What is a Combi?

To the unfamiliar, a combi oven might seem like a far-too-advanced piece of equipment that the average kitchen can’t afford. However, this couldn’t be further from the truth. With so many cooking functions in a single package, combi ovens are worth the initial investment. In this guide, we’ve outlined what a combi oven is, including the specific cooking modes and features that will transform your kitchen.

What is a Combi Oven? 

Introduced to the market less than 20 years ago, a combi oven combines steam and convection into a single cooking process. Before it became popular in the fine dining world, the combi was mostly used in hotel restaurants and chains. Today, many chefs are curious about the combi oven’s potential to produce high-quality, delicious dishes for their customers.

How Does a Combi Oven Work?

At a basic level, a combi uses convection to move heat around the oven chamber, but a separate steam mode can dial in a precise humidity percentage inside the oven. This allows you to set the temperature and moisture separately, which is an unprecedented level of cooking control. After all, some dishes require more heat and humidity than others. Meanwhile, an auto-reversing fan inside the oven has multiple speed settings to spread heat for more even cooking.   

By having access to convection and steam in the same oven, chefs can use the combi to poach, dehydrate, smoke, fry food, bake and more. This multi-functional design saves valuable floor space in your kitchen, and helps reduce operating costs.  

Which Combi Oven is Best?

Every kitchen has different needs, which is why Alto-Shaam designed its combi ovens with capacities ranging from 6 to 40 pans. Whether your operation is small or large, there is a combi oven tfor you. Alto-Shaam's CT PROformance™ models are designed with a vibrant touchscreen, which ensures consistency with pre-programmed recipes and enhanced functionality with the integrated CombiSmoker feature. Additional features of Alto-Shaam combi ovens include PROPower™ technology which offers three different power levels and a removable food probe for accurate cooking results. With so many cooking variables at your fingertips, Alto-Shaam combis are designed to help you achieve the perfect texture and tenderness every time.  

Learn more about our combi ovens by visiting our product page or attending A Taste of Alto-Shaam demo. When you’ve seen the power of convection and steam in one, you’ll be convinced.

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