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Need new toaster/convection oven - Breville? Cuisinart? Something else

Diane in Bexley Dec 29, 2011 10:33 AM

Use it for Eng muffins, bagels, toast; pizza, grill panini sandwiches, heat up a casserole, etc. As a single person, I use this more than my big convection oven. The one that broke did not broil successfully, that would be a plus, but not a necessity. Have done a little research and found Breville and Cusinart seem to be highly recommended. Please share your experiences and recommendations - I would like to spend around $100. Thanks!

  1. r
    rasputina Dec 29, 2011 01:05 PM

    I know there have been some big threads on the Breville smart oven. We absolutely love ours, I also use it more than my full size convection oven. I've baked pies, cakes and breads in it along with all the usual uses. It's more than 100 dollars, but it was worth every penny.

    2 Replies
    1. re: rasputina
      Pomander Dec 29, 2011 03:02 PM

      Ditto everything Rasputina said. Totally worth it and I would buy it again in a heartbeat. I also use it more than my regular oven. I am single as well and this is great for baking/roasting both smaller and larger portions. For example, i can make a decent size pizza and a standard size pie but also just a few cookies if I want to. I tend to freeze dough or smaller portions of food. If I buy prepared foods it's nice to heat them up quickly without firing up the big oven. I haven't used the broiler, however. The bake and reheat options are my favs - love the convection feature. I bought mine at WS and am so glad I did; their CS is great and the price was on par with what Amazon offered. I find that WS appreciates customer loyalty quite a bit; if I have problems I get real help that Amazon just cannot offer (because it is such a huge operation). There is a less expensive toaster oven version, but I would really recommend the convection, even if you have to wait a bit to save up for it. I also sprang for the cutting board that goes atop of the oven, and it makes a nice shelf for other items...sort of a spacesaver, I guess. I bought mine at Zappos but I think most stores that have the oven offer this as well. I didn't need the pizza stone. The dark colored metal pan that comes with the oven can give you a nice crisp crust...preheat it in the oven first and then add your pizza. Good luck!

      1. re: Pomander
        bemocked Jan 9, 2012 06:00 PM

        +2 on the Breville - worth every penny!

        Got ours a few months ago (used one of the 20% off certificates that Bed Bath & Beyond sends out every few weeks - so that helped on the price)

    2. r
      redbeanbun Dec 29, 2011 06:11 PM

      i too am curious. i spent a few months researching to replace a toaster oven. there are so many models out there but i couldn't find many reviews or discussions that weren't about how much everyone loved their Breville toaster oven. all i knew was that i wanted an easy to remove crumb tray for cleaning and no annoying ticking timer. i finally gave up and bought the smaller Breville and i can't say i regret it even though it was significantly more expensive than most models out there. we also bake pie, cookies, reheat leftovers, and yes, eventually we found out it makes beautiful toast too. so it does our toaster oven jobs and has taken over some of our regular oven jobs. i guess in the long run this saves on electricity, especially in the summer when the oven and air conditioner seem to be at war.

      1. c
        calliope_nh Dec 29, 2011 06:45 PM

        The little Black & Decker I got when married 26 years ago started burning the toast, so in October i researched and chose Cuisinart. It is not convection. I don't see the name of the model on it to give you. It has a bagel setting that toasts more from the top or toast which is even from top and bottom. The rack can be placed at three levels. I have done broiled fish, and cooked chicken nut mostly use it for the toast and bagels which it does great. I think I paid about $80.

        1. goodhealthgourmet Dec 29, 2011 07:18 PM

          the Breville kicks ass. it will set you back much more than $100, but i personally think it's worth every penny. i hardly ever turned on my full-size oven again after buying it, and it's large enough to roast a chicken, bake a cake or a loaf of bread...heck, i've even shoved my small cast iron pan in there, handle and all, and the door closes!

          easily the best $250 i've ever spent on kitchenware. if you can afford the price tag and the counter space (it has a rather large footprint), i say go for it.

          (sigh. i miss mine. it's packed in a storage facility 3,000 miles away and i keep *thinking* about using it!)

          1. g
            goodeatsgal Jan 4, 2012 11:06 PM

            Breville now has a new Mini oven, which is truly a toaster oven size. It's currently sold only at Williams-Sonoma. It has settings for bagel, toast, frozen pizza, and more. We've had it for about 10 days now and so far, it's worked perfectly. It's not convection, though, if that's important to you. Also, it's $149; however, it's the cheapest of the three Breville ovens. http://www.williams-sonoma.com/produc...

            1 Reply
            1. re: goodeatsgal
              Claudette Feb 19, 2012 07:31 PM

              Sur La Table has both sizes (but not the mini). I've had so much trouble with W-S mail order that I've sworn off ever buying from W-S again.

            2. r
              rshields9093 Jan 5, 2012 07:15 AM

              A few years ago our oven broke, but the stovetop still worked. Given the age of the range we didn't want to pay the high repair costs, but we also couldn't afford a new range at that time. So after MUCH research we bought the Breville to tide us over until we could afford a new range. Now we have a great new oven with all sorts of bells and whistles and it is still the Breville that we turn to nearly every day. It will set you back more than $100, but if you can swing the price (and have the counter space for this fairly large appliance), I guarantee you will not regret the purchase.

              The Breville is the only toaster oven I have found that actually toasts bread/bagels/etc/ very well (by that I mean evenly). I actually put my toaster in the attic after getting this oven (that mitigated some of the counter space issue with this oven). It is also a great pizza machine (homemade or frozen -- though I bought a cheap pizza screen and got much better results with that than with the pan that came with the oven). It reheats many items better than a microwave. It broils far better than any other toaster oven I have encountered. It roasts (small roasts, of course) exceedingly well (I often finish a roast under the broiler to get a little more browning action). And finally it bakes as well as any full oven will (albeit some cooking times are a few mintues longer).

              2 Replies
              1. re: rshields9093
                Stephanie Wong Jan 5, 2012 04:47 PM

                Can you roast a whole chicken in your Breville convection oven? Or must it be butterflied?

                1. re: Stephanie Wong
                  RudysEquipment_Supplies Jan 6, 2012 07:43 AM

                  The directions says you can do whole chicken 30 minutes. (recommends keeping it under 4.5lbs)

              2. flourgirl Jan 6, 2012 08:00 AM

                Count me in as a huge Breville fan. I've gone through more than my share of toaster ovens, finally bit the bullet and spent the $$$ on the Breville - and it's some of the best money I ever spent. I seriously love that thing. I use it every single day, it does what it's supposed to do and does it very well, and it still looks great on my counter after more than 2 years of daily use.

                1. fini Jan 6, 2012 11:26 AM

                  +1 Breville

                  I've had mine for about 8 months, and it's been solid. Breville appears to be building higher quality appliances than many of the other popular manufacturers right now. Stay away from the others.

                  1. s
                    sueatmo Jan 6, 2012 03:19 PM

                    I have used a Cuisinart model TOB195 for about 2 years, and it is swell. I use it every day. I toast bread, bake casseroles, bake potatoes, roast asparagus and on and on. Recommend it hightly.

                    1. BobB Jan 9, 2012 09:28 AM

                      Breville all the way. Best toaster oven on the market by a long shot.

                      1. r
                        rexster314 Jan 9, 2012 09:41 AM

                        Although the Breville Smart Oven is over twice as much as your limit, I highly recommend it. Got ours last week and have used it almost daily since with perfect results each time

                        1. n
                          NotJuliaChild Jan 9, 2012 09:41 AM

                          I have the middle Breville Oven and I am amazed at how fast it heats up.

                          So far, I'm very pleased.

                          1. j
                            JoeBlow65 Feb 16, 2012 08:50 PM

                            So none of the people who are recommending the larger Breville Smart Oven have had any of the problems described in 1-star Amazon reviews? I'm thinking of taking one overseas and won't have any warranty coverage ...

                            3 Replies
                            1. re: JoeBlow65
                              flourgirl Feb 17, 2012 06:27 AM

                              I've had mine for about 3 years now, I use it almost every day, usually several times a day, and I haven't had any of those problems.

                              1. re: flourgirl
                                BobB Feb 17, 2012 07:35 AM

                                Same here.

                              2. re: JoeBlow65
                                JoeBlow65 Feb 19, 2012 06:24 PM

                                Thanks to all for your replies. Glad to hear most of you have had no (or minimal) problems with your Brevilles. I'll have a week in-country to try and break it before I take it overseas. Planning to buy from BB&Beyond with a 20% off coupon. A return should be no problem if something goes bad within the week.

                                Also looking at the Calphalon XL Digital Convection Oven, but can't find too many objective reviews. http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/produ...&

                              3. m
                                MontanaBBQ Feb 17, 2012 11:06 AM

                                Breville makes awesome appliances, but they do demand a premium in price. If money weren't an issue, I would definitely recommend the Smart Oven. But at the 100 dollar price point, definitely go for the Cuisinart. Costco has a model for $100 that has served me well for four years without a single misstep. Bakes evenly, which is quite a feat for a toaster oven, and also broils quite well.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: MontanaBBQ
                                  sueatmo May 13, 2012 12:49 PM

                                  I have had a Cuisinart counter top convection-toaster oven for a couple of years. I use it daily. It makes fine toast (better than the toaster I had) and it bakes really well. If I had to replace it, I'd certainly consider a Cuisinart first. I don't find Cuisinart appliances to be cheap, but they aren't priced at the top either. I've been pleased with my Cuisinart coffee maker and slow cooker as well.

                                2. m
                                  MRS Feb 19, 2012 06:36 PM

                                  I really wanted to keep our Breville toaster/convection but it kept blowing out the circuits in the kitchen in our rental It was so bizarre. I finally had to return it. :(

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: MRS
                                    flourgirl Feb 20, 2012 07:49 AM

                                    We live in a home that was built in 1968. Until just a few weeks ago, we had the original circuit box, which only had 100 amp service. If I had a few things going at the same time in the kitchen and turned on the Breville, the circuits would often blow. i'm no electrical expert but my understanding is that the Breville draws a lot of power. We had the circuit board upgraded a few weeks ago and we haven't had any problems since.

                                  2. k
                                    Klady May 13, 2012 12:44 PM

                                    Used the Breville smaller Smart Oven for the first time. People are raving, but be aware of how hot it gets on the outside and, I think, along with that it, it gives off a lot of heat. My kitchen is small and the room gets warmer when the unit's been on for some time. I've had toaster ovens for years and none of them got this hot on the outside.

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