Steamy or rainy weather can wreak havoc on everything from your home to your hair. And baked goods are no exception. That’s because humidity—a measurement that tells us how much moisture is in the air—can be a baker’s worst nightmare. But sometimes, you have to bake, and it can’t wait for good weather. These tips will help ensure your cookies and breads turn out great even during the Dog Days of Summer!
If you are looking for a new oven or home, or if you are lucky enough to have a convection oven in your current home, then you may be wondering, “What is a convection oven and how does it differ from a regular oven?” You are not alone—it turns out a lot of people have heard these two terms, but do not actually understand what they mean.
You have probably heard that convection ovens are a bonus in a new home, but even a lot of people who have them have no idea what they are best used for, or how to use them. In fact, most people use a convection oven in the exact same way that they have been using a conventional oven Dutch oven for years, before learning the value that a convection oven can bring to their kitchens!
Bob’s Red Millwe have broken down the differences between convection and conventional ovens to help you take your cooking and baking to the next level. Keep reading to explore all the secrets of convection ovens, when to use them, and most importantly, how to create
Try it a few times. You just might become a fan.
Photo: Getty Images
If you’ve purchased a new oven or range in the past several decades, chances are you have a convection setting―and chances are you’ve never used it. As with other special features touted by appliance manufacturers, the feature seems highly appealing until you realize you have no idea if or how you should be using it. Understandably so: Convection cooking is rarely mentioned in recipes or cookbooks. If you’ve ever wondered what exactly is a convection oven and whether or not using the setting makes a difference in your final product, this should help clear things up.
What is convection?
Activating the convection setting on your oven kicks on an interior fan and exhaust system that circulates hot air around your food. This causes the heat inside the oven to be drier and more evenly distributed, so dishes cooked with convection will cook about 25 percent faster than those on your oven’s conventional bake setting. In addition to saving time, this makes convection cooking slightly more energy-efficient. Also, for this reason, most appliance manufacturers recommend reducing a recipe’s temperature by 25 F when cooking with convection (check your oven’s manual) to avoid burning your food.
Convection cooking also helps promote browning for roasted meats, poultry, baked potatoes, meatballs, sheet pan vegetables, and so on. “Thanks to the delivery of steady heat and even air circulation, ‘hot spots’ do not exist in the oven in convection cooking,” explains Nancy Schneider, a home economist for Miele. “Rotating trays essentially becomes a thing of the past, and the constant flow of air allows for the heat in the cavity of the oven to blanket the food and cook it more quickly than conventional ovens. The exterior of a roast will have perfectly even browning while the interior will remain tender.”
Fun fact: Air fryers are actually just mini convection ovens. Just like your full-size oven, the convection fan inside air fryers circulates hot air around the fryer basket, which is what gives your cauliflower or sweet potato fries that fried-like crispness. Now you know!
When shouldn’t you use convection?
Though the convection setting is a great option when you’re roasting, we’re less impressed with the results when baking desserts and other delicate dishes. Because the fan blows air around the inside of the oven, moist foods prone to shifting or splattering (like quick breads, custards, and other baked goods) can come out dry and unevenly baked. Sometimes cookies or cakes will show a “sand drift” pattern from the moving air. Use the regular setting for these types of treats. Their shorter bake times make the time-saving aspect of the convection setting less enticing, anyway.
Cornbread is a staple in many southern households. If you’ve tried to make it without a recipe, you probably noticed that it takes longer than other bread.
It’ll take less time than baking them from scratch. Keep reading to find out.
- 4 Easy Steps to Dry Out Cornbread in the Oven
- How Long Should You Dry Out Cornbread In The Oven
- Tips & Tricks When Drying Out Cornbread in the Oven
- Final Verdict
4 Easy Steps to Dry Out Cornbread in the Oven
Preheat The Oven
The first step is to preheat your oven to 275 degrees F. Take a look at the cornbread after it’s been in the oven for 10 minutes.
The top surface of the cornbread should be golden brown and slightly puffed up. You’ll notice that the crunchy edges of this cornbread will soften once cooled.
Cut It into Squares
If you have a large cookie sheet and want to use it for multiple batches of cornbread, then cut smaller squares so that it fits better.
Toast Until Dry
Toast the cornbread for 30-45 minutes until it is dry. You’ll know it’s done when the edges of your cornbread are golden brown and crispy but not burnt.
As soon as you can, pull a cookie sheet out of the oven without burning yourself with smoke (this usually takes about 8 minutes).
If your cornbread isn’t quite done yet, add an extra minute to your cooking time or let it cool completely before serving so that moisture evaporates from its surface.
Let It Cool
The cornbread should be mostly cooled down before dressing or using in your recipe because hot cornbread is still soft and might crumble when pressed.
How Long Should You Dry Out Cornbread In The Oven
“Peace goes into the making of a poem as flour goes into the making of bread.”
–Pablo Neruda, Diplomat and Poet
If you want a soft and moist interior with a chewy exterior, allow it to stand for about 15 minutes before serving or baking.
Tips & Tricks When Drying Out Cornbread in the Oven
- Make sure you use a pan that is oven safe. If you don’t have one, you can improvise using an aluminum pie plate or a foil-lined pizza pan.
- You can add an egg yolk to your ingredients so your cornbread won’t crumble while cutting.
- Use a pan that is the right size for the amount of cornbread being made.
- Check the cornbread edges every 10 minutes to prevent burning.
Do I need to dry out cornbread for stuffing?
Yes, you need to dry out cornbread for stuffing. Because if you don’t, the bread will have a soggy texture.
How to dry out cornbread if there’s no oven?
To dry out cornbread without an oven, put the bread in an open paper bag and let it sit on the counter for 24 to 48 hours.
How do you dry cornbread for dressing?
To dry cornbread for the dressing, let it dry in the oven for 30-45 minutes. Do not dress them while hot because it will absorb the dressing and makes the texture soggy.
Should I leave my cornbread out overnight for dressing?
Yes, you should leave the cornbread overnight to achieve the right hardness for dressing.
Generally, it takes about 30-45 minutes to dry cornbread perfectly in the oven. Still, the amount of time depends on the moisture of the cornbread.
But it’s especially good in recipes that don’t specify how long you should allow the bread to sit before baking.
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When you bake you probably have had this happen to you. Dry cake!
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Well, when you know what caused it you can prevent it and if your cake is dry can you still salvage it? So are you ready to learn the answer to the question why is my cake dry after baking? Get ready to put it in the oven!
Baking a cake can yield a different result even if you use the same recipe over and over. Outside influences like temperature, and humidity can have an effect and dry out a cake.
But also, the size of your eggs, the temperature of the butter, or how long you cream it can have an impact on the moisture level in a cake.
But when you run into a dry cake you want to know why and what happened so it doesn’t happen again.
Because there is nothing more frustrating than seeing a delicious-looking cake, taking a bite, and coming up with dry cake.
Main Causes To Dry Cake
So let’s take a look for answers to why my cake is dry. You have 7 reasons that can be the cause of dry cake.
Not Enough Moisture In The Batter
A cake gets dry if the amount of dry ingredients is higher than the amount of moisture available in the cake batter.
Flour absorbs liquid and if there is not enough moisture in the batter the flour stays dry causing a dry cake.
Not enough moisture in the batter can be caused by the lack of eggs, milk, buttermilk, sour cream, oil, or too much flour.
A great ingredient to add to your batter is buttermilk or sour cream. Both are light and creamy ingredients that can keep your cake moist.
Size Of The Eggs Used In Your Cake Recipe
Most recipes will define what size eggs are needed. However, when it just says eggs use large size eggs instead.
When you use small or medium size eggs you will not have enough liquid in the batter. So that can cause the cake batter to be too dry.
So try to use similar size eggs. When in doubt weigh the eggs and use the ones closest to each other in weight.
If you are using medium size eggs because that is all you have and the recipe calls for large add an additional half egg.
You can weigh the egg, whisk it and then add half of the egg to the recipe.
You Overcooked The Cake And Cooked The Cake Too Long
A dry cake is often times caused when you bake your cake for too long. It is very important how to tell when a cake is done.
Always check it at multiple spots in your cake. You can take a bamboo stick and take it out thinking your cake is not cooked through.
But then you check in another spot in the cake and it is done.
So check your cake properly and get it out when it is done. Do not leave it in the oven or else it will dry out.
Your cake will continue to cook when you take it out of the oven so you can take it out when it is just done.
The Oven Was Too Hot
What you see on your oven may not be correct. Ovens are notorious for not being properly calibrated.
So you may think you heated the oven to 350℉ while in reality the oven is heated at 375℉.
Use an oven thermometer so you can check the temperature.
These thermometers are very inexpensive and tell you how hot your oven is and if you need to increase or reduce the temperature.
Now it is recommended to preheat your oven about 25℉ higher than the recipe calls.
When you open the door to insert the cake cold air flows into the oven reducing the temperature inside.
After you close the oven door you can reduce the temperature to what is called for in the recipe.
You Doubled The Recipe
When you double the cake recipe you run the risk of over-creaming the butter and sugar, you can under-mix the batter, or over-mix the batter.
You can have issues with the amount of baking powder or baking soda and subsequently rise of your cake.
If you need double the amount of your cake batter, make the batter twice so you have more control over the result.
Wrong Size Spring Form Or Baking Tin
When you use a spring form or baking tin that is too small for the amount of batter that you have it will impact the result of your bake.
A small spring form means a thinner layer of batter. This will cook faster but if you keep to the cooking time in the recipe the cake can dry out as it is thinner.
Dry Cake After Baking
When you baked your cake and did not store it properly you can also get a dry cake.
So proper storage is called for. It is recommended to either store your cake at room temperature outside the fridge or in the freezer.
The refrigerator dries out a cake so do not store it in the fridge.
The main difference between bake and convection bake is in how heat is distributed. With convection bake, an air circulation system distributes air inside the oven cavity. With a conventional oven, two heating elements heat air inside the cavity without the use of a fan to circulate the hot air.
Depending on the model, some convection ovens utilize a third heating element in addition to the fan called true convection that can help some foods cook faster than traditional thermal bake settings.
If you have a convection oven or wall oven with convection bake settings, like this model by KitchenAid brand, understanding how different baking cycles work and when to use them can help you achieve the ideal cooking environment for different dishes. Read on to compare convection vs. regular bake and learn when to use convection bake for your recipe.
WHAT IS CONVECTION BAKE?
With true convection baking, your oven is able to help maintain optimal temperatures as you cook. The fan used in convection baking helps evenly distribute hot air to help remove excess moisture from the surface of foods and help ensure consistent results across dishes when cooking on multiple racks.
HOW DO CONVECTION OVENS WORK?
Convection ovens work by using a fan and exhaust system to circulate air distributed from the heating element throughout the oven cavity. On most convection oven models, convection settings can be turned on or off, giving you the flexibility to cook with conventional thermal settings when you like.
Some convection ovens, like this True Convection range model from KitchenAid brand, feature a third heating element that can help foods cook faster compared to its traditional thermal-bake cycle.
Unlike convection bake, regular bake cycles allow the oven to operate like a conventional, thermal oven. Conventional ovens lack the air distribution system used by convection ovens, distributing heat instead via the active one of two heating elements.
WHAT IS CONVECTION BAKE USED FOR?
Convection bake is best used for recipes that could benefit from the even heat distribution of hot air circulated throughout the oven via the fan and exhaust system. This heating method makes convection baking particularly useful for baking multiple batches of cookies or dishes on multiple racks.
When you use convection baking settings, you can elevate your roasted meals by achieving crispy, flavorful skins on meats or delicious caramelization on vegetables.
WHEN SHOULD I USE CONVECTION BAKE VS. BAKE TO COOK?
In addition to even baking, convection bake settings can help you achieve the ideal environment for cooking specific recipes. Convection settings can fulfill most baking needs and can be used to cook a wide range of foods, including meats, vegetables, casseroles, cookies, pies and more.
Use convection bake to achieve light and flaky baked goods or cook through layered casseroles and pasta bakes. You can also use convection baking to provide the dry environment needed to start experimenting with recipes involving dehydrated or toasted ingredients.
Certain baked goods, however, are best cooked using conventional oven settings. Avoid convection baking foods like cakes, quick breads, custards and other delicate desserts and pastries.
DOES A CONVECTION OVEN COOK FASTER?
Because of the radiant heat produced by conventional oven heating elements, dishes may cook faster or slower depending on their location inside the oven. With a convection oven, the circulated air throughout the oven cavity helps deliver consistent heating to dishes regardless of their placement.
Convection baking also reduces the likelihood of hot or cold spots in your dishes. As a result, your food may cook faster without the need to rotate dishes or adjust cook times to accommodate uneven heat distribution of regular bake cycles.
IS CONVECTION BAKE GOOD FOR PIZZA AND OTHER HOMEMADE RECIPES?
The even baking and heat distribution of a convection oven provides the ideal environment for making a variety of dishes, including homemade pizza and oven-baked ribs. With convection baking, hot air is delivered to each area of the pizza for even cooking across the pie.
On most conventional ovens, heat is usually distributed by the bottom heating element, leaving the crust without targeted heat. With convection baking, you may achieve a crispier crust thanks to the circulated hot air inside the oven cavity. Experiment with the many cooking possibilities of convection bake for other homemade recipes like baked desserts or golden, fluffy loaves of sourdough bread.
SHOP KITCHENAID® OVENS
KitchenAid® ranges and wall ovens with Even-Heat™ True Convection combine powerful convection cooking technology with intuitive design to help you achieve consistently delicious results. Browse the full collection of ranges and wall ovens by KitchenAid brand to discover the appliance that’s right for your kitchen.
LEARN MORE ABOUT KITCHENAID® OVENS
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Broadly speaking, dry cake isn’t exactly an earth-shattering problem. But when you’ve put your skill, effort, and ingredients into a cake that later reveals itself to be dry — and worse yet, when that revelation comes at a special celebration — it certainly impacts your own little world.
Why does cake turn out dry — and what can you do to prevent that sawdust-y scenario? Let’s examine the most common causes of dry cake.
Certain cakes, especially those that’ll later be rolled or stacked and filled (like this Genoise) are meant to be on the dry side. Their drier texture helps them support creamy fillings without becoming soggy.
1) It’s the recipe
Some cakes are supposed to be a bit on the dry side: think nonfat foam cakes like angel food, or a lower-fat genoise. In fact, their drier, sturdier texture is considered an asset: They’re better able to handle being rolled or filled with custard, soaked in syrup, or slathered with whipped cream. If your recipe uses no fat or calls for butter as its only fat (and not much of it), then you can assume it’s not going to produce a super-moist cake.
2) Too much flour was used
Photography by Rick Holbrook; food styling by Kaitlin Wayne
The soft, tender crumb of this Coconut Cake comes from cake flour, which also helps keep the cake moist.
3) A different flour was substituted
Your recipe calls for white whole wheat flour, or cake flour, but you think “whatever” and opt for all-purpose flour. Whoops! If a recipe calls for a specific flour (and doesn’t offer a substitute), use what’s called for. Both cake flour (with its fine grind and higher starch content) and whole-grain flours (more coarsely ground) absorb and retain more liquid than all-purpose flour. This liquid retention results in a cake that stays soft and moist longer.
(So if your recipe calls for all-purpose flour, can you substitute cake or whole wheat flour and get a moister final product? Maybe. But at least on the King Arthur site, the recipes are written such that you’ll get the best results by using the flour called for.)
4) Butter was used in place of vegetable oil
If you can’t resist using butter, try substituting it for half the vegetable oil (by volume), and increasing the amount of butter you’re substituting by 25%. Example: If your recipe calls for 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) vegetable oil, use 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) vegetable oil and 4 tablespoons + 1 tablespoon butter. Melt the butter before stirring it into the cake batter.
Want to know more about balancing butter and oil to get the best attributes of both in your cakes? See The key to making a cake that tastes straight from the box.
Baking your cake in a pan larger than what the recipe calls for can easily result in overbaking — i.e., dry cake.
5) You chose an alternate pan
What if your recipe calls for a 7” x 11” pan, and all you have is a 9” x 13” — close enough, right? Nope. The thinner the layer of batter the more quickly it’ll bake, and the faster the cake will dry out. Match whatever pan you have as closely as possible to what the recipe calls for, volume-wise. For help, see The essential alternative baking pan sizes.
Choose an oven thermometer with big, clear numbers so you can read it through the oven window; opening the door to read the thermometer will drop your oven’s temperature as much as 25°.
6) The oven was too hot — or not hot enough
You choose your oven temperature, hit preheat, and 20 minutes later you’re sliding your cake onto the middle rack. But hold on: did you check your oven’s temperature with an independent oven thermometer?
Ovens are notorious for their inaccuracy: 10 minutes after you turn it on, the oven signals it’s 350°F when your hanging thermometer inside reads 225°F. Likewise, an oven that’s on for a while can start to creep up, the 350°F gradually becoming 375°F or even 400°F.
Baking a cake in a too-hot oven for the recommended time will dry it out. And baking a cake in a not-hot-enough oven will dry the crust before the center is fully baked. For best results, check the oven temperature before loading your cake, then monitor it every 10 minutes or so throughout the bake, making adjustments as needed.
The top layer of this hot milk cake was in the oven just 5 minutes longer than the bottom layer — yet look what a difference in browning. You can guess which layer was drier.
7) The cake was left in the oven just a bit too long
If your recipe says to bake the cake for 25 to 30 minutes, start checking it at around 20 minutes. (For what to look for, see How to tell when cake is done.) Much better to tuck your not-quite-done cake back in for 5 more minutes than to suddenly remember to look at it 10 minutes after you ignored the timer going off. Even a couple of minutes can spell the difference between a cake that’s perfectly baked and one that’s disappointingly dry.
8) The cake was stored in the fridge
Warning! Warning! Do NOT store cake in the refrigerator long-term unless it includes a topping or filling that needs to be refrigerated, e.g., whipped cream, custard, and their ilk. Your perfectly moist cake, no matter how well wrapped, will start to dry out after a day in the fridge.
You need to chill the cake for its filling to set? No problem. The recipe says to refrigerate the layers for 30 minutes to make them easier to frost? Fine; simply apply a crumb coat and your covered cake will remain soft for as long as 12 hours or so. But putting a perfectly good lemon cake brushed with syrup into the fridge for “safekeeping” and leaving it there for several days (or longer) is the road to ruination.
Likewise, if your cake does have to be refrigerated for a few hours (or even overnight), be sure to let it warm at room temperature for a bit before serving. Any solid fats used in the cake (e.g., butter, in either the cake itself or the frosting) re-solidify when cold, making its mouthfeel (you guessed it) dry.
A generous application of Simple Syrup helps bring dry cake back to life.
Rescuing a dry cake
If despite your best efforts your cake turns out dry, bring it back with some simple syrup, either plain or flavored. Brushing 3 to 4 tablespoons syrup onto each layer of cake before frosting will help disguise any dryness-inducing errors you made along the way!
Does your idea of the perfect cake come right out of a box? See how to give homemade cakes that signature moist boxed-mix texture: The key to making a cake that tastes straight from the box.
Cover photo and food styling (Back-to-Basics Yellow Cake) by Liz Neily.
What About the Negatives?
Okay, we agree that it cannot be all positives. Like anything in the kitchen, an oven with convection is better for recipes, while it may not be the best choice for all recipes. With any recipes that require rising, such as cakes, bread or other baked goods, you may have strange results with a convection oven.
The convection oven could accidentally cook the outside of the dish before the dough is through rising, which can cause strange textures and lopsided batters (no one likes a bumpy cake!).
We definitely recommend using a conventional oven for any recipes that require rising, as you do not want to cook the outside before the inside is finished leavening. The convection can also dry out the inside of these recipes, such as bread, cake, soufflé, flan, or other baked goods so you want to steer clear of that setting if you want your final product to be nice and moist.
Overall, the convection oven setting is a great choice if you want a crisp, quick, product, but if you want your dish to maintain moisture or rise before it is finished baking, then stick with the conventional oven.
How to Make a Cake More Moist
With each of these must-have cake tips, you’ll never serve another dry cake. Moist chocolate cake recipes, red velvet cakes, pound cakes—you name it—you now know how to make all of them stay tender and moist through the whole baking process.
Humidity Affects Ingredients’ Performance
On muggy or rainy days, when humidity is extremely high (think 70 percent or more), your dry baking ingredients like flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and baking soda actually soak up moisture from the surrounding air. If you’ve ever seen your flour clumped or “caked” together, this is the reason why. And this tiny amount of extra moisture is enough to alter the quality of your cookies, cakes, candies, and breads in not-so-good ways.
But before you throw in the kitchen towel, try these easy tips to weatherproof your baked goods on the most humid of days.
Lessen the Recipe’s Liquid
To help counterbalance the additional moisture your dry ingredients soak up from the air, try reducing the amount of liquid in the recipe by about one-quarter. (For example, if your cake recipe calls for 1 cup of milk, reduce it to ¾ cup. Reserve the other ¼ cup.) If your cake batter looks too dry once all the ingredients are mixed together, add a splash of milk from the amount you set aside. Do this one tablespoon at a time until your batter softens to the desired consistency.
Store Flour and Sugar in the Refrigerator or Freezer
If flour and sugar are stored in the refrigerator or freezer rather than your pantry, humidity can’t get to either one as easily. As an added benefit, keeping these ingredients cool also helps keep them fresher longer, as well as bug-free. Just remember to always return your flour and sugar to room temperature before mixing! If you don’t, your breads and cakes won’t rise.
Increase Baking Time
Have you ever tested for doneness after the shortest baking time, only to find your baked goods are still a tad underdone? The extra water in your ingredients is likely to blame. To correct this, leave your goods in the oven to bake for an additional 3-5 minutes (which allows extra time for the liquid to cook off). To avoid overbaking, continue testing for doneness every couple of minutes.
Run a Fan or the A/C
To help lower humidity levels in your kitchen on these dog days of summer, first, close all kitchen windows. Having them open only invites humid air indoors. Next, run a ceiling fan, dehumidifier, or your home’s air conditioning system for at least an hour before you start baking. Cooler air isn’t able to hold as much moisture as warm air, so doing this helps push any extra moisture out of the room.
Check our Best Days To Bake for even better results in the kitchen!
Store Baked Goods in an Airtight Container, Or in the Fridge
Even after baking, there’s still a chance humidity could ruin your fresh-baked goods. When left out at room temperature, they can absorb moisture, which can turn your crispy ginger snaps into sticky, soft, or stale inedibles that you’ll end up tossing in the trash. To avoid this, be sure to cover or store cookies, cupcakes, and cakes in an airtight container or in the refrigerator. A spot next to the flour will do nicely!
Got any other “bad weather” baking tips and tricks? We’d love to hear them!
About the author
Tiffany Means is a freelance writer and a degreed meteorologist. She specializes in weather forecasting and enjoys making the subject of weather (and the science behind it) more relatable. She currently resides in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina.
How to Make a Cake Moist
What makes a cake moist? Precision, for one. Baking requires using exactly the ingredients called for. For example, some cakes use milk, buttermilk (or an acceptable substitute), or sour cream for liquid. These ingredients are not interchangeable. The same goes for oil, butter, or shortening; use exactly what’s called for. When butter is listed be sure to use real butter and not a substitute; substitutes contain water, which will not give the same tender crumb as the fat from the butter.
Buy It: OXO Angled Liquid Measuring Cup, 2-cup ($11, Target)
- Preheat your oven at least 10 minutes, and use an oven thermometer ($7, Target) to make sure that the oven reaches the proper temperature.
- If you’re using dark cake pans, reduce the oven temperature called for in your recipe by 25°F.
- Start checking cake doneness after the recipe’s stated minimum baking time.
What Does This Mean for My Cooking?
Okay, so now that you are back from checking your oven, let us talk about what this difference in airflow can mean for your cooking processes. A convection oven can be a part of a gas or electric oven, so you can use convection and still get the benefits of cooking with gas over electric or vice versa if you prefer one type of oven for your baking.
A convection oven circulates the oven heat throughout the entire oven space, which means that you will get a more even cook or bake on your dish than you would with a conventional oven and its stagnant heat source. The food can typically cook faster because the heat stays more consistent, and there are no cold or hot air pockets like there can be in a conventional oven.
You also will not have to deal with the oven heat rising and cooking your food unevenly—typically this shows up as food that is more cooked on the top and less cooked on the bottom. This can be beneficial for recipes where you want to cook your food more evenly, like meats and fish.
The exhaust portion of the convection oven features will also help pull moisture out of the oven, which can leave your food more crisp and fresh, which is perfect for veggies or baked chips! So the benefits of convection ovens are numerous—faster cooking, crispier end product, and more even cooking.
It turns out that are actually more energy efficient than most conventional ovens. This is not to say that the actual oven uses any more or less energy when on the . It really just means that because the convection setting causes the food to be ready more quickly, this setting will require less energy than the normal setting.
The oven with convection does not need to heat up as much either, so the oven preheating does not require as much energy either. If you are interested in cutting down on your environmental footprint (and energy costs), then convection is a great way to go.
Many convection ovens have different settings within the convection feature. The Convection Bake setting will have a lower fan speed, which is good for longer, drier recipes, whereas the Convection Roast setting has a higher fan speed, and is perfect for crisping the outsides of meat or vegetables.
You will typically just use whatever setting the recipe calls for, but if you are experimenting, you can use the low-speed Bake for recipes that are lower temperatures for longer, and use the high speed Roast setting for recipes that call for temperatures in the high 300s and 400s.
You can always play around with different settings to find which one is your favorite!
How to Make a Box Cake Moist
If this all sounds great, and you would like to try out cooking with your newly discovered convection settings, then we can help! You would probably think that you could just pop your dish into the oven on the same settings, flip the convection switch, and get that turkey roasted in half the
Unfortunately, this is not the case. Because the oven cooks more consistently and more quickly, you need to make some adjustments from your normal settings if you are cooking with convection. You’ll also have to base it on the different cooking times between a roast vs bake
Lower the temperate by 25 degrees
First, you will definitely want to lower the oven temperature. Many chefs recommend lowering your temperature around 25 degrees from your conventional settings. Cooking is significantly more efficient with convection, so you do not need to raise the oven temperature as much.
Check the food frequently
You also should check in on your dish more often toward the end of cooking. Chances are you will not need to leave it in the oven quite as long, so pay special attention to it to ensure it does not burn.
We always recommend checking on your dish via the oven light and not by opening the door, which is especially true with convection as this method relies so heavily on the circulation of air inside the oven. If you open the door, the air will escape, which will disrupt the convection process.
Don’t crowd the oven
When using the convection setting, you will want to make sure you are not putting too many dishes inside the oven. It may be tempting to crowd everything in at once, but trust us—you will be rewarded for your patience.
relies on air circulation, so it will cook much more evenly if there is not much else in the oven. The bonus here is that it will cook more quickly, so you will have time to bake multiple dishes separately instead of shoving them into the oven all at once.
Use dishes and pans with low sides
In the same vein, dishes and pans with lower sides will help with the air flow as well and allow your food more breathing (I mean, cooking) room. Think cookie sheets instead of casserole dishes, if your particular dish allows. If you make these slight adjustments to your cooking routine, then you will find that convection cooking is fun and delicious.
They Are Mostly the Same
As far as the actual physical oven itself, it may surprise you to learn that a conventional oven and a convection oven are almost the same. As a matter of fact, convection ovens are almost exactly the same as regular ovens, just with an extra feature. A convection oven contains an additional fan and exhaust system that blows the through the entire space evenly while your food is cooking.
Whereas a normal oven has one source of heat (these are usually in the bottom of the oven), a convection oven has this one source as well usually, but also has the option to use convection heating, which turns the system on and fills the entire oven with the heat. However, you can use this type of oven normally to cook food without ever even turning on the convection setting, so there is a chance you may have a convection oven and not even realize it (if you want to go check right now, we’ll wait).