Gas-powered ranges are popular, and for good reason. For a long time they’ve been the top choice of professional chefs—and a growing number of home cooks, too. The reason comes down to precision, consistency, and flavor. Gas burners can cook food faster and with greater ease and precision than electric ranges. With gas, you can modulate burner temperature immediately, unlike electric burners that take time to heat up and cool down. Gas also is usually less expensive to run on a daily basis.
Beyond their superior cooking and heating power, gas ranges are compatible with all types of cookware, including nonstick pans, iron skillets, stainless steel pots, and copper kettles. Many also feature a griddle for making pancakes and searing meat for the whole family to enjoy. If your kitchen has a gas hookup, a new gas range is a fairly easy update to your kitchen that can pay off immediately. Top picks below include affordable options as well as several higher-end models in a range of sizes.
- BEST OVERALL: GE JGB735SPSS 30 in. 5.0 cu. ft. Gas Range
- BEST BUDGET: Whirlpool 5.1 Cu. Ft. Freestanding Gas Range
- BEST HIGH-END: BlueStar 30” Culinary Series Sealed Burner Range
- BEST DUAL OVEN: KitchenAid 6.0-Cubic-Foot Double Oven Gas Range
- BEST FEATURES: Frigidaire Gallery 30-in 5-Burner Air Fry Gas Range
- BEST 36-INCH: NXR LS 36-in Convection Freestanding Gas Range
What to Consider When Choosing the Best Gas Range
Gas ranges are available in two main styles: slide-in and freestanding. Beyond that key distinction, there are dozens of specifications and settings to consider. It’s also important to be familiar with the various features and safety precautions since these ranges use an open flame to cook food. Below is the breakdown of some of the most important features to consider before buying a new gas range.
Slide-in vs. Freestanding
Freestanding gas ranges come in standard sizes, designed to fill the spot where your current range sits. The sides of freestanding ranges are finished, which means they are ready-made to slip between your cabinets or stand alone. The benefits include the ease and convenience of installation. A major renovation or custom installation is not usually required. They also have a backguard, which protects the wall from splashes and also may house a clock, timer, and some controls. Other controls can be found on the front or sides, depending on the maker and model.
In contrast, slide-in ranges are designed to blend seamlessly into your kitchen setup. They have unfinished sides and are intended to fit between cabinets. Slide-in ranges have cooktops that fit flush with the surrounding countertops so that liquids and crumbs don’t slip through the cracks. Controls are typically on top or in the front, and their lack of backguard may require the addition of a backsplash to protect the wall while cooking.
If you currently have a freestanding range and want to swap it out for a slide-in model, you may have to update your countertops and backsplash to accommodate the different style. In general, slide-in models can involve higher installation costs but also offer a sleeker, more seamless look.
Gas ranges can be compared by their power and precision. When it comes to product specs, you may want your chosen gas range to measure up in the following three ways.
A standard gas cooktop is 30 inches wide. Extra-large and pro-grade ranges can be between 36 and 48 inches wide. A 30-inch range is functional for most small to medium households. If you have many mouths to feed or desire more cooking room to experiment, consider a 36-inch range. Its slightly larger cooking surface may have additional burners and can accommodate more pots and pans. If you have the space, it won’t significantly eat into your cabinet and countertop space.
Number of Burners
Low- to middle-grade gas ranges typically have four gas-powered burners. Higher end, professional-grade models may have five or six. If you enjoy making pancakes or frying meat, look for a griddle burner or built-in griddle feature in the center or side of the cooktop. These higher heat burners are larger in size and used for making pancakes, burgers, and grilling veggies.
The power output of each burner on a gas range is measured in units of heat called British Thermal Units (BTUs). Low- to middle-grade ranges come with four burners that each produce the same number of BTUs. More deluxe models may offer different BTU outputs for each burner as well as higher BTU output overall.
Gas ranges with high BTU burners typically cost more but also produce more consistent results. For simmering and slow cooking, a lower heat output from about 5,000 to 9,500 BTUs is usually enough. For boiling, searing, and pan frying, high heat upwards of 20,000 BTUs would work. You can always turn down the heat on a higher output burner, but you can’t turn it up if the power isn’t there.
The best gas ranges not only have beautifully designed, powerful burners; they also provide large, evenly heated ovens. There are three main specifications that help compare ovens: size, single vs. dual, and convection vs. conventional.
Ovens are measured in cubic feet, with standard oven sizes for gas ranges coming in between 4 to 6 cubic feet. For a family or multiperson household, an oven would probably require 4 cubic feet or more. The most versatile gas ranges on the market typically include an oven of 5 to 6 cubic feet, which will be more than sufficient to cook daily meals for a household of four or more.
Single vs. Dual
If you like to bake, broil, or warm multiple dishes at once and would like the convenience and efficiency of separate temperature zones, then you may want to consider a range with a dual oven. These ranges have stacking ovens, one on top of the other. By using different settings for each oven, they can be used simultaneously to cook entire meals and desserts in half the time it would take with a single oven.
Dual oven ranges are more expensive than single ovens, and both ovens are usually smaller than a range’s single oven. Some people also find that the lower oven is harder to reach and operate than the top oven.
Convection vs. Conventional
Unlike conventional ovens that rely on the natural movement of heat waves to bake food evenly, a convection oven has a fan that circulates the hot air evenly for a consistent temperature and well-baked results. Expect food to cook and bake up to 25 percent faster on convection settings, and you also may need to adjust the cooking temperature that’s suggested by traditional recipes.
Some convection ovens have an easy conversion setting, allowing you to translate traditional recipe temperatures into convection settings. In general, shallower pans and baking sheets are used while cooking on convection settings since air can circulate more easily through the dish, baking and browning food consistently. Casseroles and deep-dish pans are better suited to conventional baking methods.
While gas burners can function when the power is out, a convection fan is electrically powered. So if you have a power outage, the convection feature won’t work. These ovens are slightly pricier than conventional ovens, adding at least $100 to the overall cost of a gas range.
From basic gas ranges with four burners and one oven to high-tech models that offer delayed starts and self-cleaning mode, there are dozens of additional features offered with gas ranges. Here are a few of the most popular features.
- A high-heat burner for boiling, stir frying, searing, and more.
- A low-heat burner for simmering, poaching, and reheating.
- A griddle burner for making pancakes and cooking meats in their own fat.
- Self-cleaning mode for the oven, which uses steam to cleanse the surface of baked-on particles, odors, and grime.
- Wi-Fi-enabled features connect to your smartphone via an app, allowing you to remotely monitor temperature, turn the oven on and off, set timers, and more. However, there are obvious safety concerns with operating an oven remotely.
- Delayed start gives you the option of preprogramming when the oven will start. Again, there can be safety concerns with operating a range when you are away from your kitchen, so this is a feature that should be used with extra care.
- A warming drawer keeps freshly prepared food warm while you’re waiting for guests to arrive.
- A storage drawer beneath the oven offers additional space for pots and pans.
- Adjustable racks inside the oven allow you to perfectly position baking trays for even results.
- Customizable colors and finishes can blend with the current design of a home and give your kitchen a professional look.
Our Top Picks
If you are looking to upgrade your current range to take advantage of new features or styles, or if you need a new range because of an oven problem, look no further. Included is a selection of the best of both freestanding and slide-in ranges based on top-quality engineering, user-friendly features, and professional results. In this list are different sizes and styles with an extra-large 36-inch option, too.
GE’s 30-inch gas range has most of the desirable features home chefs want in freestanding gas ranges. The flat, edge-to-edge cooktop provides a large cooking space and is compatible with any style or material of cookware. In the center, a large nonstick griddle gives you more surface area for cooking and grilling. With five burners that range in power output from 9,500 to 18,000 BTUs, you can quickly boil water as well as control heat with precision. The heavy-duty grates can be cleaned in the dishwasher or in the self-cleaning oven, which has a steam-cleaning setting.
The gas convection oven is 5 cubic feet, which is big enough to simultaneously make multiple dishes meals for your family. One key feature is the no-preheat air fry, which shortens cook time and allows you to make healthy, crispy main meals and sides. A roller rack is included, making removing heavy or unwieldy cookware easy and safe. A drawer at the bottom gives you ample space for storing pots, pans, and baking sheets. Before purchasing, make sure you have a natural gas line, a new gas flex connection kit, and a 110-volt, three-prong electrical outlet.
If you want to replace your standard electric range with a gas-powered cooktop and oven, consider this Whirlpool model. It comes at an affordable price without sacrificing the power and features that cooks love about gas ranges. The cooktop contains five burners: one 5,000-BTU, one 8,000-BTU, one 9,500-BTU, and two 15,000-BTU burners for maximum efficiency. The dishwasher-safe sealed cast-iron grates cover nearly the entire cooktop surface and are designed to prevent spills from spreading.
The oven is 5.1 cubic feet and features two adjustable racks. The custom broil settings operate in 5 degree increments, from 300 to 525 degrees Fahrenheit, ensuring precise temperature control and perfectly cooked dishes. The oven window and interior light allow easy monitoring without opening the door and letting heat escape. The control lock is an extra safety feature which prevents unintentional activation, especially useful if you have kids.
BlueStar is a heritage American company, operating out of Pennsylvania since 1880. Their premier gas ranges combine professional-level power and craftsmanship with user-friendly designs that befit a home chef. While you can purchase standard models, like this 30-inch Culinary Series Sealed Burner Range, what sets BlueStar apart is its personal touch. You can customize your range with a host of finishes, features, and accessories.
Three of the four sealed burners provide maximum cooking area and operate at an ultra powerful 21,000 BTUs. For precision cooking, this range also features a 5,000-BTU simmer burner. The convection gas oven fits commercial-size sheet pans and features a 1,850-degree commercial-grade infrared boiler. Choose from more than 1,000 colors and finishes for a range that integrates seamlessly into your kitchen.
A double oven is a luxury and sometimes a necessity for large families and serious home cooks. With KitchenAid’s 30-inch-wide double oven gas range, you get 6 cubic feet of oven capacity as well as separate temperature zones for preparing a variety of dishes simultaneously. The cooktop has five burners, ranging in power from 5,000 to 17,000 BTUs, and a central griddle for more grilling and searing space.
But it’s the two even-heat convection ovens that are the real draw. The convection fan ensures that the interior is consistently heated, with a conversion setting that allows you to easily change conventional settings for recipes into convection settings. Gliding racks move smoothly in and out and won’t tilt or wobble, even with large pans and heavy dishes. Glass touch controls make operating and adjusting heat and other settings easy and user-friendly. The entire surface is stainless steel and easy to wipe clean.
With just a touch of oil, you can make crispy, delicious meals—at a fraction of the cost and caloric content—thanks to air fry. Frigidaire’s freestanding gas range was the first appliance to pioneer this easy cooking method, and it’s still the gold standard for ranges with all the bells and whistles. The cooktop features four round burners, ranging in power from 5,000 to 18,000 BTUs, plus a central oval burner, perfect for your griddle pan. The wrought-iron burners are easy to remove and clean.
Inside, the convection gas oven, which measures 5.6 cubic feet, has a quick preheat setting, which means you can start baking in just a few minutes. You also can quickly air fry meals, broil, and more, thanks to a third heating element and an effective convection fan. It has a 30-minute steam clean mode and its stainless steel resists fingerprints.
NXR’s restaurant-style ranges are engineered and manufactured in Germany with home cooks in mind. The six cast-iron burners give you maximum versatility, with power ranging from 6,000 BTUs for delicate simmering to 18,000 BTUs for boiling and stir frying. Black porcelain drip pans manage spills easily and make cleanup a snap. The 5.5-cubic-foot oven has an extra-large capacity and includes a 10,000 BTU broiler burner, perfect for making fish and grilling kabobs. The interior convection fan circulates air to create an even temperature environment.
NXR’s freestanding higher-end gas range is crafted from food-grade stainless steel. The cooktop is 36 inches wide, which offers more cooking space than standard 30-inch models. This range is best for cooks who need plenty of room, versatility, and the ability to juggle multiple dishes at once.
FAQs About Gas Ranges
We’ve gathered the answers to some of the most common questions about gas ranges. Before purchasing a new gas range, make sure your kitchen has a gas line and speak with a professional contractor before ordering a slide-in range, which may require custom installation.
Q. What is a slide-in range?
Thanks to unfinished sides and no backguard, slide-in ranges are intended to sit flush with surrounding countertops and provide a sleek, custom look to your kitchen.
Q. What are the most common sizes for ranges?
Standard gas ranges are 30 inches wide, while deluxe and professional-grade models may be 36 to 48 inches wide. Most ovens range from 4 to 6 cubic feet.
Q. How do I choose a gas stove?
Make sure you have a gas connection in your kitchen before purchasing a new gas stove. Then, make sure you have a variety of burners with low to high BTU output, from 5,000 to 20,000 BTUs per burner.
Q. Do gas stoves and ranges require more ventilation than electric ranges?
It depends. In general, you won’t need extra venting to release fumes outside your home. Check your local building codes on ventilation requirements. Carbon monoxide, a poisonous gas, is a byproduct of natural gas and a risk with gas ranges. For safety reasons, be sure to install a carbon monoxide detector.