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When Our Place announced its foray into the kitchen appliance space with the release of the Wonder Oven this past June, I was charmed by what appeared to be an Easy-Bake Oven for adults.
While the Wonder Oven reminded me of the classic Hasbro toy I baked tiny sweet treats in as a child, Our Place — makers of the internet-famous Always Pan — asserted that its oven was a fully functional kitchen workhorse.
“A revolutionary 6-in-1 appliance that combines the convenience of an air fryer, the ease of a toaster, the capabilities of an oven, and the luxury of steam-infused baking,” the brand known for its hybrid kitchenware declared. It could reheat leftover pizza, broil salmon, bake cookies and even roast an entire chicken. Lofty claims, I thought.
I was even more dubious after unpacking my own Wonder Oven, finding the appliance to b lightweight (it weighs a little over 11 pounds) and rather toy-like. It had three large round knobs, one main door and was completely monochrome. It was like someone had shrunk my real oven and painted it beige. I was concerned over whether something so cute could cook food thoroughly and without catching on fire.
After three months of using the Wonder Oven on a regular basis (at least 5-6 times a week), my fears of it bursting into flames on my kitchen countertop, like in that horrifying scene from the Brave Little Toaster, never materialized and it turns out the Wonder Oven is a convenient, utilitarian, multifunctional appliance that saves me time and doesn’t look ghastly on my countertop like a bulky air fryer or traditional toaster would.
Over the past three months, I’ve also tested the Wonder Oven’s cooking capabilities. Our Place insists the oven broils, roasts, bakes, air fries and toasts everything. And while I typically use my Wonder Oven for quick reheats or air frying some frozen Trader Joe’s sweet potato fries, I recently decided to test its limits.
- Exterior: 11.6 in. height, 10.6 in. depth, 11.5 in. width
- Interior: 7.6 in. height, 10.3 in. depth, 10 in. width
- 11.6 lbs
- 12 L capacity
- Heat range: 200° – 450°F
- Timer: 0 – 60 minutes
- Includes a wire rack, bake pan, air fryer basket and crumb tray
- Multilevel design, so you can cook multiple meals at once.
- 1-year warranty
How well does the Wonder Oven air fry and reheat leftovers?
If you’re looking for a non-ugly air fryer, the Wonder Oven is one of the few appliances on the market that looks good and has powerful heating capabilities comparable to a standard air fryer. However, if you aren’t overly concerned about the aesthetics of your kitchen appliances and simply want to reheat/air fry food, you could probably save some money and purchase any air fryer currently on sale at Amazon.
However, unique to the Wonder Oven is steam-infused technology. Just pour a small amount of water into the small basin atop the appliance to activate the steam infusion, which can be used on any of the six cooking modes. This will help juice up steak, bring stale pastries back to life and ensure you never have to eat another soggy, chewy slice of leftover pizza again.
Can it bake cookies?
Admittedly, I’ve had issues with baking cookies in the Wonder Oven. Using premade chocolate chip cookie dough twice I’ve ended up with burnt cookies.
Curious if this was a me problem (I am forgetful), an issue with the Wonder Oven or my store-bought dough, I decided to make chocolate chip cookies from scratch, placing half of the dough in my real, adult-sized oven and half in the cutesy, child-sized Wonder Oven.
Unfortunately, my homemade cookies baked in the Wonder Oven still had burnt bottoms. They did, however, cook incredibly quickly, about 10-15 minutes faster than the ones in the convection oven. (Our Place asserts the Wonder Oven preheats in under 2.5 minutes and cooks 30% faster than its traditional counterparts.) But that might have been the issue. The bottoms were already charred before the top of the cookie could finish baking. The chocolate chip cookies baked in my regular oven, on the contrary, were perfect.
How about a roast chicken?
Maybe the boldest claim from Our Place is that its Wonder Oven has the capability of roasting an entire chicken. I was, once again, rather suspicious of whether a whole chicken could even fit inside the small apparatus and if the Wonder Oven could cook it thoroughly and in only thirty minutes.
Our Place has its own Whole Roasted Chicken recipe, but I decided to cook Ina Garten’s Engagement Chicken (because obviously). Following Garten and the instructions on Our Place’s website, I managed to successfully roast a beautiful, delicious bird (see below), much to my surprise. However, because I’m deathly afraid of salmonella, I heeded Ina’s directions and roasted the chicken for about an hour, instead of a mere half hour as Our Place suggested.
Would I roast a whole chicken in the Wonder Oven again? Probably not. It was cumbersome to remove (it was quite heavy and chicken juice was spilling everywhere) and it couldn’t marinate in the onions and lemon as it would in a regular roast pan.
Still, it’s an impressive feat, and if you were cooking a larger meal (say Thanksgiving dinner), the Wonder Oven would be an immense help if you were strapped for oven space. Obviously, you couldn’t roast a turkey in this thing, but you could cook a few sides and ensure they’re served hot along with the main course.
Should you buy a Wonder Oven?
The Wonder Oven might be the most impressive piece of multi-functional kitchen equipment Our Place has produced.
As mentioned above, though, if you don’t mind a more industrial-looking appliance and don’t require one with six different cooking modes, a $90 Hamilton air fryer or $50 Black + Decker toaster oven would likely suffice. However, $195 is a fair price to pay for an appliance with this level of functionality and design.
Overall, if you want a good-looking, easy-to-use appliance that will revolutionize leftovers, roast poultry in a pinch and save you time and stress in the kitchen, the Our Place Wonder Oven is a solid choice.
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