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Choosing the Best Toaster

Updated on January 11, 2010

Kitchen Toaster

Not everyone has a toaster, but you may find that it is so much easier to use a toaster for morning breakfast or even a snack of a slice of raisin bread that is lightly toasted instead of your oven. A toaster will provide a perfect even toast to a slice of bread, most even have settings so that you can decide if you want your bread lightly toasted, medium, or plain black.

When choosing a kitchen toaster there are so many options that you can choose from. Toasters come in a variety of colors so that you can choose the one that best fits your kitchen decor. They also come with different numbers of slots; typically toasters come in either 2 or 4 slice toasters. You can also purchase toasters that can toast a bagel or hot dog bun, as well as toasters that can multi-task by toasting your bread, keeping your meat warm, and cooking your eggs.

Whichever toaster you choose for your kitchen, make sure that you check out the different features so that you can purchase the best toaster for you on the first try without having to make a return and buy another toaster.

When buying a toaster, make sure that you consider the following features:

  • How many pieces of bread can you toast at once? Larger families and families on the go will need a toaster that can toast more than 2 slices of bread at the same time.
  • Can you toast bagels? If you prefer bagels over toasted bread, then you'll want to make sure that the toaster you choose can fit a bagel half into each slot. You don't want the bagel to get stuck.
  • Are there settings to determine how toasted the bread will get? Depending on what you're toasting your bread for, you may want the bread lightly toasted or a little crunchier, or maybe you just prefer crunchier bread than softer bread. The setting will be able to help you master your toast.
  • Are there controls for different settings of food? Is there a cancel option? Reheat, frozen, defrost, or bagel setting?
  • Is there a crumb tray? The crumb tray helps to minimize mess and make cleaning easier. Not all toasters have them, but you will find that most of them do include a crumb tray.
  • Is there a warranty? Some toasters offer limited time warranties, which is something that you may want to consider.
  • What colors does it come in? Depending on your kitchen decor, a white toaster may not fit, so a little extra searching may be called for in order to find a back or die-cast one.

Depending on what your needs and wants are, the features will vary.

Breville Die-Cast Smart Toaster

  • Slices: 2 slice toaster
  • Bagel Option: Yes
  • Settings: Push-button controls for toast, a bit more, bagel, defrost, and lift-and-look functions
  • Warranty: 1 year limited warranty
  • Color: Die-cast metal
  • Other: LED panel illuminates according to selected setting on variable browning control; hot to touch; comes in 4 slice toaster version as well as the 2 slice

T-Fal Deluxe Toaster

  • Slices: 4 slice toaster that has independent 2 or 4 slice control options
  • Bagel Option: Yes (extra wide, adjustable slots perfect for bagels)
  • Settings: 7 customized toasting levels, reheat and bagel functions, high-lift lever, cancel button
  • Crumb Tray: Yes
  • Warranty: 1 year limited warranty
  • Color: Black and steel
  • Other: Cool to touch

Cuisinart 2-Slice Toaster

  • Slices: 2 slice toaster
  • Bagel Option: Yes
  • Settings: 9 browning levels, cancel, reheat, defrost, and bagel settings
  • Crumb Tray: Yes
  • Warranty: 3 year limited warranty
  • Color: White
  • Other: Touchpad controls, cord wrap, high-rise carriage, LED indicator lights, cool to touch

Back to Basics Toaster and Egg Poacher in 1

  • Slices: 2 slice or 4 slice toaster
  • Bagel Option: wide toaster slots perfect for English muffins, croissants, or bagels
  • Settings: Cancel button and automatic shut-off
  • Crumb Tray: Yes
  • Warranty: 1 year limited warranty
  • Color: Black
  • Other: 3-in-1 appliance functions as toaster, egg cooker, and meat warmer; cord storage

Proctor Silex Toaster

  • Slices: 2 slice toaster
  • Bagel Option: Slots are wide enough for bagels
  • Settings: Auto shut-off,
  • Crumb Tray: Yes
  • Color: White
  • Other: Hot to touch


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    • Whitney05 profile image

      Whitney 8 years ago from Georgia

      dohn i agree that toasters are much simpler and easier to clean.

      rnmsn, thanks :-) I try

      Fritteritter thanks. I'm trying something different. I'm hoping it will help someone looking for appliances. Sometimes microwave ovens are better than toasters, depending on what you're cooking, but i think a toaster should be in every kitchen, whereas a microwave oven is not as much a necessity.

    • fritteritter profile image

      fritteritter 8 years ago from Ohio, USA

      I'm enjoying your kitchen appliance reviews very much, and this is another hub well-done. We have a Black & Decker 4-slice with cancel, frozen, and bagel buttons. I also have a convection toaster oven - perfect for toasting and baking, even cookies... but like dohn121 said, a huge pain to clean! I'm very glad to have a standard toaster as well.

      That T-Fal toaster looks very classy!

    • RNMSN profile image

      Barbara Bethard 8 years ago from Tucson, Az

      As my eng/lit prof said in college/whatever you write about be sure it is well researched, thought out, flows well and gives succinct as well as interesting information! As always, Whitney, you deliver on all points and I thank you!

    • dohn121 profile image

      dohn121 8 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      I prefer these types of toasters over the toaster ovens many people have as they are safer and are undoubtedly easier to clean (the ones with the crumb trays). Thanks Whitney!