Small toaster ovens are a great option for small apartments and cramped kitchens. You can easily fit them on a countertop, along with your other appliances. They’re far more versatile than microwaves and toasters, as they offer baking, broiling, toasting, and many other cooking modes.
A toaster oven is also a good alternative to a standard big oven for those who can’t stand for too long or who just need to prepare smaller meals. Keep reading for five reviews of the top small toaster ovens, followed by a detailed buyer’s guide. A brief FAQ section is also included.
|BREVILLE the Compact Smart Oven, Countertop Electric Toaster Oven BOV650XL||Prime||Buy Now|
|Breville BOV450XL Mini Smart Oven with Element IQ||Prime||Buy Now|
|Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Toaster Oven, Red (31337)||Prime||Buy Now|
|Black and Decker TO1313SBD 4-Slice Toaster Oven, Black||Prime||Buy Now|
|Toaster Oven 4 Slice, Multi-function Stainless Steel with Timer - Toast - Bake - Broil Settings, Natural Convection - 1100 Watts of Power, Includes Baking Pan and Rack by Mueller Austria||Prime||Buy Now|
Small Toaster Oven Reviews
The BREVILLE BOV650XL is a compact and stylish smart toaster oven with eight cooking functions and simple controls. It can take on everything from toast to pizza, from muffins to roast chicken. It lets you save a great deal of space on your countertop, while offering a wide range of features.
The highlight of this smart oven is the Element IQ system. Basically, Breville’s toaster ovens that come with this feature have sensors that can redistribute heat within the chamber to get your meal cooked, baked or roasted evenly on all sides. The feature also helps you save power on lower settings.
This Breville oven has eight cooking modes, including toast, roast, bagel, pizza, bake, cookies, broil, and reheat. The oven also allows you to choose how dark you want your toast to be.
On the technical side, the BOV650XL delivers 1,800 Watts, which makes it one of the most powerful options in the small toaster oven class. It can heat up to well over 400° Fahrenheit.
The front panel of this toaster oven is equipped with an easy-to-read LCD screen. It has two color modes — orange and blue. The former is on during the pre-heating, while the latter kicks in when the cooking process is done.
The display layout changes depending on the setting. For example, when your oven is in toast mode, the display shows the toast darkness level and the number of slices you’re toasting. By default, it displays the temperature in Fahrenheit, but you can change it to Celsius with the push of a button.
The front control panel is also equipped with a Start/Cancel button, a cooking mode dial, a Temp/Time knob, as well as Defrost and Temperature Conversion buttons. The Temp/Time knob also allows you to select the toast darkness level and the number of slices you’re toasting.
The oven is big enough to take four slices of bread and six muffins. You can also bake a 12” pizza in it. It is easy to clean due to the non-stick coating and it has a handy crumb tray at the bottom. The grill has three positions for maximum flexibility.
The BREVILLE BOV650XL Compact Smart Oven has eight cooking modes that allow you to use it for a huge range of dishes, including bagels, cupcakes, pizzas, sausages, casseroles, roasted chicken, and more. The Element IQ system makes sure your meal gets perfectly done every time and it saves energy on low settings. Moreover, this little oven has simple controls and an easy to read, informative LCD display.
On the downside, the toaster mode is not among the best in the class.
- Smart heat distribution
- 8 cooking modes
- Large enough for a 12" pizza and 4 toast slices
- Informative LCD display
- Average toaster function
The Breville BOV450XL packs a lot of power in a small package, and it has eight cooking modes. It can take on anything and everything from a simple toast to pizzas, cupcakes, and roasted chicken. If you’re looking to save space on the counter without sacrificing power and versatility, the BOV450XL might be your next toaster oven.
Like the rest of the BOV lineup, the 450XL is equipped with the Element IQ system. This lets you prepare meals without needing to worry about the details. For example, if you’re making English muffins in the bagel mode, the system will make sure the top side receives more heat. But if you’re preparing lasagna on the baking setting, it will be done equally on all sides.
The oven of this Breville toaster oven can accommodate an 11” pizza, four toast slices, and a six-cup muffin tray. Like with any regular oven, you can use silicone trays. The chamber’s coated in non-stick coating, which makes it easy to clean and maintain. It also has a removable crumb tray at the bottom.
There is a nice, well-organized LCD display on the front panel. The info it displays depends on the mode the oven is in. The display is orange in the preheating phase, and it turns blue once the cooking process is done.
The rest of the control panel is made up of the mode selector with eight settings, toast mode controls, and the bottom buttons. The toast mode controls include the Temp/Darkness and Time/Slices buttons, as well as Up and Down selector switches. The bottom section includes Start/Cancel, A Bit More, Defrost, and Temperature Conversion buttons.
The Breville BOV450XL, though small, has plenty of power — 1,800 Watts to be exact. Thanks to the Element IQ system, this toaster oven doesn’t waste power on the lower settings.
This powerful and compact toaster oven comes equipped with the smart Element IQ system, so you can adjust the strength of each quartz element depending on the cooking setting. It also has eight cooking modes, an easy-to-read display, and simple controls.
The only noticeable downside to this oven is its average performance in the toast mode.
- Powerful and compact
- Smart heat distribution
- Simple controls
- Clear and informative display
- Toast mode is disappointing
Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Toaster Oven
The Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Toaster Oven looks like it’s been taken straight out of a vintage home appliance catalog. It also makes a fantastic toast and finger-licking good pizzas. If you’re hoping to furnish your kitchen in style, the Easy Reach Toaster Oven might be the one for you.
The Easy Reach Toaster Oven is among the best-designed toaster ovens out there. It has a candy apple red exterior with black and metallic details. A metallic color scheme is also available. This oven is small and functional, and a great choice for a cramped kitchen.
The roll top door gives you easier access to the toast or pizza you’re baking, while also saving space. It is transparent and has a thermo-resistant handle at the bottom.
The front control panel is a simple one, featuring only two knobs and the on/off indicator. The top knob lets you select between cooking modes, while the bottom knob is the timer. By default, the longest interval you can set is 30 minutes. There’s also the Stay On feature, for dishes that require more time. The maximum temperature is 450° Fahrenheit.
This oven doesn’t have an LCD display or smart heat distribution. There are only three cooking modes — bake, broil, and toast. But these still allow you to prepare a wide range of dishes and sweets. Recipes you can try include various cakes, as well as broiled meat and vegetables.
The oven is big enough to fit four slices of toast. You can also bake a 9” pizza in it. The grill is included with the oven and it has two height positions. The crumb tray is located at the bottom and can easily be removed for cleaning. A baking pan is also included in the package.
The Hamilton Beach Easy Reach Toaster Ovenis super-easy to use. It has simple controls and can be used for a wide variety of meals. It also has a top roll door that takes up no additional space when opened, while giving you full access to the food inside. Finally, it looks gorgeous, especially in the candy apple red color scheme.
Those used to electronics in home appliances might consider the exclusion of a display a minus.
- Low maintenance
- Beautiful design
- Easy to use
- Lacks a display
Black and Decker TO1313SBD
The Black and Decker TO1313SBD is a multi-functional toaster oven. It has a sturdy build, practical design, and uses modern cooking technology. With four cooking settings, an adjustable timer, and easy maintenance, it is a great option for those on a tight budget.
The TO1313SBD is equipped with four cooking settings — bake, toast, broil, and food warming. These cover a huge range of meals and snacks, including toast bread, pizza, cakes, cookies, casseroles, lasagna, and many others.
When in toast mode, the oven will evenly distribute the hot air around the chamber to make sure all slices are equally crispy on both sides. The oven can take up to four slices of bread at a time. It can also fit a standard 9” pizza.
The chamber is easy to clean after you’re done cooking. It has a convenient crumb tray at the bottom, to make maintenance even easier. The toast rack is fixed in one position and can’t be moved up or down like on some other models.
The TO1313SBD has a simple and convenient control panel. It is located to the right of the oven door and doesn’t have a digital display. The dial on the top is for temperature adjustment. The measurements are written in both Celsius and Fahrenheit. The lowest setting is for warming up food, while the top two engage the Broil and Toast modes, respectively.
The cooking setting dial is located right beneath the temperature dial. It has four settings — warm, broil, bake, and toast. The timer is at the bottom. The maximum automatic setting is 30 minutes. If you’re making a dish that takes more time, use the Stay On setting. The oven also has three separate settings for toast.
This model comes with its own baking pan that fits perfectly inside the chamber. Aside from that, the package includes a toast rack and a broiling pan. The available color options include black and stainless steel.
The Black and Decker TO1313SBD is a super-compact and very affordable toaster oven. It performs excellently in all four cooking settings and has simple controls. What’s also nice is that it has dedicated settings for the toast mode. Finally, the oven comes complete with baking and broiling pans.
The outside of the oven tends to get hot, so you’ll need to be careful about how you position it.
- Even heat distribution
- Easy maintenance
- Tends to heat up on the outside
Mueller Austria Toaster Oven
The Mueller Austria Toaster Oven is a super-affordable option for those on a tight budget. It also has plenty of power and can save energy while warming up your meal. If you’re looking for a reliable and well-made budget solution that doesn’t take up much space, make sure to give this toaster oven a try.
The Mueller Austria Toaster Oven has four modes. These include baking, toasting, broiling, and warming. Baking mode uses only the bottom heater, broil mode uses the top heater, while mode both heaters are turned on in toast mode.
The control panel is simple and is made up of three large dials. It is located to the right of the oven door. The temperature dial is at the top, the cooking mode dial is in the middle, while the timer’s positioned at the bottom.
The temperature dial goes from 150° to 450° Fahrenheit. It also displays temperature in degrees Celsius. The Function dial lets you choose between bake, broil, and toast modes.
You can set the timer to maximum 30 minutes if you want the oven to automatically shut-off after the cooking is done. If you’re preparing a meal that takes longer, switch to the Stay On position. If you’re making toast for breakfast, this oven lets you select whether you want it light, medium, or dark.
Its chamber is big enough to take a 9” pizza or four pieces of toast. It has two heaters, one on the ceiling and the other on the chamber’s floor. There are two toast rack positions and the standard crumb tray sits at the bottom.
The Mueller Austria Toaster Oven offers an excellent ratio of performance and price. It is also very powerful and energy-efficient on lower settings. The oven is versatile, allowing you to cook a staggering range of meals and snacks. It is well-built and has a functional, modern design.
The bottom tray doesn’t slide out, so cleaning it takes more time than with some other models.
- Easy to use
- Not the easiest to clean
Buying a toaster oven can be a complex task, especially if it is going to be your main cooking and baking appliance. With that in mind, you should consider all aspects and compare as many models as you can to make sure you’re getting the one that’s right for you.
Make sure to consider the toaster oven’s size and capacity, the number of functions, included features, accessories, and extras, as well as the price and warranty. Now let’s see what separates the top small toaster ovens from the rest.
Size and Capacity
First, you should ask yourself what you would like to cook or bake in your new toaster oven. Is it a 12” pizza, a pair of fish fillets, or a few cookies here and there? Consider how many people you will be feeding. Will you be cooking for one, two, or perhaps a bigger family?
If you intend to use the oven every day and to prepare a wide range of meals, a bigger model is the best way to go. There are amazing toaster ovens that can bake 12” or even 13” pizzas, and some can even accommodate a 15-lb. Thanksgiving turkey. The bigger models tend to cost more than smaller ones, but it will pay off in the long run.
If, on the other hand, you need the oven to prepare quick snacks or just a few slices of toast from time to time, a smaller oven might be the smarter choice. Compact toaster ovens are more energy-efficient and they can be simpler to clean.
Number of Settings
The number of cooking settings may be the most important feature for those planning to use their new toaster oven every day. Currently available toaster oven models all have multiple cooking settings, and that includes the budget class options. The most common ones include toast, baking, and broiling. All models can be used to warm up a meal.
In addition to these four, some models might have extra cooking settings, like pizza, roast, or steam. Let’s take a quick look at the most commonly included settings.
This is the most standard setting. You will find it in every toaster oven, regardless of its price and size. It is designed to mimic the way a “big oven” bakes. The heat mainly comes from the bottom element, though many models can increase and decrease the power of the elements as needed.
The broil setting only uses the top element to prepare food. You can use it to grill veggies, melt cheese, and give your casserole a nice brown surface.
The toast setting uses both the top and bottom elements to evenly heat up the food. Aside from toasting bread, it is great for reheating pizza and making waffles and bagels.
This setting keeps the meal above the temperature range where bacteria may develop (40°-140° Fahrenheit). It is around 160° degrees on most models.
This setting uses both top and bottom elements. The former will melt cheese and other toppings, while the latter will give the crust a nice crisp. Some models have specific time limits for frozen and fresh pizzas.
Roasting is harsher than baking, and it is done at a higher temperature. In roast mode, the oven will reach the maximum temperature faster.
Some models include this advanced mode. It utilizes an onboard water reservoir to let you poach and steam the food. You can also create artisan breads and other bakery-style pastries with this setting.
The name of the setting says it all. It is completely tuned to baking cookies, though you can prepare other foods and meals that require similar temperatures and have a similar preparation time. This mode generally turns the convection fan on (if there is one).
The bagel setting is designed to give your pastry a crusty top and a well-done interior, while being gentle on the exterior.
Depending on the model, your toaster oven may also come with air-fry, dehydrate, dual cooking, slow cooking, and many other cooking settings. Air-fry is there when you want to give your meal a nice brown top and make it extra crisp. Use dehydration to dry fruits and herbs. Dual cooking lets you combine two settings. For example, you might broil sausages, and then, when the broiling is done, you can leave them on the warm setting for another half an hour.
In order to make their toaster ovens more appealing to buyers, manufacturers keep trying to outdo each other by offering a wide range of innovative features. You can expect convection, digital displays, rotisserie spits, and more. Here’s a word or two on some commonly seen features.
This is a fan that distributes the air around the chamber. Ovens with a fan are also called convection toaster ovens.
This is an essential one. It keeps track of the cooking process and will turn the elements off once the time is up. However, most models have the Stay On feature for meals that take longer to prepare. In Stay On mode, it is up to you to turn the power off.
A neat feature found in more mid-range and top-range toaster ovens. It usually displays the temperature info and the cooking setting. In some special cases, it can display other key info. It may change colors to signal where you are in the cooking process.
Some toaster ovens have inside lights that let you monitor the progress of your meal without the need to open the chamber door.
Accessories and Extras
Let’s take a look at the most commonly featured accessories that come with toaster ovens.
Many models, even in the budget category, come with a baking pan. The included pan is perfectly sized to fit inside the chamber. You can use it to bake or broil your meals.
This useful accessory keeps the food above the baking pan during broiling. Many models, though not all, have multiple positions for the broiling rack.
This is a standard feature even in the budget class. A removable crumb tray is located at the bottom of the chamber and you can pull it out while the door is closed.
All of these accessories make your toaster oven more convenient to use. Of course, you can also buy pans and trays separately.
Price and Warranty
Finally, you should consider the toaster oven’s price and the warranty that comes with it. The most affordable models start under $50, while the most expensive ones can cost you a few hundred dollars. Of course, the more accessories and cooking modes the oven has, the more expensive it will be.
Before buying a toaster oven, read the warranty carefully and see how long you’re covered. Also, find out how the manufacturer handles defects. Make sure you understand the return policy in case the oven underperforms or arrives damaged.
What Is a Toaster Oven?
A toaster oven is an oven that combines the functionalities of a traditional toaster and a standard oven. Toaster ovens tend to be much smaller than the classic models, and they are perfect for small kitchens and cramped countertops.
Toaster ovens usually only have a main chamber, where all the cooking takes place. There are no standard burners on the top, though some models might feature the classic upright toast slots.
Controls are usually positioned on the side of the oven. The most important ones are the temperature and cooking mode dials, as well as the timer. Some models might also sport LCD displays and additional buttons and switches.
Why Should I Get a Toaster Oven?
There are several reasons you should consider switching to a toaster oven. Here’s a word or two on each.
If you find it difficult to bend over or crouch every time you need to check on the pizza or casserole in your standard oven, a toaster oven on the countertop might be a good alternative.
Easier to maintain
Being smaller, toaster ovens are far easier to clean than classic ovens.
Once positioned and integrated with the working surface, a standard oven can’t easily be moved around. A toaster oven fits on a countertop and can be relocated easily.
Toaster ovens tend to be more energy-efficient than the standard variety. Many models also save power when warming food.
Standard Toaster Ovens vs. Toasters, Microwaves, and Convection Ovens
There is a considerable difference between toasters, microwaves, standard toaster ovens, and convection ovens, even though they serve similar purposes. Here are the major differences between standard toaster ovens and the other appliances.
Convection toaster ovens
Convection ovens are very similar to standard ones. The only major difference is that the convection models have fans that distribute the heat around the chamber.
While toaster ovens use heating elements, microwaves rely on electromagnetic waves. Essentially, microwaves are there to defrost foods and warm up meals, but they are not great at preparing toast and other crisp meals.
The main difference between the two is that toasters are limited to making toast and bagels, while toaster ovens can have multiple cooking settings and they can handle a much wider variety of meals.
Do Toaster Ovens Heat Up While Cooking?
Some heat up while others don’t, depending on the manufacturer and the model. However, due to the fact that many models do heat up while working, you should always be careful to correctly position your toaster oven on the countertop.
It needs to have sufficient clearance from the overhead cabinets, as well as from other appliances and items on the counter. Make sure to check the user manual for the exact requirements for your oven.
How to Use a Toaster Oven
Toaster ovens are mostly used to toast bread and bake pizza. However, there’s so much more they can do, especially the advanced models that have four or more cooking settings.
For example, you can use the bake setting to make your favorite casserole, chicken breasts, or any other meal you would bake in a standard big oven. The toast setting lets you prepare delicious muffins, bagels, garlic bread toast, and waffles. The broil setting is great if you want to make mozzarella sticks, chicken nuggets, and egg rolls.
We put together a more detailed article on using a toaster oven.
The winner of this top small toaster ovens review is the Breville BOV450XL. This smart oven offers eight cooking modes, Element IQ technology, a convenient LCD display that changes colors when the cooking is done, and easy maintenance. It has four quartz elements and can fit an 11” pizza and four toast slices.
If you’re on a tight budget, the Mueller Austria Toaster Oven is your best bet. The oven offers toast, bake, and broil cooking modes. It can also keep the food warm and has a Stay On feature for longer cooking times. It can fit a 9” pizza or four slices of toast inside the chamber.