Is a traditional or convection oven best in an RV?

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By Chuck Woodbury
EDITOR

Gail and I have a combination microwave/convection oven in our motorhome. Our Winnebago Adventurer also came with a traditional oven. We did some research and decided we could do just fine with the microwave/convection arrangement. So we removed the traditional oven and installed three drawers.


It was a wise move. Gail does most of the cooking and is very happy using the convection oven. We still use the microwave for heating things up and some cooking. I am no expert on this sort of thing, but wanted to bring up the topic after reading the following question at our Facebook Group, RV Advice:

“I need to know which is better in a class A motorhome, an oven or a convection oven? We have an oven and a very small microwave, but are concerned that an oven may heat up the rig too much. We can refigure to put in a convection microwave but not really sure it’s worth the $$.”

I can personally answer the question about a traditional oven heating up the rig too much: That has never been an issue with me with my current motorhome or ones before. On hot days, we’d simply not use the traditional oven. On cold days, it helped heat the coach.

What do you think? Would you please leave a comment?

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Einar

We have a traditional oven in our camper and of course it is a small one. I just needed to figure out how to use it without burning meals in it.
Luckily I use to be a chef for many years and solved it quickly. We keep a pizza stone in the bottom to spread the heat properly with no hot spots.
Yes a convection oven would be nice but having room for one in our tight space.

rvgrandma

It all depends on preferences and if the convection oven works. Mine does not work well. I have used commercial convection ovens so know how to cook with them, but the one in my MH, which is 19 years old, has never worked right. Not to mention all the heat it puts out. I prefer my regular oven. I use it at least 3 times a week even in hot weather. When it is hot out I turn the stove fan on which sucks much of the heat out.

Edward

We have a Fleetwood Pace Arrow with both types in it. The wife loves the convection style and here in Fla, the day time temps make the use of the gas oven problematic due to the heating up of the coach. Cookies to roast, they all come out fine.

Dennis

We have a Newmar with a microwave/convection oven and love the extra drawers in place of a traditional oven. Really like the convection oven but don’t use it much in hot weather due to the heat it generates inside the coach which the AC units cant overcome in 90 + sunshine . If motorhome manufactuers would vent the units to the outside instead of inside the coach it would solve a lot of the problem

John

Have a GE Advantium 120 and it is fantastic. Be careful some manufacturers have door latches that are not suitable for RV use. The door will fly open unexpectedly and cause damage to the microwave and any item inside the microwave. IE glass plate.

Barbara J Pattison

Not all convection/microwave ovens are created equal. I currently have a Sharp in my Winnebago Journey motorhome and it does a very nice job. I had a different make/model in a Newmar Canyon Star, and it was a piece of junk. A small tray of cookies would be burned on one side of the tray and raw on the other side. Newmar did replace it for me with a different manufacturer model. The only small issue I currently have with the convection / microwave combo is that when I use the convection oven to roast meat, I have to wait until the oven cools before I can microwave the steamable veggies. I usually just stick them in a pan and steam them stove top.

Colin Grant

I have been using convection/microwaves for 30 years and some are really good but it seems most of the smaller ones leave a lot to be desired. My first was a Sharp 1-1/2 to 2 cubic feet it lasted 25 years and the current one is similar in size Panasonic for the last 5 years and both have performed flawlessly. The amount of heat they generate in a small space seems to be a problem for the small sized ones plus they don`t have all the controls of the bigger models. The selection of small sized ones is poor and I have been looking for several years to purchase one for my RV. When you roast with combination cooking (microwave/convection) it is very quick with better results than a regular oven. I plan on putting a circulation fan on the cabinet to keep it cooler if I ever find the right one.

George Newsome

We also have a convection/microwave and drawers where the oven used to be. Works great for us.

To further reduce unwanted heat inside the coach, we cook on an 3 ring induction cook top.

suzanne

We use a Panasonic Infrared Counter-top stove ($120). Heats up immediately, toasts evenly, cooks/heats great, takes little space. Typical toaster ovens always gave us less than stellar results. Don’t like using microwaves for health reasons. Our large convection works ok, but is better used for pan storage.

Carol Lennon

Our first 40 ft, motorhome, I had a micro/conv. We decided to have more storage, since we were full time. I absolutely hated, not having a oven. I cook, a lot and the conv. oven did not meet my standards for proper baking. We have since owned 2 other trailers, and I made sure I had the large oven. Works great. When it’s really hot, I use my Ninja Foodi.

rvgrandma

I have a 2000 MH – the convection part of the microwave does not work well. Before someone says -‘you don’t know how to use them’, I used them in restaurants for years and love them. When we bought our MH the first thing I did was remove the stove top and have an oven/stove top put in. Was fine losing the 2 drawers as the oven is more important. I bake in it probably 2-3 times a week. If it is hot out I either delay baking or turn the fan on to suck the hot air outside. Having the oven on only changes the inside temp a few degrees. When I would use my convection oven it put out as much or more heat – which I have not tried using in over 10 years.

so for me – the oven is important. Plus, inside of it is bigger than the convection oven.

Coralie M

We have had our 2004 Dutch Star for 4 years, and I only use the oven for storage. I got an air fryer oven for Christmas and it will be going with us next summer. It browns and reheats much better than the convection microwave!

Liz

When ordering our 2011 Cameo 32FWS we chose a combination microwave/convection oven and had a cabinet put in place of the gas oven. I do a lot of cooking and I never missed it. Our current rig has both and I have used the gas oven only once. One caution is to make sure the microwave/convection oven in your rig is large enough to be functional.

Gayle

I have both in my fifth wheel. I have used the convential gas oven on occasion such as when I’ve prepared a big holiday meal but I’ve found that 1) it heats up the rig too much, & 2) it’s a royal pain in the patootie (& knees) to light. I’m getting too old to be almost prone on the floor to light it. I use my microwave/convection oven almost daily but it too has issues. 1) Even though I use a cover whenever possible, food still splatters occasionally. It is difficult to clean since I can’t use a commercial oven cleaner nor anything abrasive on it & 2) it doesn’t always cook evenly. They both have their pros & cons.

John R Crawford

We have had both, convection and conventional gas. We never used the gas oven but we use the convection oven all the time.

Katalin H Heymann

I had a microwave/convection oven for almost 10 years when I lived in an apartment. It actually caught fire inside the mechanism while microwaving a potato. A new replacement was 3 times the price of a standard microwave, so I opted for just a microwave since the apartment furnished an oven.

Chuck

We have 2014 Winnebago 27RBDS with a small microwave and gas oven. What I learned several years ago is that you have to put pizza stone in the open, and it will work fine. We use the oven quite a bit with cooking and baking. I think that if people could learn how the oven works they could get much better results.

Katalin H Heymann

My gas oven in my used travel trailer never worked. The knob couldn’t be moved to turn on the gas. I opted for a convection/toaster oven combination and use my oven for storage. I’m not capable of removing the oven and can’t afford someone else to do so. The microwave is up high and difficult for me to remove heavy hot food containers so is used sparingly except in the summer.

Janis Partanen

Have had. A microwave convection oven for the past 18 years. It bakes fine and the. Microwave oven is perfect. Our 5th wheel came with both. Have never felt the need to use the regular oven . It is a great place to store bread and cookies…

Dave Telenko

We have a 2017 Forest River Berkshire QS4 that came with the microwave/convection oven in our motorhome. Well we’ve had it for 2 years & so far my wife hasn’t used it & when we need an oven she says I’m gonna read the directions first, still hasn’t happened. In our 99 Winnebago we had a regular gas oven that was, well less than desirable so to say, but it worked good enough. So I guess i’m gonna learn on how to use it. LOL
Dave