Informational Articles

Guide to Knowing Your Oven

Getting to know your oven is an essential first step in being a successful Bold Baker — so here's a Guide to Knowing Your Oven

Hi Bold Bakers!

This is Patricia, Gemma’s Mum. I have had my fair share of ovens over the years, from gas to electric, to even an AGA. What have I learned over 50-plus-years of cooking? Ovens vary, that is a fact. Over time the thermostat, which controls the heat of your oven, will go off, and not be the same as my oven, or your friend’s oven, or the last oven you used. This means that you need to pay attention to your baking, learn how to monitor it for doneness, and never just abandon it to its own devices! So, here is a Guide to Knowing Your Oven.

Monitoring a bake means checking it through the baking time indicated in the recipe. It means not opening the oven door more than strictly necessary. This action will change the temperature in the oven cavity and will affect the results. A fallen cake can indicate that the oven temperature has dropped before the bake is set up. 

A rule of thumb is to check the bake about ¾ way through the time indicated in the recipe. Just take a peep through the glass door and only take the bake from the oven if it looks and smells done. A little touch to the top of the bake will tell a lot — if it feels firm to the touch it is most likely done. Then you can take it from the oven and test it with a skewer, or toothpick.  When there is no raw dough attached you can be sure it is right. As you become more experienced you will just know at a glance. That lovely freshly baked smell too indicates that it is baked. 

If your oven seems way off, and your bakes are failing, you can buy a simple thermostat which will give you an accurate reading of the temperature. 

An OTG, Oven Toaster Grill operates in a different way to a large cavity oven. The instruction books for these ovens can be a big help, as will the manufacturer’s websites. 

The chart below should be accurate enough for all your baking.  Temperature can vary between different types and sizes of ovens, in addition to your location, altitude – which brings its own challenges – ambient temperature, humidity and the age of your appliance, etc.

A downloadable guide to knowing your oven.

I hope you find this Guide to Knowing Your Oven useful in your baking!

Best,

Pat.

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Binu
Member
Binu
1 month ago

Hi, this is really useful! Thanks a lot Patricia. I bake with my OTG. Someday will get a huge oven. 👍.
Would love to see you baking some traditional recipes. Made the Irish bread pudding yesterday, was yummy!!😋

Aishwarya Vijayakumar
Guest
Aishwarya Vijayakumar
5 days ago

Hello,
This article is so useful. Could you kindly elaborate on the different OTG settings? I am new to baking and would like to know which setting I can use to bake different goods. Below are the functions on my oven:
1) Only bottom heating
2) Only bottom heating with fan
3) Top and bottom heating with fan
4) Top heating + fan + grill
5) Top and bottom heating + fan + grill
Cheers!

Casilda
Guest
Casilda
29 days ago

Hi this is quite useful. I was surprised to see Gas Mark 10 in the chart as my oven has max 8. Thanks for sharing expertise knowledge. I am from Sri Lanka.

Arthur Hovey
Guest
Arthur Hovey
1 month ago

Many thanks, Patricia, with every good wish!

HAWNBAKER
Member
HAWNBAKER
1 month ago

Thank you Patricia for this tutorial! Very informative. I use an OTC too and my girls are impressed how I can bake in it!

MARTHA BLOCKER
Guest
1 month ago

MM y Oven want out on me so had to buy a Oven Roaster that i Love be cause i can use it the same as a oven and saves on my Electric Bill 77 percent so the recipes i follow i can use on your site with no problem. Better tan a oven. All so great for cooking any kind of roast and my Prime Rib less than 3 hours depending on size.

Member
Anwar Ahmed
1 month ago

VERY GOOD. THANKS FOR YOUR EFFORTS.

AZJane
Member
AZJane
1 month ago

Thank you for the good advice. We rent our house.
I am “stuck” with an old electric oven. Solid door, no window, and it is quirky. Being at 3500 feet above sea level in a dry atmosphere, I’m still mistrustful of it.

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Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I want to help you bake with confidence anytime, anywhere! No matter your skills, I have you covered. Sign up for a FREE profile and join millions of other Bold Bakers in the community for new dessert recipes, baking techniques, and more every week!

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