Amish stoves are wood burning, made of steel with a porcelain finish and can be furnished with a hot water reservoir. Modern models also feature oven thermometers, warming closets and shelving for cooking and baking items. These stoves are well suited for rural areas because they operate without electricity.
The wood burns in a firebox lined with brick, usually in the left rear of the stove. It is so well insulated that it keeps the fire at a low burn all night, allowing use of the stove without rebuilding the fire. Accessing the firebox is done through the side, front or top, depending on the model. Large fireboxes are preferred because they use bigger pieces of wood, and the fire lasts longer.
The fire temperature is increased for cooking by turning knobs that regulate air flow, increasing the flame. Instead of burners, Amish stoves have flat cooking plates with lids that are much easier to clean. Ovens are large and temperature controlled. Some models can hold eight loaves of bread at the same time. The oven also doubles as a space heater when the door is left open.
While some wood cook stoves on the market are relatively lightweight and built with screws, the Amish models use heavy-duty steel. The pieces are welded together, ensuring that they last a lifetime.