Does a person actually need a stove

If you have a kitchen with very little physical space, can a person get by with a dual burner hotplate, toaster oven and microwave rather than a stove, or does a stove offer functions that you cannot get from those 3 instruments?

Of course a stove, and a full size oven, offer more flexibility. That noted, if you have simple tastes, you can get by with what you’ve listed. Add a crockpot and a George Foreman grill, and you’re good…for one person, anyway.

Sweet. Do they make crockpots with built in MP3 players that play the song ‘a better place to be’ by Harry Chapin on a 24 hour loop?

If you like to cook a lot you might find yourself frustrated but if you’re just worried about being able to make do you’ll be fine. A stove does things you can’t do with any of those three but there will still be a lot of things that you can make with no problem.

Also, sorry if you’re going through rough times, good luck to you and I hope things get better.

You’ll have trouble cooking a turkey…

What’s the difference between a stovetop and a hotplate? Apart from structural differences, aren’t they just heating elements to put a saucepan on?

You could make the microwave oven one that includes convection and it provide more flexibility. It might cost as much as a stove, though.

Having a stove that’s usually hooked up to 220 volts will save you some/a lot on the electric bill.

You can get portable roasters. They won’t get the turkey nice and brown, but they’ll cook it to eminent edibility.

You can get away with a microwave. No need for the burners (yes, you can cook pasta and rice and veggies in the microwave) unless you absolutely need to eat fried stuff. And if you use Bread With A Crust (souther-European style) or Pita style, you don’t need a toaster.

The right sized toaster oven will cook a 12 lb turkey or ham.

How do I know this, you ask?

My sister’s oven was out over the holidays. Both were cooked in the toaster oven and the ham warmed up in the micro.

Funny, mudgirl (now 10) and I were just discussing this very thing a couple of days ago. I was telling her about how low-income people are often reduced to eating the worst kinds of food because they don’t have full kitchen facilities. I told her that just giving them more money doesn’t seem to be the answer; she said “Well, instead of giving them more money, you could give them a Crock Pot; you can cook lots of healthy food in a Crock Pot!”

And by golly, she’s right.

If I didn’t have a range (stove top/oven) but did have a Crock Pot (or slow cooker), microwave, and toaster, I think I could do all right as far as turning out nutritious meals for my family.

So to address the OP, no, I don’t think you really need a range, if you have a few basic counter-top appliances.

It North America, I am pretty sure it is sacrilege not to be at least capable of making fried foods, not to mention illegal in the state of Texas. Surely you don’t expect one to make cook bacon or grilled cheese in the microwave. (Do not get me started on the BaconWave. It is not to be spoken of except to be vilified.)

(You can make a grilled cheese sandwich, wrapped in foil, and pressed flat with an iron.:))
I use my toaster oven every day, far more than the regular oven. And the microwave is fine for boiling water and things. You can make a cake in a crockpot, with an insert.

True, but it’s not quite the same when it isn’t sizzling in butter. I mean, nobody eats grilled cheese for their health.

I honestly think I could do 90% of my cooking on one hotplate using 3 pans. I only use my microwave for steamed frozen vegetables or rice. I do use my crockpot a bit and hardly ever need an oven of any description.

For the first six months of my marriage, I cooked everything on a two-burner hotplate – no other appliances, except a toaster and a coffeepot. I missed being able to roast and bake, but it wasn’t really that bad. It took some planning though.

I don’t think that most Japanese homes have an oven, and yet the people there seem to survive. I use mine once or twice a week; I cook a lot, but bake/roast only relatively rarely.

Speaking as someone who has lived without a stove, grill, or hotplate (and just owning a microwave) for seven years (and counting)…I can safely say, no, a person doesn’t need a stove.

Of course you can get by. Chinese homes often just have one hot plate and a rice cooker, and they do fine. You can get by with anything if you like.

In reality, it depends on how much you like to cook. When I had a five burner stove and a full sized oven, I put them to use. I held great dinner parties, did a lot of baking for friends, etc. It’s tough to make an elaborate multi-course meal with just two burners and a pain to bake large quantities in a toaster oven. Right now I just have a two-burner hot plate (living in China) and I don’t do a heck of a lot of cooking, in part because it’d be hard to do my style of cooking with such limited resources.

I live alone and I have not used a stove even once in at least 20 years. I have used a microwave.