But that doesn’t mean you can’t cut down on energy while baking that casserole or platter of cookies! Here are 10 tips to help you maximize your oven’s energy-efficiency, as well as cut your cooking costs:
1.) Multitask: Your oven is fairly spacious and have multiple racks, so save energy by using it to cook multiple dishes (or a dish and some sides) all at once.
2.) Never-mind The Temperature: Aside from a few particular baked goods, temperature can be fairly negotiable, so instead of waiting for the oven to fully pre-heat, you can use that time to begin warming up some dishes to get a head start on baking.
3.) No Peeking: Resist the urge to open the oven door while baking, as you’ll lose a fair amount of heat (approximately 25 degrees). Instead, stick to your timer, the oven light, and your nose to see if the dish is done!
4.) Rack It Up: Don’t forget you can always move your oven racks around and arrange food accordingly. Tips: The top rack is meant for high-temperature and quick cooking. The middle rack is best for moderate temperature cooking. Use your bottom rack for slow cooking and low temperatures.
5.) Use The Convection: Did you know you can save 20% of your oven-related energy costs by using a convection oven? A convention unit utilizes a fan to force hot air around the oven, which means shorter cooking times and lower temperatures.
6.) Clean It Up: Keeping your oven tidy will direct the heat at your food and not the burnt stuff caked to the racks. Keeping it clean also ensures that it’s easier to clean each time, saving your own energy and the cost of cleaning products.
7.) Use Efficient Dishes: Glass and ceramic hold heat much better than metal, so you can turn down the temperature around 25 degrees and the food will cook just as quickly.
8.) Scrap The Foil: Foil stops air from flowing freely in the oven, which actually makes your oven less efficient.
9.) Turn It Off Early: Even after you turn your oven off, heat still trapped in the unit will continue to bake your food for a little while. Consider turning off the oven and using the residual heat to finish off your meal.
10.) Stagger Pans: Using multiple pans? Staggering them on the racks can maximize the air flow! The more air flow you have, the quicker your food will bake.