Best Warming Drawer 2019 – Buyer’s Guide

Installed neatly below your oven, warming drawers are a very handy item to have. Despite having been around for a long time, it is only in recent years that they have soared in popularity. But to say they take up little room, they have a huge task on their hands.

They essentially keep tableware at a nice temperature to be able to serve hot food, keeping it warmer for longer. It is particularly a great idea if you have a large household or frequently have guests, as it will make your job of serving up much easier. We have all struggled dishing up the Sunday dinner, right?

You could also keep smaller food items in there to stay warm while something else is finishing off in the main oven, and it won’t dry out. Or, use it to prove dough or melt chocolate if you’re a baker, or defrost the dinner if you forgot to leave it out earlier.

The Best Warming Drawers – Our Top Picks

IMAGE PRODUCT DETAILS
Miele ESW7120 Built In Warming Drawer
  • Dimensions: H28.9 x W59.5 x D57cm
  • Capacity: 23kg
  • Maximum Load: 12kg
  • Control: Touch
  • Extra Features: Slow cooking, Dough proving
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Newworld Unbranded UWD14 Built In Warming Drawer
  • Dimensions: H14.1 x W59.5 x D56.1cm
  • Capacity: 14L
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Touch
  • Extra Features: N/A
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AEG Mastery KDE912922M Built In Warming Drawer
  • Dimensions: H29.5 x W59.5 x D53.5
  • Capacity: 58L
  • Maximum Load: 4kg
  • Control: Dial
  • Extra Features: Dough proving, Defrost
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Best Warming Drawers

NEFF N90 N17HH10N0B Built In Warming Drawer

One of the most popular warming drawers that have been released in the past few years. It combines simplicity with modernity perfectly, and will accompany pretty much any kitchen.

It is 14cm tall, so a short unit, but can hold up to 25kg in weight so it is ideal if your plates are particularly heavy or you’ll have a few to stack up in preparation for dinner time. This makes it one of the best at accommodating heavier items, which is good if you like to warm heavy casserole dishes or bowls.

The push-pull mechanism is great for ease. This means you don’t have to free up a hand to pull it open with a handle, and there is a lot less risk it will jam. It will also close with a simple push, which is a gentle manoeuvre and won’t send any food on the plates flying.

When fitting, this drawer has been designed to be installed at eye-level. Functions-wise, it will keep your plates warm and defrost food with a temperature range of 30 to 80 °C, so there are no extras such as dough proving or slow cooking. The lack of functionality across the board means it is not cheap, but with a host of glowing 5* reviews and a nice ceramic glass base for easy cleaning, making the splash now will save you a headache in the future.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H14 x W59.6 x D54.8cm
  • Capacity: 20L
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Knobs
  • Extra Features: Defrost

We like

  • Does the basics really well
  • Very stylish
  • Quality build and feel

We dislike

  • A bit pricey to say there's not many extras

Final Verdict

Will match pretty much any oven and cooking set, and is so easy to use that juggling mealtimes will no longer be a pain

Miele ESW7120 Built In Warming Drawer

If you need something really at the professional end of the scale, then this drawer from Miele steals the show.

Not only is it 28.9cm tall and able to hold up to 12kg, but it is Smart so can be controlled and adjusted over the Wi-Fi connection in your home and through your phone or tablet. Just download the Miele mobile app and the two will pair up with ease. You also get some recipe ideas thrown in…

You can slow cook in it, which is perfect if you need to free up space in the oven. With precise temperature control technology, the heat is maintained within 1 degree throughout the whole process, which is essential when cooking for long periods. In fact, we’d say it could give you even better results than your dedicated slow cooking pot.

The price is representative of the technology and work which has gone into the product. It has been tested for the equivalent of 20 years’ use, so you could argue that spending this now for an item which will last so long is better than spending £400 on a drawer every four/five years. Plus it is bang up to date with smart connectivity, so you won’t be yearning for a later model in a couple of years time.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H28.9 x W59.5 x D57cm
  • Capacity: 23kg
  • Maximum Load: 12kg
  • Control: Touch
  • Extra Features: Slow cooking, Dough proving

We like

  • Wide 30-85 °C temperature range
  • 20 years of use guarantee
  • Touch control

We dislike

  • Price (but a fabulous investment)

Final Verdict

One for those who know their cooking sessions will revolve around having a warming drawer to hand, but so worth the price

Bosch Serie 6 BIC510NS0B Built In Warming Drawer

With a 23 litre capacity, you can heat enough crockery and cutlery for six table place settings with this Bosch warming drawer, which makes larger events such as the Christmas dinner a bit less of a headache.

There are four functions to choose from: dough proving, plate warming, defrost and keeping food warm. This means there’s a nice temperature range too, from 40 to 80 °C. There is a rubber mat on the bottom of the drawer, which is perfect for keeping everything steady when the drawer is being pulled in and out.

A handle-less push door ensures that even when your hands are full with dishes and food, the drawer is still able to be opened. It is designed to be fitted at eye-level, so will be simple to push too.

We loved that it comes with a plug attached. As long as there is no need to make any changes to the layout or cable length, it can probably be installed without the need for an electrician so this reduces overall costs and faffing.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H14 x W56.8 x D55cm
  • Capacity: 23L
  • Maximum Load: 15kg
  • Control: Rotary
  • Extra Features: Defrost, Dough proving

We like

  • Extra functions
  • Rubber mat keeps everything secure
  • Great size

We dislike

  • Ensuring it is fully shut after closing can take a while to get the hang of

Final Verdict

A really attractive item, and to say it can do everything possible, the price isn’t bad either

Newworld Unbranded UWD14 Built In Warming Drawer

Our pick for the best budget warming drawer around. Newworld are great when it comes to reliable yet affordable kitchen appliances, and this warming drawer is ideal if you need the practicality but don’t want to pay the earth for it.

The 14 litre capacity may not be the biggest of those we have reviewed, but will still fit enough plates for a family meal. You can choose the warming plate function or to keep food warm, which makes serving it all at the same time easier.

The soft closing door will protect your food from spilling all over the place when you close the drawer, and also protects the mechanisms over the long-term use. With a temperature range of 40 – 80 °C, you can pick the level which suits the task best.

There are no extras like dough proving or defrosting, but as seeing it is almost half the price of the next budget pick on our list, they are two functions which will likely be fine to forget about if cost is the main priority.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H14.1 x W59.5 x D56.1cm
  • Capacity: 14L
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Touch
  • Extra Features: N/A

We like

  • Price
  • Touch control - great for price
  • Power indicator

We dislike

  • Simple - no extra functions

Final Verdict

Simple to use and while it is basic, the price makes it very accessible and a great alternative to cold food or using the microwave

SMEG Cucina CTP15X

If you want the majority stainless steel look, then kitchen appliance champions Smeg have designed a neat little warming drawer which will make you very happy.

It stands at 13cm tall, but will hold up to 25kgs, making it ideal for smaller heavy items such as mugs, bowls and plate stacks. You can ensure food stays warm before it is ready to serve to guests with the dedicated function, and there is an indicator light which will inform everybody when it is switched on.

It lacks any big extra functions such as dough proving or slow cooking. For this reason, we would say it is best for anyone who literally just wants to keep plates warm but is equally as concerned about the looks and aesthetics of the appliance. But it comes with a plug attached so is simple to fit, and the 30 to 75 °C temperature range is generous.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H13 x W59.5 x D53.5cm
  • Capacity: 18L
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Touch
  • Extra Features: N/A

We like

  • Easy to use
  • Matches many other Smeg products

We dislike

  • Lack of functions for more advanced tasks

Final Verdict

Basic and shows off more when it comes to looks than functions, but if you have other Smeg products then it is going to fit right in

AEG Mastery KDE912922M Built In Warming Drawer

At 29.5cm tall, this is one of the deepest warming drawers we have featured. On top of this, the 58 litre capacity offers plenty of space to heat 12 place settings – the Christmas dinner and barbecues will never be hectic again.

It can be hard getting so much food out in as little time as possible to keep it all warm, so this item could be a real saviour. You will also fall in love with it if you enjoy baking, particularly of the savoury kind. Thanks to the combination of the large capacity and dough proving technology, you can make larger loaves and they’ll still have plenty of room to ge ready for baking.

Despite the large size it will only hold up to 4kg of goods, so isn’t one for really heavy items. But it is lined with an anti-slip mat, which will keep the contents steady even when the drawer is opened and closed with force. It is designed to fit in an eye level unit, so will be easy to access and safe to use.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H29.5 x W59.5 x D53.5
  • Capacity: 58L
  • Maximum Load: 4kg
  • Control: Dial
  • Extra Features: Dough proving, Defrost

We like

  • Power indicator light
  • Anti-fingerprint stainless steel
  • Easy rotary control

We dislike

  • Can only hold a small weight

Final Verdict

The sheer capacity will be the clincher here for some, so while it isn’t the showiest, it wins for practicality

Siemens IQ-700 BI630CNS1B

The Siemens IQ range of appliances has proved incredibly popular, with ovens that have really changed the game and given the most dedicated cooks and bakers something to talk about.

So to have the matching warming drawer is a must. But don’t panic if you don’t have a Siemens IQ oven – the sleek black design and ease of use and installation will ensure it fits into any setup.

As it uses telescopic runners, it pulls out fully so you can access the entire inside of the drawer with ease, which makes loading it up and removing the crockery easy and safe. It also makes it much easier when it comes to cleaning it and getting right into those corners. An easy clean base is in place to make the job easier, too.

The defrost function will definitely come in handy for those of you who always find that their favourite curry they want for dinner and have a sudden craving for requires the frozen chicken in the freezer.

There is a closure latch which we love for safety as well, which is particularly important if you have little ones knocking about. It makes it a bit trickier to pull out, but it is still easy enough when required.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H14 x W59.5 x D54.8cm
  • Capacity: 20L
  • Control: Rotary
  • Extra Features: Defrost
  • Maximum Load: 25kg

We like

  • Design
  • Easy to clean and keep clean
  • Indicator light for power

We dislike

  • A few other online reviews say it can have issues with thermostat regulations

Final Verdict

A lovely mid-priced item which does all the basics which you’d expect of it, and it works very well either as part of the wider collection or a standalone

NEFF N90 N17HH20N0B

Depth and weight usually don’t really go hand in hand when it comes to warming drawers, but this Neff model actually combines the two very well. At 29cm tall and able to hold 25kg, it is a fabulous choice if you have heavy high-quality plates and casserole dishes but still want some depth for latte glasses etc.

A simple push will open the drawer, so if you have your hands full or need a smooth interaction so the espresso cups inside don’t go tumbling, this makes it an easy process.

It looks nice and sleek, and matches the Neff range of ovens and other cookware perfectly. It would also work as standalone however, as from the outside it is sleek and unbranded.

Installation is incredibly easy, with just four screws and a plug to place in.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H29 x W59.6 x D54.8
  • Capacity: 52L
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Knobs
  • Extra Features: Defrost

We like

  • Clean design
  • All easy to keep clean and shiny

We dislike

  • A couple of reviews mention that longevity is not great - some ~three years in all

Final Verdict

Combines depth with weight capacity to ensure it is flexible enough for your cooking needs

Bosch Serie 8 BIC630NS1B

Perfectly suited to smaller, heavy items, this warmer can heat your plates and keep your food warm until it is ready to serve so you can all sit down for mealtime together.

It isn’t just warming it can do either. A handy dough proving function will get your breads to perfection ready to bake, and you can also defrost food safely so you don’t have to plan ahead too much with every dinner.

The build is very solid, which we would expect from a manufacturer like this of course. But it is still good to know that it will last through the daily wear and tear of use, and for a good few years until it has broken even cost wise at the very least.

We also really liked the Cool Front technology which keeps the outside of the drawer cold. If you have a busy kitchen or some kids about, this is going to give you the safety you need. As a bonus, it is designed to fit at eye-level so gives you great access.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H14 x W59.5 x D54.8cm
  • Capacity: 20L
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Knobs
  • Extra Features: Dough proving

We like

  • Easy cleaning
  • Indicator light

We dislike

  • Attracts fingerprints

Final Verdict

It will look lovely in every kitchen, and is packed with plenty of extras and safety features to keep you happy

Caple WD140BK 14cm Warming Drawer

You get a lot with this drawer to say it is a great budget pick. There’s the fan heating, push/pull opening and 30-75°C adjustable thermostat – and that is just the start.

If you are one to forget that your appliances are switched on, then the 90 minute automatic turn off is ideal. It will switch off if it hasn’t been used in this time frame, which doesn’t only protect you and your home but also saves energy.

At the top temperature, warming your plates will only take around 4-5 minutes, so there isn’t too much planning ahead to be done. The non-slip base cover gives your crockery a good stable base, and also makes it easy to clean and wipe out when the time comes.

The 400W motor and fan heating balances the heat throughout the entire unit, so even if smaller items are pushed right into the corners, they will still get the same attention.

Specifications

  • Dimensions: H14 x W59.4 x D54.6cm
  • Capacity: N/A
  • Maximum Load: 25kg
  • Control: Dial
  • Extra Features: N/A

We like

  • Price
  • Handleless opening
  • Black glass finish

We dislike

  • Just covers the basics

Final Verdict

One of the cheapest picks, yet still very reliable and does the essentials incredibly well

Help and Resources

Warming Drawer Buying Guide

Sizes

You can generally get two depths of warming drawer: 140mm and 290mm depth. The former is great for general tasks such as warming plates, and the latter (also known as a Sous Chef warming drawer) can be used in the same way as the shallow one, but also to heat larger pieces of crockery such as casserole dishes.

Consider the kinds of things you want your warming drawer to do. If it is just keeping crockery warm, then a small one will likely be sufficient and save you some money. Anything more, such as cooking or proving dough, and a taller model could be worth the investment.

Weight Capacity

Just as with other drawer types, warming drawers can only hold a certain weight. Breaking this could mean a warped drawer or long-term damage.

Shallow drawers are usually best at holding heavier weights as there is less pressure on the unit as a whole, so try to find the perfect balance between depth and weight by thinking about the dishes and the items you’re most likely to ty and keep warm.

Fitting

Bear in mind that, while warming drawers usually aren’t automatically included in kitchens, there are usually plenty of places which can accommodate them, such as space under your oven area or where a sliding drawer would often go. But this will often be the shallower sizes.

So, if you live in a rental property or don’t want to make too many changes to your kitchen, a shallower drawer will often be easier to fit. But larger ones are great if you have the space, or if you are installing a new kitchen. Generally, most warming drawers are now released with installing under built-in eye-level ovens in mind.

Always consider the convenience of removing dishes from the drawer when you fit. You don’t want to have to reach awkwardly while carrying hot plates, as this could cause injury or damage.

Also, when thinking about installation, check how the product is presented. Some will need to be hard wired by an expert electrician, but others can come with a plug, meaning you can do the work yourself if no changes need to be made to the layout.

Safety

All drawers usually come with power lights to alert you when the unit is switched on. Other things to look out for are:

  • Temperature Selection – Some have a range of choice, from lower heat that will warm cutlery without risking cracking it to higher which can even slow cook food. This will boost safety because everything will be the ideal temperature
  • Full Extension – Ensure the drawer will extend fully out when open to make it easier to access the contents. You may have to reconsider where you are installing it to make this happen – don’t place near open doors or tight corners etc
  • Automatic shut off – After the unit has not been in use for a while, it is good to know that even if you forget to turn it off manually, it will do so automatically

FAQ’s

What Are Warming Drawers For?

The main job of a warming drawer is to keep your plates and other crockery warm before you serve a meal. They can also warm coffee cups or glasses before you have a hot drink.

Serving food on a warm plate/bowl or coffee into a warm mug will keep it warmer for longer, meaning you don’t have to rush to serve it quite as quickly.

Some can also keep food warm if they go up to the correct temperatures, which is great if you want to avoid nuking it in the microwave or risk cooking it any longer in the oven. Keeping it warm in a drawer will lock in moisture and prevent it drying out.

A few drawers out there can also act as a second oven, either defrosting food or proving bread. You could even slow cook in them if there is an appropriate setting.

What Are The Ideal Temperatures For Use With Warming Drawers?

  • Cups And Glasses – 40°C is best, as it keeps the beverage warm for a while, is still cool enough to touch but won’t damage the materials
  • Heating Plates – You don’t want to reach over 60°C for this, as anything higher could both crack the plate and also be too hot to touch when bringing it out
  • Keeping Food Warm – Not only does food need to retain heat, but it also has to be safe to consume afterwards. The ideal is around 70°C for this. This will keep things warm yet safe and not dry them out. Ensure the food is in a heatproof dish
  • Proving Bread – The best for speed is 27°C. Anything above 35°C and the yeast becomes dormant, so look for a drawer which can go as low as 30°C

On top of this, the time that they are in there will depend on the thickness of the items, and how much is in the drawer.