One of the most important things to keep in mind with food warmers is that they do not cook food. They are also not intended to bring cold foods up to safe serving temperatures. They simply keep already-cooked and -heated food at safe-to-serve warmth. Most maintain temperatures between 80 – 220 degrees F. Many allow users to easily load or lift out pans without tilting, helping to prevent messy and costly spills. Most are also fully insulated, making them energy-efficient and limiting the amount of ambient heat that is added to the kitchen.
To fit your capacity requirements, we offer warmers that have one, two, three, or four drawers. Typically, each drawer holds one full-size, 2-1/2 inch deep food pan. Multi-drawer units will often have a stainless steel bottom between each drawer to catch spills and prevent the transfer of flavors from one drawer to another.
Floor models are quite convenient, in that they can be placed almost anywhere there's room and the appropriate electrical connection. These offer the highest capacity, with three or four drawers each.
A countertop model is a good choice if you only need to warm one or two types of food. The compact design makes these ideal for space-challenged kitchens. When choosing this type, it is important to make sure that the number of drawers you choose will actually fit in the space available.
Built-in units will need to fit cabinet or chef station specifications. This type is popular due to its sleek, streamline appearance and space-saving design. Many cooks also prefer the added convenience of under-cabinet warmers, because these units can be placed within arm's reach of their prep stations.
- Models with humidity control can help when you need to warm moist foods and enable you to proof dough. The ability to control the moisture in the air will ensure that items will not dry out if placed in the drawer for prolonged periods. Typically, the humidity level is controlled by a slide control that is adjustable, often without opening the drawer. Most of these produce humidity with water held in a small pan that must be filled by the user.
- Deep drawer models can accommodate pans up to 6-inches deep, allowing them to hold more food, but their depth could interfere with the evenness of heat in denser food.
- Some models are designed to hold two pans per drawer, with those positioned front-to-back and place side-by-side. This enables you to hold several different products in multiple pans and increases the holding capacity.
- Many models have self-closing drawers, which might be a benefit when you consider that units like this would free your hands when handling hot pans of food.
- A narrow design warming drawer can help you fit a unit into a tight space.