Best Radios for the Kitchen

Last updated: 6th February, 2017

Lots of us enjoy listening to the radio while cooking, and having a good kitchen radio can make cooking much more enjoyable.

Buying a radio for the kitchen is a bit different to buying a radio for the living room or bedroom. There are several things to consider, including:

  • Size – the best radios for the kitchen are small and compact.
  • Portability – a portable radio is more convenient and safe for using in the kitchen than one with lots of wires.
  • Volume – cooking can be quite a noisy activity, so you want a radio with decent, powerful speakers.
  • Style – some people just want a radio that sounds good, while for others want a stylish kitchen radio that goes with their decor.
  • Digital or analogue? – Do you want a radio that picks up DAB stations, or would you rather stick with FM?
  • Remote control – a remote control is a good feature to have in the kitchen, as you can change the station or volume without having to walk across the room.

Here’s a roundup of some of the best kitchen radios currently available in the UK.

Philips AE5020 DAB+ FM Radio

The Philips AE5020 is an attractive radio with a wood-style casing and a metal carrying handle. It offers both FM and DAB/DAB+ radio.

Features

  • Takes C style batteries
  • 20 preset stations for FM and 20 for DAB
  • Carrying handle
  • Telescopic aerial

Dimension: 14.8 x 21.1 x 15.5 cm
Weight: 998 g

Pros:

  • Good sound quality for its size
  • Budget-friendly price
  • Looks great
  • Good DAB reception

Cons:

  • Instructions manual is short and poorly written

Buy online: £49.99 on Amazon.co.uk


Roberts Expression DAB/FM RDS Portable Radio

The Roberts Expression has a stylish wood casing design similar to that of the Philips AE5020. If you use rechargeable batteries with it, it will recharge them when the radio is plugged into the mains.

Features:

  • Takes 4 D-sized batteries
  • Stereo headphone socket
  • FM RDS shows the radio station name on the LCD screen
  • Rubber feet to stop it from sliding

Dimensions: 26.2 cm wide x 18.3 cm high x 9 cm deep

Pros:

  • Warm sound
  • Good DAB reception
  • Enough volume even for a noisy restaurant kitchen
  • Easy to use
  • Stylish retro design

Cons:

  • Tone can’t be adjusted

Buy online: £82.99 on Amazon.co.uk


KitSound Swing FM Radio

The KitSound Swing is a small and attractively priced FM radio that would look great in a retro kitchen. Its design is inspired by the 1920s and it comes in a choice of colours: Black, Blue, Red, and Beige.

Features:

  • Mains or battery powered
  • Alarm clock – useful as a timer in the kitchen
  • Carry handle
  • LCD display
  • Takes 4 AA batteries

Dimensions: 11.5 cm high x 7.2 cm wide x 17.9 cm deep
Weight: 630 g

Pros:

  • Cheap
  • Classic retro look
  • Easy to set up
  • Crisp, clear sound
  • Small, compact size

Cons:

  • Saving and using preset stations is fiddly and difficult
  • LCD screen doesn’t stay lit up

Buy online: £34.98 on Amazon.co.uk


Steepletone Brighton

The Steepletone Brighton is another retro portable radio. It has a 1950s-style design and lets you listen to MW, LW and FM radio stations. It’s a cute radio that would make a good present.

Features:

  • Rotary controls for tone, tuning and volume
  • Carrying handle
  • Bluetooth for streaming audio from a smartphone

Dimensions: 30 cm wide x 21 cm high x 8 cm deep

Pros:

  • Low price – excellent value for money
  • Cute retro look

Cons:

  • Sound quality could be improved
  • Doesn’t take batteries

Buy online: £32.99 on Amazon.co.uk


Konig Retro AM/FM Radio

If you’re a fan of Cath Kidston or Emma Bridgewater, you’ll love the design of the Konig Retro. It has a 1950s style that would look great in a retro kitchen.

Features:

  • Takes 6 LR14 batteries (also has a mains lead)
  • Carrying handle
  • Telescopic aerial

Dimensions: 30.1 cm wide x 21 cm high x 8 cm deep
Weight: 1.8 kg

Pros:

  • Fun and quirky design
  • Adjustable tone
  • Lightweight
  • Large dial makes it easy to tune

Cons:

  • No DAB—just AM and FM

Buy online: £33.75 on Amazon.co.uk


Goodmans Oxford 1960’s Vintage Style Digital & FM Radio

This affordable 1960s-style DAB/FM radio comes in a choice of colours: Cream, Moss Green and Sky Blue. It has a leather carrying handle and chrome detailing.

Features:

  • Shows the station name on the LCD display, even for FM thanks to RDS
  • Aux in and headphone socket
  • Mains adapter and battery compartment for 6 C batteries
  • Saves 3 preset stations

Dimensions: 26 cm wide x 16.6 cm high x 7.4 cm deep
Weight: 1 kg

Pros:

  • Beautiful design. Made from plastic, but looks high-quality.
  • Quick to set up and simple to use
  • Good value for money

Cons:

  • Doesn’t come with instructions (they’re online here)
  • Only saves 3 preset stations (many radios save 10 or more)

Buy online: £49.94 on Amazon.co.uk

Read our full review of the Goodmans Oxford 1960’s Style Radio


Roberts Radio Revival iStream2 DAB/DAB+/FM Internet Radio

The Roberts Radio Revival iStream2 is an impressive retro radio with a long list of features, including the ability to listen to over 10,000 stations worldwide over the internet. It’s the priciest radio on this list, and seems somewhat overpriced despite its great features and attractive 1950s-style design.

Features:

  • DAB/DAB+ radio and WiFi internet radio
  • Saves 10 preset stations

Dimensions: 26 cm x 15.5 cm wide x 12.5 cm deep
Weight: 998 g

Pros:

  • Robust and sturdy
  • Crisp and clear sound

Cons:

  • Internet connection can be unreliable, which is frustrating
  • Expensive

Buy online: £181.56 on Amazon.co.uk


Roberts ‘Play Duo’ DAB/DAB+/FM RDS Stereo Radio

The Roberts Play Duo has two stereo speakers and offers FM, DAB and DAB+ radio. It’s mid-priced and has a simple, modern design.

Features:

  • Stereo sound
  • Saves 10 preset stations
  • Takes 4 AA batteries or mains power

Dimensions: 19.5 cm wide x 10.5 cm high x 4 cm deep
Weight: 590 g

Pros:

  • Two speakers offering stereo sound
  • Clear sound
  • Easy to set up and use
  • Solid build quality

Cons:

  • Volume doesn’t go very loud
  • Tone can’t adjusted

See price on Amazon


Arbury DAB Digital FM Portable Radio

This portable FM/DAB radio from Majority isn’t as stylish as most of the radios here, but it’s certainly affordable.

Features:

  • Saves 20 preset stations
  • Alarm and sleep functions
  • Earphone socket
  • Telescopic aerial
  • Built-in rechargeable battery

Dimensions: 14 cm wide x 13 cm high x 4.5 cm deep

Pros:

  • Small, compact size is great for the kitchen
  • Good sound quality for the price
  • Built-in battery is convenient

Cons:

  • Setting preset stations is fiddly
  • Instructions manual is hard to follow

Buy online: £23.95 on Amazon.co.uk

Read our full review of the Majority Arbury radio


August MB400 DAB/DAB+ Radio

This DAB/DAB+ radio can be used as a wireless Bluetooth speaker for streaming music from your smartphone or tablet. If you currently listen to music on your phone in the kitchen, this radio will let you play that music through its 2 x 3W speakers.

Features:

  • Alarm clock – useful as a cooking timer
  • NFC Bluetooth streaming
  • DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Play music from USB drive or SD card
  • Uses 4 C batteries or mains power

Dimensions: 20 cm wide x 15.5 cm high x 7.2 cm deep
Weight: 758g

Pros:

  • Quick and easy to set up
  • 6W output should be enough for the kitchen
  • Small and lightweight

Cons:

  • No AM or FM radio
  • Lacks bass

Buy online: £40.00 on Amazon.co.uk


VQ Retro Mini Emma Bridgewater Digital Radio

If you want something that looks different, you should consider the VQ Retro Mini Emma Bridgewater Digital Radio. It comes in a range of designs by ceramics designer Emma Bridgewater.

Features:

  • FM/DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Uses 4 AA batteries or mains power
  • Clock with dual alarms

Pros:

  • Adjustable EQ
  • Very good DAB reception
  • Compact
  • Compact, stylish and funky—perfect for the kitchen
  • Clear and easy-to-read display

Cons:

  • Sometimes sounds muffled
  • Setting preset stations is fiddly

Buy online: £79.99 on Amazon.co.uk

Read our full review of the VQ Retro Mini Digital Radio


Pure Evoke D4 Portable Digital DAB/FM Radio

This portable radio from Pure is made with a real oak-veneer casing and has a stylish, contemporary look. If your kitchen decor uses a lot of wood, this radio would match it perfectly.

Features:

  • FM and DAB radio
  • 2 alarms
  • Kitchen timer
  • OLED display

Dimensions: 21.7 cm wide x 18 cm high x 11.5 cm deep
Weight: 1.4 kg

Pros:

  • Intuitive layout and design
  • Sturdy build quality
  • Classic design
  • Very good sound

Cons:

  • Setting alarms is quite fiddly and requires you to push a lot of buttons

Buy online: Check on Amazon on Amazon.co.uk

Read our comparison of Pure Evoke radios

Other radios

If none of the radios above take your fancy, have a look at our other radio reviews or consider getting one of these portable DAB radios for less than £50.

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