Best Toaster Ovens: A Buying Guide

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Okay, this is a sandwich and a panini site.  But, aren’t toaster ovens some of the best, most versatile kitchen and food tools?  And, don’t tell anyone I said this (except everyone reading this) BUT toaster ovens might actually be more versatile and useful in the kitchen then panini grills and sandwich makers.  Ugh…I hated saying that but it’s probably the truth.

So, if you like crispy left-over pizza, scrumptious open-faced sandwiches, late night cookies, or just some good ole’ “if cooking in a toaster oven” type of food then BUCKLE UP, we’re about to get all toaster oveny at Sandwich101.com

So, single people, couples without kids, couples with kids, and even lofters and barracks or dorm dwellers can definitely get a huge push in the kitchen from one of the best toaster ovens on the market.  But how do you know which toaster ovens are of the best?  Well, that’s why I’m here!

We’ll introduce our 5 favorite toaster ovens first and then we’ll get into what you should be looking for in a toaster oven. If you don’t trust us, then know that we did a lot of research on Amazon for their best-reviewed toaster ovens.

The 5 Best Toaster Ovens

Oster Large Digital Countertop Convection Toaster Oven

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This Oster is a large, 6 slice convection and toaster oven that is a great accompaniment in any kitchen.  And, no matter what your experience level in the kitchen then you can get a lot out of this Oster toaster oven.  (I like how “Oster” and “toaster” rhyme…it’s fun to say).

The black and polished stainless-steel finish is a sharp looking piece of any kitchen.  The controls and display are digital and big enough to read from afar.  (And even though the smoke of your burnt slice of pizza.  JK…that was just a joke.) It makes the outside of the oven both aesthetically pleasing, easy to clean, and simple to learn and use.

The large, 6-slice interior is awesome enough to circulate hot air around the entire inside of the oven.  It also has a 90-minute cooldown that shuts down in order to give you peace of mind cooking that you can literally walk away from.

The heat and circulation are precise and cooks to perfection.  You can choose the shade of toast that you like to eat and get it done perfectly every time.

Adjustable broil at any temperature and gives you great melt and browning options.  So, you can all out with a 500 degree sear of a roast or just gently melt some cheese for bruschetta.


Breville BOV450XL Mini Smart Oven with Element IQ

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This Breville (one of many really good toaster ovens from the brand) comes with a total of 4 1800 watt heating elements that have that Element IQ Technology.

What exactly is Element IQ Technology? It adjusts the power of four individual quartz heating elements to cook food more evenly and quickly. This sophisticated heating system distributes heat throughout the oven when and where it is needed, to guarantee more efficient cooking.

This Breville can fit an 11″ pizza and cook it to perfection!  There are 8 preset cooking functions to make cooking easier and more precise for your convenience.  Need to heat up a muffin?  Just choose the appropriate preset option.

Our favorite thing about the Breville BOV450XL is the “A Bit More” button.  If you need to heat up or cook a bit more (need a little more color to your toast?) then just hit the button and get it toasting and cooking just “A bit more”.


Panasonic NB-G110P Flash Xpress Toaster Oven

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Enter here now the Panasonic Flash Xpress toaster unit.  You can use the fancy, technical alpha-numeric designator if you’d like, but we just like to refer to this beauty as the Flash XP.

Why do we like this toaster oven?  You can do everything that you usually do with any other product on this list but you can do it around 40% faster than most any conventional oven (whence the “flash xpress”).

No preheating necessary.  Once you push “On” then you immediately start getting the power of two quartz and ceramic heating elements with super-efficiency. This makes the BEST food as it is cooked to perfection inside and out.

  • Not dry.
  • Not raw.
  • Not overly moist.
  • Not singed.
  • But PERFECT.

Controls and settings are put in the perfectly logical places that are easy to locate, switch, puss, and operate.  The control panel stays cool and you have the convenience of 6 pre-set touch modes.  Whether you’re cooking baked potatoes and roasting chicken OR reheating hash browns and pizza.  The Flash Xpress gets it all done well.

And for perfect snacks, piping hot meals and side dishes, a touch-button temperature sensor gives you precise manual control with eight precision heat level settings and a smart digital timer.

The oven’s simple, clean design accents any kitchen décor or countertop. And for added convenience, the oven includes a distinctive square inner tray, a baking tray & a removable crumb tray, plus a bright interior light.


Cuisinart TOB 260 N1 Chef’s Convection Toaster Oven, Stainless Steel

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TheCuisinart TOB 260 N1 Chef’s Convection Toaster Oven is a beautiful stainless-steel toaster oven.  We have a lot of love for this machine and we are currently using it in one of our test kitchens right now. Not testing it in the test kitchen but using it in the test kitchen. And here’s why:

Some of the most advanced cooking and heating technology of any machine on this list:

  • The best toasting results with “Always Even Shade Control”.
  • You can choose the size of the pizza with pre-programmed (up to 13 in.es) for the best results.

Various and Multitude of Cooking Options:

  • Simple to operate and an intuitive digital interface.
  • How many functions do you have? How about bagel, toast, bake, broil, keep warm, roast, pizza, sandwich (yum…can you say “Panini!”), leftovers, and (of course!) defrost.
  • A convenient “+30” button that easily adds 30 more seconds to your roasting and cooking times.

Ultimate Experience in Convection Cooking:

  • The convection cooking allows for much faster cooking times than you’d usually get in a conventional oven as well as consistent heating through and on each piece of food that you put in the oven.
  • Two different Convention settings.
  • The Chef’s Convection Oven also comes with a Speed Convection which provides cooking without preheating. This feature also has a separate activation button.

Non-stick inner and rack coating as well as Oven Light:

  • 4 interior rack positions and the ability to use two racks at once.
  • Oven light is different here in this oven because it allows you to see your food as it cooks and heats. This isn’t standard in every conventional toaster oven.

Here’s Just Some of the Items that the Cuisinart TOB 260 N1 Chef’s Convection Toaster Oven:

  • Toast 9 slices of bread.
  • Bake a pizza up to 13 in. in diameter.
  • Roast a 5 lb chicken.
  • Roast a 7 lb. turkey breast
  • Prepare 4 lb.s of ribs.
  • Easily fits two 9 x 13 in. baking pans.
  • Double rack cooking capability.

Additional Accessories Inside the Box:

  • 2 Oven Racks.
  • Baking/ Drip Pan.
  • Broiling Pan.
  • Removable Crumb Tray.
  • 13 in. Pizza Stone.
  • Recipe Booklet.

Hamilton Beach Toaster Countertop Oven Convection, fits 6 Slices of Bread, Stainless Steel

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  • While this toaster oven doesn’t have the smallest price tag and it’s not the “best of this bunch” here, there are folks on Amazon who disagree with me.  Of all the reviews on Amazon, over 76% of them are 5-Star.
  • Temperature control is integrated into the machine via a probe which you can use to keep a constant eye on the internal temperature of your meat as it is cooking.  This is a highly convenient feature.
  • Large capacity inside the oven.  It can fit a 12″ pizza and takes up only a small amount of counter space.
  • 7 settings: versatile cook settings include convection, bake, broil, Warm, reheat, toast and bagel. 3 rack positions offer complete cooking flexibility.
  • In-depth digital display that includes the oven’s temp and food temp (from built in probe).  This means you can track precisely when your meat is done and prevent any chance of over or undercooking that roast!
  • Great, 3 yr limited warranty.

Bonus Option: Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Toaster Oven

For those who are looking for a more colorful and very budget-friendly option, there’s this more affordable but still very high-quality option from Hamilton Beach.

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How to Choose a Toaster Oven (What to Look for in the Best Toaster Ovens)

Any of the options above are great.  What we considered when picking this line-up and what you should always consider when buying a toaster oven are 3 major things:

Function: 

What can your toaster oven do?  What do you need it to do?  Do you plan on just re-heating and toasting?  If so, then you can pick a basic, price-friendly product.  However, if you need precise temperature measurements, then you’ll need a better product.

Remember:  Baking, broiling, toasting, re-heating, etc. They all have different temps and times.

Size:

Again, this is for your consideration and noone can answer this for you.  Are you a single person or just a couple?  Perhaps you’re a larger family.  Whatever the case, you’ll need different size options in your toaster oven.

But remember, bigger toaster ovens take up more counter space and usually cost a bit more.  The best thing to do in the case of size is to choose the toaster oven that is JUST big enough and within your budget.

Price:

Of course, the cost of these products are going to be a huge consideration.  You can get one of these products for the low price of around $50 OR you could a more advanced toaster oven that doubles as a second home oven that could cost between $150 and $250.

Benefits of Using or Having a Toaster Oven

  1.  Save Energy

Less space to heat than a conventional oven and it uses less energy.  This reduces in not only saved money and a greener home by using less energy but also with a shorter cooking time.

So, whether you want to save money or the environment (or both) then a counter top, toaster oven is the way to go.

2.  Smaller and Less Weight

Good for dorm rooms, boats, RVs, studio apartments, barracks, etc.  How else can you fit the convenience and power of a home oven into a tightly packed 4.5 cubic feet space?  You can’t.

That’s why we recommend a toaster oven in any of those situations.  Even in the smallest f apartments that come with an oven, you could always use a toaster oven to act as a helper or for added convenience. Oh, and they’re easy to move as well.  So, if you’re moving around often then this is the way to go.

3.  Crisping and Browning

Ever try cooking toast, bacon or crisping a broiled rack of ribs or pizza in a microwave?  Gross, right?  You won’t get soggy crust or soft, greasy bacon in a toaster oven result.  There’s nothing more disappointing than being hungry, and smelling that bacor pizza heating up in the microwave only to open it up and have it a limp noodle of nastiness in your hands.

We truly feel that this is the BEST toaster oven buying guide and recommendation reference on the internet.  If you have any other questions or need additional information then go ahead and shoot us an email or leave a comment.  We’d love to help you out more and learn from each other.

Buying kitchen stuff, like panini makers and toaster ovens is never going to be easy.  However, that’s one of the major reasons why Sandwich101 exists. We hoped this guide helped you out.