Microwaves are among the most popular and commonly used kitchen gadgets in the world. However, there are still many people who can’t tell the difference between various types of microwave, and how they work. For instance, do you know what it means to buy a combination microwave, rather than standard microwaves?
Combination microwaves can be an excellent choice for families that want a versatile cooking product for their homes. A combi microwave can defrost and microwave food, but it also comes with a conventional oven feature and options to grill and bake.
If you’ve struggled with your home cooking goals due to a lack of space in your kitchen, combi microwaves could be the solution to your problems. But what is a combination microwave and why do you need one?
A combination microwave is exactly what it sounds like. This is a microwave with power levels like that of a small oven. These microwaves often come with a range of features for home cooking, so you can make more than just ready meals when you’re short on time.
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Combi microwaves can be programmed to automatically cook everything from baked treats to an entire chicken. The number of cooking options you’ll get will depend on the kind of product you buy and your budget. Make sure you check out a buying guide before you buy the first microwave oven you see.
Though a combination microwave oven doesn’t always give you the same flavour as you’d get from a typical one, these microwaves do offer convenience and versatility for people with small space, or limited time. The various cooking settings and auto programs should help you to create a wider variety of dishes in a shorter timeframe.
A combination microwave can grill foods, bake cakes, and some even come with an easy auto defrost setting so you can prepare ingredients for later.
What’s Better? Combi Microwaves or Standard Microwaves?
Combination oven microwaves are intended for homeowners with limited space, who don’t want to compromise on cooking. You can replace a range of cooking appliances with a combi microwave, and access all kinds of food preparation methods, from grilling to steaming.
The versatility of a combi microwave makes it easier to brown, crisp, and roast food however you like, and you don’t need a spacious kitchen. Because of this, a combination microwave offers a lot more flexibility than your standard microwave.
Pros of a Combi Microwave:
• Wide range of cooking options
• Higher selection of capabilities than a standard microwave
• Microwave capacity may be larger in some products
• Cooks in a similar way to a traditional oven
• Can be quicker at cooking than a traditional oven
• Usually have various automatic cook functions and convenience features
Cons of a Combi Microwave:
• More expensive than most microwave ovens
• Not necessary if you don’t experiment with cooking food
• Often bulkier than a standard microwave
• May not achieve the same taste as a conventional oven
How Does a Combi Microwave Work?
Most combination microwaves are very easy to use. They come with auto cook programs so you can leave your food to prepare while you do other things around the kitchen. A combination oven works similarly to a standard microwave and oven. Your manufacturer will include an expert guide with your purchase to help you understand the features available.
Combination microwaves offer greater flexibility than the standard microwave, although they still cook with a combination of hot air and a heating element. People love these devices when they have a smaller kitchen space because they can replace a full oven. Most combination microwaves cook faster than a standard oven and have slightly more capacity than a basic microwave.
Combination microwaves also come with things like multi-stage cooking, defrosting capabilities, grilling, and more. Although it may take a while to discover all your cooking modes, you should get the hang of the functionality quite quickly.
What to Look for in Combination Microwaves
When looking for the perfect combination microwave, it’s important to determine what kind of results you want. These products don’t just replace standard microwaves, they’re also useful for supplementing or replacing your existing oven.
If you don’t have a lot of space in your kitchen, or you want a microwave that’s quick and simple to use with a range of dishes, a combi solution might be perfect for you. Just remember to look at factors like:
Some combination microwaves feature a turntable similar to your traditional microwave. Others have a flat cooking space with fans that help to distribute the air. If you choose a turntable option, ensure that the turntable diameter gives you enough space for your meals and various ingredients.
Some combi microwaves come with extra features to make cooking easier. You may get a model with a crisping basket, browning shelves, and grill components. These features will help you to make the most of your microwave energy.
Auto Cook Settings
What kind of foods can you cook automatically with your microwave? It should be easy to set something cooking while you’re working elsewhere in the kitchen. Look for automatic heating, grill, and defrost settings.
If you’re going to use your microwave to cook more complex meals, you’ll need to look for multi-step programming. This means that you can use the microwave to defrost an item, then cook it to perfection straight after.
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Some of the latest combi microwaves come with information intelligence built in that allow them to automatically sense the weight of your food and cook it with minimal instructions.
What Can You Cook in a Combination Microwave?
Combination microwaves are versatile products. Thanks to their quick heating function and simplicity, there are plenty of recipes online that can help people to take advantage of the cooking flexibility that combi devices offer. If you’re beginning to use a combi microwave for the first time, make sure you read the instructions before you try heating something.
Different combi microwave models may have different requirements when it comes to how to use the heating elements, and how to keep your investment safe.
Once you’ve read through the information provided, you can start by cooking some of the things you would usually use a standard microwave for. Most models will have no problems with things like defrosting meat, fish, or bread, or heating up leftover food.
You can also make plenty of meals from scratch in a combi oven, such as pasta, pies, scrambled eggs, rice, and more. If your model comes with auto programs, check these for inspiration on the kind of foods you can use your device for. Some auto programs include features for things like baking, steaming, grilling, and poaching, too.
Remember, a combination oven is more than just a standard microwave. You can cook a lot of the meals you would make in a convection oven here. Just be sure that anything you make in your combination microwave is cooked through all the way before serving.
Can You Put Metal in a Combination Microwave?
You probably already know that you should never place metal in a standard microwave because it can cause serious damage, and maybe a significant fire risk. However, combination microwaves may be a little different. Many of these products come with metal shelves and plates for grilling and cooking different kinds of food.
Don’t simply assume that you can use metal in combination microwave. Although you can use these microwaves for a lot more things than a traditional model, it’s best to check the manufacturer’s information first. If your microwave oven comes with metal things that you can use for cooking, it’s likely that you can use these safely in your device.
Even though you may now know what is a combination microwave, it is important to make sure that you read all the information and follow the instructions carefully. Be sure to fully understand how to use our microwave oven to reduce your risk of dangerous mistakes.
So, do you need a combination microwave or will you stick to the appliances you already have? Let us know!