If you’re a home chef or even just a short order cook for your hungry family, you’re probably well-versed in the pros and cons of most small appliances. Crock pots, instant pots, air fryers, microwaves, stand mixers, juicers — they’re all fun and useful for what they do, right? But if you’re really looking for a daily kitchen workhorse, consider the traditional toaster oven. Perfect in size, easy to use and quick to cook, the toaster oven is perhaps the one appliance you really shouldn’t be living without.
This countertop appliance, beloved by moms for decades, is now better than ever. Using the latest in convection cooking technology and offering a variety of preset functions like bake, broil, warm and “pizza” (thank you very much), you can use a toaster oven to make pretty much every meal of the day. Toaster ovens use less energy than your regular oven and don’t heat up the entire house when you’re making lasagna. Plus, you can reheat leftovers to crispness and take advantage of a second oven option when making large meals. Many of today’s models also offer additional bells and whistles like auto-turn offs, digital control panels and roll-up doors.
We’ve rounded up some of the best countertop toaster ovens on the market from name-brand appliance makers. Check out the options below and get cooking with one of these multi-function meal-makers.
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1. Breville Smart Oven Pro Convection Toaster Oven
The convection powered oven boasts 9 preset functions, including toast, bake, roast, broil, bagel, pizza, cookies, reheat and warm. It also has a roomy interior that will hold up to six slices of bread or a 13-inch pizza. The backlit LCD screen makes it easy to read and change the temperature or time. An interior oven light automatically turns on near the end of the cycle so you can peek on the progress of what you’re cooking.
2. Oster Stainless Steel Collection Toaster Oven
This extra large toaster oven, which comes equipped with convection technology, can handle almost any meal you want to cook up: The large interior can accommodate two frozen 16-inch pizzas, family sized chickens, a casserole or even a pan of chocolate-chip cookies. Two rack positions allow for customizing the space — especially helpful when cooking a tall roast. But it doesn’t just cook good, it looks good! The sleek, modern-looking unit features a stainless finish frame with French doors and a user-friendly manual/digital control panel for convenient operation. Other highlights include a see-through door that allows for checking on food at a glance, an optional interior light, an easy-to-clean interior and an external removable crumb tray. A durable baking pan comes included.
3. Hamilton Beach 6-Slice Countertop Toaster Oven
The Hamilton Beach 6-slice toaster oven has a unique roll-top door that moves up and out of the way for safe, easy access to food before, during and after cooking. With the door opening above the oven, it also frees up countertop space in front. Perhaps best of all, it’s easy to keep clean because food can’t spill or drip on the door. Five cooking settings — bake, broil, pizza, convection and toast — two rack positions make it easy to cook a variety of foods, from crispy toast to broiled fish to roasted vegetables.
4. BLACK+DECKER 8-Slice Convection Countertop Toaster Oven
The BLACK+DECKER Extra-Wide Convection Countertop Toaster and Pizza Oven toasts up to eight slices of bread at once and simplifies large baking tasks. Its extended interior fits an entire 13-inch by 9-inch pan with handles, so you can bake lasagna, brownies, and even 12-inch pizzas with your standard bakeware and go straight from oven to table. Four cooking functions — bake, broil, toast, and keep warm — using convection technology offer fast and even results while baking. Plus, the toaster oven includes a broiler pan and an external crumb tray that slides in and out, making cleanup a breeze.
5. Mueller Toaster Oven
If time is of the essence and you have a big family to feed, this dual-rack toaster oven is here to save the day. This Austrian-made toaster oven also can help you with your energy bill — it’s energy efficient as it reheats 30 percent faster and uses 60 percent less energy than most. And if you just need to heat something small, using a toaster oven will already be more cost effective than heating up your entire oven.