Amazon does have good customer service, though, I believe.

              Or Google the model that interests you. The Consumer Search Website reviews all kinds of things, including microwave ovens. You also might want to look there. I'm sorry not to be more helpful. I just haven't acted on anything to do with microwave or microware/convection ovens for myself, so I'm really behind the curve on this.

          3. I have a similar Panasonic combo microwave/convection oven (a Japanese model because I'm in Japan) and really like it.

            The lack of a turntable is a great feature, IMO. You can microwave things on oval or square dishes, and you never have to worry about long things getting hung up and failing to rotate. Easier to clean too.

            My model also has direct temperature input - you just enter the desired target temperature instead of the time. An infrared temperature sensor inside monitors the temperature of the food as it cooks. The sensor also measures three separate zones and can adjust the microwave intensity sent to each of the zones so that all parts of the food cook evenly.

            I've only used the convection oven to make lasagna, which came out fine. A friend of mine has the same oven and has used it to bake very tasty cookies and muffins. I've never tried to make toast in it. Somehow it just doesn't seem to be the right tool for the job.

            2 Replies
            1. re: tanuki soup

              Thanks tanuki. Does the lack of a rotating turntable cause any issues with eveness of cooking? (using the mcrowave mode alone)

              1. re: Seitan

                Hi, Seitan. Sorry, I probably should have made it clearer that the "direct temperature input" and "infrared temperature sensor" features I mentioned apply to microwave cooking. It seems that the oven has some way of directing microwaves to different areas in the oven to ensure even heating.

            2. I have had a Kenmore for about three or four years. It does have a turn table and does a good job of both the microwave and convection. I don't really see why you would necessarily need a toaster oven, but I would assume you would need a toaster.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Mother of four

                We have a microwave-convection oven which we bought when our over-the-stove microwave died. I went for the combined unit because we only have one oven, and frankly because we had just been through eight days without electricity and I was feeling self-indulgent. i've been pretty happy with it, though I don't use it as an oven all that often. I've done casseroles, rolls, and I think at least one cake in it. Not an everyday thing, but nice to have for Thanksgiving and suchlike. It does have a turntable, which can be turned off if using a larger dish. One thing to keep in mind is that it has to be preheated, just like a regular oven, and that does take a while.

              2. Hi, Seitan:

                I have one in my beach home that I absolutely despise. It is not a Panasonic, and it does have a turntable. It supposedly has MW+convection+infared broiler functions. The MW is OK, but underpowered. The broiler works, in a way. But the convection oven is a joke--easily DOUBLE the cook times of even a conventional oven. I basically bought it for an extra oven (I already had a 1960s RadarRange and a gas salamander there), so it was a bust.

                It is now my backup boat anchor (in case the concreted Le Creuset breaks free--then it's the crabs' problem). If you're interested, I will update with the make/model when I'm at the beach this weekend.

                Aloha,
                Kaleo

                1. I have used the sharp microwave convection ovens for years and they seem to get the job done for me. There are several models to chose from, I suggest taking a look at their website.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: JEN10

                    I've been using a Sharp Microwave Combo oven which combines a microwave, convection oven and grill/broiler for the better part of a year. The model is R96ST-A, which is an EU model, so the US equivalent will have a different model number. It's on the larger side at 40 L capacity, ab. 11 gallons and it can function as a countertop or be installed in a cabinet.

                    The grill/broiler function (1300 watts) in combination with the provided rack or shelf will produce nice toast.

                    If making toast were the primary or even secondary use of this sort of oven, I'd probably opt to get a dedicated toaster or small toaster oven unless I had absolutely no space for it. It seems like overkill for a single slice of bread. But for occasional toasting, it's fine.

                    One does have to learn how long it takes to get the desired amount of scorching as there's no control for light-medium-dark toast. You can imagine how I came to appreciate this point.

                    It's rated at 900Watts for Microwave functions, which has proven adequate for everything I've done with it, even if more powerful MW ovens are available.
                    And as a convection oven, it seems to cook very nicely, especially when I bake/roast on a rack set on the turntable rather than using a shelf and rotating the food.

                  2. I had an old (purchased from JC Penny if all places) convection/microwave that worked out well fir me. I could put in a chicken, hook up the temp. probe and be assured of a quick decent chicken. Now I have better ways of doing things, but I did like that oven.

                    1. Kitchenaid and Meile have microwave/convection ovens with a grill element in the top. I'm told other combo ovens use a halogen element to brown, thus do not work well as a toaster oven. I can't seem to get feedback on how the toasting part works, but I am trying to reduce counter clutter, and will buy one of these. Does anyone have experience with one of these?

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: sfolove

                        We bought a Kitchenaid a little over a year ago. It has a crisper tray that you can put in it, but I've never tried to toast in it. It works great for everything I've tried in it.

                        1. re: sfolove

                          Just put a Miele speed oven in my total kitchen remodel. The first thing I did in it was toast a bagel and it worked beautifully on the Max Broil setting. The entire bagel was warmed and the top was beautifully browned. I am looking forward to using all its features (it was just installed a week ago), but it will be a learning curve for me.

                          1. re: luvlabs

                            How long does this bagel operation take? Shorter time than in a standard toaster?

                        2. We just purchased a Kitchenaid microwave/convection oven. It has a crisper tray, and convection rack, but I still haven't figured out how to toast bread. I'm just starting-(gave up and used the broiler in the lower oven recently...)
                          If anyone has experience--let us know! I DON'T WANT A TOASTER ON THE COUNTER--SIGH....

                          1 Reply
                          1. re: sfolove

                            sfolove, try toasting your bread the mexican way. Use a dry frying pan on the stove. It toasts quickly and you just have to flip the toast over when its dark enough.

                          2. I have had my current micro/convection for 24 years. It is a Kenmore and I love it. (The one before that was stolen in a burglary.) It works great but does not toast. It makes fantastic food and does an awesome job as a dehydrator. I have an inexpensive toaster oven we got used so I can toast and do quick mini broil jobs (e.g. cheese on open-faced sandwiches).

                            1. We boubght a Whirlpool Model WOC54E last year. It all works well except that the fan is awfully noisy--for the convection oven it doesn't go off until the oven cools down sufficiently. It's a good safety precaution I guess, but it's extra-irritating if the dining room is anywhere close and you have guests over.

                              And for a completely unknown reason the fan does not go off at all when the microwave stops running until the door is opened. The 15-second beep is enough to remind that something is still in the microwave, so there's no reason for the very loud fan to keep going.

                              The four beeps when the microwave is done is also excessive. Two beeps would do. Beeps can be turned off entirely if desired, but that's not at all a good choice--a brief reminder is a good thing....but four beeps (like a big truck backing up) is maddening.

                              1. I had one when I was sent overseas to work and loved it. I left it there thinking I could replace it here. I didn't see any when I rotated back and am just now Googling to find one. I don't remember what brand I had but it was a wonderful item.

                                1. Although this is an older thread I'll leave this info for anyone who might have an interest. I purchased a Kenmore micro/convection combination just about two years ago and it's already starting to go. The convection never really worked as well as I liked, I have a true convection oven which is far superior. I had hoped the smaller unit would work as well but it doesn't. Now after two years the microwave function is showing signs of weakening so I'm not sure how much life it has in it. I won't bother trying the combination again.

                                  4 Replies
                                  1. re: jrvedivici

                                    I have a Samsung MW/convection that's about four years old and works perfectly. I don't need a second oven very often so this is just the thing for me. And it's REALLY big so even MWing I can fit something quite large in it. And by turning off the turntable, then REALLY big. Sorry you've had a bad experience. Hope mine continues to do well.

                                    1. re: c oliver

                                      It sounds as if you have the model for me! I bought a "commercial grade" microwave in the early 80s and have loved it for more than 30 years. I had an electrical problem which turned out to be the receptacle but I didn't find out until I had already tossed my microwave and I'm sick. I've always cooked my 12-15 lb turkeys using a cooking bag in my microwave (so moist you can't stand it!). I bought a large microwave 3 weeks before Thanksgiving last year and burned up the turntable motor immediately. Big did not equate to strong! Manufacturers now will only tell you size of dish they hold, not weight so I'm thinking if I combine with convection, it would surely be strong enough?...
                                      Please let me know your opinion of my need and what your model is.
                                      Thanks, Lynn

                                      1. re: Lynntom

                                        c oliver must be off galivanting lately, as she hasn't been around of late, but I found this that she'd posted a little before the last post...

                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8282...

                                        1. re: sunshine842

                                          Thank you so much for responding. It sounds like there may be hope after all!

                                  2. I interested for my business to save space and money a microwave Convection Oven that could cook, broil, toast, reheat. I need to cook popcorn, reheat frozen chicken wings and nuggets, toast Panini and sandwich and specially I need to bake pizza. Could this oven satisfy my needs ?

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: ljcatilino

                                      I don't think mine will toast but it will broil.

                                      1. re: ljcatilino

                                        My combo microwave can do all these things but is but is not practical for commercial use. If you use it as an oven for pizza for example you can't use it as a microwave until it has cooled down sufficiently which could take 10 minutes which would be hell for a commercial kitchen.

                                        Not sure if this is true for all models but I suspect there would be limitations in most models.

                                        Panini I don't really understand how you do in an oven as it is supposed to be pressed and grilled but the combo microwave could make a toasted sandwich.

                                        I would probably get a breville smart convection oven and a separate microwave if I were you or look for used commercial appliances which might be more viable.