Welcome to our guide to the best all-electric oven and hob combos, or cookers as they are more commonly known.
The electric cooker – and its dual-fuel counterpart – is arguably the most popular type of cooking appliance in the UK and also to some degree in the US. They are generally cheaper to buy than separate ovens and hobs and much easier to install because you don’t need to employ a fitter with carpentry skills to cut holes in the kitchen worktop, build a wooden plinth or fix mountings to a wall.
By definition, a cooker is up to 60cm in diameter, the standardised UK measurement for all kitchen appliances and most kitchen cabinets. Hence, a 60cm cooker will simply slide into position between your cabinets so all you need is a suitable electricity supply directly behind it.
We’ve researched a variety of models and alighted on this quintet of highly praised and variously priced electric cookers that come with both double and single ovens and electric ceramic or induction hobs in one tidy, easy-to-use unit to make your cooking days go with a zing.
What exactly is a cooker?
A cooker is essentially an oven and hob in a single floor-mounted unit that’s designed to stand alone and fit between your kitchen cabinets. They are a completely different style of cooking appliance to a built-in system comprising an oven and hob, and they’re much easier – and cheaper – to install because they can simply be pushed into position between any standardised 60cm gap between your kitchen cabinets and worktop. However, some manufacturers also produce cookers with a smaller width of 50cm. These are a great choice for diminutive kitchens where space is at a premium.
When does a cooker become a range cooker?
This is a bit of a grey area but most experts will agree that the word ‘cooker’ relates to any unit with a maximum width measurement of up to 60cm, the standardised measurement used in kitchen design and hence most domestic appliances. A range cooker is simply a wider version a cooker with a starting width of 90cm. Range cookers are ideal for larger kitchens and big families because they sometimes comprise up to two extra ovens and a much wider hob. You can buy range ovens in a wide variety of sizes, from the aforementioned 90cm all the way up to 110cm and, in some instances, a whopping 150cm.
Best electric cookers 2022: the list
If you’re okay with cooking on a ceramic hob, this sterling black-and-white model from Zanussi is an excellent option. In fact, according to its battalion of happy users, the Zanussi's ceramic hob is extremely efficient despite the need to stir more frequently than one might when using an induction hob.
However, the star of the show here is the main, larger-than-average 73-litre oven which is said to bake and roast supremely well on all shelf levels and with very accurate temperatures, to boot. Moreover, it’s also equipped with an air fry function for all-round crispiness and a PlusSteam facility that is brilliant for baking and warming up pre-packaged ready-to-bake baguettes and the like.
The second 39-litre oven is of the conventional variety but it’s no slouch when it comes to cooking additional ingredients or dessert while the lower cavity deals with the main dish. This oven also serves as a grill and word on the web is that it’s a cracker that cooks evenly across the entire surface of the included grill grate.
For the price, this is one of the most highly regarded cookers on the market right now. It’s spacious, accurate, efficient and, for the sub £700 price, great value for money.
If you want to keep your spend low but not at the expense of performance, the Beko KDC653 is a keenly-priced model that has received a raft of very positive user reviews. It’s available in three colour schemes – white, black and silver – and features a responsive electric ceramic hob and two ovens.
As is the case with most standalone 60cm cookers, only the 69-litre bottom oven is fanned so that’s the one to use for the Sunday roast and any baking sessions. The top 36-litre cavity is of the conventional non-fanned variety and is best used for grilling purposes, at which it excels. One major bonus with the main oven is that it goes up to 240˚C which is a higher temperature than many ovens these days and rather handy for baking off-the-shelf pizzas and anything else that requires higher-than-normal temperatures. You can also clean the lower cavity using the power of steam – simply fill a tray with water, turn it full temperature and any grease will be loosened for easier removal.
Heading to the top, the four-zone ceramic hob’s intuitive digital touch controls are very easy to get a handle on while giving the hob a premium ‘induction’ look. Yes, the touch display will be covered in greasy fingerprints the moment you start using it but then that’s the case with practically every induction hob on the market. All you need to know is that, according to its army of contented users, it heats up quickly for a ceramic model, with one buyer going so far as to say that ‘it's like using a gas hob’.
If you’re in the market for a very decent sub-£350 electric cooker from a reliable budget brand that most users are very happy with, then put this one on the list.
When it comes to cookers – and more specifically range cookers – Rangemaster is one of the most solid brands in the industry. After all, the company invented the original range cooker way back in 1830 and it continues to manufacturer its wares in the original Royal Leamington Spa factory.
This induction-topped model is just about all you need in a cooker and a perfect fit for country- and shaker-style kitchens especially. Available in cream or black – and with a gas hob if required – the Rangemaster Classic is full of retro design flourishes, from the bank of old-style control knobs to the arched baker’s window in the bottom oven. It looks properly classy, in other words.
Rangemaster has an excellent reputation for build quality and reliability so a price of around £850 doesn’t feel excessive for a cooker of this nature – in fact it’s a damn good deal in our opinion. The main fanned cavity has a gross capacity of 69 litres and the top oven-cum-grill a respectable 35 litres, so there’s loads of space on board for every conceivable dish, including the Christmas turkey. Both ovens also have fat-absorbing catalytic linings which makes the oven much easier to clean.
The Classic is equipped with a four-zone induction hob that uses physical knobs to control each zone and a touch control timer on the induction surface. We can’t stress enough the improved convenience and efficiency that physical controls provide. Where the majority of induction hobs opt for full touch controls that never respond properly if your finger tips are too dry, the knobs on this model make temperature section an absolute breeze.
If you can stretch your budget, you won’t be disappointed with this aesthetically pleasing model. It’s quick to reach temperature and, judging by the raft of exceedingly positive reviews, it delivers the goods time and again.
If you’re after a slightly larger-than-normal oven cavity, this model from the house of AEG might just fit the bill. At 73 litres, the main oven is fractionally larger than others and that can make a difference if you have a bigger-than-average roasting tin or simply require a few more litres of space. The 39-litre top cavity serves as both a conventional non-fanned oven and grill.
Like the Rangemaster above, the controls on this oven’s four-zone induction hob are of the physical variety which makes it so much easier to make fine temperature adjustments. However, the layout of the controls are a bit strange because the induction controls are split left and right rather than all in the same area. Nevertheless, the hob is also equipped with a bridging feature which links two zones together for rectangular cookware and there are also touch-sensitive power-boost controls on the glass plinth for boiling pots of water in about two minutes flat.
AEG is part of the Electrolux group that also produces Zanussi ovens, so there are many similarities between this model and the Zanussi at number one. However, the induction facility in this instance makes hob cooking much more enjoyable. If you can afford the extra outlay, the AEG is a great bet. Just be aware that its power loading is a hefty 11.3kW so make sure your power supply is sufficient before laying down the readies.
You’ll have to look far and wide for a cheaper electric cooker than this simple but effective model from Indesit. The key thing about this model is that it’s 50cm in width, so if the space between your kitchen cabinets is smaller than average or if the kitchen fitter didn’t use his/her tape measure correctly, this is the model to opt for.
The Indesit IS5V4KHW is as basic as it comes which is hardly surprising given the low sub–£200 asking price. Hence, it only has one oven (61 litres) and it’s of the conventional variety – ie it doesn’t have a fan. This shouldn’t be too much of an issue with some cooking sessions and we’ve read it’s actually very good at baking. However, as the temperature change increments are in 50˚ steps and with very few markings, you may have trouble locating the correct temperature for the recipe you’re cooking. Although it does have a grill, the fact that it’s in the same cavity means you will never be able to grill while the oven is in use.
Regarding the hob, according to some user reviews, the Indesit’s four-zone ceramic hob doesn’t spread heat all that evenly across the pan so you will need to stir ingredients on a regular basis. Yes, it’s a bit of an inconvenience but that’s to be expected at this price level.
For those with space restraints and on a very tight budget, this all-white model will provide perfectly acceptable results, though you may need to experiment a little to find its sweet spots.
How complicated is it to install a cooker?
If you already have a cooker installed, upgrading it couldn’t be easier because in most instances the new model will be the same width and height. As long as you have a suitable power supply with the correct current rating, all that’s required is to slide out the current model and disconnect its supply. However, if your existing model uses a gas hob and you wish to move over to an all-electric model, you will need to call in a registered Corgi gas fitter to safely disconnect the gas pipe and seal off the valve before you can slide the new unit in again and attach the power supply.
It bears mentioning that most people will fit a like-for-like model when choosing to upgrade their cooking equipment. If upgrading to a different system, most home chefs would move from standalone cooker to built-in oven and hob and not the other way around since integrated oven-and-hob systems are generally neater, more stylish and they offer scope to mix and match units from different manufacturers.
However, changing a cooker to a built-in oven and hob can be very tricky – and expensive – because it requires an experienced fitter with carpentry skills to build a plinth above the floor and fit a whole new worktop to replace the gap left by the existing one. The new worktop will also need a large hole cut it it to accommodate the induction or ceramic hob. Fitting a wall oven is even more of an expensive faff because you may need to remove an existing wall cabinet to accommodate the new oven and possibly even have the oven’s ring main extended.
In a nutshell, there wouldn’t be much point in moving from an existing built-in system to a standalone cooker unit unless you were looking to expand your oven and hob size by investing in a wider-than-60cm ‘range cooker’. You can read up on range cookers by heading over to our guide to the Best Range Cookers.
What type of electric hob is best?
Most all-electric cookers are fitted with two main types of hob – induction or ceramic. Induction is much more efficient and faster in every task, from simmering to boiling. They also offer unparalleled temperature control, all the way from an imperceptible simmer to a full-blown boil. Cookers with induction hobs tend to be more expensive to buy but if you can afford it, you won’t be disappointed by its performance. You may, however, need to buy some new cookware because induction only works with ferrous metals like steel and iron. You can read more about induction hobs by dipping into our guide to the Best Induction Hobs.
Ceramic hobs, on the other hand, comprise a heating element under a ceramic glass plinth. Ceramic hobs are perfectly adequate to cook on and they are always much cheaper to buy. However, they are not as quick to respond to temperature changes as induction. Also, you may need to stir food more frequently because ceramic hobs don’t generally radiate heat as well across the entire surface of the pot or pan. Nevertheless, if budget is a concern, a cooker fitted with a ceramic hob will most certainly suffice.
Before we finish, we should add that there is another type of electric hob called the solid heat plate. We are not featuring any in this feature because they are generally as useless as a chocolate teapot. Really, you are advised to avoid them like the plague, unless of course you’ve invested in an expensive Rayburn or Aga which will likely come fitted with permanently-on hot plates as standard.
When you find the cooker of your dreams, make a point of looking for its power rating. This is important because there’s a very good chance that the model you’ve chosen may be too powerful for your home’s 32-amp electricity supply, especially if you live in an old house or flat. It’s therefore a wise move to have an electrician call around first to tell you what level of kilowatts your kitchen ring main is capable of handling and buy a cooker with a power rating that matches it. Otherwise you could face a hefty fee to have a new, more powerful ring main fitted. Don’t make this mistake. I did, and regretted it though the upshot is that I now at least have a ring main that’s suitable for any configuration of cooker and hob in the future.
• Looking for a built in oven? Check out our guide to the Best Electric Ovens
• Fancy moving over to induction? Head over to our guide to the Best Induction Hobs