While toaster ovens have made it possible to make an array of foods on the countertop, the traditional pop-up toaster remains as popular today as it was decades ago. Pop-up models still do the best job of preparing toast to the perfect level of crisp golden deliciousness because their heating elements are so close to the bread.
Although the basic design of the toaster oven remains the same, today’s models are much more advanced than the ones made even just 10 years ago. If you haven’t purchased a toaster in awhile, prepare to be amazed by what the new ones on the market can do.
To help you find the best toasters, this top 10 list was put together using information from customer reviews and other research. All of the appliances featured below are capable of perfectly preparing toast, so you can’t go wrong with any of them.
The features of the toasters do vary greatly from model to model, though, making it a good idea to know a bit about the latest toasters before you dig into the countdown.
While older toasters usually could only make two slices of toast at a time, some new models have four or more slots. This list only features two and four-slice models, as six and eight-slice units receive a lot of complaints in toaster reviews for taking up too much countertop space and being hard to store.
As you consider which appliance is best for you, it’s a good idea to keep what you’re toasting in mind. Some models have special settings for bagels and frozen foods like waffles that can be beneficial if these types of foods are frequently on your breakfast menu.
If you like to get the toast going before you get ready for work or don’t want to have to worry about the toast getting cold while you finish the eggs and bacon, a toaster with a keep warm feature can be a good investment. How frequently you plan to use your toaster will matter, too, as toasters vary in terms of durability.
The 10 Best Toaster Reviews
1. Oster TSSTTRWF4S 4-Slice Toaster Review
The Oster TSSTTRWF4S made it to the top of our list of the best toasters for being an excellent value. It’s moderately priced but still packed with features that make it very flexible. Wide slots allow you to toast bread of any thickness, and it has seven shade settings to ensure you get the results you desire.
In addition to standard toast mode, the model has reheat, frozen and bagel options plus a handy cancel button. Its levers are sturdy and easy to move, and the cord retracts for compact storage. You can even put the crumb tray in the dishwasher for easy cleaning. The only feature this toaster is missing is a Keep Warm feature, making it a great buy for the price.
2. BLACK+DECKER TR1278B 2-Slice Toaster Review
The BLACK+DECKER TR1278B is the best-selling toaster on Amazon, and it’s a great basic model for someone who just wants to be able to perfectly prepare toast on a daily basis. While it’s the second least expensive on the list of the best toasters, the model is not cheaply made. It is solidly crafted and is backed by a 2-year warranty.
You can set the toaster to 7 different levels, and it has a frozen and a bagel setting. The slots are wide to accommodate all types of bread, and the model has an extra lift that makes it easy to lift out bread. While the toaster is an excellent value, be forewarned that it’s slower than a lot of other models, as its heating element is not as powerful.
3. Cuisinart CPT-440 4-Slice Toaster Review
The Cuisinart CPT-440 is the latest evolution in toaster designs. Its completely digital and motorized, so there are no levers to push down. You simply use the buttons to select your mode and your level of toasting from 1 to 7. When you press start, the toaster automatically draws in the bread, toasts it and then raises it when it’s done.
There are dual controls for independently setting, and the model has bagel, defrost, reheat and cancel buttons for flexible use. While the unit is backed by a three year warranty, the model does have moving parts and a digital display, meaning there is more to go wrong with it than with an ordinary toaster. Still, reviews indicate that the model works well with few reports about breakage.
4. Hamilton Beach 22811 2-Slice Toaster Review
The Hamilton Beach 22811 Keep Warm 2-Slice Toaster is a great choice for someone who wants the benefits of a Keep Warm feature but still wants to buy an affordable appliance. It includes the Cool Touch technology of the other models in the Hamilton Beach collection and a 3-minute automatic shutoff safety timer.
The Toast Boost feature raises the bread, so you can easily grab it, and the appliance has Bagel, Defrost and Cancel buttons. There are also seven shade options to pick from. While the range of features that you get for the money is impressive, this model is a little less durable than some others on the countdown. It only comes with a 1 year warranty and with heavy daily use, it may not last for much longer than that.
5. KRUPS KH732D50 2-Slice Toaster Review
The KRUPS KH732D50 is a sleek chromed toaster with two extra wide slots outfitted with bread guides for positioning. With Defrost, Reheat and Bagel modes, it gives you the flexibility to toast up a variety of foods quickly. The unit also has a Cancel button in case you want to end toasting early and a cord storage area to prevent tangles on the counter or in the cupboard.
While the model is well made and comes with a 2-year warranty, its price is a bit high when you consider that it only has six toast settings. The only feature it has that is very different than other models is that its buttons are illuminated with energy-efficient LEDs. That’s really not enough to justify the difference in price between this and some less expensive models, which is why it’s positioned where it is in the rankings.
6. KitchenAid Pro Line Series 4-Slice Automatic Toaster Review
The KitchenAid Pro Line Series is an entry-level professional grade toaster with a beautiful white finish and a chic retro shape. Truly one of the best toasters in terms of the quality of its build, the appliance comes with a five year warranty and is built like a tank. It automatically raises and lowers toast. Very flexible, the model features four wide slots with bread guides for positioning the bread and has seven shade settings. After toasting, the Pro Line even keeps the bread warm automatically.
If you’re not happy with how dark it is, you can press the “A Little Longer” button to put the toast back in for a few more minutes. The appliance has Bagel, Frozen and Cancel buttons as well. The downside to the KitchenAid is that it’s by far the most expensive option, more than 20 times pricier than the cheapest model on the list.
7. Hamilton Beach 24121 4 Slice Cool Touch Toaster Review
If you like the sound of the Cool Touch exterior of the Hamilton Beach 2263 but want a model that is more advanced, the Hamilton Beach 4 Slice Cool Touch Toaster is the perfect solution. It features the same insulated technology but has four slots and settings for bagels, frozen bagels and frozen toast. Also equipped with a Cancel button, the appliance has extra wide handles and a stylish curved shape that makes it a handsome addition to the countertop.
Reasonably priced, the toaster does have a couple of limitations. First, it only has five toast level settings. Secondly, its crumb trays are a little flimsy. In toaster reviews, there are reports that the trays are hard to maneuver because they can bend easily. They’re also shallow, so they can cause spills.
8. Hamilton Beach 22623 Cool Wall 2-Slice Toaster Review
If you’re looking for a bargain toaster that does the basics, the Hamilton Beach 22623 is a great choice. It’s stylishly designed and has insulated sides that keep the exterior of the appliance cool for safety. You can choose from seven shades, and the model turns itself off automatically if your forget.
It does lack any other modes like Frozen or Bagel, and its slots are a bit narrow, limiting what you can toast. Still, when you consider the fact that the model consistently receives praise in toaster reviews and is the least expensive option on the list, it’s a solid option for those who just want to make evenly done toast. The appliance is also good for households with small children due to its safety features.
9. Wolf Gourmet WGTR102S 2 Slice Toaster Review
The Wolf Gourmet WGTR102S is a high-end kitchen gadget that is a step-up from basic consumer models but not quite a commercial-grade appliance. It has wide slots equipped with bread guides that ensure toast stays centered to cook on both sides. In addition to the toast mode, the model features Bagel and Frozen settings plus a cancel button. There is also a Keep Warm mode. The crumb tray is easy to slide out to empty, and the unit has seven toasting shades to choose from.
Wolf warranties the appliance for 5 years, ensuring that it can last through daily wear and tear. The drawback to this toaster is its high price, which is 10 times more than other two-slice models on the list. If you’re looking for a two-slicer that you can count on to last, though, this appliance still offers value due to its ultra durable build and nice range of features.
10. Cuisinart CPT-320 Compact Stainless 2-Slice Toaster Review
The Cuisinart CPT-320 is a solidly built, simple toaster that is great for everyday use. It features wide slots that can handle thick pieces of bread, and its bagel mode does an excellent job of toasting. The appliance has a slide-out crumb tray that is easy to empty and a cancel button that lets you stop toasting with the push of a button.
Also included in the design are reheat and defrost modes. The reason for its spot on the countdown is its tendency to toast unevenly because it lacks interior guides. In toaster reviews, there are many comments saying that thin slices of bread end up more toasted on one side than the other. Also, the model only has six toast settings, which is less than some cheaper models offer.
Commonly Asked Questions and Other Requests
What is the best toaster for the money, right now?
This question is tough to answer and is really based on personal preference. These appliances are quite simple in functionality, and really vary in build quality and how much work they can handle at once. Most cost 10-50 dollars, and for prices closer to 50 dollars you can get a really good one.
But assuming you want a simple, two – four slice toaster… first one we recommend is the Oster TSSTTRWF4S 4-Slice Toaster. It has a good looking exterior from brushed aluminum, and simple knobs for selecting the appropriate heat settings. As for 2-slice toasters, Krups KH732D Toaster is a good one too. It is chrome coated (looking quite good when clean), and even has a removable crumb tray. That last part is a feature that most toasters don’t have.
What are different types of toasters?
First one is the traditional type, coined as the pop-up toaster. It originated in the early 20th century, and can be found in most homes today.
Second type is called a conveyor toaster. These are almost always used in commercial kitchen and factories. The main purpose behind their functionality, is to be able to toast hundreds or even thousands slices of bread in a matter of hours.
Third type of toaster is a toaster oven. This is something that is used for much more than just baking and toasting bread. We have a separate guide that talks in-depth about them.
How many watts does a toaster usually consumer?
On average, a toaster will consumer 1,000 to 1,100 watts of energy.
How does a toaster work?
A toaster (as well as toaster ovens), work by sending electricity through coiled wires which heat up to a very high temperature (glowing red). As the bread is placed in between the glowing red coils, the toasting process starts. How much heat is produced and how long you leave bread inside a toaster will determine how brown it will be.
How do you clean a toaster?
Never use any kind of liquid to clean a toaster, let along clean it while its plugged in. It’s VERY important to clean only when its unplugged. If there’s a tray inside which collects crumbs, go ahead and clean that first. Afterwards, go ahead and flip the toaster upside down and shake out any remaining crumbs.
Exterior can simply be wiped down by a damp rag, or even polished up if you have any stainless steel or chrome finish.
What are the best toasters under any give price point?
There’s a lot of toaster brands, most popular ones being Black+Decker, Hamilton Beach, Cuisinart, Oster and Chessman.
We did some research, and we put together a few price points. Best for under 100 dollars, under 50 dollars, under 40 dollars, and under 30 dollars.
Here’s just a simple list in order from most expensive to least:
- Cuisinart CPT-440
- Cuisinart CPT-180
- Black+Decker TR2400SD
- Hamilton Beach 22444 SmartToast