Deciding which toaster oven to buy

Which Is Better: A Toaster Oven or Convection Oven?

Which Is Better: A Toaster Oven or Convection Oven?. Both convection ovens and toaster ovens aim to achieve the same goal: to heat food in a thorough manner. Deciding which heating unit is better means taking into consideration a variety of factors, including budget and types of meals you are most likely to heat. Only after weighing these and other factors can a person truly decide which oven is best for her.

Convection Versus Toaster

Convection ovens, unlike toaster ovens and conventional ovens, utilize an internal fan to evenly circulate hot air within the unit. The main advantage of a convection oven is that the circulated hot air allows the food to be cooked at a faster rate than toaster ovens. Toaster ovens, much like traditional toasters, use heated coils to warm food and are typically smaller units, capable of fitting on a countertop.

Toaster Ovens

Those on the market for a toaster oven must weigh certain factors before making a final purchase. For example, toaster ovens with a nonstick interior are easier to clean than those without. All toaster ovens come equipped with removable crumb trays; however, some are removable from the front. Those that are removable from the front can be removed while the oven is hot. Some models come equipped with an automatic shutoff feature, allowing the unit to turn off after a set amount of time, which prevents the food from being burnt or catching on fire. According to Consumer Search, the best toaster ovens on the market as of 2011 are the Breville The Smart Oven BOV800XL, the Cuisinart TOB-195 Toaster Oven with a convection feature and the Hamilton Beach 31197R countertop convection oven. The cheapest model is the Hamilton Beach with an estimated starting price of $90 as of 2011. The most expensive model is the Breville with an estimated starting price of $250 as of 2011.

Convection Ovens

Those looking to purchase a convection oven should purchase the Kenmore Elite 48043, according to Consumer Search. The Kenmore Elite has an estimated starting price of $2,200 as of 2011 and includes three oven racks, two oven lights, an electronic clock, preheat control and a self-cleaning option. The overall interior width of the oven is 24.125 inches while the interior depth is 18 inches and the interior height is 16.5 inches. These measurements will determine what size of a meal you can cook. Convection ovens can typically cook more food at once than toaster ovens. (More information here)

The Decision

When it comes to deciding which is better -- a toaster oven or a convection oven -- personal opinion and cooking styles will always be the deciding factor. Toaster ovens are ideal for those who wish to heat small to larger meals without taking up a lot of space within the kitchen. Convection ovens are ideal for those who like to cook larger meals at one time and have the space to install one. Toaster ovens with a convection feature are ideal for those who cannot decide between the two and only require the size of a toaster oven to heat the majority of their meals.

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