When buying a toaster oven look for some features like the size, your budget, its functions, special accessories, availability, and warranty.
Toaster ovens have become essential these days for cooking various dishes. So many people who previously did not own a toaster oven are now willing to buy one.
Even those who already have a toaster oven now want to replace their old one with a new advanced toaster oven that has much better features.
But as there is a wide variety of toaster ovens to choose from, it can be confusing while choosing.
To help you decide, we are going to discuss everything you need to know about toaster ovens and 9 tips to help you select the best one.
1. Figure Out The Size Of The Oven And Required Space
The size of the oven depends on how you are going to use it and what you are going to cook in it. For instance, Black and Decker toaster ovens are the perfect family-friendly ovens because of their sizes.
Before buying an oven, get a measuring tape and measure the dimension of the oven. If it suits perfectly with the available space in your kitchen, then you can consider getting that oven.
However, there are a few more issues that you need to consider. First is the length of the cord. If there are enough power sockets in your kitchen, then you can go for something with a shorter cord.
This is the better choice because although longer cords can help in certain areas, it can also cause some trouble. It is prone to damage, and if the cord is not placed properly, someone may trip on the cord.
Another thing to consider is the wattage of your oven. A larger oven requires more watts to work with. If your electricity outlet cannot support the high wattage, the oven might not work properly and this can also damage the electric supply line.
Getting some advice from an electrician about the house’s wiring and circuit load should help you with this problem.
2. Budget For The Toaster Oven
Setting a budget for your oven is good, but you should not sacrifice the quality and durability of the oven just to save some penny. Toaster ovens are electric appliances and any compromise in their quality and durability can be troublesome.
Fortunately, you can get good quality ovens even on a tight budget. To get a good toaster oven for the right price, you can talk with other people who used it before.
Read the review of these products and also research by going through articles related to the toaster oven. They will give you ideas on which toaster ovens are better or more cost-efficient.
Another way you can save some money is by buying an oven when they are on sale. Although you might need to wait for some time for the discount you want, the trade-off will be worth it.
3. The Functions Of The Oven
All toaster ovens have three basic functions and actually, these three are all that you need. These features are bake, toast, and broil.
1. Bake – This is the same as any big oven. Heat is emitted from the bottom of the oven. The toaster oven ensures that heat is emitted equally, and so, the top and bottom elements are cycled on and off.
2. Toast – For toasting, heat is emitted from both the top and the bottom side of the oven. This ensures that both sides get enough heat.
3. Broil – This is the opposite of baking. Heat is emitted from only the top portion of the oven. This is for dishes that require heating from the top side. Broiling is perfect for melting cheese or grilling vegetables or small cuts of meat that are used as toppings in a dish.
Although these are the basic ones, many new and advanced ovens have more functions. These extra functions include:
- Roast: Roasts the dish inside at a high temperature.
- Slow cooking: Heats the dish slowly over a long time to ensure that heat reaches the deepest part of the dish.
- Reheating: This feature emits the perfect amount of heat that can prepare any leftover food from yesterday.
4. Features Of A User-Friendly Toaster
There should be some easy-to-use features that make operating the oven much easier. Some features that should be in your oven include
1. LCD screen
This will show you what function you are using, the timer, and the amount of heat you are setting. It should be bright so that it is easy to see and spot the timer.
2. Internal Lights
Internal lights are necessary, otherwise, it would be hard to see if the pot has sat in the oven properly. It also allows you to see the condition of the dish from the outside through the transparent door.
3. Frozen Button
This is another essential feature. This lets the oven know that you are cooking or heating something that is frozen. The oven then adjusts the heat and timer accordingly.
This is a rather unique feature available only to some toaster ovens. This allows you to create mouthwatering roast, meat, and kebab dishes in a Rotisserie manner.
5. Non-Stick Interior
The interior of the oven must be made with non-stick materials. This allows the interior to be cleaned more easily.
Most ovens come with various accessories that help you in cooking. Although the accessories may differ, the one thing that almost all ovens should come with is a crumb tray and a baking pan for easy cooking and baking.
The baking pan is a pan that has the same size as the oven interior and can help you bake or broil. The crumb tray is used to catch any crumb that falls from the dish and to the bottom of your oven.
Additional accessories that may come with the oven include a chopping board, broiling rack, pizza pan, and much more.
6. Accessibility of the oven
Some people with physical disabilities cannot reach the oven or use it properly.
To mitigate this problem, many advanced ovens have technology that enables the access of cooking to those who need it. These ovens have voice-activated features and also use sounds to alert the people about when the cooking is done.
7. The Warranty Of The Oven
If you have found a suitable oven that fits all your needs, the first thing you should do is visit the website of the brand producing the oven.
Go through their products and see if they provide a warranty. See if they provide any additional service, like providing extra pans or racks.
You should also look for instructional videos for operating the toaster oven. You will know all the details and functions of the oven thoroughly. Another thing that you should pay attention to is the return policy of the company.
There might be some defects in the oven. So, be sure to go through the return policies if you want to return your damaged oven and buy a new one.
8. Go For Customer Service
Your oven is expected to work properly for a long period, but that might not always be the case. There may be a technical error that cannot be fixed by you. In these cases, take it to the customer service department for a quick repair.
But before going to the customer service, research the problem you are facing and check if you can solve it by yourself. If possible, try to fix it.
After repair, make sure you let the customer service test drive the oven to ensure it works properly. If you find that customer service that is unwilling to provide a test run, look for one that does.
9. Buy In Store Not Online
It is always best to physically go to the store rather than order things online. If you go to the store, you can see and check several factors that you could not do otherwise.
The flexibility of the door, the size, the functions, you can check them all. If you check the products online, you will only be able to judge the product based on the opinion of others.
Buying a toaster oven might be overwhelming to some, as there are a lot of options to choose from.