I recently purchased this Toaster Oven in Bed, Bath and Beyond. Our toaster oven was not working well so one day when I was in Bed and Bath I just decided to buy whatever was on the shelf. I did this because of Bed and Bath's amazing return policy: keep the receipt and the packaging and bring it back for any reason at any time. Having used their policy before, I knew I'd have no trouble if I didn't like this toaster oven.
Recommend this product?
My requirements were: I wanted a product that fits on the counter, toasts bread, and can be used to bake small portions such as a slice of pizza. I also wanted a reasonable price.
I found that most of the toaster ovens on the shelf offered convection ovens. This raised the price from $10 to $20 and upword, so I decided against any oven that has this feature. This left me with only one choice - the Hamilton Beach - so I bought it.
I paid $23.99 ($29.99, less their 20% coupon discount) plus tax.
This product is actually a toaster/oven/broiler. I don't expect to use the broiler, but it's ok to have the feature.
The oven measures 8 1/2 inches deep and 14 inches wide, plus 7 1/2 inches tall. Note that it's really 11 inches deep because there's a part in the back that makes it deeper. Sounds odd but it's not flat and can't be pushed against the wall in back. This makes the unit a little bigger than I'd like, but it's no bigger than my previous oven.
There is enough room inside to toast 4 slices of bread.
Using the unit takes some getting used to just like any other new appliance. There are 2 dials on the front that are used to set toast, oven and broil. To toast bread, set the lower dial to the picture of a slice of toast and set the upper dial to the light, medium or dark slice of toast. For my first few times, I had these reversed in my head so I burned the toast. Warning - using the dark setting really makes the toast inedible. Once I got this straight, I've had very nice toasted slices.
The unit comes with a rack and a broiler pan. The rack is set in the up or down position, depending on what you are using the oven for. Instructions are easy. You use the broiler pan when you broil and bake.
To bake you set the upper dial to the temperature and the lower dial to the bake setting. Again, it's sensible and not hard.
Cleaning - to get rid of the toast crumbs, you have to lift the unit and turn it over and open the trap door. This requires that you stand by the sink to avoid dumping crumbs all over. The unit is light in weight so this isn't an issue. But if you want a crumb pan, this unit does not have one. Also if you have trouble handling the unit to turn it over, this isn't the product for you.
One thing that is different than my older toaster oven is that the tray does not get pulled out of the unit when you open the door. I liked that feature but it's not a show stopper for me.
Safety - the oven gets hot on the outside and the door gets hot too. Use caution when opening the door to get items out and don't leave anything on the unit. This is not a toy and these precautions are common sense.
I've had the product for almost a month and so far it's meeting my expectations. It's been worth the price and I have the insurance that I can always take it back if something goes awry.
I am updating this a few days later just to mention that when the unit is done toasting, it dings. This is a good thing since most of us would forget to rescue our toast.
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Amount Paid (US$): 23.99