Cooking food in a convection oven vs convectional oven starts with understanding how different foods will react when using convection in the cooking process.
How to use a convection oven revolves around the technology.
A convection microwave is a combination of a convection oven with a microwave oven giving you basically two ovens in one and the best of both worlds for cooking.
But cooking food in a combination oven can be a little tricky. Here are some food facts for convection oven vs conventional oven use that also apply to microwave cooking.
Remembering the guidelines below will ensure you get optimum flavor from your food while enjoying the benefits of even heating and faster cooking.
Meats with Bones and/or Fat in a Convection Oven
Both the bones in meats and poultry and fats will affect your convection oven cooking. Bone-in meats cook differently than boneless and may cause irregular cooking even with the uniform heat distribution from the convection fan.
Any meat that is next to bone tips may overcook while the meat located under a large bone, for example a ham bone, may be under-cooked. Since fat cooks faster than the meat itself, large quantities of fat will absorb microwave energy, cooking the meat next to it faster.
Convection Oven Cooking is Impacted by Food Density
Foods like breads, cakes or rolls that are light, porous or fluffy will take less time to cook than their heavier counterparts such as potatoes and roasts.
Convection oven use for the reheating of donuts, for example, or other foods with different soft or creamy centers, be very careful in your cook times. Foods that contain fillers or centers made with sugar, water or fat will attract microwaves and cook faster than the exteriors.
For example, the cream in a filled donut can be extremely hot while the outside of the donut will only seem warm to your touch. Biting into one of these can result in a burn if you don’t allow the center to cool to a manageable temperature.
Quantity Matters in a Convection Oven vs Conventional Oven
The more food placed in an oven at one time, the longer it takes to cook. Two convection baked potatoes will take longer to cook than one potato. The less food in the convection oven the less cooking time.
With even heat distribution, overcooking your food will cause its moisture content to decrease. Extreme overcooking could result in a fire so cooking should be monitored at all times while your convection oven is in use.
Convection Oven Cooking is Impacted by Food Shape
When food is the same size and uniform in appearance, it will heat more evenly. Take cooking chicken in a convection oven, for example – the thinner end of a chicken drumstick will cook faster than the meatier end.
To help in cooking food with an irregular shape, when possible, place the thinner parts toward the center of your cooking dish and the thicker parts toward the outside edge.
What’s the Temperature of Your Food?
Your convection oven vs conventional oven is affected by food temperatures. Food, that is at room temperature when you start cooking it in your convection oven, will take less time to cook than if it’s been frozen or refrigerated.
Consulting your owner’s manual will provide adjusted convection cooking times for various thawed, frozen or refrigerated foods.
Piercing Allows Steam to Escape
When you have foods that have a skin on them or membranes, they must have a way for steam buildup to escape. This can be done by piercing, scoring or simply peeling a strip of skin from the food, like an apple, before cooking.
Be sure to pierce everything from seafood to chicken with a skin, to whole potatoes, whole fruits and vegetables. Scoring meat works well in a convection oven vs conventional oven when cooking sausages and hotdogs.
WARNING – Don’t cook or reheat whole eggs with or without the shell. When steams builds up in a whole egg, it may burst, causing damage to the oven and possibly causing injury. It is safe to reheat sliced hard cooked eggs or even scrambled eggs or omelets.