Are you looking for a time- and cost-efficient way to cook delicious and healthy meals for your family? Fortunately, the solution is only a toaster oven away. These innovative devices are a mix of microwaves, standard ovens, and toasters. Nonetheless, they surpass all of them when it comes to functionality and practicality. While they allow you to save time and bring your cooking skills to the next level, there are many products on the market, and it is up to you to find out what features you require and how to use the device safely. Check out this ultimate buying guide and make sure you get the best toaster oven out there!
Without further ado, we would like to present to you the Breville Smart Convection Toaster Oven with Element IQ, a highly functional, quality-made stainless steel product with plenty of exciting cooking functions that will make your cooking experience more fun. If our #1 pick isn’t up to your expectations, make sure to check out the rest of them and discover what to look for in a toaster oven to make sure it will serve you and your family well in the years to come!
This highly functional programmable 9-in-1 toaster oven boasts of several exciting cooking functions and features 5 Quartz heating elements. It is made of top-quality stainless steel and comes with color-changing LCD. Thanks to its Element IQ, the oven optimizes and automatizes power delivery.
Top 5 Toaster Ovens
|Name||Pre-Set Cooking Functions||Dimensions (Inches)||Price|
|Breville Smart||Toast, Bagel, Bake, Roast, Broil, Pizza, Cookies, Reheat, Warm||18.5 x 16.2 x 11.2||Check Price|
|Breville Mini Smart||Bake, Broil, Roast, Cookies, Reheat, Pizza, Bagel, Toast||15.5 x 14 x 8.8||Check Price|
|Cuisinart Chef’s||Toast, Bagel, Waffle, Keep Warm, Bake, Broil, Roast, Pizza, Leftovers,||20.9 x 16.9 x 11.4||Check Price|
|Panasonic Flash Xpress||Toast, Bread, Pizza, Frozen Foods, Quick Reheat||13 x 12 x 10.25||Check Price|
|Oster Digital||Bake, Convection Bake, Broil, Toast, Pizza, Defrost, and Warm||15.4 x 19.8 x 11.4||Check Price|
1. Best Overall Toaster Oven
Breville Smart Convection Toaster Oven with Element IQ
This toaster oven by Breville has a special IQ technology that lets you adjust the heating manually between 120 and 500 degrees Fahrenheit to prepare your food quickly and efficiently. Consuming 1,800 watts when in use, it offers more functionality and power than most toaster ovens.
The outer part of this toaster oven is made of stainless steel, making it easy to clean and maintain. It has an LCD display and dial for setting cooking functions, time, and temperature conveniently. It also shows whether the oven is cooking or preheating your meal. The handle of the unit remains cold, making it safe to touch even when in use.
With dimensions of 18.5 x 16.25 x 11.25 inches, this compact toaster oven fits 6 toast slices or a 13-inch pizza. It features an insulated dual-wall door and glass window that keeps the heat inside the oven. It also includes a crumb tray to make this unit easier to clean.
This toaster oven comes with nine preset functions to eliminate guesswork when cooking. These functions are bake, roast, bagel, toast, cookies, pizza, broil, warm and reheat. Each function is also customizable according to the volume of the food, recipe, and personal taste.
The oven also remembers your last customized settings until you change them or until the unit is unplugged.
Pros and Cons
- 9 preset menu functions
- Uses IQ technology
- 1800W with five quartz heating elements
- LCD display and dial
- Ideal for preparing all kinds of food
- This unit is a bit pricey
2. Best Mini Toaster Oven
Breville Mini Smart Toaster Oven with Element IQ
Those who want to have a toaster for all toasting needs might enjoy using this Mini Smart Oven by Breville. Its temperature control ranges from 120F to 450F, and there are 8 preset cooking functions to make your food preparations easy, namely roast, broil, bake, pizza, cookies, reheat, toast, and bagel.
The Element IQ technology in this toaster helps distribute the heat evenly and channels heat where it is needed according to the selected cooking function. It adjusts the heat accordingly by lowering or increasing the heat output for different types of preparations.
All functions can be done through the dial which allows you to set temperature and time easily. It also lets you change the functions according to your needs, and once changed, the setting will remain until unplugged or altered.
The LCD display illuminates with an orange backlight during operation and turns blue when the cooking cycle is finished.
With dimensions of 15.5 x 14 x 8.75 inches, this 1800-watt toaster oven has a capacity of four slices or one 11-inch pizza.
Its tempered glass door prevents the heat from coming out, making it safe to touch even when in use. It also comes with a removable crumb tray to help you clean up the unit.
Pros and Cons
- Compact design
- 8 preset cooking functions
- 1800W with four quartz heating elements
- Easily readable LCD
- Features Element IQ Technology
- The timer is a bit loud
- Handle sticks out
3. Best Toaster Oven with Multiple Cooking Functions
Cuisinart Chef's Convection Stainless Steel Toaster Oven
When it comes to preparing a meal for the entire family, this toaster oven by Cuisinart might be the best choice for your needs. It has an extra-large capacity of 9 slices of bread or a 13-inch pizza and it includes two oven racks and removable crumb tray.
With dimensions of 20.87 x 16.93 x 11.42 inches, this model boasts its 15 cooking functions, including toast, waffle, bagel, keep warm, defrost, leftovers, roast, sandwich, broil, pizza, and bake.
Its dual cook function runs two cooking functions at two different temperature levels. This feature is ideal for tougher cuts of meats, dishes that benefit from top browning, and slow cooking items for up to four hours on two cooking functions.
It also allows faster cooking time with its two convection settings. The traditional convection setting can be enabled at any time during any of the cooking functions, while the Speed Convection cooks your food without the need for preheating.
This unit uses their own cooking technology called Always Even, which ensures that your food is cooked properly on all sides.
The +30 Option also lets you add 30 seconds to any selected function during toasting or cooking. Cleaning up is also a breeze with its non-stick interior coating and crumb tray.
Pros and Cons
- 15 cooking functions
- It features Dual Cook function and two convection settings
- +30 Option adds 30 seconds to any function
- LCD display
- It uses always Even technology
- A few reviewers said that the dial feels flimsy
- The convection produces a warbling sound
4. Best Toaster Oven for Fast Cooking
Panasonic Flash Xpress Toaster Oven
For those who are looking for a small toaster oven, this model has overall dimensions of 13 x 12 x 10.25 inches, making it ideal for small kitchens, apartments, offices, and dorms. But there is no need to worry about its capacity as it easily fits in four slices of bread or pizza up to 9 inches in diameter.
This smart toaster oven comes with 6 illustrated presets for frozen, waffle, roll, pizza, quick reheat, and toast bread. It also calculates the cooking time function automatically and controls the heat for different types of food.
This model heats instantly from 250F to 500F, so there is no need to preheat the unit. Its high-efficiency quartz and ceramic heating elements are placed in the back and front to bake, brown, reheat, or toast evenly. It also cooks up to 40% faster than conventional toaster ovens with its FlashXPress double Infrared Light.
Controlling cooking time is easy and quick with the up and down arrow touch buttons on the digital timer. Once it is done, a beeping sound will let you know that your food is ready.
A convenient interior light also lets you keep an eye on your food while it cooks. In addition, this toaster oven comes with a removable crumb tray and baking tray.
Pros and Cons
- Uses FlashXpress infrared technology
- Illuminated interior
- Includes baking tray and crumb ray
- Six preset buttons
- Digital timer is easy to use
- Rack height is not adjustable
- Tray is not non-stick
5. Best Affordable Toaster Oven
Oster Digital Convection Toaster Oven
This toaster oven by Oster has a large interior that can accommodate a 12-inch pizza and six slices of bread on its wire rack. With a temperature range of 150F to 450F, this model has a capacity to cook a variety of foods. Its digital control panel also provides precise time and heat adjustments, and its preset cooking functions help you cook, toast or bake your food easily.
Its cooking functions include broil, convection bake, bake, warm, defrost, pizza, and toast. When operating, it only uses 1,300 watts, making it one of the most energy-efficient toaster ovens in the market.
This countertop oven also has a convection baking feature to circulate hot air throughout the oven for crispier edges, flakier crusts, and even-browning in less time.
With dimensions of 19.72 x 16.29 x 11.33, this sleek unit has a stainless finish frame and easy-to-use digital control panel. Its see-through door and interior light let you monitor the progress of your meal. Durable baking pan and removable crumb ray are also included in the package.
For additional safety, it has an automatic shut-off that turns the unit off when the timer runs out. While the top becomes hot, the handle and sides all remain below 100 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pros and Cons
- Seven preset cooking functions
- Adjustable rack settings
- Large interior capacity
- Convection baking feature
- Baking pan and crumb tray included
- Some users reported that the top of the unit gets very hot
- A few reviewers said that this model is not so good for toast
Benefits of Using a Toaster Oven
If you have a kitchen, then you should also have a reliable toaster oven to complement it! There are plenty of benefits that these innovative devices offer. From saving your time and energy, here are some of the primary toaster oven advantages you might be interested in.
Convenient Size and Form
Unlike standard ovens, these alternatives are much smaller, saving a lot of space for other kitchen essentials such as cabinets. Fortunately, they can replace the need for conventional ovens as well as microwaves and toasters.
While the positioning of standard ovens is fairly limited, toaster ovens can make a great addition to countertops or can be hidden away in the cabinets.
Pre-Set Cooking Functions
These devices are very versatile and come with a wide range of pre-set cooking functions that will make your time in the kitchen more enjoyable. From defrosting to baking to reheating, there’s almost nothing toaster ovens aren’t capable of.
Saves Money & Time
Since they use less energy than conventional ovens, toasters can help you save money on electricity bills. Additionally, they are also more time-efficient thanks to their programmable nature.
Easy to Use and Clean
Toaster ovens start doing their job with a simple touch of a button. All you need to do is prepare your food, place it in the oven, and select the right cooking setting. Then, the oven will do the rest!
Fortunately, cleaning a toaster oven in case of spills is also relatively simple due to its small size and no-stick interiors.
Convection Cooking & Baking
Plenty modern toaster ovens already feature convection cooking. This highly convenient feature allows the hot air to circulate in the oven with the help of a fan for a better heat distribution and more even cooking. Thanks to this function, food is prepared faster and is cooked thoroughly on all sides.
Features Worth Considering
Depending on your budget, size requirements, and special cooking needs, there are several features that you should consider before investing in an oven toaster.
Most toaster ovens come in a set that includes a crumb pan and a baking rack. Some also include upscale pizza stones, broiler trays, and baking pans. Make sure that the set you want to buy includes the accessories you need, as buying additional accessories might cost you dearly.
Pre-Set Cooking Functions
If you want the device to work for you and not the other way around, it’s good to look for toaster ovens that come with plenty of pre-set cooking features. Some of the most common and desired features include:
- Keep Warm
- Dual Cook
Advanced Heating Elements & Temperature Adjustments
Standard toaster ovens feature one or two heating elements that cook the food from both sides. More advanced models, however, may feature as many as four or five heating elements which ensure even heat distribution, faster and healthier cooking, and energy saving.
Additionally, pay attention to the temperature range that the oven offers. The higher the range, the better the oven is for versatile use. For example, you might require a low temperature for toasting bread or nuts while you may find higher temperatures useful for broiling meat.
Timers & Alerts
Ideally, your toaster oven will manage the cooking process on its own once you’ve selected the cooking settings. The best models feature a built-in timer that alerts you when the food is prepared. Some ovens also include an auto shut-off feature which ensures that the food doesn’t burn in case you forget about time.
Smaller toaster ovens can typically handle 2 – 4 bread slices or other foods that don’t occupy too much space. Slightly larger models may already be big enough to fit a whole chicken, bake small 9-inch pizzas, or bake muffins for 6. The largest toaster ovens can fit two 9 x 13-inch pans, allowing you to bake pizzas, bread, or muffins simultaneously.
Surprising Ways to Use Your Toaster Oven
While these tiny ovens can make the perfect toasted bread that you’ve always desired, they can handle a lot more than just that. From muffins to pizzas to fish, toaster ovens are versatile devices that can be used for preparing breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks & sides, or desserts.
Stock Up On Toaster Oven-Friendly Tools
Toaster ovens are smaller than regular ovens, meaning that you’ll need a whole new set of tools to cook and bake in them. To make your experience more convenient, we suggest you arm yourself with these tools:
- 6-Cup Muffin Tin: While 12-cup muffin trays obviously can’t fit in such a small device, some 6-cup tins may. To avoid buying one that won’t fit in, make sure to understand the measurements of your toaster oven and the tray before purchasing it.
If the majority of muffin trays are too large for your toaster oven, consider buying one that has less metal or rubber around the edges.
- Small Cookie Sheet: They come in all sizes, and fortunately, an 8 x 10-inch cookie sheet fits the majority of standard ovens. If no cookie sheet is small enough for your device, you can always opt for tin foil as a budget-friendly alternative.
- Bread Pan: Loaf pans can be used for a lot more than just making bread. While standard-sized one may not fit the average toaster oven, look for a pan that’s around 5 x 10 inches or less, depending on the size of your device.
- Ramekins: A ramekin is a small glazed ceramic or glass bowl that can be used in ovens for cooking and serving various dishes. They can be excellent for preparing baked eggs, oatmeal bakes, or individual fruit crisps.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. For that reason, make sure it’s also a delicious one using the top breakfast toaster oven recipes you can find below!
- Mini Pizza
Get some whole wheat pizza dough, throw on an egg or two, and add any foods and condiments of your choosing. To make it a healthy breakfast, make sure not to forget about vegetables and an additional source of protein.
- Egg Cups
With the help of muffin tin or ramekins, preparing eggs cups has never been easier. Place some toast around the edges of the cups and crack one egg in each. Add chopped pieces of bacon and parsley for additional flavor and bake in a toaster oven as needed.
- Greek Frittata
Start your mornings with a frittata to secure a good dose of protein and vegetables. Preheat your toaster oven to 350° F and prepare the ingredients in a crockpot while waiting. You are advised to oil the casserole and whisk in eggs, pepper, salt, spinach, scallions, tomatoes, and chopped olives. Lastly, gently stir in some feta cheese. Bake until the frittata is dry in the middle and pleasantly browned around the edges.
If you don’t have enough time to cook your lunch, a toaster oven can help you. Here are some fast and easy-to-make lunch ideas for you and your family!
- Chicken Quesadillas
An easy and healthy way to satisfy any chicken meat lover. Preheat the oven to 425°F and prepare for baking by evenly dividing chicken, jalapeño, cheese, cilantro, and chopped green onion over one side of tortilla. Fold the other half over and toast the quesadillas until they are golden brown. Serve them with salsa verde and/or sour cream.
- Baked Tofu
Baked tofu makes a great snack, side dish, or a light standalone meal. Consider squeezing tofu with a dishcloth to remove excess water. Then, slice it into 1-inch cubes and marinate it in a mixture of soy sauce, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and minced ginger for 30 minutes. Toss the cubes with cornstarch and bake them on 350°F for 20 – 30 minutes.
Still hungry? Here are some delicious dinner ideas that will satisfy your stomach!
- Pesto Salmon
This light yet filling dish will keep you full and only requires five ingredients. Oil some tin foil and place salmon fillets, skin-side down, on it. Squeeze the juice of a fresh lemon over the fish and sprinkle some white wine on it. Preheat the oven while the fish marinades. Spread some pesto over it and broil for around 15 minutes or until the fish flakes. Serve with lemon slices and toasted pine nuts.
- Stuffed Mushrooms
Simply get a few pieces of large Portobello mushrooms and remove their stems and scoop out the black gills. Then, you can fill the mushrooms with anything you want and bake them for 10 – 20 minutes for perfect taste. Some stuffing suggestions include sautéed garlic, spinach, cheese, diced tomato, chopped onion, and breadcrumbs.
- Toasted nuts
- Baked sweet potatoes
- Parmesan Zucchini
- Baked beans
- Cheese and tomato crackers
- Roasted bananas
- Roasted Brussels sprouts
- Butter cookies
- Apple crisps
- Roasted figs
- Choco chip cookies
Having a toaster oven can reduce your time and effort needed to prepare delicious dishes. It is appropriate not only for big families and dorms but also for all those who are after practicality and simple cooking techniques. Still, finding the right toaster oven that will suit all of your needs can be challenging. Fortunately, we narrowed down your search and presented the top five products currently available on the market. While Breville Smart Convection Toaster Oven with Element IQ is clearly the winner of this round due to its high-quality design, exciting cooking functions, and unique heating methods, all of the introduced toasters have something special to offer.
To make sure you get what you need and learn how to use these gadgets, we advise you to surf through our buying guide again and pick your favorite. Hesitate no more and treat yourself to delicious food with the help of the best toaster oven that you’ve been secretly wanting all this time!