Breville BOV900BSS Smart Oven Air Review 2021

Back when I was living in a one room apartment I would have given anything to own the kind of countertop smart oven that’s readily available today.

They pack a huge amount of functionality into a small form factor, and allow for a fantastic amount of experimentation. They’re definitely better than the two pan heating hob I had to make do with in my early 20s…

These things are only getting smarter over time as well, with Whirpool apparently hard at work on a smart oven that can not only visually identify the food placed in it, but also cook it to perfection too. Fingers crossed these things don’t start eating your dinner as well…

Right now though, there’s one smart oven that dominates the market. In my Breville BOV900BS review, I’m taking a comprehensive look at one of the most popular countertop ovens. Is this really the best device of its kind on the market right now?

Sale
Breville BOV900BSS the Smart Oven Air Fryer...
  • The Breville Smart Oven Air with Element iQ System is a versatile countertop oven allowing you to roast,...
  • ELEMENT iQ SYSTEM: Using 6 independent quartz elements, smart algorithms steer power to where and when...
  • AIR FRY & DEHYDRATE SETTINGS: Air fry French fries and other family favorites; Higher temperatures...

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Do You Need a Smart Oven?

Countertop smart ovens provide an extremely convenient alternative to the larger, range-like ovens found in most kitchens.

Although sometimes called toaster ovens, the name just doesn’t do them justice these days. Despite their small size, they’re often capable of tackling full size family meals, including full roast dinners

Modern countertop ovens also come with many presets to help you tackle whatever’s in front of you. Whether you’re dehydrating food or air frying French fries, they’ve got you covered.

They’re particularly useful if you have either a small kitchen or live in an apartment. You get all the versatility of a regular oven, but in a much more compact form factor. They also pre-heat quickly too.

A good countertop oven is superior to just about any microwave as well. Most now come with a convection setting, which circulates heat all around the interior. That means your food cooks evenly.

There’s more good news when it comes to the environment. Ovens like these use around half the energy of a traditional kitchen oven. Not only is that good for the climate, you’ll enjoy cheaper electricity bills as well.

If you like to cook up a big feast for lots of dinner guests, then you’re unlikely to be giving up your main oven altogether. Even so, you’ll get more than enough daily use out of your countertop counterpart to justify the extra investment.

A final word if you have young children.

My wife and I have found it pretty easy to teach our kids not to touch the main oven at any time (just in case), but prying hands will get to countertops.

Make sure you’re able to locate your oven somewhere safe, as the exteriors get extremely hot to the touch.

Breville BOV900BS Smart Oven Review

Breville’s BOV900BS Smart Oven is one of the company’s most popular products in this category.

As well as providing the versatility of a standard countertop oven, it also comes with cooking presets. Some of these are designed for specific tasks like air frying and dehydrating food. That means you don’t need to spend more money than you have to, on extra devices to get those jobs done.

If you’re looking for an all-in-one alternative to a regular oven, it’s a really good option.

Keep in mind that while it has an impressive interior size, it’s not going to be suitable for replacing your standard oven completely. That’s especially true if you like to host a lot of guests in one sitting.

Pros

  • A massive cooking interior, capable of handling even a roast turkey.
  • Proofing, dehydrating and air frying modes mean you don’t have to buy lots of different appliances.
  • Cleans very easily.
  • Extremely quick to pre-heat, needing only a few minutes to get going.
  • Very accurate temperature control.

Cons

  • A jack of all trades appliance means some compromise. Air frying results in particular are not as good as you’d get from a dedicated appliance.
  • Fans can make a fair bit of noise, especially when running in Super mode.
  • Pricier than some of the alternatives on the market.
  • Light disables automatically after 30 seconds. You’ll need to activate it manually to check in on what’s cooking.
  • Simple toasting jobs (bread, bagels etc) take longer than they would do with a regular toaster

Key features

In the next section of my review, I’m taking a closer look at some of the key features of this smart oven.

2-Speed Convection Cooking

The BOB900BSS operates in two different modes: Super and Regular.

Regular, as you’d guess from the name, is for typical, temperature controlled cooking. In that sense it performs like a typical oven and can cook about as much as you can fit inside it (which is a lot!)

The Super mode is where things get interesting though. While this is active, much more air moves around the oven. That means you can air fry foods like French fries, and dehydrate vegetables into chip snacks.

It doesn’t perform as well as a dedicated air fryer, but apply the right amount of oil will give impressive results with practice.

Air Fry and Dehydrate Presets

This smart oven also comes with presets designed to perform exactly these two tasks.

If you want to experiment with dehydrating your own foods but aren’t very experienced, you don’t have to worry about timings too much. Simply prep the veg, pick the correct setting and you’re good to go.

You can fit up to four trays in the oven at any given time. This is super helpful when you want to cook a variety of different snacks together, and experiment with some new ingredients.

Other Presets

There are 12 different presets in total, so you don’t have to fiddle around with timers and temperatures. If you just want to get on with dinner, pick your setting, throw the food in, and you’re all set.

  • Toast
  • Bagel
  • Broil
  • Bake
  • Roast
  • Warm
  • Pizza
  • Air Fry
  • Reheat
  • Cookies
  • Slow Cook
  • Dehydrate

Large Interior

That’s a lot of features to fit in! To achieve this, Breville has built an impressive 1 cubic feet of cooking space within the BOV900BS.

That means you can cook either one very big meal (such as a roast dinner), many trays of individual items, or fit your existing pans inside.

Breville reckons you can fit a 9″ x 13″ pain in the oven comfortably. Before buying, you might want to check the dimensions of your existing cookware though, just to make sure it will fit inside.

This large space is good news for amateur bakers too! Activate the baking preset and the bread will bake without coming into contact with the uppermost elements.

Multiple heating elements

Breville’s continued developing its Element iQ system to improve the heating elements used in the company’s smart ovens. The BOV900BS contains six individually controlled cooking elements.

As certain areas of the appliance gain or lose heat, power moves around the interior to balance things out. That means you don’t have to worry about food cooking unevenly.

If you’re baking and need to turn anything around, the oven also contains a Rotate setting. This will alert you when you need to switch things up, and means one less timer to worry about!

Accessories

In the box you’ll get a few useful accessories designed specifically for the unit:

  • Baking Pan
  • Broiling Rack
  • Pizza Pan
  • Air Frying Pan

That should be enough to get you started with all the versatility this oven provides, and no excuses not to try everything at least once!

As we’ve already mentioned there’s a lot of space to play with here. Any other pans you already own have a good chance of nestling within the BOV900BS.

Easy to clean

One of the things I really like about the BOV900BS is how easy it is to clean. When you’re using a single appliance to fulfill many different tasks, things are going to get messy, fast.

Maintaining your equipment will always pay dividends in the long run. The easier it is to mop up your mess and get at all parts of the oven, the more value you’re going to get from it in the long run.

Alternatives

If you’re not sure if the BOV900BS is the right smart oven for you, there are some other options that are worth exploring.

Emeril Lagasse Power Air Fryer 360

Emeril’s flagship smart oven offers a decent selection of presets, including air frying and dehydration.

It also comes with its own rotisserie spit, so if that’s an important function for you then it’s well worth considering as an alternative. Note that the internal capacity of this smart oven is comparatively low.

Emeril Lagasse Power Air Fryer Oven 360 |...
  • Emerald 9-in-1 air fryer – replace your countertop convection oven! 5 all-over heating elements mimic a...
  • Better than ordinary convection ovens - 360° quick cook technology and five super powerful heating...
  • Extra versatile – LCD digital display with 12 cooking functions: air fry, bake, rotisserie, dehydrate,...
  • 9 presets
  • 5 heating elements
  • 6 slices of toast
  • Slow cook functionality
  • 0.53 cubic feet of cooking capacity

BREVILLE BOV650XL

The little cousin of the BOV900BS, Breville’s BOV650XL again makes use of the Element IQ heating system to ensure even cooking all around.

You’ve less presets to play around with (eight in total), and it crucially lacks the air-frying function we love so much. Still it’s a perfectly viable option if budget is a concern.

Sale
Breville BOV650XL the Compact Smart Oven,...
  • The Breville Compact Smart Oven with Element iQ System includes most features of a larger Smart Oven in a...
  • ELEMENT iQ SYSTEM: Using 4 independent quartz elements, smart algorithms steer power to where and when...
  • 8 COOKING FUNCTIONS: Super versatile compact smart oven with 8 cooking functions to guide you to...
  • 4 heating elements
  • 8 cooking functions
  • 4 slices of toast
  • 12” pizza capacity
  • Non-stick coating for easy cleaning

Cuisinart TOB-260N1

Cuisinart is a key competitor of Breville and the TOB-260N1 is a popular alternative to the BOV900BS.

There are 15 cooking functions to play around with, and a pretty generous interior capacity. You should find it enough for all but the largest meals.

Cuisinart TOB-260N1 Chef's Convection Toaster...
  • Spacious 0.95 cubic-foot capacity oven Fits 13" pizza and 9" x 13" baking pan
  • 15 cooking functions, including innovative dual cook, and speed convection.
  • Digital controls with large blue backlit display and LED buttons. BPA free; Convenient auto-slideout rack
  • 5 heating elements
  • 15 cooking functions
  • 0.95 cubic-foot capacity
  • 13” pizza capacity

Conclusion

Regardless of whether you’re short on space or budget (or both), Breville’s BOV900BS really is our favourite option in the smart oven category right now. It’s small enough to be discrete, but big enough to accommodate proper hearty meals.

Sale
Breville BOV900BSS the Smart Oven Air Fryer...
  • The Breville Smart Oven Air with Element iQ System is a versatile countertop oven allowing you to roast,...
  • ELEMENT iQ SYSTEM: Using 6 independent quartz elements, smart algorithms steer power to where and when...
  • AIR FRY & DEHYDRATE SETTINGS: Air fry French fries and other family favorites; Higher temperatures...

You’ve got all the functions you could possibly need to massively expand your cooking repertoire. too. It’s also easy to look after, and you’ll have that much less clutter in your kitchen.