A ubiquitous kitchen appliance, you usually don’t give your toasters a second thought until you have to replace it. Thus, when you stand in front of a whole line of toasters, you realize that you have no idea what to choose. Here are some tips to help you choose the best toaster to suit your needs.
A toasted bread is a popular breakfast item these days because it’s easy to make, goes well with protein and extends the life of bread. Did you know that toasting goes all the way back to the Roman times where it derived its name from the latin word “tostum”, meaning scorching or burning? It was a time-consuming activity that required the cook to constantly check the bread. Because there were other things to attend to in the kitchen, cooks left breads too long that resulted in burnt bread, probably earning its monicker. With the invention of pop-up toasters by Charles Strite, burnt toasts is just a preference these days.
When choosing your toaster, you have to consider several factors before forking over your credit card. First, ask yourself how you use your toaster on a daily basis. If you are not a morning person and skip breakfast most days, then a toaster will probably be just another appliance that gathers dust in your countertop. Getting a high-end toaster will not suddenly turn you into a healthy person who eats breakfast everyday, so if you really need one, get the cheap kind. No need to waste money on something you know you will use sparingly. This goes also for those breakfast-eaters who don’t like toasts. Not everyone is a fan of burned bread.
However, if you are part of the 44% of Americans who eat breakfast everyday, then a toaster purchase deserves some thought. You will be glad to know that toasters have evolved too. There are many additional features that have been added by manufacturers. Of course there are the regular toasters that can toast only the regular loaf bread 2 at a time. There are also those that have wide slots to accommodate different kinds of bread (ex. bagels), and those that more than 2 slots if you like to toasts several breads at the same time. Some have defrost functions, bun warmers, bagel settings and even burn settings. Additional features will of course mean additional cost. So carefully consider what you need and compare with the offered features.
You should also consider multi-purpose toasters like the breakfast toasters or oven toasters. These appliances save space and power as they perform several functions at the same time. You can cook eggs, warm bagels or brew your coffee while you are toasting bread too. This is especially useful for tiny apartments. It’s a bit bigger than a regular toaster, but you will be able to do away with other kitchen appliances that clutter your small space.
The oven toaster is another space-saving appliance that you should seriously consider. They can cost a lot more, but they have so many functions that are worth the extra dollars. They can toast all sorts and shapes of bread and pizza, roast chicken, bake bread, and do so many more than what a regular toaster can do. Oven toasters can be used for every meal of the family, thus affording more choices all day. Some homemakers have even come to rely on it and use their regular oven for big batches.
Other than the function, a buyer should also consider cost and quality. It is worth repeating that you should only get a toaster with the functions that you really use. Go with brands that have been known to deliver quality. A toaster, whatever kind it is, should last a long time. Don’t get taken in by all the newfangled knobs and shiny exteriors. Stick to what you need and what you can afford.
When the toaster was invented, it had only one purpose – to toast a slice of loaf bread. That may have been the original intention, but people are creative. Some people can even turn toast into a gourmet food. So before you buy just any toaster that you see, take the time to reflect on the best toaster that suits your needs. Remember, you will be with this toaster for quite some time, so choose carefully.