Buying a toaster oven can be a complicated affair especially if you are a first timer. The modern toaster ovens are multifunctional as opposed to the former units which were basically used to toast bagels and bread. You can use your appliance to broil, bake and do conventional cooking of foods such as casseroles and pizzas without much trouble.
The appliances are easy to use and economical at the same time and will come highly recommended for the modern households. Toaster ovens come in different sizes and shapes from different manufacturers and you can use these quick tips to choose the best appliance for your day to day needs.
Step # 1: Choose based on your cooking method
In case you intend to use your toaster oven for warming foods and toasting purposes, a simple model will be ideal for you. Other appliances are designed to cook using infra-wave/infrared or convention warming option and thus will work well if you intend to use the appliance for broiling or baking.
On the other hand, convection toaster ovens are equipped with small fans that help disperse hot air within the oven evenly thus browning food while reducing the overall cooking time by 30 percent. Although these convection toasters are a bit pricey, their convenience makes them popular in many kitchens. If you want to reduce the overall cooking time, toaster ovens equipped with infrawave (infrared) are ideal since they do not need pre-heating.
Step # 2: Consider your budget vis-à-vis the cost
Cost are vary and you can get one that goes for as little as $30. There are other models such as the Breville Smart Oven BOV800XL which goes for $360 and these are the high-end multifunctional appliances.
However, you should be able to get a top rated appliance for any price ranging between $30 and $360 based on the functions and how evenly this can able to broil or bake things such as pizzas.
Step # 3: – Check the Features Offered
Toaster ovens normally feature a digital keypad or a dial timer. Each of these features has its own benefits and many users find digital toaster ovens to be easier to use as compared to dial timers. Digital appliances also give more accuracy for setting selection plus they have pre-set functions to help cook common dishes.
You should also check the interior of the toaster ovens and choose one with a non-stick material as this makes them easier to clean. Appliances that come with a removal crumb-tray accessible from the front are also better and user-friendly.
Step # 4: Check the size
Toaster ovens are designed to accommodate different slices of bread. You will find them referred to as 4-slice or 6-slice based on the number of slices you can toast at a go. Additionally, the appliances come in different sizes ranging between 10×10 inches to bigger ones measuring 20×16 inches.
Appliances that are basic and used for re-heating or simple toasting are normally smaller in capacity and size. For roasting or baking larger pieces of food on your countertop, a larger appliance will be ideal.
Step # 5:- Safety features
Consider a toaster oven that has safety features such as auto shut-off or notification ring sound that helps you know when the food is fully cooked. Automatic shut-off is better, safer, and therefore recommended. Appliances that come with cool-touch sides are also better especially in homes where there are little children.