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May 5, 2016

There are many different kinds of commercial ovens for restaurant owners to choose from, and just as many factors to consider before settling with one. What suits one restaurant may not suit another, and it depends on each business’ — among other things — floor space, budget for the initial purchase, maintenance and operational costs, type of food served and production capacity. Here is a concise guide to buying commercial ovens for your restaurant:

Which type of oven?

Commercial ovens are tailored for specific types and capacities of cooking, so your choice will depend on your restaurant’s scale of operation and menu. Convection ovens, the most common ovens seen in restaurant kitchens, offer quick and even cooking. Conveyor ovens utilize conveyor belts to continuously move food under hot air, making them an ideal choice for high capacity restaurants. Accelerated cooking ovens are small and speedy, ideal for time-sensitive restaurants. Combination ovens are multi-functional, offering baking, roasting, grilling, boiling as well as crisping. If your restaurant specializes in rotisserie meats, then rotisserie ovens would suffice. Another popular one, especially in bakeries and pizzerias, are deck ovens.

Gas, electric or dual fuel?

Buying commercial ovens also involves deciding on gas, electric, or dual fuel ovens as they affect operational costs and the quality of food produced. There are mixed opinions on whether one fuel type is better than another. While fan-assisted electric ovens offer more evenly distributed heat, gas ovens are less reliable in this department. However, gas ovens are generally more cost-efficient, and newer models are equipped with fans for heat consistency. Nowadays it’s common for restaurant owners to stick with dual fuel ovens to get the cooking speed of gas ovens and the consistency of electric ones.

Hob or no hob?

Certain ovens offer the option of with or without hobs. Those with hobs let you use the burners while the oven is on while hob-less ones allow you to integrate other equipment or use the space as a countertop. When buying commercial ovens with hobs, think about whether there are enough hobs and whether you can place large pans on all hobs at the same time to maximize usage.

Once you have the answers to these three primary questions, identify the costs involved in cleaning and maintaining your equipment of choice. This will help trim down your selection. Lastly, look at the warranty that comes with the oven, it says a lot about how confident a manufacturer is in their products.