The Best Toaster Ovens

Whether you’re planning on roasting a whole chicken or you just want to reheat a slice of last night’s pizza, the best toaster oven should be able to cook food the way you want it without requiring too much of your time or energy. We baked cookies, toasted bread, made fresh pizza, and reheated leftovers in 11 of the best models on the market. We found three excellent toaster ovens for different budgets and cooking needs.

The 3 Best Toaster Ovens

Breville Mini Smart Oven

Best For
Most Kitchens
Breville Mini Smart Oven
An intuitive oven that consistently exceeds expectations.
Pros
Consistent results
Easy to use
Stylish and compact
Cons
Small capacity

Why we chose it

Consistent results

The Breville has the same 1800-watt power as toaster ovens that cost $100 more. Before we started testing, we were skeptical of the Breville’s “Element IQ” heating, but it’s not just marketing: The Breville delivers amazing results by targeting its heating elements according to your chosen presets.

Its eight customized settings include "Cookies," "Toast," and "Pizza.” We were unsure how well these presets would work, but the results spoke for themselves: The Mini Smart Oven made chocolate chip cookies with crunchy edges and a gooey interior, and it produced the best batch of toast of any model we tested.

Easy to use

Through all of our tests, the Breville was the most enjoyable to use. You won’t be constantly forced to consult the manual or second-guess what you’re doing. It guides you through every step to help you get the best results. If you choose the toast setting, the Breville prompts you to pick a shade from a seven-point scale, then how many slices you’re making. It also tells you when it’s preheating and when it’s ready — a minor convenience, but essential for those doing a lot of baking.

Breville for Toaster Oven

The Breville's control dial made it easy for us to start cooking.

Stylish and compact

With a sleek stainless steel finish and minimalist control panel, the Breville is elegant to look at. The only thing that separates the Breville Mini from pricier toaster ovens is its size — it’s a little smaller than most other models in its price range. But if you’re not looking for a kitchen centerpiece, you’ll appreciate how little room it takes up on the counter.

Points to consider

Small capacity

Unlike our upgrade pick, the Cuisinart, it’d be hard to replace your conventional oven with something this small. We actually appreciated how snugly the Breville fit on the counter — you won’t have to rearrange your whole kitchen just to accommodate it — but if you’re looking to roast a whole chicken in your toaster oven, you’re better off opting for something roomier.

Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Oven

Best on
a Budget
Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Oven
A simple machine that’s perfect for toast and leftovers.
Pros
Great for the basics
Thoughtfully designed
Large capacity
Cons
Less versatile

Why we chose it

Great for the basics

The Easy Reach Oven is a sturdy, no-frills machine. It has settings for baking, broiling, toasting, and convection baking — more cooking modes than any other budget option we looked at. And it’s designed to do the basics really well. It toasted bread and reheated leftovers better than other toasters in its price range, producing results that were even and consistent.

Thoughtfully designed

What really won us over was the Easy Reach Oven’s door design. Unlike every other model we tested, the Hamilton Beach has a door that rolls up instead of folding down. It may seem like a pretty trivial detail, but it makes a huge difference in how often you have to clean.

When you pull the rack out on most toaster ovens, it sits directly above the glass door. That means most oven doors become a repository for crumbs and oozing pizza cheese. The Hamilton Beach remained pristine throughout all of our tests. It also felt safer: instead of reaching above a scorching piece of glass to pull out your food, the door stays safely up out of the way.

Easy Reach Door for Toaster Oven

The oven’s uniquely practical door design secured it as a favorite.

Large capacity

As soon as we took the Easy Reach Oven out of the box, it felt more impressive than other budget options. It was by far the largest of the group we tested, with an internal capacity usually reserved for models twice its price.

Points to consider

Less versatile

Not everything cooks perfectly in the Easy Reach. In our toast test, the middle pieces were noticeably darker than the edges of the outer slices. But that’s basically par for the course, even with larger toaster ovens costing over $200. If you’re going to be cooking four or fewer slices at a time, it’ll do the job.

It’s also not well-suited for dishes with long cooking times. The timer only goes up to 30 minutes, a good measure of what you should expect out of a toaster oven for this price. If you’re planning on using it for dishes that take longer than that, it’s worth upgrading to the Breville Mini Smart Oven or the Cuisinart.

Cuisinart Chef’s Convection Toaster Oven

Best
Upgrade
Cuisinart Chef's Convection Toaster Oven
The whole package; it might just replace your conventional oven.
Pros
Large capacity
Consistent performance
Easy to use
Thoughtful extras
Cons
Takes up counter space

Why we chose it

Large capacity

The spacious Cuisinart Chef's Convection Toaster Oven can seemingly do everything a full-sized oven can: roast an entire chicken, cook a 13" fresh pizza (the best pizza we tasted during testing, we might add), and bake a fresh batch of cookies. While other toaster ovens only have room for four-to-six slices of toast, the Cuisinart managed to fit nine — so there’s plenty of space for more ambitious meals.

Consistent performance

Similar to the Breville Mini Smart Oven, we didn’t have much to complain about with the Cuisinart’s cooking. Granted, every slice of toast wasn’t perfectly even, but we saw that problem with every bigger toaster oven, and it was still the best of our most expensive tier. Consumer Reports came to the same conclusion, declaring, “There were no discernible flaws in its performance.”

Easy to use

For as much functionality as the Cuisinart gave us, it was also one of the easiest to use. There was a thoughtfulness in features like the +30 second button and the interior light that the other models just didn’t match. It has 12 preset cooking modes, more than the other high-end models we tested. And while more isn’t necessarily better, it was nice not having to think too much about getting the settings just right. Whatever we could imagine cooking in an oven, the Cuisinart had an option for. Even better: it guided us through it.

Cuisinart for Toaster Oven

The Cuisinart's cooking presets plug in time and temperature automatically. Need to adjust? Just turn the dial to choose between settings and turn them up or down.

Thoughtful extras

Additional, unmatched details separate Cuisinart from the rest of the pack. It comes with a 13” pizza stone, as well as separate pans for baking and broiling. Cuisinart also offers a three year limited warranty, where others — including the Breville — are only valid for one year.

Points to consider

Takes up counter space

Its dimensions are about 21” x 17” x 12” — a necessity in accommodating its roomy internal capacity. It all comes down to what you want out of a toaster oven. The Cuisinart will take up a ton of room on your counter, but you may never have to turn on your oven again.

How to find the right toaster oven for you

Consider your kitchen

If it’s going to be a convenient tool (that you actually use), a toaster oven needs to fit seamlessly into your life. Important factors to consider include: the finish of your other appliances, the depth of your countertops, and how much space you’re willing to give up to a new appliance.

Pay attention to your cooking habits

What will you cook in your toaster oven most often? The answer to that question will determine how much money you can get away with saving. If you know you need it to cook a fresh pizza with bubbly cheese and crispy crust, you’ll need to spend more than someone who only wants golden toast and evenly cooked leftovers.

Decide on a budget

If you know your space and cooking habits, you can figure out what you’ll need to spend for a toaster oven that meets your needs. Each of our top picks is best-in-class for its budget level.

Toaster Ovens FAQ

Can a toaster oven save me money?

According to a study by Energy Star, toaster ovens use about half the amount of energy as a conventional electric oven when cooking small meals. That could mean as much as $0.30 saved for every hour you spend cooking.

What can I cook in a toaster oven?

From muffins to bacon, the toaster oven’s utility is broad. The Hamilton Beach website says they’re “great for small-batch recipes [that you] bake, broil, or toast” — beyond that, it seems limitations differ according to price. The most basic toaster oven will handle toast and leftovers. The more you pay, the more likely your oven will accomplish tougher tasks.

What can’t I cook in a toaster oven?

At the very least, don’t use Pyrex, glass cookware, or parchment paper in your toaster oven. Pyrex, in particular, explicitly warns against it. And glass cookware, in general, runs the risk of fracturing or shattering from repeated exposure.

What does “convection” really mean?

Convection heating works by moving hot air around to keep temperatures consistent throughout an oven. This cooks food faster, so it’s recommended you reduce the temperature by about 25 degrees and start checking in with about a quarter of the time left. Convection heating can also dry food out, so be careful with desserts like cakes and souffles.

The Best Toaster Ovens: Summed Up

Breville Mini Smart Oven
Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Oven
Cuisinart Chef's Convection Toaster Oven
Best for Most Kitchens
Best on a Budget
Best Upgrade
$150
$60
$185
Wattage
1800 watts
1400 watts
1800 watts
Presets/Cooking features
8
3
15
Internal capacity
4 bread slices
6 bread slices
9 bread slices
Overall dimensions
14.25" x 16" x 8.5"
9.5" x 18.75" x 15.25"
21" x 17" x 11.5"
Accessories included
10"x10" boiling rack
10"x10" baking pan
crumb tray
silicone door buffer
Oven rack
broiling pan
crumb tray
2 oven racks
13" pizza stone
9"x13" baking pan
broiling pan
Warranty
Limited 1-year
Limited 1-year
Limited 3-year