10 Best Toaster Ovens | April 2017

10 Best Toaster Ovens | April 2017
Best Mid-Range
★★★
Best High-End
★★★★★
Best Inexpensive
★★★
We spent 33 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top options for this wiki. Despite their name, today's toaster ovens can do a lot more than heat bread. They come with capacities large enough to hold whole chickens or 12" pizzas, use fast-heating technology, and are more energy efficient than a regular oven, saving you time and money. All in a compact size that can fit in a dorm room or small apartment. Skip to the best toaster oven on Amazon.
10
The Hamilton Beach Easy Reach has a unique design with a roll-top door that is perfect for those with short or limited counter space. This also makes it easier to reach inside and grab your toast without accidentally touching one of the heating elements.
  • door is removable for cleaning
  • budget-friendly price
  • max timer setting is just 30 minutes
Brand Hamilton Beach
Model 31334Z
Weight 10.5 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
9
The Black & Decker CTO6335S offers exceptional performance and style with a convection cooking feature that circulates hot air for faster and more even cooking. It also features an extra large digital display and preset one-touch functions.
  • broiling rack holds a casserole dish
  • max temp is just 400 degrees
  • button wording rubs off over time
Brand BLACK+DECKER
Model CTO6335S
Weight 18.4 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0
8
The Waring Pro TCO600 is available in all silver or with a black housing and features easy-to-use dials on the front for setting time, temperature, and cooking function. It is on the smaller side, though, and has just a 0.45 cubic ft. capacity.
  • 1500 watts of power
  • very accurate cooking temperatures
  • does not have a convection feature
Brand Waring
Model TCO600
Weight 19.4 pounds
Rating 3.6 / 5.0
7
The small, but powerful, Breville BOV450XL is optimal for snack foods or small servings. It provides perfect results while using less counter space, making it a great choice for dorms and small apartments. The user can also set it by temperature, time, or toast shade.
  • 3 rack positions
  • customized settings remain in memory
  • quartz heating elements
Brand Breville
Model BOV450XL
Weight 16.6 pounds
Rating 3.8 / 5.0
6
The Oster TSSTTVMNDG offers reasonable quality for a reasonable price. Its interior is large enough to hold a 13" by 9" pan, it has a 150-450° temperature range, and it comes with an adjustable broil setting for melting cheese and browning foods without burning them.
  • removable crumb tray
  • has defrost and warm settings
  • countdown timer is finicky
Brand Oster
Model TSSTTVMNDG-SHP-2
Weight 21.5 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0
5
The stylish Cuisinart TOB-135 Deluxe was designed with the consumer in mind, featuring a brushed stainless steel body and nonstick interior for easy cleanup. It also comes with a handy recipe book to give you cooking ideas and features an auto shutoff function.
  • can hold a whole chicken
  • maintains precise temperatures
  • sides stay relatively cool
Brand Cuisinart
Model TOB-135
Weight 19.2 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0
4
The user-friendly DeLonghi DO1289 won't disappoint with six unique program settings, digital controls, and a full set of accessories for flexible cooking. It has large rotating dials in the front to adjust the time, toast color, and cooking function.
  • includes a dehydration kit
  • durastone ii enamel interior
  • comes with two wire racks
Brand DeLonghi
Model DO1289
Weight 20.2 pounds
Rating 4.0 / 5.0
3
The Breville BOV845BSS Smart Oven Pro has five heating elements and, with Element IQ technology that moves heat exactly where you need it, ensures everything in the oven receives even heating. It also features a slow cook function for long cook times at low temperatures.
  • housed in reinforced stainless steel
  • timer with an auto shutoff
  • convection fan for faster cooking
Brand Breville
Model BOV845BSS
Weight 28.6 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0
2
When time is not on your hands, the compact Panasonic NB-G110P will be your best friend. It cooks up to 40% faster, featuring flashXpress technology, which eliminates the need for preheating. It also has six menu illustrated preset buttons for ease of use.
  • auto calculates cooking times
  • reminder beep when food is done
  • digital countdown timer
Brand Panasonic
Model NB-G110PW
Weight 12.3 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0
1
The Cuisinart TOB-260N1 has a spacious 0.95 cubic-foot capacity, which is enough to hold a 13" pizza or a 9" x 13" baking pan. It features intuitive digital controls with a large blue backlit display and LED lit buttons that can be easily seen in dim light.
  • has an interior light
  • always even toast shade control
  • easy-clean nonstick interior
Brand Cuisinart
Model TOB-260N1
Weight 35.7 pounds
Rating 4.9 / 5.0

Buyer's Guide

Toaster Oven Or Gourmet Appliance? What's Right For Me?

A toaster oven is a toaster oven is a toaster oven...though not necessarily.

There are about as many features and price points to toaster ovens as there are flavors of jelly bean. The only sure thing we know is to steer clear of Bertie Bott's vomit flavored jelly beans.

The savvy shopper will want to buy only as much toaster oven as he or she needs. Here's a quick guide for your ready reference.

If you're a college student, or someone who mostly eats out, you might just need to toast or defrost and heat up snack and convenience foods. Stick with the basic toaster oven of 1200 watts or so. You won't need convection (unless you want your snacks heated lickety-split!). You won't need heating elements made from cutting-edge materials. Electric coils will do just fine. And you probably don't need the largest oven on the market. You'll spend less if you opt for fewer features and less versatility.

Say you're still living on your own, but have moved beyond frozen pizza and entrees. You might actually want to prep not an an entire meal, but say, complex sandwiches, or even cookies or tarts. Congratulations! You've moved from basic to something a bit more sophisticated.

Look for precise temperature control. Even presets for the foods you want to make, like cookies or muffins. You might also want an alarm to let you know the oven has heated up. And an alarm to tell you when your food is ready. You might even want a lighted interior, so you can see how your food is progressing. Plan on spending a bit more for features like these.

Finally, there's the user who really wants to use the toaster oven as an oven. Roasting chicken, broiling steak, prepping macaroni and cheese from scratch. If this describes you, feel free to go all out. Get the supersized toaster oven with the heating element of exotic material. Take advantage of digital controls and numerous presets. Go for convection. And plan to spend somewhere in the low hundreds. If you're a space- and energy-saving foodie, why hold back?

Quartz...In A Toaster Oven?

A toaster oven used to be a fairly simple business: a chrome-look design, with a transparent door, heated only by coils that much resemble a dated spring mattress.

These days, you'll find not only gleaming, true stainless-steel exteriors, but a range of features and heating elements that sound like something out of the Dharma Initiative.

Right now, we're going to discuss heating components in particular, for your better comprehension because we care.

Ceramic heating elements are utilized to distribute heat more evenly throughout the oven. Think of dutch ovens, or terrines, or more the more relatable ceramic infused hair dryers, or the stuff that melts the ice off your car's back window. With ceramic heating, hot spots are nonexistent. You won't have to worry about your chicken charring on the outside, while remaining pink on the inside.

Quartz heating elements are likewise capable of even heat distribution. Quartz is a highly durable material also used in analog watches, blow dryers and flat irons...as well as jewelry of course. But this isn't literal quartz we're talking about, not entirely - so don't flip your toaster oven inside out trying to find quartz stones you fools.

Quartz is a type of infrared heating. "The heating comes from a heating element encased inside a quartz tube." What does this all mean when it comes time to cook? In basic terms, the quartz tube works as an insulator. Instead of hot air dissipating into thin air, its short wave lengths are emitted and absorbed by the nearest organic object - the food - much like how your skin absorbs sunlight. What you can expect with quartz heating elements is faster prepared food, the first time around.

Halogen heating elements emit infrared heat too and are an efficient way to cook food.

Far Infrared technology allows for heat to radiate, or transfer, to a material, then bounce back. It offers more efficiency than the usual conduction.

Convection cooks food by circulating hot air, typically via a fan, in a toaster oven. With convection, cooking is even.

Other features to consider are automatic shut-off that allows an appliance to shut off if it overheats. It might also shut off once the preset cook time has run its course. Cool-touch technology means you won't burn your hand when you touch the oven door handle.

This is not an exhaustive list, and we certainly could go on all day discussing toaster ovens, but this is a great start to inform yourself of your options.

Toaster Oven Versus Microwave Showdown

The toaster oven came about out of a need for a small appliance to prepare small meals and/or snacks. College students, folks with tiny apartments, and folks who lived alone were thought to be the primary market.

Then the microwave came along and created some serious competition. Just as small, but so powerful...and with so many presets... and lightning fast! You could make a TV dinner, heat up soup, make food from powdered ingredients...and of course, pop corn or bake a potato...in less time than it would take to set the table. Was this the death knell of the toaster oven?

Down but not out, toaster oven manufacturers came out swinging. They boosted power, created elements of exotic heat-conducting materials. Amped up the size of the baking space, added convection capability, and even threw in some baking pans, adjustable shelves, and timers to tempt consumers.

Microwave enthusiasts remained firm. So fast, so quiet, so easy to clean. No messy crumb trays full of burnt bits! "I'll never go back to cooking with traditional heat," they exclaimed.

But consider the following. Can anything match the crispness of a slice of bread toasted to golden-brown perfection? Can anything come close to the flavor and color of the one thing the microwave can't give you? Caramelization. It's a big word for the browning that comes from heating sugar, native or added. And whether you're prepping cheese pizza, bread, waffles, or biscuits, it can't be achieved from microwaving.

Sure, there will always be folks for whom the damp, often gummy texture of some microwaved food is no big deal. But fans of crispy-brown doneness -- that leaves a micro eco footprint -- will never be persuaded to let go of the toaster oven.



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Last updated on April 28 2017 by Brett Dvoretz

A wandering writer who spends as much time on the road as behind the computer screen, Brett can either be found hacking furiously away at the keyboard or perhaps enjoying a whiskey and coke on some exotic beach, sometimes both simultaneously, usually with a four-legged companion by his side. He hopes to one day become a modern day renaissance man.