Best Toasters Reviewed & Compared
Toasters are easily one of the most utilized tools in the kitchen. From serving up Sunday morning sides of toast to making a makeshift grilled cheese sandwich, the uses for a toaster are virtually limitless.
However, if you are in the market for a new toaster because your trusty old one finally gave out on you or if perhaps you are just looking for an upgrade due to keeping up with the needs of your growing family, you may feel a bit at odds when it comes to the unlimited toaster options available.
My Favorite Toasters
1. Hamilton Beach 22811
One of the coolest features about this toaster is the fact that it sets off a small beep when your food is ready and will proceed to keep it warm for you without overheating for up to 3 minutes, so you can keep getting yourself and your family ready and out the door during super busy mornings. Following the 3 minute duration, it will proceed to shut itself off for safety purposes.
There is also the great feature of the Toast Shade Selector, which offers 7 various settings, to better ensure that you can get your bread just as crispy as you prefer them to be. Not to mention the fact that it also provides cool-touch walls, stainless steel sides, and an elevated toast-boost to guarantee that your fingers will not ever get burned. The top of this one still does get pretty hot so always use caution.
The only notable issue with this toaster, though, is the fact that the electrical cord is attached at the front of the toaster and in turn comes out from the bottom of it, and it is not a very long cord. This most definitely means that you may have to work closer to the walls or having it faced in an odd direction depending on where the power outlets are located in your kitchen.
The good news about the cord though is the fact that it does have the capability to wrap underneath of the toaster itself which is incredibly convenient for storage and just keeping it out of the way. That being said, if the only main issue with a toaster being the cord, especially with such a great price tag, you really can’t go wrong with this toaster.
- Keeps the food warm for 3 minutes without overheating and shuts off automatically
- 2 Extra-wider slots that fit different kinds of pastry
- Cool touch stainless steel exterior
The electrical cord is too short
2. Black&Decker TR1278B
Combine these features and you will find that your bread will pop up exactly the way that you like them each and every time! And best of all the crumb tray drops down to make cleaning a breeze!
However, that is not quite an accurate statement as the toaster actually features a wrap-around device for the cord on the bottom of the toaster.
The crumb tray was also an issue that displeased some people, however, it was created to open by simply sliding the tray forward, then you just push it back to close, it works quite well and has not been noted to open up on its own. With regards to toasting evenly, it works perfectly as it should.
The toaster also feels incredibly light which is super convenient if you have to move or store it. And finally, the toaster features a handy cancel button that stops toasting and ejects your food. The handle itself was not designed to eject your food, which may actually be one of the issues that many were having about their levers breaking, they may have improperly used it. Overall, it can easily be said that there nothing wrong with this toaster free of perhaps a lack of simply understanding and trusting it to do its job. It is a simple toaster that is perfect in pricing as well.
3. Cuisinart CPT- 435
In fact, there are over seven different browning settings as well as incredibly convenient self-adjusting slots which of course mean virtually any size of bread from thin to thick are expected to be evenly browned. And with the help of the LCD countdown toasting-time bar display you can easily make sure that you do not overcook your bread items.
And there have been complaints that there is a high pitch sound that the toaster emits once your bread has been toasted and ejected. Though some added that the sound really was not that bad, to others it was plain and simply unbearable.
However, we find this option quite a good and quality one and did not identify any issues with it while testing it for the purpose of this review.
- Super stylish design
- 7 different toasting options
- LCD countdown screen
Lever might stop working after several toasting sessions
4. KRUPS KH732D
This toaster also offers extra-large (1.5” x 5.75”) slots that are also self-centering and can easily accommodate a wide variety of breaded items, such as English muffins, bagels, buns, and thick slices of homemade bread. There are also several different setting options to allow you the freedom to choose the best setting for your needs.
And of course, there is also the cancel function which permits you the opportunity to end the toasting session whenever you choose. Simply turn the knob to select one of the six browning settings, from light to dark and you are all set to go! Some other awesome features of the KRUPS Breakfast Set 2.Slot Toaster is that it includes a high-lift lever for smaller items, blue LED indicators, two removable crumb trays for easy cleaning, and super convenient cord storage to assist in keeping your countertop looking organized.
KRUPS is a super popular, trusted brand in terms of kitchen appliances. However, even the most trusted brands can often come with their flaws. One of the most notable complaints about this toaster is that it has a “cheap” vibe to it. There were even a few instances of the plastic handle breaking off after only a few times of use, which is certainly a downgrade. Though KRUPS most certainly has an exceptional return policy, depending on how often you plan on using this toaster, you may want to be sure that you handle it with care!
- 6 different shade settings
- Fits Bagels, English muffins and homemade bread
- High lift for smaller items
5. Black & Decker T2569B
Some of the helpful features are that this 850-watt 2-slice toaster comes packed with self-centering, extra-wide slots and a convenient browning-control knob to better select the shade of your bread from light to dark as desired.
While there are a ton of toasters, even top of the line ones, of which have been noted to not be entirely capable of evenly toasting bread and some have even been noted to have bread that come out with burned edges, this simple Black and Decker surprises the user as to how well and even it performs.
For the overall price and simplicity of this little guy, you really can’t go wrong if you are in the market for just a simple, working toaster that does its job. And, if all else fails, Black and Decker boasts an awesome return policy.
- Browns evenly
- Fit for Bagels and English muffins
- Slide out crumb tray
Doesn't elevate the bread high enough
Criteria for Evaluation
Size and Capacity
Toasters greatly vary by size. Think about you particular needs for your toaster ask yourself the following: do you need to toast 2 slices of bread at a time or 4? Will you be toasting artisan bread or bagels? How much counter space is available? Once you better know, be sure to always check the interior and exterior dimensions on all models prior to purchasing.
Keep Warm Option
The great option of Keep Warm is perfect for those who are always rushing out the door. Certainly not a necessary feature, but definitely a very handy one! Most toasters that boast this option do have an automatic shut off for safety purposes, but always look into that prior to purchase.
If you have trouble remember to grab your bagel on your way to drop the kids off at school or head into work, having a handy audible reminder may be a good option for you. Be sure to take into consideration what other reviews state about beeps and audible sounds, though, as many can be louder than expected.
Ease of Clean-Up
There are a ton of different models of toasters that have significantly different options of ease of overall cleaning. Some models permit the crumb tray to slide out only slightly while other models have a completely removable crumb tray to make cleanup much easier.
These are some small details of which a lot of people tend to overlook. If you do not want your toaster smoking due to a significant amount of crumb build up at the bottom, this is something you will certainly want to consider.
Ease of Use
In terms of ease of use, you will also want to consider this. Are your toasting needs smaller and very basic?
Or are you looking to purchase a toaster for an elderly relative who may struggle with too many options? If so, you will want to be sure to seek out a general, simple toaster that has a limited amount of options for overall ease of use.
Shade control is a huge factor and can allow for better capability of your toaster being able to automatically adjust the temperature and the time to give you the perfect amount of desirable toasting. If you like your bread toasted in a specific way, this is something that you will most certainly want to keep in mind when investing in a toaster.
Bagel, Reheat, and Defrost Features
Depending on your personal needs and desires, you may want to consider additional special features of which will allow you the freedom to select pre-programmed settings with the simple press of a button. While these extra features are most certainly nice, they are definitely not necessary features.
Some will say the extra cost for these features is not worth it when you’re talking about just making toast. They might look amazing sitting on your counter, but the toast they make isn’t so great. A straightforward toaster with a couple of slots, an on/off switch and seven-setting browning selection is really all you need.
This gets the main job done the best. Same is true for the automatic pop-up. This feature simply starts to cool your toast instead of the ideal of keeping it warm with the heat left over from the toasting cycle.
Finally, we come to what is often the most important aspect to consider when it comes to investing in the best toasters on the market. You will, most certainly want to consider the toaster price that you are interested in purchasing. Sure it may have all the best features and comes from a top of the line brand name.
But take heed and read the reviews of any toaster you are interested in, as all too often you will not exactly be getting what you are planning on paying for.
It has often been noted that when it comes to toasters, just because you spend upwards of a hundred dollars on one, does not truly mean it is the best one available. In fact, much to the contrary, many have been found to note that the toaster they paid a minimal amount for actually works far better than one they invested a significant amount in.
Did you Know?
An inventor by the name of Albert Marsh create a nickel-chromium alloy that was able to be heated over an over using an electrical current. General Electric spent four years to make a toasting appliance that was suitable for home use. Later, in the mid 1920s, the Toastmaster company introduced the first pop-up toaster to the general market.
Why is my toaster not toasting food evenly?
If your toast is not evenly toasted, then it will need to be cleaned. Check our Q&A on how to clean your toaster for more information.
Why does my toaster create an odor?
The number one reason your toaster could have an odor can be due to the manufacturing process. During this process, the toaster may be still covered in dust that needs to be removed before you start toasting for the first time.
Here’s what to do if that happens:
- Press the bread lever down (don’t insert anything in it)
- While working for the first time, the toaster will heat up and burn the dust that may have accumulated. The odor you may notice is more than normal during this process.
What does the bagel button do?
This button is used to toast foods such as bagels or English muffins. These foods are thicker than regular bread and take longer to toast. When you use this feature, the toaster will adjust the toasting time for the appropriate food item being toasted.
Which lighter/darker setting to choose?
This feature allows you to choose how to toast, whether just light toasting or crunchy toasting. Make sure to select the lighter settings if you are toasting thin slices and remember that this setting will remain until you don’t change it manually.
What does the frozen button do?
The frozen button is a feature that is used for you to toast your frozen foods. In one simple step, this feature will automatically defrost your food and then toast it. On some toasters, this button is called the defrost button.
What does the warm button do?
The warm button is a feature that is used for warming foods that have already been toasted, but may have become cool. With this feature, your toaster will warm your food without toasting it any further.
Are there different bread slot sizes to consider?
Yes. Because a bagel is a different width than regular bread, for example, you will want to make sure that the toaster that the toaster you choose has bread slot sizes that will accommodate a variety of different bread types and sizes. When selecting a toaster, you want to make sure that you can toast any of your foods; from frozen or club sandwiches.
What is the purpose of the crumb tray?
Most options now-a-days come with crumb trays which are are a great thing because they can be easily removed. Removal allows allows you to get rid of the crumbs stuck inside your toaster and the result of use over a longer period of time.
What is the most durable and/or safest toaster housing material?
Some people find that they are worried about safety when it comes to their toaster. If this is the case what you need to do is take into consideration toaster housing. Options made of metal metal generally retain heat. However options made of plastic or cool reach steel are likely to retain less heat and therefore are perfect for any family with young kids.