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What is a Rethermalizer?

Retherming is reheating previously cooked food to a safe temperature. According to the USDA, prepared food must be reheated to an internal temperature of 165°F, within two hours, or it must be discarded. Cooking times of 90 minutes are preferred, to allow a safe amount of flexible preparation and cooking time.

Ovens that are designed specifically for retherming are called thermalizers but are also known as retherm ovens or rethermalizers.

How Does a CVap® Rethermalizer Work?

What makes CVap ovens different? CVap’s dual-heat system. Controlled vapor heat is incredibly efficient at heat transfer. Consequently, it quickly brings food to serving temperature without burning the outer edges. CVap’s air heat controls surface texture, so foods are as moist or crispy as you desire.

CVap RTV Retherm Ovens are specifically designed for thermalizing. They feature additional heating elements to pump more BTUs into the oven’s interior. Consequently, they are the fastest ovens we make.

CVap CHV Cook and Hold Ovens are also capable of rethermalizing foods within USDA guidelines.

What are the Benefits of Using a Retherm Oven in Your Kitchen?


Thermalizer ovens allow off-site food preparation. This is advantageous for centralized kitchens with satellite operations. Critically, CVap Retherm Ovens max out at 350°F. Consequently, they don’t require ventilation hoods (in most locations).


CVap ovens aren’t limited to simple retherming. They can bake, poach, braise, roast, low-temp steam, stage, and more! They offer the versatility of a combi oven, without the maintenance headaches and expense.

Food Safety

Thermalization effectively destroys harmful microorganisms, making food safer to consume. By heating the food to at least 165°F in less than two hours, pathogens like Salmonella, E. coli, and Listeria are killed, reducing the risk of foodborne illnesses.

Preservation of Nutritional Value

Thermalization is a gentle heating process that helps to preserve food’s nutritional content. Unlike more aggressive heat treatments, such as canning, thermalization can minimize nutrient loss and maintain the food’s overall quality.

Minimal Flavor and Texture Changes

CVap Retherm Ovens minimize negative impacts on the sensory qualities of food, such as flavor, color, and texture. The relatively lower temperatures used in thermalization compared to other sterilization methods help retain the natural characteristics of the food.

Consistency and Precision

CVap Retherm Ovens provide precise temperature and time control, ensuring that food is heated uniformly throughout the product. This consistency is crucial for achieving the desired food safety outcomes. Consistency is also crucial for customer satisfaction.


CVap Retherm Ovens have greater wattage and air movement. Consequently, this improves energy transfer efficiency. Retherm efficiency is the transfer of energy from a heated oven to a thermal mass (food) at a fast and controlled rate. Retherm energy efficiency is a measure of how much of the energy that an oven consumes is delivered to the food product during the rethermalization process.

The larger the thermal mass, the more energy (kW), is needed to transfer to the mass. In the same regard, the more energy (kW), the faster the thermal mass can absorb the energy and reach desired temperatures. Consequently, this makes CVap Retherm Ovens ideal for reheating chilled or frozen foods. They deliver lots of energy, quickly.

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