Despite their outwardly low tech, slightly 80’s appearance, halogen ovens represent modern convenience at its best. Not only do they cook food up to 40% faster than a standard oven but they use much less energy doing so too. Plus they don’t break down essential vitamins and minerals in food the same way microwaves often do. It is no wonder these useful cooking appliances are gaining popularity within the UK.
The problem is, as with most popular devices, there is a huge choice and finding the best one for your needs isn’t always easy. In this guide, you’ll discover everything you need to know about halogen ovens, from reviews on the best units to guides on how they work.
Halogen Oven Comparison Table
Halogen Oven Reviews:
Vonshef Premium 12L Air Fryer
Vonshef is a brand we have seen more and more of over recent years. In our opinion, they produce decent mid-range units which are priced very competitively and often provide good value for money. It is for this reason they appear to have carved themselves out a good portion of the consumer appliance market.
So we were very curious to see what the Vonshef 12L offered and if it followed in this tradition of offering value for money.
How To Use The Vonshef Premium 12L
To begin with, you’ll notice this device is visually & functionally very similar to others on the market. Although this is not surprising as halogen ovens follow a common design. On top of the device, the heating unit and controls for the oven are located. Two simple twist dials allow you to set the timer and temperature. The timer runs from a standard 0 – 60 minutes. Whilst the temperature controls allow you to cook from 125 to 250 degrees and even has a defrost setting – which is a very useful addition.
What Else Is Included?
One of the things which really made this Vonshef halogen oven stand out for us was the sheer number of accessories it arrives with. Inside the box, you’ll find everything from a frying pan to a steamer or bread rack. This greatly increases the versatility of this device and allows you to do anything from steaming, baking or frying to defrosting or roasting using this one appliance.
For example, something as simple as the included toast rack can toast up to 8 slices of bread at once. Which is really handy for when family members come to stay or if you have a large family. This is just one of many different uses which really illustrates just how useful these devices can be with a few extra accessories.
Also included is an extender ring which increases the initial cooking capacity from 12 to 17 litres. When combined with the high and low rack supplied this extra increase in room will allow you to cook whole meals using just the oven. This, in part, is why halogen ovens are so popular.
How Easy Is It To Clean?
As you may have guessed (if you’ve read any of our other reviews) this device also features a self cleaning mechanism. This makes maintenance a breeze because there’s no need to scrub baked on dirt from the bowl once you’ve finished.
What We Think
With this oven Vonshef have done what they do best: prepared a good-quality, mid-ranged unit which is excellently priced. If you want a versatile, yet simple cooking device this could be the device you’re looking for.
Daewoo Deluxe 1.7L 1300W
Halogen ovens are truly an amazing invention. They reduce the need for oil when frying, create finger-licking delicacies and cook much faster than your conventional oven.
So, if you enjoy cooking, this is a tool you simply cannot do without. If you are in the market for one of these useful frying tools, we have a fantastic value model in mind – the Daewoo Deluxe 17L 1300W Halogen Air Fryer.
It is stylish, smart, fast, cooks to perfection, and has a build that adds a whole lot of convenience to home cooking.
When it comes to design, the Daewoo Deluxe looks like your average halogen air fryer – a big clear cooking dish at the bottom with a heating element and fan at the top. This combination of heat and built-in fan ensure even circulation of hot air over the cooking bowl, delivering perfectly cooked food every time.
This halogen air fryer also comes with extra items in the box. You will find 7 accessories at your disposal, including an extension ring, which boosts the fryer’s capacity from 12L to a whopping 17 L plus 2 mesh trays, and high & low rack set for preparing more than one dish at a time.
The inclusion of tray and rack also means that the Daewoo Deluxe is good for cooking a wide range of dishes ( such as fries, meat, steamed vegetables, pizza, etc).
What Else is Included?
Aside from the extension ring, tray and rack, the Daewoo Deluxe includes a lid-stand and spray oil bottle in its list of generous accessories. The stand is useful for safely storing the hot lid while serving. On the other hand, the oil bottle offers a mess-free way of adding small amounts of oil to your food.
How to Use It
Simplicity is one of the major highlights of the Daewoo halogen oven. The unit uses dials to set cooking temperature and time. The timer dial offers a range of 5 to 60-minutes. Turning this to set cooking time will essentially switch on the air fryer. And, once the set time has elapsed, the fryer will automatically shut off. So, you can set your food to cook for a pre-determined length of time and walk away. The temperature control dial adjusts over a range of 125 to 250-degrees C and includes a ‘Thaw Wash’ setting as well.
Before you add ingredients into the fryer, first you have to lift the lid that has the heating element attached to it. There is a handle on the lid, which makes that an easy and, most importantly, safe – especially as the lid gets hot during use. After that, you can simply drop in your food as well as any of the accessories before proceeding to select cooking time and temp.
How Easy is it to Clean?
Cleaning the Daewoo Deluxe is literally effortless. When dealing with the bowl, you won’t have to lift a finger thanks to the unit’s self-cleaning function. Simply fill the cooking bowl with warm soapy water and point to the Thaw Wash setting on the temperature dial. The air fryer will do the rest and clean itself. However, you will have to wash the included accessories. Luckily, all of them are removable, so they can be easily washed up and put in the dishwasher.
The Daewoo Deluxe Halogen Air Fryer is a fantastic cooking appliance which arrives with a good selection of accessories to help increase its cooking range – this is a huge plus point given its low price. It allows you to enjoy healthy and tasty meals and, with its large 17L capacity, this halogen air fryer can easily make enough food for a family of 4 to 6 people. Overall its a fantastic bargain.
Russell Hobbs 18537
Rusell Hobbs are another well-known brand in the UK. They make everything from kettles to microwaves and toasters to irons. The 18537 is their main entry into the halogen oven market and has been a popular seller (and has the reviews to back it up) since its initial launch in late 2011.
Let’s take a look at the Russell Hobbs 18537 to find out exactly what this compact unit can offer you.
To begin with, this device offers slightly less cooking room than the Andrew James unit above. The main capacity of the oven is a touch smaller at 11 litres. This is still quite sizable and it can be increased with the included 5-litre expansion ring to give you a very respectable 16-litre total capacity.
How To Use The Russell Hobbs 18537
Following a design common to virtually all halogen ovens the lid of this unit consists of a glass base plate on top of which sits the cooking element and controls. You can set this unit to cook from 0 to 60 minutes and at a temperature of 125°C to 200°C degrees which is about average for a unit of this type.
It is important to note the device will not operate without the timer running. This serves two purposes; the first is that it stops you accidentally cremating your food(!) and reduces the risk of fire. It is a testament to how much faster these devices can cook when compared to a regular oven.
When you first receive the oven you’ll notice that the instructions ask you to use the unit for 10 minutes at 200 degrees whilst it is empty. During this time it does smoke a little but this is nothing to worry about. The supplied manual claims this will happen but does not explain why. We assumed perhaps some residue left over from the manufacturing process was being burnt off.
What Else Is Included?
As with some other halogen ovens this appliance does arrive with a heater rest. It is a little on the flimsy side but does do a good job of holding the lid in place.
Once you’ve finished cooking, the lid features a handy folding carry handle making it safe to pick up and move and you can place it on the supplied lid rack for safe storage. In addition to the lid rack, this unit also comes with some tongs, a low and high rack and, of course, the extension ring. It would have been nice to see one or two more accessories included however this is down to personal preference and not a necessity.
How Easy Is It To Clean?
No decent halogen oven would be without a self-cleaning cycle and here the Russell Hobbs does not disappoint. To clean the unit place 1.5 litres of water into the oven bowl along with a dash of washing-up liquid. Then run the device at 125 degrees for 10 minutes until the bell sounds. Then all you need to do is let it cool and empty away the contents – easy.
What We Think
Overall this is a well-built and sturdy unit, as you would expect from Rusell Hobbs. It was disappointing that it did not arrive with a few more accessories. However, this should be fine if you just want a simple halogen oven and aren’t bothered about all of the extras.
Despite being relatively unknown electriQ have produced a decent mid-range halogen oven which easily stands on-par with its competitors. We believe this is, in part, because it seems to share the same parent manufacturer as some of the other brands. Though we can’t be sure, because we’re not electronics experts, the overall style of the case and size appear very similar to some others in the market place – with only a few subtle differences.
You might be wondering if this a problem. We would have to say no. In fact, it is a very good thing. More competition means manufacturers compete on pricing and become more innovative to get your attention. Generally speaking, it means you get more bang for your buck. So, let’s see what this electriQ oven can do.
How To Use The electriQ Halogen Oven Work?
On top of the lid, you will find the controls and the main heating element. The top features a folding handle for lifting the lid – so no burnt fingers here. The handle also acts as a safety switch and the unit will not operate whilst it is upright. When you lift the handle the unit switches off. This is a nice safety feature and will also help prevent any burns.
The temperature and timer can both be set using two simple dials. Which is, again, a feature common to most devices. The timer can be set from 0 – 60 minutes and the temperature can be set from 125 – 250 degrees.
There is also a defrost function and you can even cook food from frozen in the device. All you need to do is set the temperature dial around 20 degrees lower than the recommended cooking temperature for the item in question.
What Else Is Included?
Next, we thought we’d look at the accessories and the electriQ certainly does not lack in this department. If you’ve read any of our other reviews you’ll know that accessories can rapidly increase the usefulness of any halogen oven. The main advantage is that you only need to cook in, and clean, one device for your meals.
It comes with both a high and low rack (for twin level cooking), steaming pan, frying pan, tongs, a 4 piece fork set and a lid holder. This will allow you to cook all manner of meals from pizza to full roast dinners and even steam vegetables.
Should you find you need more room the initial 12-litre capacity can be extended with the supplied extender ring to 17 litres. This is a pretty standard addition so its good to see it here.
Lastly, this oven does feature a self-cleaning function. Which can be used once the unit has cooled down.
What We Think
Overall this is a solid entry by electriQ. It is difficult to find much wrong for the price and it comes with a good gamut of accessories which should keep even the most ardent cook happy. If you like the look of this unit but don’t want to go with a relative unknown we recommend you check out our review on the Vonshef which is very similar.
Michael James 17L Halogen Oven
In another unit which shares a standard design, this Michael James halogen oven appears to offer a very similar model to the electriQ and Vonshef models. However, it comes with two main differences which should definitely make it worth a look.
The first it that it has an excellent price point and is by far one of the cheapest halogen ovens we’ve seen.
The second is that it arrives with an impressive complement of accessories for a halogen oven with such a low price tag. Most notably it does include an extender ring, which brings increases this ovens cooking capacity from 12L to 17L. It even arrives with high and low rack for multi-level cooking, a set of tongs (for the safe removal of the racks) and a handy lid stand.
How To Use The Michael James Halogen Oven
The heating unit is located in the main lid and it contains the standard two dials which set both the temperature and timer. The timer runs from 0 – 60 minutes whilst the temperature can be set from 125 to 250 degrees. It did surprise us to see that this appliance also comes with a defrost function – something we thought may have been sacrificed to reduce cost.
What We Think
Overall this oven by Michael James is about as cheap as halogen ovens come. It does mean you’ll sacrifice on one or two accessories however this does not impact the quality of the device. It would be ideal for anyone who wants to dip their toe into cooking with a halogen oven but may not want to pay for a more expensive unit.
How Halogen Ovens Work
Because halogen ovens look so different to a traditional oven it might be tempting to believe how you cook using them is different too. In fact, they are very similar in this respect. To start with you always need to place your food in a container or tray before placing it in the oven. In turn this container is always placed on a wire rack to allow hot air to circulate to cook your food evenly.
What really differs is how halogen ovens heat the food. Instead of using gas or large electric heating elements, halogen ovens use, as you’ve probably guessed, halogen bulbs. This might seem like an odd choice considering we use them to light our homes. However, halogen bulbs give off a lot of heat – much more than a regular light bulb. They are also much more compact and have a longer life span making them ideal for use in a halogen oven.
When activated they emit infrared light which heats the air inside the cooking chamber. A top mounted fan then circulates this air to ensure even and fast cooking. Whilst we couldn’t find any independent scientific reports many manufacturers reports claim they can cook food up to 40% faster than a standard oven.
The Advantages Of Halogen Ovens
The energy savings above come from 4 main features:
- There’s much less space to be heated
- There’s no heat up time
- The food cooks faster
- The type of heating element used
Useful Accessories & Extras
Throughout our halogen oven reviews we’ve mentioned that you often get a few additional included extras. Most of what you need is included with the oven. However, there are one or two extras you might find handy.
Here’s our top list of what we think you should look for when you buy, plus we’ve also included one useful extra accessory which is often not included with these ovens:
1 Extension Ring:
These are incredibly handy because they increase the capacity of your halogen oven and allow you to cook more food at any one time. This could be handy when you’re cooking larger meals such as at Christmas.
2 Toast Rack:
If you and your family love toast this is sure to come in handy. Typically you can cook up to 8 pieces of toast in the rack at once.
Virtually all units come with a set of tongs to make it easy lifting in and out the baking trays or wire racks. They will prevent burns and stop you spilling your food everywhere. This is something which is worthwhile checking is included just to make sure you do not get caught short.
4 Lid Rack:
If your unit has a lift off lid (as many do) make sure it comes with a lid rack so you have somewhere safe to place the hot lid when checking or serving your food. If it does not, make sure you have a good wooden chopping board or heat resistant silicone mat to put it on.
For the health conscious among you the steamer tray is a must. It will allow you to quickly steam fish and vegetables.
6 EXTRA – Temperature Probe:
This will definitely come in handy during your early days of using a halogen oven when you might not be sure of cooking times. You will be able to ensure all of the meat is cooked fully and prevent under-cooking. You can find a selection here.
As with air fryers and soup makers a halogen oven could really make a difference in your kitchen. They are incredibly convenient, energy efficient and make cooking all sorts of meals that little bit easier.
In our selection of ovens, we’ve reviewed a wide spectrum to encompass the best value for money units which offer a good selection of features and accessories to help you narrow your choice.
If you’re ready to get your first halogen we recommend looking at the Vonshef Premium 12L Air Fryer or Michael Jame Air Fryer. They both offer excellent value for money, are very similar, and you have the choice between a unit with a lot of accessories and one with very few.