Budget-wise · cooking · Microwave · Ovens · Ranges

Appliance trend: multitasking appliances

Buy based on how you cook most days.

When buying appliances, people often focus on two days of the year: Thanksgiving and Christmas.

What matters at that moment to you is finding a range whose oven accommodates a massive turkey.

Or, thinking about overflow casseroles and Christmas cookies, you opt for double ovens.

But what about the other 363 days of the year? If you’re not a serious baker, that second oven sits cold. And warming up that range with the huge oven capacity for a couple of baked potatoes wastes time and energy.

Instead, a trend we’re seeing is assembling a team of  appliances that can work alone during normal operations but also can multitask for occasional holidays and parties.

So instead of a giant range, combine a double oven range and convection microwave.

The smaller upper oven of the range can be used for one-dish meals. Come Christmas, you can bake a dessert up top while a roasts monopolizes the lower oven. The convection microwave can bake a casserole. My mom did this successfully for years with her Jenn-Air convection microwave (after she finally got rid of the old range she kept in the laundry room, only to be used during the holidays).
A convection microwave also works overtime when paired with a single oven, perfect for those who won’t make enough use of a double oven.

Better yet, make that second oven a speed oven for the ultimate versatility.


This GE Advantium (model PSB1001NSS; Miele makes an upgrade if you’ve got the dough) cooks up to 4 times faster than your grandmother’s oven – covering all 4 bases: warming/proofing, true convection, sensor microwave (that can rotate a 9×13 casserole on its turntable!) and of course, speed cooking.

Until I can upgrade to a convection microwave, I use my Crockpot for anything that doesn’t need “crisping,” but I’d love to hear how others really make use of their multitasking appliances.