Countertop Ovens vs. Regular Ovens

A countertop oven is a smaller version of the range ovens or wall ovens found in most American kitchens today. Countertop ovens bring many full-sized oven benefits and capabilities down to a convenient, compact size that fits on your counter. 

This smaller version of a kitchen range oven or wall oven is perfect for extra small kitchens or creating single dishes. Equipping your kitchen with a countertop oven and a full-sized oven can also help you simultaneously prepare larger meals with different cooking requirements. Opt for a convection countertop oven to expand your culinary versatility and bring new cooking techniques like air frying to your kitchen.

Range Ovens vs. Wall Ovens vs. Countertop Ovens: What are the Differences?

Ranges and wall ovens are full-sized appliances ideal for cooking multi-dish meals and are usually permanently installed. A countertop oven is much smaller and can be easily moved around. It's the perfect size for single dish meals or techniques like toasting, thawing and crisping. 

Some countertop ovens offer a range of specialized functions, making them as versatile as their full-sized counterparts. If you want an oven combined with a cooking surface for sauteing, searing and simmering, opt for a kitchen range that includes an integrated cooktop. 

Here's a quick guide displaying the differences between these types of ovens and how they compare to a countertop version. While there are always exceptions, here’s what you can usually expect to find:

 KitchenAid stove, built in wall ovens and countertop oven  KitchenAid stove, built in wall ovens and countertop oven
Standard Size 24, 27 or 30 inches wide 24, 27 or 30 inches wide 17-22 inches wide
Capacity 4-6 cu. ft. 2-5 cu. ft. Fits a 9x13 baking pan*
Installation Freestanding or between cabinets Built into cabinets On countertop, portable
Convection Available Yes Yes Yes
Integrated Cooktop Yes No No

*Select models only, including all KitchenAid® countertop ovens.

2 KitchenAid built-in wall ovens surrounded by gray cupboards 2 KitchenAid built-in wall ovens surrounded by gray cupboards

Countertop Oven vs. Wall Oven

The main differences between a countertop oven and a built-in wall oven are size and installation. A countertop oven stands alone on top of your counter, while wall ovens are usually installed within cabinets with 3-5 cu. ft. of capacity. Double wall ovens have up to twice the overall capacity. Learn more about how to find the right wall oven size for your kitchen. 

KitchenAid gas oven with open flames and pots on the back burners KitchenAid gas oven with open flames and pots on the back burners

Countertop Oven vs. Range Oven

Aside from size and installation, the main difference between these two kitchen appliances is that a countertop oven does not have an integrated cooktop. A kitchen range is built with burners or heating elements on top for searing, sauteing, boiling and other stovetop functions. A countertop oven is just the oven cavity made for cooking, baking, broiling and sometimes air frying and more. You can also learn more about oven parts with our guide to the parts of an oven.

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Open KitchenAid countertop oven with roasted meat and sweet potatoes on rack Open KitchenAid countertop oven with roasted meat and sweet potatoes on rack

Can a Countertop Oven Replace a Regular Oven?

Many countertop ovens come with robust features and settings, letting you do as much as a regular oven—and sometimes more. However, they have less capacity for multiple dishes or large meals. Deciding to replace your full-size oven with a countertop version comes down to what and how much you want to make.

Many countertop ovens include features normally found on regular, full-sized ovens, including:

  • Convection countertop oven models

  • Multiple racks

  • Preset cooking functions

  • Interior lights

  • Non-stick interiors

  • Temperature probes

The KitchenAid® Digital Countertop Oven with Air Fry even goes beyond the capabilities of most full-sized ovens. With the No-Flip Air Fry Basket and 360° Air Fry System it's easy to make everything from french fries to delicate fish.

Most households will still want to have a full-sized oven for the larger capacity it provides. Owning both a countertop oven and a regular oven can give you extra flexibility when creating a variety of meals. When you’re making a single-dish meal like a sheet-pan dinner, a countertop oven lets you skip heating your full-sized oven. This means you’re likely to use less energy and spend less time waiting for it to heat up. If your oven isn’t heating up properly, learn ways to troubleshoot it.

A countertop oven is also perfect for cooking multiple dishes with different cooking requirements at the same time. Roast meats using a convection setting in one oven and bake a delicate souffle in the other.

Is a Countertop Oven Worth It?

Countertop ovens can bring new techniques to your recipes, as well as provide extra oven space for more making. Bake a sourdough loaf in your range oven while roasting a sheet pan dinner or air fried bacon in your countertop oven. If you frequently make smaller batches and single dishes, a countertop oven is the perfect size.

Select KitchenAid® countertop ovens have the ability to bake, roast, convect cook and even air fry all on your countertop. Each model offers enough capacity for a 9x13-inch baking pan to easily accommodate a sheet cake, full one-pan dinner, or up to 2 full size chickens (3.6 lbs each).

Here are a few more benefits you'll love about having a countertop oven:

  • Takes up less space than a full-sized oven

  • Preheats quickly so you can avoid heating the entire oven when preparing smaller meals or cooking for one

  • Great for quickly completing everyday tasks with select models featuring capabilities like toasting, reheating and even air frying on select models

  • Some convection countertop ovens let you add capabilities your current oven may not have like air frying and convection cooking

Woman removing roasted chicken from KitchenAid countertop oven Woman removing roasted chicken from KitchenAid countertop oven

What is a Convection Countertop Oven?

Convection ovens of all sizes feature a fan that circulates hot air throughout the oven cavity to help maintain optimal temperatures. This also helps remove excess moisture from the surface of your food and promotes the browning of meats, caramelized roasted vegetables and flaky baked goods. Using a convection setting can also sometimes help cook your dishes faster. The KitchenAid® Dual Convection Countertop Oven features two fans and allows you to cook a 3 lb chicken up to 20% faster with the Dual Convect Bake setting, compared to the regular Bake setting.

If your kitchen range or wall oven doesn't have convection capabilities, a convection countertop oven can bring this cooking and baking technique to your kitchen without needing to replace your existing appliances. Learn more about convection ovens, or explore countertop ovens from KitchenAid including select models with convection heating technology.

Open countertop oven with two roasted chickens inside Open countertop oven with two roasted chickens inside

Benefits of a Convection Countertop Oven

The benefits of convection baking in a regular oven are often similar to a convection countertop oven, depending on your recipe and a few other factors:

  • Circulating air helps dishes cook evenly

  • Meats get crispy outside while staying juicy inside

  • Promotes evenly browned meats

  • Helps carmelize vegetables 

  • Golden-brown finish and fluffy insides on certain baked goods

  • May cook foods faster, depending on the recipe

Breaded zucchini chips in platters with a creamy dip on the side and a can of soda Breaded zucchini chips in platters with a creamy dip on the side and a can of soda

What Can You Cook in a Countertop Oven?

A countertop baking oven is the perfect kitchen companion, especially for smaller portions or single servings. Countertop convection ovens are also particularly good at baking foods that taste best with a crispy exterior and a fluffy or tender interior – like juicy meats, air fried chicken, baked potatoes, roasted root vegetables and fresh bread. Some countertop ovens also let you dehydrate foods so you can make fruit leather, jerky and other favorites. Try one of these recipes in your countertop oven: 


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Explore KitchenAid® Countertop Ovens

KitchenAid brand offers full-sized oven expertise on your countertop with a lineup of innovative, space-saving countertop ovens. Choose from three models with enough capacity to fit a 9x13 baking pan, perfect for a sheet cake, a full one-pan dinner or up to 2 full size chickens (3.4 lbs each). Discover select convection countertop ovens to get delicious, even results on a range of recipes. Browse the selection to find the right fit for your countertop, including models that let you experiment with new techniques like air frying, dehydration for making jerky and dough proofing. Consider also learning about KitchenAid® smart ovens. Looking for countertop oven accessories or countertop oven replacement parts for your KitchenAid® Countertop Oven? Shop all of our countertop oven accessories.


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