Halachos of Using an Oven on Shabbos – Whether Standard or Sabbath Mode

STAR-K has worked with numerous appliance companies to make modern appliances more kosher-consumer friendly for Shabbos and Yom Tov. We have helped develop features that, in many cases, eliminate lights, icons, tones and digital displays; provide for timed bake without tones and icons; and enable temperature adjustments on Yom Tov.

The appliance companies named this constellation of features “the Sabbath mode” – a naming decision that has contributed to some confusion by consumers as to the proper halachic use of these ovens on Shabbos.

See below for a brief summary clarifying the proper halachic use of any oven on Shabbos:

1. No adjustment to the temperature is permitted on Shabbos, even in Sabbath Mode.

2. All food must be fully cooked and placed in the oven before Shabbos. No food (cooked or non-cooked) may be placed in the oven on Shabbos to re-warm or cook. This is true regarding ovens as well as warming drawers.

3. According to Rabbi Moshe Heinemann, STAR-K’s Rabbinic Administrator, a thermostatically controlled oven that is on during Shabbos (as opposed to one programmed to shut off via Time Bake) may be opened one time and all the food must be removed from the oven at that time. The oven may not be accessed again during the remainder of Shabbos.

4. The controls of an oven that is left on for Shabbos (or a portion of Shabbos through the use of Time Bake) should be covered (e.g., with a piece of aluminum foil). IMPORTANT: Be careful not to cover any vents.

STAR-K would greatly appreciate the help of rabbonim in publicizing these important halachos to their congregants.

Consumers who are interested in STAR-K certified Sabbath Mode ovens are invited to visit the appliance page of our site.