Toaster or Toaster Oven? What Buyers Need to Know

When it comes to kitchen appliances, a toaster isn’t going to be the one that breaks the bank. Most people can live without a toaster and never even miss it. Some of us just love toast too much. Regardless of your preferences, a toaster is a small appliance-staple in millions of households.
If you’re remodeling your kitchen or moving into a new home, a toaster will be one of the finishing touches. That toaster could also be a toaster oven. What’s the difference? Which one should you choose? Here are some tips and things to keep in mind that will help you make the right purchase for your kitchen.

Toasters vs. Toaster Ovens

There are quite a few differences between toasters and toaster ovens, but one thing is assuredly the same: they can both toast a slice of bread. Here’s a closer look at each.

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Photo Credits: http://www.flickr.com/photos/elasticsoul/2457667318/

Toasters

Toasters usually have two or four slots for bread, and they’re very simple devices. You choose a heat setting, press a button, and wait for your perfectly browned piece of toast to pop up. They’re smaller than toaster ovens; they won’t take up as much room on your countertops, and they can be easily stored away in a cabinet until you need them if you prefer. Some toasters will have more settings or features than others, and as a result some are more expensive than others.

Toaster Ovens

Toaster ovens are larger than toasters, so they take up more counter space. If your kitchen is small, this can be an inconvenience. Toaster ovens vary in size, too, and the size you choose will depend on how much space you have, as well as how much food you want to cook at one time. Toaster ovens actually tend not to toast bread as well as toasters do, but they can perform many more functions. Some have a broiler setting, which is great for cooking things like hamburgers. You can cook just about anything that’s small enough to fit inside.

Price

If price is a concern, toasters are less expensive. They can cost as little as $15, and those budget-priced toasters often work just as well as higher-end models. Lower-priced toaster ovens may cost about $70, but they’re worth the extra money if you can get more use out of them.

Features

Toasters can have convenient features like slide-out crumb trays, which make cleaning the inside of the toaster easier; retractable cords for easier storage; and bagel or frozen settings. Toaster ovens can have broiler or reheat settings, and multiple or adjustable racks. Toaster ovens with porcelain interiors are easiest to clean.

Design

One of the cool things about toasters is that there are so many different designs, that your toaster can double as a design element. It can match your overall motif, with different color finishes, chrome, or other finishes. There are trendy toasters in retro and modern styles, and they can look really cool sitting on your counter. Toaster ovens can look good, too, but there isn’t as much variety or style available.

Stacey Lee is a professional chef and kitchen design expert who loves to blog in her spare time. She often writes about anything from the best new recipes to transitional kitchen design.

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