When I was first asked if I wanted to try a countertop appliance that made cooking easier, faster, and was able to bake, toast, reheat, air fry, sear, dehydrate, and more, I was very curious. I have to admit I was a bit skeptical as well. The promise of effortless, delicious meals in minutes was exciting, but I wanted to try it and test it out myself.
The Brava Oven is a smart oven that uses the power of Pure Light Cooking™ to cook your food. The oven is connected to WiFi and features a touch screen with automatic cooking settings, you can connect it to your phone via the free app, and it has internal cameras for watching your meal as it cooks live.
I have been using the Brava smart oven in our home, feeding a family of four, and after trying out most of its different modes and settings, I am sharing my full review of the Brava here.
Let’s starts with the basics, though. I’ll touch on how the oven works, its size, and features, before we get into what we think about it and how useful we have found it.
Size and Looks.
If you love technology and modern, clean lines, you will love Brava. The oven is beautiful to look at, and it fits with our kitchen’s decor and the clean, modern vibe we try to go for. The Brava weights 55.9 lbs and its exterior dimensions are: (H: 11.3 inches, W: 16.4 inches, D: 17.32 inches), it also requires a minimum of 4 inches of clearance on both sides and the rear for proper ventilation.
How It Cooks
Brava uses Pure Light Cooking™ to cook your food quickly. It relies primarily on infrared energy, a mix of visible and non-visible light. The oven has a series of top and bottom lamps that don’t need to preheat to reach full power, reaching 500 degrees in under a second. The heat the lamps emanate is the same as a campfire, so don’t confuse this oven with a microwave, as it doesn’t use the same technology as microwaves.
Touch Screen Interface
Brava doesn’t have any knobs, because you can fully control it through the touch-screen interface. The super easy to use interface allows you to connect the oven to your WiFi, perform updates, browse recipes using the keyboard, and select the different cooking modes. It also has a full live view of what’s cooking inside the oven, courtesy of a built-in camera located inside the oven.
Via the Brava App you will get a notification on your phone once you start cooking, same with a full live video view of what’s cooking inside the oven, so useful if you are not standing next to the oven. You can browse recipes on the app, and even check out Custom Cook recipes that can easily be added to your Brava by using a KEY number found in each recipe. I love that I can explore new recipes like this and simply add them to my Brava in seconds.
What Can You Do Using Brava?
With Brava, you can bake, toast, reheat, air fry, sear, slow cook, keep warm, and dehydrate your food. All in one appliance.
I am a big fan of using technology to improve our lives, and I love the fact that the Brava has a touch screen and it is connected to the Internet. I can get software updates to upgrade the oven’s features, and they continue adding new recipes weekly, so that is something you can’t really do with your old-school appliance.
Having Brava connected to my phone, and being able to see what’s cooking, with a live video feed on my phone is amazing. I can sit and work while monitoring my food without standing up. You can pause or stop the oven from your phone as well.
I also really like the fact that you can easily select the chef-tested recipes that are programmed into the Brava, follow the instructions, and voila, enjoy a delicious meal. I am not an adventurous cook, and I often stick to following recipes when cooking something new, so having trusted and tried recipes right there, ready for me just to follow, step by step, has been great.
There is a large Brava community of people on Facebook and in the app. Since you can create your own custom recipes, you can actually add other people’s recipes to your oven as well, allowing you to search and find new recipes, beyond what the oven is programmed with.
Cooking with light is different, as the lamps are very powerful, and they reach the ideal temperature very fast. So as I started cooking with the Brava, I had to play around with the settings, to figure out the perfect level when doing things like toasting my bread in the morning. But once I found the magic number, I was getting the perfect toast, every single time. You can save recipes to your favourites too, so your favourite settings are all saved for you to use again and again.
Below I’ll go into more detail on each of the modes.
Anything you cook using your conventional oven can be cooked using Brava. You can even bake a full 6lbs chicken! You can bake cookies, pies, cakes, pastries, muffins, pizza, nachos, egg frittatas, and pretty much anything else you already bake in your oven.
We made Mini Pancake Muffins the other day and the boys are now requesting them daily!
Roasted vegetables are another one of my favourite things to make in my Brava. Super tasty, and made in a fraction of the time I would spend when using my conventional oven.
We love toasting bread and English muffins for breakfast, and bread for crispy sandwiches. I recommend you start with a low number and go up from there, my favourite level for toast is at six right now. I started with nine the first time I tried it and let’s just say I had to start all over again.
This mode is designed to cook your steak and meats. It is similar to broiling in your conventional oven. It does things like melting your cheese, crisping and browning skins.
I am rarely using our microwave since we got our Brava. I have never been a fan of reheating food using the microwave anyway, and with the Brava, I can reheat our food easily. Note that reheating with Brava takes about 1.5x the time of the microwave.
Are you a fan of air frying? You can make your favourite kale chips, or air-fried french fries using the Brava. So yum!
You can make delicious beef jerky in the Brava in under 5 hours. Dehydrate your favourite fruits and vegetables as well. The boys love dehydrated apples and bananas and being able to do it at home, in the Brava, has been a treat.
As you can see, there is a lot you can do with this little device. Every week, there is an update, and your device will download new recipes that have been added by the Brava chefs.
You can use the Brava for more traditional cooking as well, with your favourite slow cooker recipes.
If you want to keep your food warm, you can use the Brava as well, to keep your meal warm before you serve it.
Some of my favourite recipes we tried.
Broccoli and Potatoes
I love how fast the potatoes cook! I save half the time when I make them in the Brava instead of my conventional oven.
Using the meat probe means you know exactly when your meats reach ideal temperature, avoiding dry, overcooked meats. These turkey breasts took only 15 minutes to cook and they were delicious!
Mini Pancake Muffins
The kids ask me to make these pancakes daily! They have an almost muffin-like consistency and the kids love them, so fluffy.
Perfectly Toasted Bread
Love how easy it is to toast my favourite bread. You can select between white, sourdough, brown, etc. I love the consistency once you find your perfect number.
Cheesy goodness. Do I have to say more? Look at how crispy and delicious this looks!
Scrambled Egg Bites
My kids love the Scramble Egg Bites, so easy to make and so delicious. I love that you can add cheese to make them extra yummy as well.
We love baking and the Brava is perfect for summer baking. No need to heat the entire house turning on the big conventional oven.
Blueberry Muffin Bread
Made some yummy fresh beef burgers using the Brava. It took only 10 minutes and they were super juicy and delicious!
Why I love Brava:
- Brava cooks 2x as fast as a traditional oven
- Unsupervised cooking; watch the cook from the App with remote camera vision
- Using the meat probe means the Brava tells you when your meats reached optimal temperature, without overcooking
- 1 or 2 tray clean-up only on most meals
- Over 1000 chef-tested recipes, with easy to follow instructions, programmed and ready to go
- Fun to use, new technology
- Small footprint (one appliance to replace multiple)
- Perfect for single people, families of four
- Nonstick trays, easy clean-ups
- Easy to use interface with touch-screen
- Perfect for new cooks, people learning to cook, and people wanting less mess to clean in the kitchen after meals
I have really been enjoying trying out Brava, and I am getting more and more comfortable with all the different modes. I love its modern technology, the way it looks, and how it is saving me time in the kitchen. I am excited to cook new things, and I love the easy clean-up at the end. I also really love that they have a strong community of Brava owners, sharing new and fun recipes, for you to try. I am seriously loving it, you guys!
If you want to learn more about Brava, visit their website. Brava is currently available for purchase online at www.brava.com.
Disclosure: I received a free Brava oven to try out. However, all opinions and views on this post are 100% my own.