What Is A Cooker?
Firstly, a cooker is a freestanding cooking chamber and a hob all in one. Unlike an oven, which is just a single cooking cavity built-in to your kitchen, you don’t require a separate hob.
As it is freestanding, it doesn’t need to be built-in to your kitchen, so you are pretty flexible in terms of positioning.
Electric vs Gas Cookers
Should you choose an electric cooker or gas cooker? That is the most important question before you start looking too much into designs, prices and functions. If you want to make the right decision then be sure to read our guide as we delve into the pros and cons of both.
Electric cookers are perhaps the most common fuel type available. They have both an electric hob and electric cooking chamber(s).
There’s some variations between the type of hobs you can get with electric cookers – solid plate tops are the cheapest, but ceramic hobs and induction top cookers are also available.
People prefer electric cookers to gas cookers because they are easier to use, install and more reliable. There is no pilot light or flame, and most will either be hard wired or plugged in to the mains electricity supply without the need for gas.
Many also argue that electric gives more consistent results and even heat, cooking food faster. It can warm the chamber easier than gas does, and electric grills are much hotter and easier to control.
- Distributes heat more evenly
- Electric grilling is more effective
- Easier to clean vs. gas
- Often provide more functions
- Often more budget-friendly to buy
- You will use less electricity than gas, but it is more expensive so will cost more to run
- Often more expensive to buy
- There is a delay heating up and cooling down your hob
Gas cookers are less popular and less widely available, but you may be a fan of gas cooking if you hate to wait for cookers to heat up or if you are more used to using a gas hob. They have both a gas hob and a gas chamber(s).
They are a bit trickier to install. Unless you know what you’re doing, always get a professional to help, and they’re easier to fit into an existing mains gas space.
If you aren’t used to them, they can be hard to get the hang of. From lighting them to ensuring a consistent power and getting the correct heat, they aren’t quite as clear as electric.
- Instant heat for hob, grill and oven
- The hob cools down quickly once turned off
- Cheaper to run vs. electric
- Often have flexible hob settings which is good for lower heats
- Not as consistent or even as electric
- Dealing with flames and gas – may not feel comfortable in your home
- Trickier to clean
- There will be installation costs involved
Dual Fuel Cookers
Although less common, dual fuel cookers do exist and provide you with both gas and electric attributes. Despite the fact there isn’t as much choice, they are actually by far the most popular pick for those who have both an electric and gas supply to their kitchen.
If you love the heat control of a gas hob but favour the uniform cooking and efficiency of an electric oven, then this may be the much superior choice.
- ‘Best of both worlds’
- Often have more functions than gas cookers
- Often more expensive than their variants
- Takes professional installation for both gas and electric
Single Or Double Cooker?
With cookers, you can choose from a single cavity or two (a double cooker).
With the latter, the top compartment is often the grill, in its own dedicated chamber and able to be used separately to the oven. This would benefit anybody who thinks the ability to use them both at the same time is good, or anyone who frequently uses the grill on its own and doesn’t want to heat the entire cooker in the process.
Single cavity cookers are rarer but still around. Their main benefit is that they are usually have a bit more capacity as the total size isn’t split, but many users also like them as you don’t have to bend down quite as much to reach the door.