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Best Toasters: 11 Options That are Worth the Counter Space

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Updated March 25, 2024

When you shop for a toaster, you have more choices today than ever before. With different styles, sizes, capacities, and features ranging from countdown timers to touchscreens, there’s a lot to consider when finding the right toaster for your needs. To that end, I talked with experts to find out what matters most when buying a toaster. I’ve also shared my top picks to help you choose the best option for your preferences, lifestyle, and budget. Read on for my selections, tips on toaster maintenance and safety, and more.

What to consider when buying a toaster

Size and capacity

Spencer Helmrich, Product Manager for the toaster category at Cuisinart, recommends considering your family size, as well as your available countertop space to determine the ideal toaster capacity. While four- or six-slice toasters can be ideal for larger families, these toasters also take up significantly more space than two-slice toasters.

Features

Consider the features each toaster offers, too. “Practical features such as a removable crumb tray for easy cleaning, a high-lift function for retrieving small items, and specially programmed toasting options like defrost and bagel are some basic features I look for,” Helmrich says.

Even toasting

Dean Harper, Chef and Director at Harper Fine Dining, looks for toasters with even browning capabilities. Features like centering guides to help align the bread and slots deep enough to fully fit bread can help to ensure even browning.

Premium features

Premium features can enhance a toaster’s operation, but they can also increase its price. “Some premium features to also consider would be toasters with countdown timers or multiple bread-type options like English muffins and waffles to increase control over your toasting experience,” Helmrich explains.

Style

If you plan on leaving your toaster on your counter, you may want to consider how well it matches your kitchen. Toasters are available in a full range of colors and aesthetics, so chances are you can find a toaster that looks like it was made for your kitchen.

Warranty

Look for toasters that are backed by manufacturer’s warranties. It’s common for manufacturers to offer at least a one-year warranty on their toasters.

Price

Toasters can cost anywhere from under $10 to nearly $500. Factors including the toaster’s features and size will all impact its cost. Consider your budget, as well as what qualities are most important to you when deciding how much you are willing to spend on a toaster.

Our top picks for the best toaster

Best convection toaster oven: Breville Smart Oven Pro

Best convection toaster oven
the Smart Oven Pro

Thanks to its generous capacity, the Breville Smart Oven Pro is capable of toasting up to six slices of bread at a time. Its 10 functions also include a bagel, pizza, roast, slow cook function, and more. Since the oven includes an oven rack, enamel baking pan, enamel broiling rack, and non-stick pizza pan, it’s a versatile addition to your kitchen.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 18.9 inches x 15.9 inches x 10.9 inches
  • Weight: 22.8 pounds
  • Functions: Toast, bagel, bake, roast, broil, pizza, cookies, reheat, warm, slow cook
  • Capacity: Six slices
  • Wattage: 1800 watts
  • Material: Brushed stainless steel
  • Color: Brushed stainless steel
  • Price on publish: $279.95

The bottom line:

The Breville Smart Oven Pro can toast up to six slices of bread at once, plus its 10 functions can do everything from slow cook to broil meals.

Get it here: Breville Smart Oven Pro


Best affordable toaster: DASH Clear View Toaster

Best affordable toaster
DASH Clear View Toaster

DASH Clear View Toaster

This toaster features a unique clear-view design. Paired with its seven toast settings, you can easily monitor the toast through the window to avoid burning. Functions like defrost, reheat, and bagel make this toaster suitable for many different foods, and an auto-off function adds safety. Since the crumb tray and window slide out, it’s easy to clean and maintain this toaster.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 15.7 inches x 6.6 inches x 7.8 inches
  • Weight: 4.4 pounds
  • Functions: Defrost, reheat, bagel
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 1100 watts
  • Material: Plastic
  • Color: White, aqua, black, gray, red
  • Price on publish: $46.49

The bottom line:

With its clear-view design and defrost, reheat, and bagel functions, this affordably priced toaster allows for precise toasting of bagels, waffles, specialty breads, and more.

Get it here: DASH Clear View Toaster


Best luxury toaster: Revolution InstaGLO R270 2-Slice High Speed Smart Toaster

Best luxury toaster
Revolution InstaGLO R270 2-Slice High Speed Smart Toaster

Revolution InstaGLO R270 2-Slice High Speed Smart Toaster

This smart toaster is equipped with extensive features to customize the toasting process. You can choose from 34 different bread options, including gluten-free, as well as seven toasting shades and three toasting modes. The touch screen is easy to use, and you can even save your top 10 bread options. The diamond-shaped heating system heats up quickly, so this toaster sears bread without drying it out for optimal results.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 11.5 inches x 6 inches x 8.5 inches
  • Weight: 5.69 pounds
  • Functions: Fresh, frozen, reheat
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 800 watts
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Color: White, platinum
  • Price on publish: $399.95

The bottom line:

This smart toaster features a touch screen for easy use, plus the option to select from 34 bread types, seven toasting shades, and three toasting modes for great results.

Get it here: Revolution InstaGLO R270 2-Slice High Speed Smart Toaster


Best compact toaster: MyMini Single Slice Toaster

Best compact toaster
MyMini Single Slice Toaster

MyMini Single Slice Toaster

If you’re working with limited space, the MyMini Single Slice Toaster is an ideal choice. This single-slice toaster features an ultra compact design, plus cord storage located in its bottom. Weighing just 1.32 pounds, it’s easy to transport and is ideal for dorm rooms, RVs, and other areas where you need to save on space. While it has minimal functions, its 5.5 x 1.25-inch-wide slot is large enough to accommodate bagel halves and more.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 9.49 inches x 3.74 inches x 6.22 inches
  • Weight: 1.32 pounds
  • Functions: Toast
  • Capacity: One slice
  • Wattage: 500 watts
  • Material: Not specified
  • Color: Aqua, black, pink red
  • Price on publish: $8.98

The bottom line:

This single-slice toaster features an ultra compact design and cord storage in the bottom, so it’s ideal for dorms and RVs where space is limited.

Get it here: MyMini Single Slice Toaster


Best four-slice toaster: Cuisinart 4-Slice Compact Plastic Toaster

Best four-slice toaster
Cuisinart 4-Slice Compact Plastic Toaster

Cuisinart 4-Slice Compact Plastic Toaster

This toaster features a four-slice capacity but a compact design to save space on your counter. Its 1.5-inch-wide slots can fit bagel halves, and seven settings let you customize the shade. A defrost and reheat function make this a versatile toaster, and the two sets of independent controls mean you can simultaneously use different settings for both sides. The toaster features an impressive three-year limited warranty.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 10.8 inches x 10.7 inches x 7.2 inches
  • Weight: 6.4 pounds
  • Functions: Bagel, defrost, reheat
  • Capacity: Four slices
  • Wattage: 825 watts
  • Material: Plastic
  • Color: Black, white
  • Price on publish: $42.95

The bottom line:

This toaster features a four-slice capacity but a compact design that includes cord storage, and it’s backed by an impressive three-year limited warranty.

Get it here: Cuisinart 4-Slice Compact Plastic Toaster


Best budget four-slice toaster: Proctor Silex 4-Slice Wide Slot Toaster

Best budget four-slice toaster
4-Slice Black Wide Slot Toaster with Crumb Tray and Automatic Shut-Off

4-Slice Black Wide Slot Toaster with Crumb Tray and Automatic Shut-Off

This four-slice toaster is affordably priced, but has many appealing features. It offers seven toast shades, and you can adjust the shade for each side of the toaster independently. The extra-wide slots can accommodate bagels, and the Toast Boost function lifts up smaller breads so you can remove them. A removable crumb tray makes for easy cleaning, and this toaster boasts an impressive three-year limited warranty.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 10.5 inches x 11 inches x 7.5 inches
  • Weight: 4.1 pounds
  • Functions: Toast
  • Capacity: Four slices
  • Wattage: 1300 watts
  • Material: Plastic
  • Color: Black, white
  • Price on publish: $39.99

The bottom line:

This affordably priced four-slice toaster includes appealing features like extra-wide slots, an automatic shutoff feature for safety, and a removable crumb tray for easy cleaning.

Get it here: Proctor Silex 4-Slice Wide Slot Toaster


Best budget two-slice toaster: Black+Decker Rapid Toast 2-Slice Toaster

Best budget two-slice toaster
Black+Decker Rapid Toast 2-Slice Toaster

Black+Decker Rapid Toast 2-Slice Toaster

This two-slice toaster features a standard, bagel, and frozen function, plus seven shade settings for a customized toast. Its extra-wide slots can fit bagels, while the extra lift makes it easy to remove smaller pieces of toast. A swing-down crumb tray makes it easy to clean and maintain the toaster. It’s also backed by a two-year limited warranty.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 10.25 inches x 7 inches x 8 inches
  • Weight: 3 pounds
  • Functions: Standard, bagel, frozen, cancel
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 1200 watts
  • Material: Stainless steel and plastic
  • Color: Stainless steel, black
  • Price on publish: $31.68

The bottom line:

This affordably sliced toaster includes numerous features like extra lift, three functions, and seven shade settings, plus it’s backed by a two-year limited warranty.

Get it here: Black+Decker Rapid Toast 2-Slice Toaster


Best wide-slot toaster: GE 2-Slice Stainless Steel Toaster

Best wide-slot toaster
2-Slice Stainless Steel Wide Slot Toaster with 7 Shade Settings

2-Slice Stainless Steel Wide Slot Toaster with 7 Shade Settings

If you want to be able to toast a variety of breads, pastries, waffles, and bagels, this toaster is designed to do just that. It features extra-wide slots as well as seven shade options, plus a bagel and frozen function. LED lights illuminate the buttons to show you which you’ve selected, and the toaster features a one-year limited warranty

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 11.18 inches x 6.88 inches x 7.64 inches
  • Weight: 7 pounds
  • Functions: Bagel, frozen
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 850 watts
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Color: Stainless steel
  • Price on publish: $39

The bottom line:

This toaster’s extra-wide slots are designed to hold various breads, pastries, waffles, and bagels, and seven shade options allow you to select the perfect shade.

Get it here: GE 2-Slice Stainless Steel Toaster


Best toaster for even browning: KitchenAid Pro Line Series 2-Slice Automatic Toaster

Best toaster for even browning:
KitchenAid® Pro Line® Series 2-Slice Automatic Toaster

KitchenAid® Pro Line® Series 2-Slice Automatic Toaster

This toaster’s automated features ensure even browning. The automatic lift and lower feature senses when the bread is in the slot, lowers the bread, and then lifts the bread up once it’s reached its desired shade. Seven settings let you select the precise shade you want, and an automatic warm function will run for up to three minutes or until you remove the toast. This toaster is backed by a five-year warranty, the longest of the toasters on my list.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 13.7 inches x 7.1 inches x 8.9 inches
  • Weight: 10.1 pounds
  • Functions: Toast, bagel, frozen, a little longer
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 900 watts
  • Material: Aluminum
  • Color: Black, white, red
  • Price on publish: $249.99

The bottom line:

With seven shade settings and the ability to automatically lift up toast once it’s reached the desired shade, this toaster is designed to create an even browning.

Get it here: KitchenAid Pro Line Series 2-Slice Automatic Toaster


Best toaster for large slices: Breville Bit More 2-Slice Toaster

Best toaster for large slices
Breville Bit More 2-Slice Toaster

Breville Bit More 2-Slice Toaster

The Breville Bit More 2-Slice Toaster features wider slots sized to accommodate thick bagels, dense pastries, and artisanal breads for a variety of toasting options. The LED indicator lets you easily monitor the toasting cycle progress, and the Lift and Look mechanism allows you to check the toast’s progress without stopping the toasting cycle. The A Bit More function helps you to get that perfect brown. The toaster features a one-year limited warranty

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 11.5 inches x 7.5 inches x 8.25 inches
  • Weight: Four pounds
  • Functions: Bagel, frozen, a bit more
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 900 watts
  • Material: Stainless steel
  • Color: Stainless steel
  • Price on publish: $89.95

The bottom line:

This toaster’s wide slots can accommodate everything from dense pastries to thick bagels, while features like an LED indicator and Lift and Look mechanism make it easy to monitor the toasting progress.

Get it here: Breville Bit More 2-Slice Toaster


Best retro-style toaster: SMEG 2-Slice Toaster

Best retro-style toaster
SMEG 2-Slice Toaster

The SMEG 2-Slice Toaster blends retro style with modern features for an eye-catching toaster. It’s available in 13 colors, including pink, pastel blue, and pastel green. Six browning settings, extra-wide slots, and reheat, defrost, and bagel functions give you plenty of toasting options. This toaster also features anti-slip feet and a built-in cord wrap, as well as a two-year warranty.

Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 12.25 inches x 7.75 inches x 7.75 inches
  • Weight: 5.25 pounds
  • Functions: Reheat, defrost, bagel
  • Capacity: Two slices
  • Wattage: 950 watts
  • Material: Steel
  • Color: 13 color options
  • Price on publish: Starts at $199.95

The bottom line:

The SMEG 2-Slice Toaster features a distinctive retro style, is available in 13 colors, and also has plenty of modern features, like six browning settings.

Get it here: SMEG 2-Slice Toaster


Should I own a toaster?

Toasters are a convenient addition to a kitchen, and for many toast- and bagel-loving families, they’re an essential appliance. There are many benefits to owning a toaster, including the ability to quickly toast various breads and foods, and the fact that compact toasters can even fit in a kitchen with limited space. While appliances like pizza ovens and small air fryers can take up a lot of space, chances are you can find room for a compact two-slice toaster even in a kitchen with limited space.

If you’re not sure whether to purchase a toaster, weigh how often you’re likely to use it. Consider whether you could use any of your current appliances, such as a countertop oven with a toast function or an air fryer toaster oven, in place of a toaster.

How to maintain and clean a toaster

Always refer to the manufacturer’s instructions on how to clean your toaster. KitchenAid recommends the following cleaning steps:

  • Unplug your toaster.
  • Remove the crumb tray, shake out the crumbs, and hand wash and dry the tray.
  • Use a soft, damp cotton cloth to wipe the exterior. You can use dish soap to clean the exterior as long as you wash it off. Dry the exterior with a soft towel.
  • Reinsert the crumb tray.

Energy efficiency and safety

“Toasters toast bread faster compared to other common toasting methods, making them more energy efficient,” explains Helmrich. “The inclusion of a Cancel function to end the toast cycle early, auto shutoff programming, and high-lift carriage for safer toast removal all improve the safety of a toaster.”

How we selected the best toasters

To select the best toasters, I considered what the experts I interviewed look for in toasters, along with other factors that make an impact on whether or not to select a specific appliance:

Capacity

Everyone’s toast needs are different, so I included toasters that ranged from 1 to 6 slices. In addition, I looked at the width of the toaster slots to see if they could accommodate a range of toast-able foods, like thick slices of bread, waffles, and bagels.

Size

Counter space is at a premium, and another appliance takes up valuable space. To make sure a toaster works for your kitchen, I included toaster options in a wide variety of sizes, and also considered the appliance weight (so you know exactly what to expect). In addition, I also considered if the toaster has multi-functionality beyond toasting, potentially allowing it to do the work of other appliances if need be.

Ease of use

Whether a toaster is designed just to toast or has other settings and functions, it should be easy to figure out how to use it—and get the results you want (read: no burnt toast). I assessed the buttons, dials, and touch-screen functions, along with any smart features. I also looked for features designed to make clean-up a breeze, like crumb trays.

Price point

I tried to include toasters at various price points to suit different budgets.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

What is the best toaster brand on the market?

“While there isn’t one definitive best toaster brand, reputable names like Breville, Cuisinart, and KitchenAid are known for producing high-quality toasters that consistently perform well,” says Harper. Be sure to consider each brand’s reputation and available products when deciding what type of toaster to buy.

Should I buy a 2-slice or 4-slice toaster?

While four-slice toasters are more efficient choices for preparing meals for multiple people, they take up more space and tend to cost more than two-slice toasters. You’ll need to consider your family’s size, available kitchen space, and budget to decide which toaster capacity is best.

How safe are toasters to use?

“Toasters are typically safe to use, as long as you abide by common sense and pay attention to any device-specific instructions,” says Harper. “You can maximize your safety by keeping the cords away from heat sources and making sure you don’t overload the outlets. Regularly cleaning out crumbs will prevent fire hazards.”

How often should you replace a toaster?

According to Harper, your toaster’s lifespan can vary depending on how often you use it and how well you maintain it. “A high-quality toaster should last for several years if cared for properly,” he says. “If you notice signs of malfunction, such as uneven toasting or unusual smells, it’s probably time to swap it out for a newer model.”

Are expensive toasters worth it?

“While more expensive toaster models can offer additional features, the value of such an investment will depend on individual preferences and circumstances,” says Harper. You will need to consider how much you’ll use the toaster as well as how much its features matter to you when deciding what to spend.

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

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