Let’s face it. Sometimes you don’t want to use the oven if you’re only cooking for two, or maybe just because you don’t want to heat up the house when it’s already a bit warm. So let me introduce to you a better option. For a more energy efficient option, consider one of these cheap tabletop halogen cookers.
With one of these, you can cook the same meals that you normally would use your full-size oven for. Not only is a halogen oven more energy efficient, but it is also quicker if you’re in a rush to get the meal done. Not sure if one of these is right for you? Keep reading and we’ll help you decide on the best halogen oven for you.
Top 6 Best Halogen Ovens (2017) - Our Picks!
What Is A Halogen Oven?
Sometimes referred to as a halogen cooker, this compact appliance sits on your countertop and functions like a full size oven for most meals. A bright halogen light is used to cook your food. And if you want a hotter cooking temperature, then you increase the brightness of that light. A fan inside the cooker disperses the heat that radiates off the light, so that your food gets cooked evenly.
A thermostat helps regulate the inside temperature so you don’t have to worry about over-cooking meals.
One thing to keep in mind is that one of these can never really replace your regular oven simply because you can’t cook everything in a halogen oven. However, they are brilliant for making quick meals, as well as for taking on holiday.
Halogen Ovens vs Air Fryers
And if you’re wondering how the halogen oven compares to the air fryer, then know that the two use completely different cooking methods. While hot air is technically the heat source for both, you end up with more like roasted meals in the halogen oven versus “fried” meals in the air fryer. You also need to use a wee bit of oil for most things in the air fryer.
I find that with the halogen oven, it is more versatile in terms of what I can cook it it. If I want, I can cook some chicken and veg in the halogen oven, but it’s not quite as simple to do so with my air fryer. Quite honestly, I think the halogen oven is the healthier cooking option of the two, but I do love me some fresh chips from the air fryer!
The biggest difference between the two is the cost. Air fryers tend to be much more expensive, whereas you can find halogen cookers at very cheap prices.
What To Look For When Shopping
You’ll soon notice that there are lot of options on the market. For the best experience, look for a package that includes several cooking accessories. This way, when you get home you will be able to make a meal in it immediately.
You should definitely look for a cooker that comes with cooking racks, a lid stand, and tongs for removing the racks. These are the bare minimum accessories you’ll need to cook with your need halogen oven.
But if you really want the best package, then we suggest also looking for one that comes with:
- extra bulb
- steamer tray
- baking tray
And like most small countertop cookers, you can expect a small recipe book to be included with most models. Of course, you can easily use the internet to look for more recipes.
Of course, one of these all inclusive bundles will have a slightly higher cost most of the time, but I think you’ll find it to be worthwhile the more you use the cooker.
What To Consider Before Buying
Now that you know what you can do with a good halogen oven, and what to look for when you’re comparing the models, you might think that you’re ready to buy one. Before you do that though, take a moment to consider the points below.
Size: Where do you plan on putting the cooker? The cooking dish is a fairly large, with a typical capacity between 12 litres and 17 litres. And you can expect the base to have a diameter somewhere near 41 cm, while the lid will be around 31 cm. So, make sure your countertop has enough space to accommodate one of these ovens within reach of a power point.
Cord length: Since you need a power point nearby, pay close attention to the cord length of the models you’re considering buying. We’ve seen some that are less than a metre while others are longer. You definitely don’t want to need an extension cable, so take measurements at home first and check the cord length before you buy.
Controls: Do you prefer manual or digital controls? Know what you want before you shop because some models have a digital control panel while others have manual rotary dials for you to use.
Frying basket: Do you want to be able to make chips and other air fry foods? If so, look for a model that comes with a fry basket. And yes, this would eliminate the need for an air fryer!
Extension rings: Do you want to be able to increase the capacity of your baking dish? If so, look for a model that comes with extension rings, which are made of metal and allow you to cook more food at once.
Baking and Steaming trays: Do you want to be able to make a pizza or cookies? Then you need a model that comes with a baking tray. Want to steam some veg? Then you need a model that comes with a steaming tray.
Lid stand: We think this is one of the most important features to look for! Since the lid gets hot during cooking, you need a safe place to put it when you unload your food. A vertical lid stand is the best place because it keeps it up off the counter, so you don’t lose any valuable space, and it ensures that no one accidentally gets burned from touching it or moving it around.
Tongs: Since the baking dish is deep, you’ll want a pair of tongs to remove the food and trays once everything is cooked. Otherwise, you’ll likely burn yourself.
Storage space: Since you won’t use your halogen cooker all the time, you need a place to store it when its not in use. Do you have cabinet space for that? Or will it sit out on the counter? Decide this before you buy so that you aren’t left frustrated after the first time you use it.
VonShef Premium 12L Halogen Air Fryer Oven Review
Of all the models that we evaluated, this VonShef halogen cooker gets top marks from us. It is available in either black or white and it has a low price that is affordable for most budgets.
As you can see, it has the manual rotary knobs for control. But that’s not what we like best about this one. Here’s why we like it so much:
- extender ring takes capacity from 12L to 17L
- self-cleaning glass bowl
- heats and cooks fast!
- comes with extender ring, tongs, high & low rack, bread rack, skewers, frying pan, steamer, and lid holder
- 1200-1400 watt power range
This model comes with all the accessories you need at a great low price. The nice thing about the bread rack is that it fits up to eight slices of bread. And the four skewers are perfect for tasty kebabs.
If you don’t like it in the white (as pictured), then know that you can also order it in black. We really like this little halogen cooker and think you will too.