In most kitchens around the world, one appliance that is invariably found in one form or the other is a stove or a range used for cooking food. This appliance is a unit that makes use of fuel in the form of gas that is supplied through a pipeline or available from a cylinder.
Burners are present that produce the flame over which utensils are placed to prepare food. However, if you go to the market to buy such an appliance for your kitchen, you are sure to be overwhelmed with choices. Also the terminology that makes use of words like oven, stove, range, and so on.
There is a lot of confusion when it comes to the above kitchen appliances because people don’t know what is what. I don’t blame any of you all, and that is why you have this article to educate you.
A stove is a kitchen cooking appliance without an oven. It is also commonly known as a cooktop and has four to six electric burners. An oven is a chamber used for cooking, heating, baking, and grilling food.
However, a range is typically a combination of both. It is what you cook in or in the kitchen. So, what exactly is the source of this confusion? Much of it probably has to do with upbringing and tradition, but there are other factors at play.
Home cooking has evolved. Hence the terms we use to describe our cooking appliances have also changed. The cooking appliances themselves have diversified. But when you boil it down, there are definite differences between these three terms, as you can see above.
Let us look at them all separately and see their exact differences.
An oven is an enclosed structure inside the range that is used for cooking foods by generating heat. Baking and roasting are two of the popular cooking methods when you use the oven of the range for cooking meals.
There are coils at the top and bottom that heat up and supply the heat to the food item that is kept inside the oven. Ovens are powered by electricity.
They are the unsung heroes of a busy kitchen helping prepare delicious Sunday roasties such as cakes and cookies. As well as the occasional frozen pizza to crispy perfection. So, for ovens, there are different types which we have listed below:
- Gas ovens – As the name suggests, they use gas as their power source. The burning gas is what creates the heat for the oven.
- Electric oven – Can be separated into convection and conduction types. Conduction ovens heat from bottom-up while convection ovens circulate heat with a fan in the back.
- Self-cleaning oven – There are two types. Pyrolytic, which heat up to extremely high temperatures, burn off food stains and catalytic ovens, which are lined with chemicals that absorb food spills before they can become burned.
- Microwave oven – Heat food using electromagnetic waves.
- Roaster oven – This is designed to roast steam or slow cook.
- Toaster oven – Ideal for making toast but can also be used for pizzas and other such items
Stoves are the topmost part of the appliance where the burners are. These burners produce the flame over which utensils are kept for cooking of foods.
Thus, whether you are boiling, frying, or making use of a pressure cooker over the flame, you are effectively making use of the stovetop. Stoves are powered by gas.However, in recent times, there are also induction stovetops powered by the heat of copper coils placed just below
Cooktops can be categorized according to the use of gas or electricity, ventilation type, and appearance.
- Gas stoves – Gas cooktops operate on natural gas or propane.
- Electric cooktop – Functions on electricity, and is more environmentally friendly when compared to a gas cooktop.
- Induction cooktop – Function on electricity as well, but unlike standard electric cooktops, these appliances use electromagnets as cooking elements.
- Downdraft cooktops – Use counter-level exhaust fans. The fan may be installed in the cooktop itself, behind the burners, in the center, or on the side.
- Coil cooktops– Are the sturdy, traditional version of electric cooktops. The heating coils come into direct contact with cookware.
If you are looking to upgrade your kitchen to a beautiful sight, then ranges are the appliances. They are a great addition to your kitchen and should suit any household due to their stunning design and the vast array of functions they offer.
Like other kitchen appliances, range cookers come in a wide range of designs and types, from classic gas ranges to modern induction hobs.
- Electric range cookers are made up of an electric oven or, in the case of a large range cooker, several electric ovens.Also contain several electric hobs on boiling water and cooking dishes in a pan. Quick to heat up, the ovens used in electric ranges are great for preparing meals that require a consistent, steady supply of heat. The downside of electric ranges that their hobs tend to use more energy than gas models
- Gas range cookers – Are conventional, efficient, and effective, offering the same design as an electric range cooker but with gas as an energy source. This gives them a range of unique advantages that aren’t available in other types of range cookers. First, gas range cookers heat up quickly, whether you’re using the oven or stovetop.
- Dual fuel range cookers combine the convenience of an electric oven with the precise, fast heat of a gas stovetop. This combination makes dual fuel a good option if you need the fast heat of a gas stovetop with an electric oven’s predictability and low maintenance needs.
- Induction range cookers combine a conventional gas or electric oven or, for larger units, two or more separate ovens with a stovetop equipped with magnet-based induction hobs for fast, efficient heating.
In conclusion, if you have a cooking chamber without attached external burners, you should call it an oven. If you have a cooking surface with no oven, you should call it a cooktop/stove.
And if you have both in one device, you should call it a range. Though you could indeed be forgiven for calling it a stove.
“Range” is the most accurate term to describe the majority of cooking appliances found in American homes. Either way, people will probably know what you’re talking about, regardless of the term you use.