Thursday, August 2, 2012

Toaster Oven

Cuisinart Toaster Oven      

Choosing the best toaster requires deciding between a toaster oven and a vertical toaster like the Breville toaster (Click here to read best toaster review).  The main advantage of a toaster oven is that it functions as a smaller, more energy-efficient version of a standard oven.  This capability is a real advantage for single people and empty-nesters.  The other advantage of a toaster oven is size.  For many people, the best 4-slice toaster is actually a toaster oven and if you want a 6-slice toaster then a toaster oven is a necessity.
In our sister blog (NonStick Cookware Alternatives), we have strongly recommended Cuisinart cookware – not just because of performance and price, but because Cuisinart ceramic cookware is eco-friendly.  For this post, we want to first consider Cuisinart toaster ovens.  We have specifically targeted models that have roughly 200 or more reviews with a user rating of at least 4 stars on Amazon.  Other toaster ovens are compared to the best Cuisinart toasters, but only if they have a 4-star rating from 200-plus reviewers.

Classic Toaster Oven

Cuisinart Classic Toaster Oven
Cuisinart Classic Toaster Oven
Want just a good basic toaster oven?  The Cuisinart TOB-40 Custom Classic Toaster Oven Broiler is 1800 watts so therefore it will toast bread or bagels very quickly.  It does not have convection, but unless you will be doing a lot of baking, convection may not be that important.  It does have a slide-out function that pulls the rack out when the door is opened.  This is a great way to avoid spills or burns.  It also has Always Even Shade Control.  Smaller than some other ovens, if you want a space saver toaster oven than this is a good choice.  Check your countertop dimensions before ordering.

Cuisinart TOB-40 Custom Classic Toaster Oven Broiler

6 Slice Toaster Oven

Cuisinart 6 Slice Toaster Oven
Cuisinart 6 Slice Toaster Oven
Need a larger toaster oven?  The Cuisinart TOB-155 Toaster Oven is big enough (0.6 cu.ft.) to broil a chicken or bake a 12 inch pizza.  It is not a space saver oven so check your countertop dimensions to make sure it is suitable.  It lacks a tray pull-out, but has the Always Even Shade control.  Clock and oven timers are handy for baking and broiling.  This Cuisinart Toaster Oven is powerful!   Users complain that the front gets hot and can present a burn hazard.  Please remember, it is an oven, so parts of it will be very hot.

Cuisinart TOB-155 Toaster Oven

Convection Toaster Oven 

Cuisinart Convection Toaster Oven
Cuisinart Convection Toaster Oven
The Cuisinart TOB-195 is a convection oven that is the same size (16 by 17-3/4 by 9-5/8 inches as the TOB-155.  This Cuisinart toaster oven has state-of-the-art electronic touchpad controls.  Great for baking and broiling, you will use it often instead of your conventional oven.   It has been highly rated (more than 4 stars) by over 400 hundred reviewers.   The Cuisinart TOB-195 convection oven is a very functional, but stylish stainless steel toaster. 

Cuisinart TOB-195 Toaster Oven Broiler, Stainless

Highly-Rated Toaster Ovens 

In addition to the Cuisinart toaster ovens, we found three other toaster ovens that have been rated by 200 or more Amazon customers and have received 4-stars or more.  Two of these toaster ovens are hi-tech toasters from Breville.  The other is a cheap toaster sold by Oster.  We do not recommend the Oster toaster, but include the product link for your information.  The Breville Smart Toaster Ovens deserve special consideration.  In terms of design and construction, Breville toasters are extraordinary.

Breville Smart Oven

Breville Smart Toaster Oven
Breville Smart Toaster Oven
Breville always delivers the best in technology coupled with high quality construction.  Previously, we recommended the Breville Lift and Look Touch Toaster (see previous post) and we also recommend the Smart Oven.  The Breville Smart Oven is somewhat expensive compared to other brands, but it comes with a pizza pan, baking pan, and a broil rack.  Powerful, stylish and simply fabulous from a technology standpoint, we can find no fault with this toaster other than the price and even that need not be a deterrent.  Think of the money (and energy) you will save by using this toaster instead of a conventional oven.  Incredibly, at the time of this post the Breville Smart Oven had 862 reviews.  Check out the video below.  You will love this toaster oven!

Breville Smart Convection Toaster Oven

Breville Compact 4-Slice Oven


Breville Compact 4 Slice Toaster Oven
Breville Compact Toaster Oven
Describing the Breville 4-Slice Oven as a “Compact Toaster Oven” is a bit misleading – it is compact in comparison to the regular Breville Smart Oven (see above), but the dimensions of this oven are 16-1/2 by 14-1/4 by 10 inches.  It is a Smart Oven and has the great technology that is characteristic of Breville.  Techies like Breville toaster ovens, but a Breville oven is more expensive than a comparable Cuisinart toaster oven.  The Compact Toaster Oven is a nice compromise.  If you really like the technology, but do not have enough counter space (or money) for a full-size Breville toaster oven, buy the Breville 4 Slice Toaster Oven instead.  On Amazon, the Breville Compact Oven is comparable in price to the Cuisinart TOB-195.

Breville Compact 4-Slice Smart Oven


Oster Toaster Oven 

The  Oster Digital Large Capacity Toaster Oven is a classic example of a cheap toaster oven.  The price is comparable to the TOB-40 Cuisinart toaster oven.  The Oster is basically a large, but cheap toaster oven that has convection.  Reviewers complained about various parts not working properly.  Safety issues have been raised with one reviewer suggesting that there was an electrical hazard.  Beware.  Please read the reviewer comments carefully before buying this oven.

FINAL NOTE:  We plan to discuss toaster ovens in greater detail in future posts.  Bookmark this page and check back in the future for an update.  Thanks for reading!

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