Anyone recommend a great toaster oven? The last one I had I did not spend much on and it was terrible. I don't mind spending more to get one that works great as I use it daily. Thanks for any help!! :o)
I have a GE 168955 that has served nicely for about 3 years now. Proctor Silex 31955 seems equivalent but both apparently are NLA. I've only used it for baking. I think a dedicated toaster performs better and more efficiently for toasting.
Everyone has raves for Breville, especially for oven tasks, though it's supposed to toast well too. A lot of toaster ovens nowadays don't actually toast all that well. :) I hardly ever use mine, so got a half-price loss leader that makes okay toast. It lives in a drawer. I saw an add for a new, very compact Breville, and I'm very tempted...
Breville compact smart oven--love ours (though a little envious lusting after the new model at W-S! LOL).
What do you want to do with the toaster oven?
I have the Breville Smart Oven and love it. I don't make toast in it but do everything else. It is like a second oven for me.
It toasts great bagels. I use it to cook small meals and keep things warm. I've used it to reheat, make pizza, bake ...
With two small kids it's an awesome addition to my kitchen.
Over at Williams Sonoma there are 370 reviews and it gets 5 stars. I got mine for free with my Airmiles points so even sweeter :)
Here is a link that might be useful: Breville Smart Oven
Due to space issues, we have the smaller of the Brevilles. Love it, incl. for toast. I sometimes wonder if we could have squeezed in the larger Breville which I find breathtakingly expensive. . .The Breville made me wonder why we spent so many years buy one lousy toaster oven after another.
I friend of mine printed a 20% discount coupon from "Bed Bath and Beyond" that I used for my Breville. Got the larger one, but maybe I would have liked the smaller one better?
I like the Brevilles too, but they're pricey. For much less $, I like the Black & Decker TRO480BS sold at Sears and elsewhere for under $40. Good design that looks and feels more expensive than it is, controls that are easy to understand and use, and the curved/sloped front and automatic slide-out rack combine to eliminate much risk of burning my hand on the upper heating element, a problem with many toaster ovens I've seen (the Breville doesn't have a slide-out rack - why not?). Don't have much cooking/toasting experience with it though.
alexr - You're not happy with the larger Breville either? Like I posted on another thread, oven feature is pretty good, toasting is not only terrible but it's slow. I expected more for the money.
I haven't used the Breville enough to know how I feel. I just have a sneaking suspicion that I might have liked the smaller one- Especially if toast was a concern. I did notice that the larger Breville has 3 heating elements on the top. Only after I bought it did I learn that the middle element only works on Broil.
So, if the 'toast' mode is marginal, we might try using the 'broil' feature and turning the toast on the upper rack.
I looked at toaster ovens this weekend, and most don't even have a "TOAST" button! I also can't handle having a "turn past 10" type timer on my toaster oven. I don't find them easy to use for controlling the bathroom vent, I doubt I'd like them better on the toaster oven. And besides making toast, I don't need the machine to shut off for me.
I think we're going to try the smaller cuisnart. Making good toast is the number one thing I want out of a toaster oven.
I've been looking at toaster ovens also and may try the new Frigidaire convection toaster oven. I've really liked the infrared/ halogen light toaster oven, but it's no longer made.
I saw a DeLonghi toaster oven (DO400) at Macy's that was kind of nice - shaped like an old GE or B&D toaster oven, but with modern electronic controls, and with large surface area heating elements top and bottom. It can display the current oven temperature, a nice touch. But I would have liked a automatically sliding-out rack, as well as one that doesn't have to be removed and reinserted at one of two heights depending on usage. It's also takes up more countertop space than it appears to, because there are plastic pieces that jut out on both sides and on the back, to keep you from placing it too close to a wall or anything combustible.
One thing I don't like about the smaller Breville (and maybe the big one too, haven't seen it) is that you have to move the rack to any of three positions depending on what you're cooking or toasting. I don't have to do that with my old GE toaster oven, and it still works well for toasting, baking, or broiling.
Then there's the Hamilton Beach 31134/31136, a small, cheap toaster that's probably the best under-$30 one I've seen, but it too requires futzing with the rack - there's only one rack position, but the bent edges of the rack mean it's at a different height if you insert the rack upside down.
I haven't seen one that gets everything right, at any price.
A few years ago this topic came up and someone suggested that what was needed was a movable top heating element. Slide it down for toasting and back up for oven.
We have the smaller Breville and really like it. The larger Breville would have taken up too much counter space, and even the smaller Breville isn't 'small'. The main functional difference between the two, besides size, is that the larger one also has a convection fan. As with other posters, we used a BB&B coupon to lessen the damage to the wallet.
It makes The Perfect toasted bagel. There are three positions for the rack, so you can get the right balance of top vs bottom.
I signed up on the BBB website, all excited to get my coupon and make the purchase. Been three days - no email and no coupon.
I think I'll order it from Amazon. They have free shipping
When I was shopping at Williams Sonoma they had three sizes of Breville Smart toaster ovens. I bought the smallest of the three, and I have been very happy with it. We use it to toast, bake, re-heat, and broil anything that fits. It doesn't have convection, and came with just one pan, but it does everything that we need it to do.
ANother Breville lover here - We have the larger one & went the 20% off BBB which did make the bite to the wallet a bit more palatable.
I do use it like a second oven - instead of heating the big 36" gas range, this gets more use. I pored through the reviews, weighed the pros/cons & am pleased with the results.
Breville owners - did anyone buy the bamboo cutting board that fits on top of the oven? If so, would you recommend it?
I have the Cuisinart TOB-195. About 170 bucks. Expensive -yes. Does it work well - yes.
I use this oven for everything - cooking for one person. Toast, bagels, pizza, salmon and veggies, sweet potato fries and much more. It gets up to temperature fast then beeps at you. It holds the heat well and things cook evenly.
I have had it at least two years and it still looks and works like new. I didn't want to pay this much but after going through 5 or 6 cheap ovens I decided to splurge. Glad I did.
Sarahlee123, I bought that cutting board and I like it a lot. I bought it for 2 reasons, one to put on top of the oven to not have a "hot spot" that I could burn myself on and 2 for an additional larger cutting board that I didn't have size wise.
It has worked out great it both cases and I like the overall looks of the oven even better with the cutting board on top.
As a cutting board it works just fine ,it is bamboo and some people like that for a cutting boards, others don't. I personally like the feel of it when I'm cutting and the size it pretty good for my home.
I don't remember the cost, but I don't think it was that far off from other boards of the same size/type.
I would say get it if you are on the fence, it is a nice addition to the smart oven.
Phil, thanks! I'm trying to decide between the large or the compact. Bed, Bath and Beyond has both, and I've got a 20% coupon. . Whichever one I get, I'll also spring for the bamboo cutting board. I appreciate your recommendation. :-)
Which size did you end up getting? My old TO is dying, so I'd better make up my mind!
Perhaps this is a new feature, but the Breville Smart Oven that I will use for the first time in a this evening does have a slide out rack in the middle position. It appears that there are magnets in the door which pull the rack out when the door is opened. The rack comes out about 3 inches, I think.
If it's new, it's a nice feature.
I am looking forward to using it. Thanks , MDBmom for starting this forum and all the contributers who helped me make the decision--and saved me $50 by alerting me to the BBB coupon.
If you read the fine print on the BB&B coupons, it excludes Breville. At least the big blue coupons I always get excluded it.
I wavered between the Smart and the compact oven, but we bought the Smart oven a few weeks ago. After using it a few times, we were so impressed with it that we're glad we went bigger. We have used all the space a few times already.
Maybe the folks at BBB let me use the coupon because it was a first time coupon issued when I signed up to BBB online. Perhaps the one I printed is different from the ones mailed to established customers. I printed it immediately after signing up and used it yesterday. No restrictions at all except for a minimum purchase of, I believe, $60.
It might be worth signing up on line if you are considering a Breville or another of the ovens BBB carries.
I bought the compact Breville this weekend from Bed Bath. They accepted my coupon with no problem. It was a BIG discount!
I've never read the fine print on the coupon - I will, the next time I get one. BTW, our BBB accepts expired coupons.
I also ordered the Breville bamboo cutting board and a 12" pizza crisper.
I have now used my new Breville oven three times, twice for toast (much better than my previous toaster--faster and more even and it accepts large slices from a homemade loaf without problem) and once this morning to heat a frozen scone. It did this perfectly also and again, much faster than my range oven and with MUCH less heat. The centered rack pops out perfectly when the door opens. I am very pleased.
MDBmom, let us know what you decide. I know there are many good choices out there.
There is an extra small Breville as well- It's only sold at William Sonoma stores. To be clear- the Breville toaster oven is available in 3 sizes.
I baked a 9 x 5 banana bread in the Smart Oven today. It came out perfectly. The recipe said 60 minutes and it took about 45 in the Breville. It browned more evenly than my regular convection oven!
I just bought the smaller version, based on these discussions. So far, it seems terrific! The BBB 20% coupon was a real help. I think it's only the larger one that uses magnets to pull out the tray. The one we got doesn't have that feature. But it fits out space and needs, and it's still a lot more money than I should be spending!
Thanks, all, for the great discussion points.