This oven-meets-air fryer will make any kitchen novice feel like a pro

I love to cook. I love preparing something delicious, yes, but maybe even more, I love the process: slowly simmering a sauce while adding herbs to taste, searing a piece of steak to just the perfect temperature. So I’ve long avoided jumping on the bandwagon of devices that claim to eliminate this process — dumping ingredients into an InstantPot and skipping from step 2 to 12 of the recipe never appealed to me. But, I will never say no when testing a new device. So when our team needed someone to try the Brava Smart Oven, I jumped at the chance – or rather, my friend did. You see, while I’m all for experimental cooking (forget a recipe – add what’s in your fridge!), my friend, a newbie in the culinary world, was blown away by the idea of ​​an oven – and accompanying app – seduced would record his every culinary action. So we gave it a try… and we have a lot to say. Read on for the full review.

Brava oven price, size and details

The first thing to note about the Brava is that it doesn’t come cheap. With packages starting at $1,295, it’s an investment (just like any kitchen appliance worth its square footage!). But, If you’re determined to invest in a smart oven and can’t spare the money right now, Brava offers financing through Affirm and accepts monthly payments starting at $54.

However, the oven is much more than a typical appliance: Think of it as a combination oven, convection oven, microwave, toaster and air fryer. If you combine all of these, the price becomes more reasonable.

In terms of size, the oven sits somewhere between your microwave and wall oven, measuring 11.3″H x 16.4″W x 17.3″L and weighing 34 pounds. I was pleasantly surprised that the Box it arrived in was It’s no bigger and was able to easily unbox it and put it on the counter.The Brava takes up quite a bit of counter space but given all it can do you’ll probably keep it away Plus, a slim design means it’s not an eyesore — and since it won’t overheat (the oven has a convection fan, a high-efficiency cooling fan, and an exhaust fan, and will automatically turn off if it starts to overheat), you can place it it right next to a counter or under a cupboard.

The Brava oven

Setting up the Brava

Once the Brava was unboxed, setup was easy: we connected it to our wifi, my friend downloaded the app to his phone, all of which took less than 5 minutes. After that we spent a looong Time to start poring over the recipes available – there are over 7,000! – and Cooking Modes (including Auto Fry, Slow Cook, Sear, Toast and Bake).

Regarding the device itself, it is only necessary to connect the oven and the heating system, the intelligent touch screen and the internal camera are ready to use. In addition, the Brava updates itself automatically when connected to WiFi, so you can always be sure that you have the latest version of software and recipes.

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How it works

The Brava works with you when cooking bright (as opposed to gas, electricity or radio frequency). Its precise technology allows you to switch techniques between searing, roasting, baking and more. The connected app syncs with your phone and guides you step-by-step through the cooking process, setting reminders and timers and even showing a live feed of your food from the oven’s internal camera. The Brava plugs into a standard outlet and runs on 120 volts.

Cooking with the Brava

Once setup was complete, it was time to test a recipe on the Brava. Given my conflicting personality, I selected a meal I was convinced no “smart” gadget could cook better than a good old-fashioned pot with bubbling oil — but one that also takes a notoriously laborious task of cleaning: fried chicken. The Brava had a recipe listed as their favorite chicken dish, and I was convinced the crispy brown edges in the photo could only be the result of frying – so we gave it a try.

The Brava does it great Easy shopping and preparing ingredients. After everything was assembled, we prepared our chicken according to the instructions (brine, wet dredge, dry dredge, just like frying). Then came the time to put the Brava to the test. I thought we were surely doomed when I realized we hadn’t bought the square pan recommended in the recipe (the Brava comes with a metal and glass pan in its starter set, but offers five more as add-ons -ons). But we went ahead, pouring the required oil into the shallow metal pan (“That can’t be enough,” I remarked when it fit into the shallow pan without spilling), and placed the chicken on top.

We put the pan in the oven and clicked start (the only button on the machine!). The Brava started instantly (no preheating required) and – my favorite part! – the internal camera flashed the screen so we could see a live feed of our chicken. I had set an Alexa timer for the Flip halfway through, but turns out I didn’t need to, as the Brava reminded my friend on the app. We flipped the chicken and put it back in the machine until the timer ran out. We had used a little more chicken than the recipe called for, so we particularly appreciated the touch-up option at the end of the recipe that allows you to cook your food an extra minute. Then came the moment of truth: I pulled out the chicken and was frankly shocked by what I saw: four golden, crispy thighs that would make the Colonel tremble even in his boots. But did the taste match it?

Long story short: yes. The drumsticks were crispy on the outside and juicy and tender on the inside, with the meat being cooked more perfectly than I’ve ever managed, admittedly, by analogy.

Final Review: So, is it worth it?

silver Brava stove

brave

We both agreed that the Brava Friend chicken was exceptional – and immediately started planning what dish we would try next (chicken fajitas? French fries? Roasted Brussels sprouts?). But of course, no product is perfect (even if the fried chicken is!). Here are the main takeaways.

The professionals: Extremely precise cooking, easy setup, user-friendly interface, attractive design, extensive catalog of recipes, clearly guided cooking, internal camera, no heat.

The disadvantages: A bit big for small spaces, high price.

Overall, I’ll admit, the Brava won me over. Best of all, despite my reservations about taking the process out of cooking, the Brava allows for more involvement than other smart devices – the clear steps walk you through the process of making something new, and the internal camera allows you to do that to check progress. It’s definitely a commitment (in terms of both price and workspace), but if you’re on a mission to become a better cook, help your partner become a better cook, or help your kids to cook to inspire, this might be just the right solution.

bottom line: It’s a device that saves time and makes cooking more efficient, but it’s almost guaranteed to inspire you to try new recipes. And what could be more fun than that?

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