country kitchen with green range cooker

Range Cooker Complete Beginner's Guide

 Purchasing your first range cooker is a very exciting moment. Finally seeing that dream Everhot, Aga, Esse or Bertazzoni taking its place within the heart of your home is quite the thrill. Whatever colour, make or model you have picked, there is no doubt that it brings elements of charm and beauty right to your kitchen. 

Even if you’re not quite there yet and are still debating making that purchase, then this  guide might help you to better understand some of the practicalities of owning one of these mighty machines. In fact, we have dedicated this entire blog post to highlighting all of the benefits, so keep reading. 

A range cooker is a freestanding cooker that usually comes with two or three decent-size ovens, a selection of hob burners and a grill. These cooking contraptions are great for morden cooking, the high end ovens will cook your food to perfection while bringing stunning style straight to your kitchen - a statement piece and it’s practical. As they are freestanding, it is also easier to transport it should you choose to move. If you don’t take your range cooker with you on your move, you could be adding thousands of pounds worth of value to your house. 

If you have made that investment, then it is time to put your oven to the test and begin to reap the benefits of having this new addition in your home. With all of its different capabilities and features, it isn’t uncommon to feel a little flustered when it comes to firing up that range cooker for the first time.

With years of experience within the industry and proud owners of our very own range cooker, we are sharing some of our top tips for beginners. We have also included a few recipes to really get you going on the right foot.

Get to know the compartments

Everhot Stove in a kitchen

If you’re new to using range cookers, then the best place to begin is getting to know each compartment and its very own uses. This varies model to model, but the general gist is that different ovens have different temperature settings. This directly impacts your cooking and may be something that takes a little while to fully get a grip of, but that is okay.

The hottest point of the oven is at the top, as this is where the most heat is retained. This part of the oven will work under extreme heat, and is ideal for browning and grilling food. At the bottom you will find lower heated ovens. For those of you that are confident in cooking with a range cooker, it is recommended to use different ovens depending on the type of food that you are cooking - this way it’s heated to perfection at the ideal temperature for each stage. 

Shield your shelves

With all of that glorious heat radiating from that top oven, you will want to be extra careful that the other ovens are not impacted - the last thing you want is burnt food. Cold shelves are a great way to solve this, and you can find some to match the make and model of your very own range cooker. Using these cold shelves protects food in the lower shelves from the heat intensity of the top shelf.

Keep the heat

One of the many wonderful characteristics of your brand new cooker is its ability to constantly reproduce and retain heat. The first rule is ensuring that you are using your range cooker in the most efficient way you can, meaning that heat loss and energy waste will be avoided. We have come up with some top tips to get you started.

Match your cookware to your burner

Ensure that your cookware, such as pots and pans match as best they can to the size of the burner. Should you use a small pot on a large burner, you’ll be wasting a lot of energy. 

Aga pots on a stove

Regularly clean your range cooker

Not only will this keep a hygienic space for preparing food, but will also make sure that food residue isn’t absorbing and wasting energy.

Aga cookware stove top plate scraper


Insulated hob covers

These little contraptions can help to retain the range cooker’s heat through the hot plates, as this is where heat can easily be lost. You can find a range of stunning designs.

Use the oven over the hot plates

The hot plates themselves release a lot more heat over the ovens which retain the heat. So, when cooking choose wisely. You’ll find that a lot of range cooker owners do most of their cooking with the ovens.  


Cooked spinach in a ceramic tray


Top tip: Always make sure that hot plates are closed when not in use. There are no buttons on a range cooker so it will continue to produce heat, and when hot plates are left open they will waste a lot of energy. 


Check your temperature

Range cookers use radiant heat to operate. This means that the oven itself heats up as opposed to a fan oven, where the air is heated. This is one of the many reasons why food prepared in a range cooker is so delicious, as it has not been dried out whilst cooking. You will likely want to trial and error to find a temperature that suits your cooking style and of course, how your home is heated. Some models will come with a suggested temperature, which is a great starting point. 

everhot 100i in green

Top tip: Regularly check that the set temperature of the oven hasn’t fluctuated without manual input, this may indicate that there is a problem. 

Conjure up some tasty recipes

Tasty sausage & veg pasta

There’s no doubt that you’ll be eager to test your new range cooker with some tasty recipes, so it’s time to dust off your old cookbooks and get creative in the kitchen.

Check out our blog series Cooking with Sophie. Here Sophie shares her latest cooking creations, using the instore Lacanche range cooker or very own cooker at home. Previous dishes include baked veg and sausage pasta, savoury puff pastry tarts, butternut squash and sweet potato soup and many, many more tasty recipes.

Tasty sauvoury puff tarts

Don’t be hard on yourself!

Whilst you’re getting used to working your range cooker try not to get disheartened by a few burnt dishes. We’ve all been there! Just keep researching and keep on trying. You’ll have it nailed in no time. 


Not just a cooker

While your range cooker is great for creating the perfect meal, these ovens come with many potential uses. No more waiting for laundry to dry in the sun, your range cooker can be used for small loads of drying. It also works as an iron, removing simple creases within a matter of hours - or, can be left overnight. Simply add a drying rack attachment, and allow the heat to do its thing.This multi-purpose cooker can also be used to heat up your home!

Find out more about our range cooker service online here or pop into our Perth store on Princes Street to view our stock and ask any questions. 


Our top picks

We have curated some of our favourite starter ovens and accessories to get you going in your range cooker journey.

You can view all our cookers here

 AGA top tips

Everhot Oven

Esse Oven
Quince & Cook x