There are some things that cannot be missing from any breakfast. From some, it is coffee while for others it can be something else or multiple things. One such example is toast. The entire idea of toast is not something new. The first reference of toast in a written recipe dates back from 1430. At that time it was seen as something put into drinks. A lot of time had to pass before toast changed to something that was consumed as part of a breakfast meal.
Today toast is something both common and delicious. Almost every household has a toaster. This is because they are inexpensive, simple and rarely break down. A good toaster can survive for decades if it is properly maintained. They are usually made with a metal enclosure and have a very sturdy construction. Most of them come with a removable crumb tray placed beneath that makes them easier to clean. Also, their capacity can vary. The usual toaster can make two slices at a time. Larger families might want to get one that can make four slices at the same time.
How To Pick The Right Kind Of Toaster
The very first thing to think about is the available budget. There are some really expensive toasters out there but there are also a lot of decent models that are being sold for a reasonable price tag. Build quality differences are easy to spot. Another big thing worth looking out for is how many slices of bread the toaster can handle at a time. The models that can go with more than two are usually quite large and take a lot of kitchen space. Usually larger families go for larger toasters. If that is not the case then there is no good reason to get such a big toaster. Other than that there is not much to say so let’s get right to our list of the top 10 best bread toasters in 2016.
10. KitchenAid KMT4116CU 4 Slice Long Slot Toaster with High Lift Lever
KitchenAid KMT4116CU is a stylish but rather expensive toaster. For the money, it does offer premium build quality and can handle 4 slices of bread. However, instead of having four slots, the model has two longer ones. This gives it a slim profile. The model has 7 shade settings including a keep warm function. It has a crumb tray at the bottom and a cord that can be hidden under the base. The model can be found in silver red or black and comes with a metal enclosure that gives it the premium feel.
The model is not without flaws. Despite being such a gorgeous appliance, it struggles to toast the bread evenly. For the lower shares, some corners of the bread might even remain completely untouched. Some parts of the bread will simply be lighter than others regardless of the shade level selected.
- All metal construction
- 7 shade levels
- Gorgeous design
- Can handle 4 slices of bread
- Does not toast the bread evenly
9. Frigidaire Professional Stainless 4-Slice Wide Slots Toaster
The Frigidaire Professional stainless steel 4-slice toaster is one of their premium products with an excellent construction and useful features. It is a great model that comes with some useful features. What makes it great is the fact that the model has multiple shade levels and they can be set differently for each pair of bread slices. It includes an auto-defrost function and can reheat bread. In terms of build quality, the model is made with a stainless steel enclosure.
One of the things that some would not like is the size of the toaster. It is quite large but this is to be expected since it is a 4-slice model. Also, the toaster is heating up quite slowly compared with other models. It works well but it takes time to get the toast done right.
- 4-slice model
- Premium construction
- Two control dials
- Large and heavy
- Takes longer to prepare toast
8. Cuisinart CPT-2000 2-Slice Long Slot Motorized Toaster
Cuisinart is a brand that managed to gain a lot of trust due to the quality of their products. The CPT-2000 is a simple 2-slice toaster but a bit unusual. Instead of having two slots the model actually has just one except it is longer. This makes the toaster much slimmer than regular models. It was made with 7 shade options and can even defrost. Its design is simple and stylish and as a bonus, it has a motorized lift which is more of a rare option in toasters.
The toaster does have one big problem and that is the price tag. It is surprisingly expensive for being such a simple model. For this price usually, we can find the so-called professional models that are made completely out of stainless steel and can handle four slices of bread at a time. The ones that do not mind spending this much on a toaster will be pleased with it.
- Well made, great design
- Motorized lift
- 7 shade options
- Slim design
7. KitchenAid KMT422ER 4-Slice Toaster with Manual High-Lift Lever and Digital Display
KitchenAid KMT422ER is one of the few premium models in our list that are actually worth the price. It is a pricy model that comes with a stainless steel construction and a design that gives it a distinct vintage aspect. The model can handle 4 slices at a time. It is equipped with two shade dials making it rather easy to get two types of bread done in parallel. For each control dial, the model has an individual display that makes it easier to see what toast is being made on each side.
One thing that can be considered a con and should be obvious is the size of the toaster. It is much wider than other 4-slice toasters. It is also a bit slow when putting side by side with regular cheap toasters. For some reason, the toaster heats up slower but it does prepare perfect toast with no sides left uneven.
- 4-slice toaster with two shade dials
- Easy to clean
- Premium build quality
- Heats up slower than other models
6. Breville BTA820XL Die-Cast 2-Slice Smart Toaster
Breville BTA820XL is a great pick for the ones that put quality above anything else. It is a highly appreciated model with a stainless steel construction and a rather compact form factor. One of its big plusses is the fact that the model is a 900-watt toaster which means it can prepare toast quite fast. It is also capable of defrosting and offers multiple shade levels. The toaster features a brushed die-cast metal housing and a crumb tray installed on the button as with any other toaster. It even features a small LED panel that shows the currently selected settings.
Mechanically, the toaster feels premium but the toast it makes might not be up to the standards of everyone. It tends to burn unevenly which can be a turnoff. Most would expect better results for a toaster from this price category.
- Takes little counter space
- Die-cast metal housing
- Multiple shade settings
- Does not burn bread evenly
5. Breville BTA630XL Lift and Look Touch Toaster
Breville BTA630XL is one of the more popular models in our list. It is an affordable model with a simple construction and all the standard features one would expect. It does have something uncommon and that is a motorized lift. It also has a manual lift button that can override the internal timer. The device has a small LED indicator that allows the user to see the progress. It comes with a small crumb tray to make it easy to clean and a modern design that will make it fit in any kitchen.
Similar to other Breville toasters the model appears to have the same issue. The toast it makes is not burnt evenly. In order to get better results, it is better to just lift the bread and rotate it so that it gets burnt in a more consistent and even manner. Other than that there is not much to complain about the toaster.
- Takes little counter space
- Multiple shade settings
- LED progress indicator
- Does not burn the bread evenly
4. BEST VALUE: Cuisinart CPT-435 Countdown 4-Slice Stainless Steel Toaster
The Cuisinart CPT-435 falls under the category of affordable products that delivers decent performance. It burns bread evenly and it works quite well. What some would not expect to get such a well-constructed toaster for such a low price tag. It has a full stainless steel body with two digital displays and separated settings to make it easy to prepare four slices of bread of different shades. Its buttons are illuminated by LED lights and feature a countdown that shows how much time is left until the toast is done
There are not that many bad things that can be said about the model. If there was one thing to complain about is its size. Not everyone needs a 4-slice toaster. Also for a 4-slice mode, it is quite large. It will take quite a big chunk of kitchen space.
- Well made
- Metal enclosure
- Two sets of controls and two LCD screens
- Very large
3. Cuisinart CPT-160 Metal Classic 2-Slice Toaster
Cuisinart CPT-160 is a great pick for the ones that are looking for something cheap with a decent construction. It has a rather retro design with an all stainless steel construction and large buttons on the sides. Its dial allows the selection of the browning with 6 levels to choose from and it even has an option to reheat or defrost. The toaster has two slots for regular slices of bread and comes with a crumb tray that is easy to clean and remove. On top of all this its price tag is surprisingly low.
In terms of cons, the model has very little flaws. The toast is not browned perfectly even but it is much better than most other toasters. For the price it is actually quite difficult to find something better which is why it is so popular.
- Great design
- Multiple browning levels
- Compact form factor
- Does not brown the bread perfectly.
2. OUR FAVORITE PICK: Hamilton Beach 2 Slice Cool Touch Toaster
The Hamilton Beach 2 slice Cool Touch Toaster managed to get the award for our favorite pick. It is one of the most affordable models in our list and despite having basic options the toaster works very well. It has several controls at the bottom and a simple aluminum enclosure painted in black. At the bottom the model has a hidden crumb tray that makes it easy to clean. It is fairly compact as it is a two slice model.
There are a lot of good things that can be said about the model. Even if it is so simple it does not have any major cons. It does not offer perfectly even toasting but it is much better than the vast majority of toaster.
- Very cheap
- Modern design
- Nearly perfectly even toast
1. Hamilton Beach 22811 Keep Warm 2-Slice Toaster
Hamilton Beach 22811 Keep Warm 2-Slice Toaster is by far the most popular model in our list. It is a simple toaster with a modest price tag and a simple but modern design. The toaster comes with a brushed metal enclosure and some black plastic parts. It can be set to defrost, keep warm or make regular toast with 7 different shades. Unlike other models the toaster burns the bread evenly which makes up for great toast. Using a special design the toaster will maintain itself cool which is a feature that many would appreciate.
One of the things that some would complain about might be the features. It is actually quite rare to hear someone use the bagel feature. However, the keep warm function and the defrost one will prove to be useful.
- Compact and modern design
- Makes even toast
- The bagel feature is not that useful
Before Buying A Toaster…
The most common issue that people have with toasters is the fact that they tend to make the toast burn unevenly. Some parts of the toast might be darker than others. Truth be told, even the most expensive toaster does not make perfect toast. What helps is to read a few reviews as the ones that already tried a certain model will be able to provide reliable feedback. For our list, we tried to find models that offer better results than most toasters. The quality of the toast is important as some might like it a bit darker and it is possible to actually have the bread burnt by a poor quality toaster.