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Top five best freestanding cookers

By Jane Darling

Our expert pick of the five best freestanding cookers - including gas, electric and dual-fuel cookers.

Put us to the test

Our Test Labs compare features and prices on a range of products. Try Which? to unlock our reviews. You'll instantly be able to compare our test scores, so you can make sure you don't get stuck with a Don't Buy.

The best cookers ace our tough lab tests, so you can be sure that the top models that we recommend cook evenly, grill beautifully and come with a hob that can boil quickly as well as simmer gently.

To help you avoid spending money on a cooker that will make preparing meals a frustrating ordeal, we've rounded up five models that scored well in our tests. We've picked out some of the best cookers around, whether you're looking for a gas, electric, induction or dual-fuel cooker.

Only logged-in members can view our recommendations below. If you're not already a member, sign up for a £1 Which? trial to unlock the table and also get instant access to our freestanding cooker reviews.

Best cooker overall

Zanussi ZCI68300BA
Today's best price £604.00
Which? score 78%
Reviewed Apr 2017
Oven:
5 out of 5
Grill:
5 out of 5
Hob:
4 out of 5
Usable space in main oven (litres):
Member exclusive
Double or single oven:
Member exclusive
Grill type:
Member exclusive

This cooker was head and shoulders above all others in recent testing. Both ovens are accurate and quick to heat up, and the induction hob is speedy, but gentle when you want it to be. Unfortunately, this cooker can't be a Best Buy, as our survey of cooker owners revealed that this brand's cookers suffer more breakdowns than we think is acceptable.

Best electric cooker

AEG 47102V-MN
Today's best price £654.00
Which? score 70%
Reviewed Apr 2017
Best Buy
Oven:
4 out of 5
Grill:
4 out of 5
Hob:
3 out of 5
Usable space in main oven (litres):
Member exclusive
Double or single oven:
Member exclusive
Grill type:
Member exclusive

This stylish-looking high-end model will set you back more than many cookers, but we think it's worth it. The ovens heat up quickly and the main one in particular sticks closely to the correct temperature. Both grills are good and the ceramic hob - while not as responsive as the best induction hob - isn't bad either.

Best gas cooker

New World NW550TSIDLM
Today's best price £409.99
Which? score 67%
Reviewed Mar 2014
Best Buy
Oven:
4 out of 5
Grill:
2 out of 5
Hob:
4 out of 5
Usable space in main oven (litres):
Member exclusive
Double or single oven:
Member exclusive
Grill type:
Member exclusive

The oven on this all-gas cooker is incredibly quick to heat up - it takes just four minutes to get to 180°C (gas mark 4) - and keeps to the set temperature very accurately. The hob spreads heat evenly and is easy to control. The only downside is the grill - you'll need to move food around to get it evenly browned.

Best dual-fuel cooker

John Lewis JLFSMC613
Today's best price £799.00
Which? score 69%
Reviewed Apr 2017
Best Buy
Oven:
5 out of 5
Grill:
4 out of 5
Hob:
3 out of 5
Usable space in main oven (litres):
Member exclusive
Double or single oven:
Member exclusive
Grill type:
Member exclusive

Decent dual-fuel cookers can be hard to track down, so we were pleased when this one came out of our tests with a Best Buy. Both electric ovens are very accurate and the grill in the top oven is good, too. The gas hob isn't exceptional, but does the job well enough.

Good value induction cooker

New World NW601EDOMTI
Today's best price £484.00
Which? score 64%
Reviewed Apr 2017
Oven:
4 out of 5
Grill:
5 out of 5
Hob:
4 out of 5
Usable space in main oven (litres):
Member exclusive
Double or single oven:
Member exclusive
Grill type:
Member exclusive

While not quite a Best Buy, this cooker, with its sleek induction hob, has lots to recommend it including its price. Both ovens are accurate, and the top one especially so. The induction hob is excellent for gentle simmering, but it also supplies enough power to heat up large volumes quickly too. The grill will brown most of what you put underneath.

Please note that the best gas cooker (New World NW550TSIDLM) was tested to a different test programme so isn't directly comparable with the other cookers.

To get the full list of models we recommend, see Best Buy freestanding cookers.

Why our cooker reviews are better

When setting your oven to pre-heat, you reasonably expect that it will hit the set temperature accurately. But many cookers miss the mark, veering away from your chosen temperature by as much as 40°C. To help you avoid buying a cooker that will leave you with half-baked cakes or overly charred chicken, we record how closely each oven reaches and sticks to a set temperature. We also time how quickly it takes them to get there, to single out the ones that won't require you waiting around forever. 

We also look at things you'll encounter in everyday use, such as how easy the settings are to manage, how clear the markings are and whether you have a clear view into the oven while your food is cooking. We test the usable oven space in each cooker to give you an idea of how much you can actually fit in the oven. We think this is a more useful measure than the manufacturer's stated capacity, which includes the whole internal area and can't all be used for cooking.

Our expert baking, grilling and cooking tests

To test how evenly each oven cooks, we bake a tray of shortbread. This delicate bake clearly shows how effective the cooker is at spreading heat evenly throughout the oven cavity. Ovens that leave pale parts or burnt corners get marked down in our tests, while those that turn shortbread an even golden brown across the whole tray get top marks. We also bake a large sponge cake. If it's well risen and evenly browned, it gets a high score, but flat, sunken or unevenly baked cakes lose points.

For grilling, we cut the crusts off white bread and cover the grill pan with them, to see how far and how evenly the grill spreads its heat. We also test how rapidly each hob will heat up a panful of water from 15°C to 90°C. Quick hobs take less than five minutes, but the slowest will keep you waiting three times as long. Best Buy hobs also excel at the other end of the scale, allowing you to simmer delicate ingredients.

To look at our full range of reviews and compare models, head to our freestanding cooker reviews.

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