Which electric roasting pan is best?

Roasting pans were once used only around the holiday season, when families got together for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners. Today, roasting pans are used for more things and have come out of the oven and onto the countertop.

Electric roasting pans cook meats, vegetables, stews and soups while using less electricity than a conventional oven. If you need a 22-quart roaster big enough to roast a 26-pound bird, take a look at the Oster Roaster Oven With Self-Basting Lid.

What to know before you buy an electric roasting pan

Roaster ovens are another name for electric roasting pans. They are countertop cooking devices with electric heating elements and large, deep removable pans with lids. The heating elements are not only under the pan, as with a regular stove, but around the front, back and sides, too. This makes for even heating of all the meat, vegetables and liquids inside. 

How big is it?

An electric roasting pan’s size is determined by how much food you want to roast and how much space you have on your counter.

  • Capacity: The amount of food an electric roasting pan holds is typically measured in quarts. Roasting pans may be as small as 6 quarts or as large as 22.
  • Exterior dimensions: Electric roasting pans free up space inside your oven for all the other things you want to cook for big dinners. At the same time, they take up space on a counter or roll-about kitchen cart. Smaller roasters have footprints of about 15 by 15 inches while the largest are as big as 18 by 25 inches.

Power

The more power you have, the bigger the bird or cut you can roast. Wattages range from 750 watts on smaller roasting pans to over 1,400 watts on infrared roasters. 

What is it made of?

  • Stainless steel is durable, expensive and easier to clean.
  • Porcelain is also easy to clean, but can chip if mishandled or abused.

What to look for in a quality electric roasting pan

Electric roasting pan features

  • Handles: The best handles are large, easy to grasp and well-insulated. 
  • Controls: Choose roasting ovens with controls that are easy to read and use. Choose from analog dials or digital keypads for more accurate temperature settings.
  • Lids: Domed lids give you room for larger cuts of meat and fowl. Special lids that baste automatically make sure your meats stay moist without you needing to constantly baste them.
  • Removable racks: Racks that come with your electric roasting pan always make the best use of the space inside. You also know they aren’t likely to scratch your pan’s lining.

Temperature range

The more you can vary the temperature, the more versatile your electric roasting pan. Look for lower temperatures of less than 150 degrees so you can do more slow simmering of vegetables, soups and stews. Choose electric roasting pans with temperatures of at least 450 degrees for roasting large cuts of turkey, ham, corned beef and brisket. 

Other uses

Electric roasting pans can be used as slow cookers or buffet servers.

How much you can expect to spend on an electric roasting pan

Prices vary by the roaster’s capacity, maximum power level and included features. Most cost $80-$180. 

Electric roasting pan FAQ

Aren’t electric roasting pans just another name for slow cookers?

A. No. The biggest difference is that most slow cookers have only a few preset temperature levels, and electric roasting pans let you choose from a wide range of cooking temperatures.

Is it easy to clean the inside of an electric roaster?

A. It is if you choose one with a removable inner liner. Cleanup is even easier if you use foil liners made to fit roasters from 16 to 22 quarts. 

Why do electric roasting pans come with a wire rack?

A. When the meat is roasted on a rack, it sits above the fat drippings as it cooks, meaning your turkey will have less fat and be healthier, too.

What’s the best electric roasting pan to buy?

Top electric roasting pan

Oster Roaster Oven with Self-Basting Lid

Oster Roaster Oven with Self-Basting Lid

What you need to know: This 22-quart oven holds birds weighing up to 26 pounds.

What you’ll love: The self-basting lid constantly circulates moisture to keep the contents moist without you having to open the lid and do it by hand. This roaster is one of the largest available, measuring 23 by 16 by 11 inches. The temperature ranges from 150 to 450 degrees and has a keep-warm function, too. The inner roasting pan is enamel on steel and is removable.

What you should consider: This pan doesn’t have enough features for some reviewers.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top electric roasting pan for the money

Nesco Porcelain Enamel Roaster Oven

Nesco Porcelain Enamel Roaster Oven

What you need to know: This 6-quart roasting pan has 750 watts of heating power.

What you’ll love: There are six temperature settings from 200 to 450 degrees. The stay-cool side handles make handling this 8-pound oven easy. It comes in six colors and finishes, and the power cord is detachable.

What you should consider: Some customers said the analog control made it difficult to select the right temperature.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Nesco Digital Infrared Upright Turkey Roaster

Nesco Digital Infrared Upright Turkey Roaster

What you need to know: Use this 19-pound stainless steel roaster with 1,420 watts of infrared power to cook an 18-pound turkey in only two hours.

What you’ll love: It uses a center heating element to cook from the inside out while the outer elements rotate heat around the bird. Set the time on the digital clock and the circle of heat takes care of the rest. This cooker detaches from the base for easy handling and has a drip tray for easy cleaning. 

What you should consider: It doesn’t have an auto-baste lid.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

 

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David Van Allan writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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