Person cooking on a gas range

What is a Kitchen Range: Types of Ranges

A kitchen range combines a cooktop, often called a stovetop, and an oven into a single appliance that covers all your culinary bases. Ranges let you sear, saute or boil on top and bake, broil or roast inside. They come in gas, electric, dual fuel, freestanding and slide-in models in multiple sizes. Stove parts differ depending on whether it is a gas stove or electric.

If you’re deciding on the best cooking appliances for your kitchen, the first step is simple: choose between a kitchen range or a wall oven plus a separate cooktop. Read on to learn more about different types of kitchen ranges and how they can help enhance the way you create in the kitchen.

A person serving vegetables with tongs

What is The Difference Between a Stove and a Range?  

The term “stove” has had different meanings over time and usually refers to the entire appliance, or “range.” However, some people also associate it with only the top of the appliance, or “cooktop.” “Range” is the term used within the kitchen appliance industry and should help you find what you need when shopping. Learn more about the differences between a stove and a range. 


For a better idea of the elements that make up a range, explore the full selection of KitchenAid® ranges, as well as wall ovens and cooktops.

What is the Difference Between a Range and a Cooktop?

A range combines a stovetop (or cooktop) and oven in one appliance, while a cooktop is a flat surface that integrates into countertops and does not include an oven. With a cooktop, you can simmer, saute, boil and anything else you would do on top of your range, but you’ll need a wall oven for baking, roasting and broiling.

What Are the Different Types of Kitchen Ranges?

Whichever word you use, the right kitchen range can help bring any recipe to life. Explore all the different types of kitchen ranges with this quick breakdown.

Vegetables cooking on a gas cooktop as bread bakes in the oven

1. Gas Kitchen Ranges

Gas ranges use an open flame on the cooktop as well as inside the oven to heat food. Gas heat is known to be highly responsive. Many home cooks prefer gas cooktops because the open flame allows for a really hands-on experience, letting you move quickly between heat levels and cooking techniques. Most models, like the full line of KitchenAid® gas ranges, will feature removable cast-iron grates with an easily wipeable surface underneath.

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A pot and a sauce pan heating on an electric range

2. Electric Kitchen Ranges

Electric ranges use heating elements on the cooktop and inside the oven to cook food. Electric heat inside the oven is produced by consistent element cycling, promoting even cooking for dishes like big batches of cookies or roast chicken. Many cooktops on electric ranges are smooth and flat, making them simple to clean. Some electric kitchen ranges feature elements with two or three rings that you can adjust for different cookware widths, like the entire selection of KitchenAid® electric ranges

 

Another unique type of electric cooktop is an induction cooktop which uses electromagnetism to generate heat directly within your cookware rather than the surface of the cooktop. Generally, this allows you to reach high temperatures and cool down much more quickly than a regular electric cooktop. Learn more about types of cooktops.

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Stainless steel KitchenAid® gas range in a modern kitchen

3. Dual Fuel Ranges

Dual fuel ranges combine a gas stovetop and electric oven, letting you take advantage of both. You may like a dual fuel range if you prefer the hands-on experience and responsive control of a gas cooktop, but also want the even, dry heat of an electric oven. Even heat in the oven helps deliver consistently cooked results while drier heat promotes nice browning and crisping. Dual fuel ranges come in a variety of configurations and sizes. For instance, KitchenAid® dual fuel ranges are available in both slide-in and freestanding models, some with up to six burners.

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Person removing a tray of baked rolls from an electric range

4. Freestanding Ranges

Keep in mind that both freestanding and slide-in ranges are available in gas, electric and dual fuel options, so prioritize your fuel type before deciding on a style.

 

Freestanding ranges feature finished sides, which allows them to be installed standing alone, between cabinets, or at the edge of the counter with one side exposed. Many models also have a backguard where the oven controls are located, which helps protect the wall behind the range from food and grease splatters. Find the flexibility you need with a lineup of gas, electric and dual fuel freestanding ranges from KitchenAid.

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Stainless steel KitchenAid® Slide-In Gas Range

5. Slide-in Ranges

Slide-in ranges slide smoothly between cabinets for a seamless, built-in look. The controls are located up front, making them easy to reach. Plus, since they don’t have a backguard, they are ideal for kitchen island installations or in front of a wall with a decorative backsplash you want to show off. The slide-in style also often comes with other premium features like KitchenAid® slide-in ranges with Even-Heat™ True Convection. Learn more about the differences between slide-in and freestanding ranges.

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Stainless steel KitchenAid® Commercial-Style Gas Range

6. Commercial-style Ranges

Commercial-style ranges are restaurant-inspired ranges. They combine high-end design and premium features to deliver a professional-style cooking experience at home. They’re available in wider widths than standard ranges and typically feature gas cooktops with high-BTU burner options and grill or griddle inserts. Commercial styling includes large front-control knobs, heavy-duty grates and expanded finish options.

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Find the Best Type of Kitchen Range for You

Whether you’re testing out a new recipe, making sauce from scratch, or conquering a five course meal, KitchenAid® ranges are up to any challenge. From slide-in ranges that give a built-in look that blends seamlessly with kitchen cabinets to freestanding ranges that give you flexibility depending on your kitchen layout, you'll find the ideal range to spark your culinary creativity.

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