Top five best single ovens for 2020
By Jane Darling
The best ovens will make cooking a breeze, reliably turning out tasty meals for years on end. But it's impossible to tell before you buy which ones will take ages to heat up, whether they'll leave you with uneven, poorly risen bakes or whether the temperature you select is really the one you'll get.
We've rounded up our pick of the five best built-in single ovens to help take the guesswork out of choosing. From the best oven we've ever tested to the cheapest Best Buy oven with pyrolytic cleaning, we'll help you find the best for you.
Find the best oven
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Best single oven overall
This is an excellent multifunction oven. It gets up to temperature really quickly, and supplies heat evenly regardless of which shelf you use. The grill spreads its heat far and wide, so you won't need to shuffle your sausages around to get them evenly browned.
Excellent budget oven
Two ovens in one
This single oven comes with a divider and two fans, allowing you to turn it into a double oven as and when you need. So, if you could do with a double, but don’t have the space, this accurate oven with an impressive grill could be the one to go for.copy
Slide and hide door
A showstopping bake should be within your reach with this quick to heat up and accurate oven. In our tests it made an excellent sponge cake, and the shortbread turned out well, too. If you hanker after an oven with a slide and hide door, this Best Buy would make a good choice.
Not found the product for you? Browse all of our built-in oven reviews.
Can a cheap oven be a bargain?
When you see an appliance going for a song, it's easy to be tempted. But a budget price doesn't necessarily mean it's a bargain. Here are a couple of cheap ovens that failed to impress us in our tests.
Ovens to avoid
Easily the best thing about this oven is its grill which spreads its heat far and wide. Unfortunately the oven's thermostat isn't accurate. In our tests, the temperature went more than 20˚C higher at one point. This could in overcooking or burning of your bakes.
How to choose the best oven for you
Electric oven or gas oven?
Nowadays, electric ovens dominate the market. The best electric ovens warm up quickly to the correct temperature and spread heat evenly, meaning your cakes and bakes come out well, whatever shelf you put them on.
Gas ovens will always be hotter at the top than at the bottom, as they don't have fans. But you can use this to your advantage by, for example, cooking a roast at the top and a crumble near the bottom.
What size oven should I buy?
Single ovens have one spacious cavity, while double ovens have one larger oven and a smaller one on top. This means you can use two ovens, or the grill and oven, at the same time.
If you need two separate ovens but are short on space, a built-under model may fit the bill. These are designed to fit in the space below your kitchen worktop.
If you want the flexibility of a double oven, head over to our guide to the top five double ovens for 2019 to find a model that will cook efficiently and evenly across both ovens.
Can a cheap oven be a great oven?
The price of ovens varies from around £150 to well over £1,000.
More expensive models tend to offer more self-cook programs, touch controls and a self-clean function. If you don't mind sticking with the basics, though, you can spend less. We've found several Best Buys around £250.
Should I get a self-cleaning oven?
The best self-cleaning ovens we've come across are pyrolytic ovens. These use a high-temperature program to burn off cooking spills from the oven walls. All you then need do is sweep or wipe away the ashes.
Pyrolytic ovens can be pricey though. Ovens fitted with catalytic liners are often a cheaper option. These speed up the break down of fatty residues when you are cooking at temperatures of more than 200°C, making the grease easier to wipe away.
Other self-cleaning ovens feature a shallow depression at the base that you fill with water. When the oven heats up, the steam loosens the cooking grime, making cleaning easier.
What other oven features are worth having?
Here are some other features to look out for that make your oven easier to use.
- Telescopic runners
- Child lock
- Programmable timers
- Oven that can be controlled remotely using an app
Head to how to buy the best oven if you still uncertain about what kind of oven you need.