One of the most overlooked tools in the kitchen has to be the oven thermometer. It’s extremely important for keeping track of oven temperature so food isn’t undercooked or overcooked, but there are still people who don’t use them in their stoves. And we feel that’s a terrible mistake, especially considering that ovens can be off by anywhere from 25 to 50-degrees. And whether you’re baking a cake or baking a casserole, that can be a significant price difference. That’s why we decided to write this guide on the subject, so everyone can realize how important this tool is and so they can buy the best oven thermometer available.
List of the Best Oven Thermometers
- Best Overall: ThermoPro TP-16 Digital Oven Thermometer (Amazon) – Review
- Also Recommended: KT Thermo 3-Inch Analog Dial Thermometer (Amazon) – Review
- Also Consider: Rubbermaid Commercial Products Instant-Read Thermometer (Amazon) – Review
Best Overall: ThermoPro TP-16 Digital Oven Thermometer
Since oven temperatures can vary widely from one oven to the next, the home cook needs to keep track of their oven’s temperature so they can make adjustments as necessary. And the best way to do that is by using a quality oven thermometer that’s extremely accurate. That’s what we went in search for and that’s what we found when we discovered this quality oven thermometer. It’s a digital model so that it has a 1-degree resolution and is accurate to within 1.8-degrees Fahrenheit north or south of the temperature set. This is a whole lot better than ovens internal temperature monitoring systems that can be off by 25-degrees or more.
Accurate temperature readings aren’t the only thing worth noting about this thermometer, however. It also has a host of other features that make it easy to use. One of the first features that can be found on this model includes a timer mode. A timer mode that can count down or up to 99-hours and 59-minutes, although we doubt that anyone would need to cook anything for that length of time. Another key feature of this model is that it comes with a durable probe, a probe that’s inserted right into the food being cooked. This allows the consumer to accurately gauge the temperature of the food being cooked, so they can know when it’s done.
Another thing worth mentioning about this thermometer is that it comes with preset USDA approved temperatures, so the consumer doesn’t have to spend all of their time looking at what temperature chicken, pork or beef should be cooked at to ensure that it’s safe to eat. This thermometer’s meat probe and wire are also extremely durable and are designed to withstand temperatures up to 716-degrees Fahrenheit. All of these reasons, and a few more that we haven’t mentioned, make this one of the easiest and best oven thermometers currently available.
Also Recommended: KT Thermo 3-Inch Analog Dial Thermometer
Even though the oven thermometer we rated as our number one choice is the best oven thermometer available, we understand that not everyone may want to use it. After all, that digital thermometer does require probes to be placed into the food being cooked, so it can be said more accurately that it actually measures the temperature of the food and not the actual interior of the oven. For anyone who would rather have a reading of the oven’s interior temperature, we would like to recommend this model. It doesn’t cost a whole lot, is extremely accurate, and is designed to provide many years of use to just about any kitchen. It’s a thermometer that might even outlast the oven that it’s used in.
The first thing worth mentioning is that this product is extremely large and has a large dial that makes it easy to read by just about everyone. While many oven thermometers have small dials that are the user has to squint and read, this model can easily be seen when the door of the oven is opened. Unfortunately, it’s increased size also means that it’s a bit bulkier than comparable models, and some consumers might be forced to work around it. Even so, we don’t that is an extremely big deal, and we’d rather have an accurate oven temperature and have to work around a thermometer than buy a model that we can’t read.
This thermometer is capable of measuring oven temperatures from 100 to 600-degrees Fahrenheit, so consumers always know the exact temperature of their oven. It also has a hook that swivels, so it can be read from several different angles, if necessary. What we liked best of all about this oven thermometer, however, was that it was extremely well made. It was constructed out of stainless steel and had an oven resistant glass lens that never clouded over. Overall, we think that this oven thermometer is a great one, especially for consumers who don’t want to spend a lot of money on a thermometer.
Also Consider: Rubbermaid Commercial Products Instant-Read Thermometer
Rubbermaid Commercial Products is a company that’s been known to make some extremely well-made devices for the kitchen, so we weren’t surprised when we discovered that one of the best budget oven thermometers available was made by this well-known company. And since it had a very reasonable price, we knew that we could pick it up and try it out without risking too much. Which is what we did. Fortunately, it all worked out in the end, because we think that this is a great oven thermometer that doesn’t cost a whole lot but has quite a few features that the consumer is going to appreciate.
In our review of this product, we’re going to start with a discussion of its construction. Even though this thermometer has a very inexpensive price tag, it’s construction isn’t a reflection of that fact. We found that this thermometer was extremely well made using stainless steel and with a shatter-proof glass lens that worked well to protect the dial. And speaking of the dial, we found that it was large enough to be easy to read no matter where we mounted it in the oven. It had nice large numbers and a contrasting red dial that worked very well with one another.
If there’s any complaint we had of this oven thermometer at all, it was the fact that we found its mounting swivel a little too small. This made it difficult to mount at times and we spend more than one occasion trying to get it properly onto the oven rack. Once set up, however, the thermometer worked well and we don’t see this as a problem that people are going to have to concern themselves with. And finally, this thermometer has a size of 3.75×2.5×1.5 inches, so it can be placed virtually anywhere in the oven it’s needed. All of this makes this a great budget thermometer for any oven.
A Guide To Oven Thermometers
Now that we’ve covered some of the best oven thermometers available, you might be wondering how we managed to select the models that we selected. To make our selection method more transparent and to allow consumers to apply the same standard to any thermometers they might choose to buy in the future, we wrote this handy guide on the subject. We sincerely hope that in the contents of this guide, our readers will learn everything they need to know to select a great thermometer for their oven. Below are some things to consider when purchasing a new thermometer for an oven.
Why Buy An Oven Thermometer In The First Place?
Before we get on with the tips on buying an oven thermometer, we thought it would be a good idea if we talked about the reason for buying one of these thermometers in the first place. One of the most frequently asked questions is: “Do I really need a thermometer for my oven?” Believe us when we say that we understand why people ask this question. People look at the temperature dial and just assume that their oven is holding the right temperature. 9 times out of 10, however, that’s not the case.
Most of the time, the oven is off—sometimes by a few degrees and sometimes by a lot more. We’ve seen some ovens that were only off by 5 to 10-degrees and we’ve seen others that were off by 50-degrees. Ovens just don’t do a good job of keeping the correct temperature, so the consumer should take it upon themselves to buy an oven thermometer. It a very inexpensive investment that will result in better-cooked meals.
Buying The Best Oven Thermometer
Now that we’ve talked about the necessity of buying an oven thermometer, it’s time to turn our attention to finding the right one available. Although there are dozens, if not hundreds, of different oven thermometers available, it really isn’t all that difficult to find a quality one. All the consumer has to do is take a few moments and look at a few key details.
Oven Probe Or Thermometer?
The first thing the consumer is going to want to consider is whether they prefer an oven probe or an oven thermometer. After reviewing both of these devices, we tend to like the oven probe the most because it gave us the most important indicator of whether the food was done or not. It does this because the probes are placed right into the food, so the user can easily see the internal temperature of the food. This is good for making sure that food has a high enough internal temperature, but it might not be suitable for determining if the temperature of the oven is suitable for browning. For those purposes, the consumer is probably going to want to consider an analog oven thermometer.
The Thermometer’s Display
Another important thing for consumers to consider is how the thermometer displays the temperature and whether or not it’s easy to read. Digital thermometers are extremely easy to read, and since their display rests on the outside of the oven, the consumer doesn’t have to open the oven to read it. If an analog thermometer is chosen, however, the consumer should make sure that it has a nice big display face that’s easy to read in a darkened oven. It’s also a good idea to choose a thermometer that has the temperature marked at 25-degree or 50-degree points on the dial. This makes identifying the temperature of the oven a lot easier.
Choose One With An NSF Rating
It’s also a good idea to make sure that the thermometer has been tested and certified by the NSF. What’s the NSF? The NSF rating lets the consumer know that the thermometer has been independently tested and rated to be accurate by an independent rating agency. In other words, thermometers rated by the NSF are usually more accurate than ones that haven’t been rated and certified.
How The Thermometer Attaches To The Oven
There are several different ways that oven thermometers attach to the oven. Digital model displays usually use a magnet to attach it to the outside of the oven, while the probe that’s attached to it by a wire sits inside the oven. But analog models tend to be mounted in an entirely different manner, so it’s important for consumers to think carefully about how it sets up because that can mean the difference between a great thermometer and one that’s not so great.
Analog models either stand up in the oven or attach to the oven rack. If the model sits upright, the consumer should make sure it’s base is wide enough to sit up without falling over. This means the base should be at least 2-inches wide, if not wider. For models that attach to the rack, make sure the clamp is large enough to easily mount to the rack and that it swivels. That will ensure that the thermometer is easy to set up and can be viewed from any angle.