Cuisinart helps keep me in toast...

Jan 7, 2010 (Updated Mar 15, 2010)
Review by  
Rated a Very Helpful Review

Pros:Handy, versatile, easy to use. Powerful and looks nice.

Cons:Knobs can be hard to turn. Takes up a lot of space.

The Bottom Line: This is a handy oven, especially for those who don't have a full sized oven.


Singer/Comedian Heywood Banks has a hilarious song called "Toast", a sort of rap about the virtues of toasted bread in the morning. He accompanies himself on a conventional toaster as he performs this number. Suffice it to say, I'd have a hard time doing that with the machine we use to make our toast... the Cuisinart Toaster/Convection Oven. We came to own this little gem of a kitchen appliance when we first moved into our new home here in Georgia. None of our furniture had arrived from overseas and we were trying to make ourselves more comfortable. I spotted the Cuisinart on sale at Bed, Bath, and Beyond for about $120, forgetting that we already had a fairly new and very similar DeLonghi oven in storage on its way to us. The Cuisinart oven was kind of sexy with its stainless steel finish and big, round dials. We took it home.

What's in the box?

This boxy little oven comes with a baking tray, broiling rack, and instruction booklet that also includes recipes. It measures .6 cubic feet and uses 1500 watts. It's capable of reaching temperatures of 500 degrees. It also has a tinted glass door and a thirty minute timer. This oven measures 20 by 18-1/4 by 12 inches and comes with a limited three year warranty. It weighs about twenty pounds.

Our experiences 

Our little oven is very handy to have around. It can be used for baking, broiling, toasting and convection baking. It also has a keep warm function. To be honest, we mostly use ours to make toasts of all kinds, though we've also used it for heating up snacks and hors d'ouerves. However, this oven would be very handy to have if we didn't have access to a full sized oven. It's capable of cooking all sorts of things and is large enough to handle meals for one or two people.

As a toaster

This machine is probably not what you'd want to use if you like toast done evenly on both sides. For really nice conventional American style toast, you'd probably want a machine that only does toast. Our oven tends to toast bread mostly on top and not on both sides. Luckily, that's the way I like it.

Why I like this oven over the DeLonghi

I mentioned that we had a DeLonghi oven that we'd forgotten about. I decided to use the Cuisinart over the DeLonghi because it has a more conventional shape than the other oven did. The DeLonghi has a "hump" on the outside edge of the racks that takes up extra counter space. I also think the Cuisinart looks better and is better constructed. Both ovens were styled with brushed stainless steel, but the Cuisinart appeared to be better made.

Drawbacks to using this oven

One thing to know is that this oven is bigger than a conventional toaster oven, so it takes up a fair amount of room on the counter. We probably could have gotten away with a smaller oven for what we use it for.

This oven also has three big round knobs with indented notches on the edges. They can be slippery, stiff, and hard to turn properly, especially if your hands are wet.

Overall

We like this oven, even if we don't use it as much as we would if we didn't have a full sized oven. I think it makes pretty good toast and it's great to have around for snacks. Personally, I'd probably like this unit better if it took up less space on the counter, but even that problem could be easily fixed if I were handy with tools. I think this model might work very well for someone who needs a larger toaster oven. So far, we haven't had any maintenance issues with this product, either.

I recommend it with four stars.

For more information: www.cuisinart.com


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