I'm thinking we have all seen the AS SEEN ON TV NuWave Oven infomercials. The hype runs something like this:
“If you are in interested in finding a cooking kitchen appliance that will save time, space and money, without compromising savory meals; it's time to look into a NuWave Oven!”
“If you are a busy professional who enjoys eating at home but has little interest in meal preparation; the NuWave Oven is perfect!”
“If you are living in a small apartment, dorm, studio or even in an on the road motor home and you need to find a cooking appliance that is compact and can bake and broil easily, using fewer pot and pans; it's time to check out a NuWave Oven!”
“If you find yourself being pulled in so many directions that when it comes to meals and meal planning, you often settle for frozen dinners served micro wave delicious; the Nuwave Oven is fast and far superior!”
“If you are packing on the pounds because of sloppy eating habits; it's time to make a change with the Nuwave Oven!”
How can 1 counter top kitchen appliance, known as the NuWave possibly live up to all these claims?
Well, in all honesty I was skeptical, but since all my kids are now out of the house, I found myself increasingly disinterested in spending time in the kitchen but getting too fat to keep eating out, so – I decided to do a little research with the intention of buying.
Note: if you are not up to reading the entire review, scroll down to my Wrap Up section at the end of this article.
What Exactly is Infrared, Convection and Conduction Heat?
The AS SEEN ON TV infomercial advertised ad nauseum, that the NuWave Oven is an amazing piece of 21st Century Technology because it combines infrared, convection, and conduction heat methods resulting cooking beyond compare.
For most of us, these terms really don't mean a fish fry to a cow, so I did a little research, and here's what I learned.
Infrared (pronounced infra-red) energy is most easily thought of as light force that shakes molecules. As these molecules shake they begin to heat up. This oven uses this light heat which heats much faster and reaches higher temperatures quicker then conduction oven ovens.
The best way to illustrate infrared heat is to imagine yourself sitting around a camp fire and someone pulls out the marshmallows on a stick. Those coals that give that sugary white puff it's brown crispy goodness, is a primitive form of infrared cooking. It's red radiant heat at work.
Conduction heat requires direct contact between the heat source and, in the context of cooking, a frying pan to transfer heat to whatever is placed in the pan. Stove top pan frying and sautéing are the most common examples. The burner transfers the heat to the pan, the pan transfers the heat to the meat. The longer the contact, the deeper the heat.
Convection cooking is not really cooking but circulating heat produced by conduction and/or infrared heat sources using some sort of fan system. This allows the heated air to distribute evenly and quickly, reducing the cooking time dramatically with the NuWave promises up to 50%.
The Nuwave has somehow packed all 3 methods of cooking into one power house little cooker; approximately 15″ high and 15″ long. All its claims point to this conduction, convection and infrared technology which I can personally vouch that:
- It does cook food up to 50% times faster saving time and energy
- It will seal in the juices so no additional fats or oils are needed; supporting weight loss
- It takes little to no water to cook vegetables preserving natural nutrients that makes for healthier eating.
- The set and forget technology works with frozen foods making for easy and quick meals.
Placing an Order For The NuWave Oven
I hit the NuWave Oven sales page and had no trouble ordering the oven. I did get annoyed by all the up selling pressure and “free” promotional products being thrown in. The additional products are free, but the additional shipping charges are exorbitant so by the time you pay those you have easily spent and additional $40. for the “free” bonus products.
There was no difficulty in ordering the NuWave. I buy stuff online all the time, so there was nothing unusual about the process, but if you feel more comfortable ordering over the phone, instead of using a debit or credit card on line, hit the “Order Now” button and the Order By Phone number will pop up on top of the screen.
If you want to buy, but don't want to extend yourself with a 1 time full payment, you can set up a monthly payment plan as low as $13.99 a month. I don't know how that works though, because I paid the full price at time of purchase.
Money Saving Tricks When Ordering
I did learn a few money saving tricks while ordering. When ready to purchase, click through to the ordering page, then hit the page close button on your computer, this takes you to a pop up window offering $10.00 off the shipping charges! Hit the “Cancel” button on the pop up and you've saved yourself 10 bucks!
It took about 8 days for the Nuwave to be delivered to my door via FedEX. Here's another money saving tip; don't pay for express postage, FedEx delivers it anyway, just a few days later than the over priced, over night delivery service.
What Was Promised And What I Got
The web site promised I would get with the basic order with no extras:
A cookbook, 25 Gourmet recipe cards, an easy reference laminated cooking guide, carrying case, how to DVD, and a 2 Year extended warranty on electrical components.
Everything was included. I haven't bothered watching the DVD; the instruction manual inside the cookbook, covered all my immediate questions.
I like the carrying case because I'm on the road a lot, makes this little gem easy to transport.
I'm working through the Cookbook. The goal is to try out every recipe. So far half of the ones I've tried have come out exactly as the recipe said it would, the other half needed some adjustments with cooking times.
My favorite accessory is the “Quick and Easy Cooking Guide”. It's a laminated quick reference sheet with recommended times and temperatures for fresh or frozen foods.
I've tried baking, broiling, steaming, frying and roasting all with satisfying success. I have yet to try the dehydrating and BBQing. I'm a bit skeptical about the BBQ, now that I know how the Nuwave works.
So to recap the Nuwave Oven is not just a “good” value, I think it's a great value! It really does:
- Cook from freezer to fork in 1/2 of the time
- Saves Energy
- Save space and is perfect for simple, Small Spaced living
- Cleans up super easy – except for food that sticks to the grill
- Offers loads of value for the reasonable purchase price
- Unpacks simply. Sets up quickly. You could be cooking that first meal within minutes.
A Few User Frustrations
The rack on which most foods are cooked, is like a miniature outdoor grilling rack. Though smaller, it's just as much of a pain to clean as a larger rack. I found that spraying it first with a non stick oil is helping to keep foods from sticking.
The cook books recipes are “iffy”. As mentioned previously, some finish cooking foods perfectly, other cooking times are not even close and either dry out the meal or are not cooked enough. That said, however, once the timing is figured out, flavor is always delicious.
Since I have only had the Nuwave Oven Pro for a few months, I don't know how long it will hold up. I use it most every day and so far it is working trouble free. The only reviews I found researching, was a few cracked casings and something about the appliance not releasing enough steam when cooking. Neither apply to my experience as yet.
In fact, 3 close friends have already purchased this product as a direct result of my mouthing off about it.
It is a wonderful small kitchen appliance, that anyone would benefit from having in their kitchen, especially an empty nester like me who no longer wants to be tied to the kitchen any longer then she has to. Though I do wish I had discovered this thing when my 4 children were younger.