Sunday, 8 March 2015

Frugal Living Tip for One: the benefits of counter top ovens

Budget Tip When you are Cooking for One

mini oven
my mini oven
Counter top ovens aren't new, but they are becoming more popular as the credit crunch hits. I have one and honestly don't know what I would do without it. It is much cheaper to heat and use a small oven and I feel I am saving earth resources at the same time.

How you can save money and save energy at the same time 

Fuel bills are escalating at an alarming rate and people are looking for ways to save money. Not everyone likes micro-waves ovens, I don't for example, say what you like but you will never convince me food taste as good micro-waved - think soggy pizza - that's all I'm saying!
On the other hand, I love my mini-oven. A mini oven uses half, sometimes less, of the amount of electricity needed to heat, then cook, in an ordinary sized oven. In addition it takes take less time too = less cost again. Most of the time, a big oven isn't really needed anyway. A casserole, roast or chicken will cook just as nicely in a small oven that has taken less time to get hot, can keep the heat where it is needed and is half the cost of running. You are in a win win situation. They are a LOT easier to clean too!

What are the best ovens to use?

There is a vast choice out there and quite often your choice will be dictated by your budget. Most reasonable ovens cost from, in the UK, £50 upwards with £100 getting you a really good one, for example from Russell Hobbs. You can get cheaper ones but they won't last as long and they will probably not be much good for baking. In the US you would expect to pay from around $75 upwards with Hamilton Beach being one of the best brands.
At those prices you may be wondering if they are worth the price. I believe so. With fuel prices rocketing, you will soon get your money's worth from these handy little ovens. A resonably priced one will do everything your big oven can do but at half the price.

Compact rotisserie ovens

A compact rotisserie oven might also be a welcome addition to your kitchen if you like your chicken etc cooked this way. The Ronco Compact Rotisserie, I have reviewed recently, are small enough to lift and store out of the way when not in use. They cook really moist, tender and tasty food from chicken and turkey, to full roasts, fish and vegetables. Some even come with a steamer for rice and vegetables you can cook on top while your chicken is cooking.
I hope you have enjoyed this little review of mini ovens and that I have at least given you something to think about.

Benefits of Using a Mini Oven

When cooking for 1 or 2 you don't need to heat up a big oven.
takes less energy
the smaller space take a shorter time to heat
uses less energy
the smaller internal space keeps the heat right where you need it to cook food evenly
uses less energy
cooking time is less than in a big oven
uses less energy
easy to clean
uses less of MY energy and patience
can be stored out of sight
uses a more natural heat than microwaves
uses less energy
seeing a pattern here?
bottom line
saves money and natural resources
Just to recap!

Other ways to save energy

If you have found yourself here the chances are that you are like me and interested in saving energy and saving money.
There are little things you can do that all add up:
  • shut off lights when you are not in the room
  • change to low-energy bulbs
  • close the fridge door quickly when you take something out
  • hang your laundry out to dry in the sun instead of using a dryer
  • turn down your central heating by a few degrees
  • open a window rather than using air conditioning
  • use a shower rather than a bath - you will save water and save on how much water you need to heat too.

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