For hundreds of years, roasting meat required the use of radiant heat. Slow cooking an animal took time, and generally a lot of manpower. The preferred method of roasting an animal was over an open fire with the animal placed on a spit.
The spit was then turned, by hand to ensure even cooking of the meat. This method was the early version of rotisserie cooking.
Today, we use our ovens to roast foods. This method uses a dry heat, which can be still or use convection methods. And to be fair, sometimes the results from dry heat cooking aren’t the best.
Rotisserie cooking is still a great way to create a perfectly cooked piece of meat that is crisp on the outside, and juicy on the inside. Rotisserie cooking uses the fat from the meat to naturally baste the meat, resulting in a flavorful and moist result.
The modern rotisserie can be an insert to your regular oven, or grill. Or, if you really want to go big, you can invest in a rotisserie oven. The principals with any of these options are the same as with the traditional rotisserie cooking.
Rotisserie Vs Standard Ovens Differences to Consider
When it comes to selecting a rotisserie oven or an oven insert you will need to consider the size of the oven. There are four types of rotisserie ovens; small, standard, vertical and commercial. Each has pros and cons, but if you are cooking at home, you’ll want to consider the quantity you plan on cooking before you make a decision.
If you pick a rotisserie oven that is too small, you’ll feel disappointed that you can’t cook what you want. On the other hand, a rotisserie oven that is too large for your needs is just a waste of space and energy.
Standard ovens come in relatively standard sizes. There isn’t much variability to consider. Of course there are options like double ovens or ovens with warming compartments, that are a bit larger in size, but in reality, you won’t find a huge amount of variability in standard oven size.
Again, we come back to the commentary that before you buy a rotisserie oven for your outdoor kitchen, you need to know what you’re planning on cooking, and how many people you’ll regularly be feeding. If you are really just cooking for a couple of people, but want the benefits of a rotisserie oven, consider a smaller sized oven that will hold a chicken or small turkey.
You could even consider a portable option. If you want to cook a full on meal for a crowd, consider a larger capacity rotisserie oven.
Standard ovens have some variability in capacity, with a standard sized footprint. If you have a larger family, do consider an oven with a greater capacity. Or consider a double oven with standard sized capacity. This will allow you to cook multiple items, at different temperatures, at the same time.
In our opinion, if you are looking for an option that is going to give you the most versatility, you probably want to invest in a standard oven that has a variety of settings and inserts.
Standard ovens today, come with convection settings, toaster settings, and even dehydrating settings. Standard ovens are also great for cooking things besides meat; you know, baked potatoes, roasted veggies, and delicious desserts.
Combination style standard ovens can do far more than just bake a cake or roast a turkey. So, when it comes to versatility and providing more cooking options a standard oven is a great pick.
The downfall with rotisserie ovens is that they really don’t give you the versatility that a standard oven does. Yes, you can remove the spit and use the oven for basic roasting, but most rotisserie ovens really don’t have the option for toasting, convection cooking or dehydrating.
Now, do keep in mind that if you really love how rotisserie cooking makes your favorite cuts of meat taste, a rotisserie oven, while not terribly versatile, may be a great investment for your outdoor kitchen.
Do your research when you are selecting a rotisserie oven. Here’s the thing, there is a lot of variability in the temperature range that rotisserie ovens offer. You’ll need to be mindful of the temperature ranges and the preset options that the rotisserie oven comes with.
If you are new to rotisserie cooking, you will certainly want to select an oven that has both manual temperature controls, and preset options for a variety of foods. This will allow you to learn how to cook your favorites, as you are learning, without ending up with food that is over cooked or not cooked well enough.
Standard ovens really have a standard temperature range. There’s not a window of options. Standard ovens heat from 200 degrees F to around 500 degrees F. And since we’re all familiar with cooking in a standard oven, there isn’t much guesswork about the correct temperature necessary to cook foods in a standard oven. We did find that some standard ovens have preset options, but most do not.
Depending on how you look at it, taking care of your rotisserie oven can either be simple, or a pain. Most rotisserie ovens need to be well cleaned between each use. Because you will be dealing with dripped fat and grease, keeping your rotisserie oven clean is essential to avoiding bad tastes imparted by burning grease.
We found that most rotisserie ovens have removable spits, grease trays and roasting racks, that can be washed with soap and water by hand or in some cases in the dishwasher. If you love your rotisserie oven, this extra effort may be OK, but if you’re not a fan of washing dishes, this might seem like too much work.
Standard ovens are nice because they almost always have a self-clean option. If your standard oven gets a little gross, just hit the self-clean button, and your oven is clean after a few hours of strange smells.
When you’re considering your outdoor kitchen, a standard oven with a self-clean function doesn’t have the same impact that a self-cleaning oven in your house does.
Let’s consider price versus use when it comes to value of rotisserie ovens compared to standard ovens. And for many people, this is really the defining consideration when it comes to decision making.
Rotisserie ovens range in price from around $50 for a small, portable option to a few hundred dollars for a larger built-in option. If you aren’t going to use your rotisserie oven a ton, you may find that the best value is to buy a small, countertop sized option, or to skip it all together.
Keep in mind that most rotisserie ovens, only function as a rotisserie oven, so versatility is low no matter how much you spend.
Standard ovens on the other hand, have a much higher cost. Even basic ovens will set you back $300, and you can spend a couple of thousand dollars on high end standard ovens.
Do keep in mind that your standard oven does much more than cook meat on a spit. So if you are looking for an option that does more, for the price, a standard oven is your pick.
A rotisserie oven is a fun option to have in your outdoor kitchen. You’ll never have the same result cooking meat in a standard oven as you do with a rotisserie oven. If you are willing to make the extra investment, a rotisserie oven is a great addition to your outdoor kitchen.
However, if you want an oven that gives you more versatility for your money, our pick is a standard oven. But, if you have the cash, and are willing to make the investment, do consider both for your outdoor kitchen, for amazing versatility, and meals that will wow your family and friends.