Most of us have seen or used a traditional toaster oven but do you know what a convection toaster is? These handy kitchen appliances can help make your cooking faster and more efficient.
In this quick article, we’ll review how a convection toaster oven works, what foods can be cooked in them, and whether or not this appliance is right for you.
What is a Convection Toaster Oven?
A convection toaster oven is very similar to a regular toaster oven but with the addition of a fan. Convection toaster ovens cook food quicker and more evenly than a regular toaster oven. They also remove some of the moisture from the air which means things will brown better in a convection toaster oven.
How Does a Convection Toaster Oven Work?
Electricity travels to the heating elements inside the convection toaster oven. These elements then create radiant heat, just like in a regular toaster oven, which warms the air inside.
With a traditional toaster oven, the heat rises to the top. But with a convection toaster oven, the fan circulates the air around evenly inside. This creates a more even cooking and also results in food being cooked faster.
How to Use a Convection Toaster Oven?
One thing to consider when using a convection toaster oven is that you will either need to reduce the cooking time or reduce the temperature since these appliances cook faster.
Let’s say that you normally cook a recipe in a traditional toaster oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 40 minutes. With a convection toaster oven, you’ll want to reduce the heat to about 325 degrees Fahrenheit or lower the cooking time to 30-35 minutes.
Your convection toaster oven may come with various settings that you can use for cooking or baking. Some of these may include preset functions for cookies or pizza. When using these settings, the time and temperature are automatically set for you. Double-check your recipe to ensure you’re using the right settings.
Best Foods to Cook in a Toaster Oven
Many foods cook very well in a toaster oven. Meat is a great choice for roasting, baking, or broiling, as it browns very nicely in a convection toaster oven.
You can also roast vegetables such as asparagus, sweet potatoes, carrots, or brussels sprouts in a toaster oven. The dry heat keeps them nice and moist inside with a crispy outside.
Baked goods can also be successfully made in a toaster oven, though you’ll typically need to make smaller batches. Convection toasters ovens are best for pastries or cookies since the dry heat doesn’t have a big impact on them.
Bread, cakes, and cupcakes are not ideal for convection toaster ovens since they can get overly dry.
|Food||Cooking Function||Cooking Time|
|Chicken, Turkey & Beef||Roast||15-45 min|
|Pastries, Pizza, Pies & Cookies||Bake||10-15 min|
|Sausages, Steak||Broil||5-10 min|
For more detailed cooking time and temperatures on various different food types, I strongly recommend you check out the official government documentation on food safety regulations.
Pros & Cons of a Convection Toaster Oven
Convection toaster ovens are ideal if you don’t have the space for a full-size oven in your kitchen. Though they are usually slightly larger than a traditional toaster oven, they will still fit nicely on your countertop.
For individuals who live alone, a convection toaster oven is great for making single-serving meals and for baking smaller quantities of things like cookies or muffins. Larger families may find a convection toaster oven challenging in that it is not large enough to make big meals.
The main benefit of a convection toaster oven is the speed and efficiency with which it cooks food. The addition of the fan to circulate the air means that your food is being heated from all angles instead of the heat rising to the top of the oven.
Are Convection Toaster Ovens Worth It?
Convection toaster ovens are reasonably priced and are a good value kitchen appliance. Particularly for people who are looking to save time and who cook smaller batches of food, the convection toaster oven can be a great option.
These appliances are also very energy efficient. Their small size and effective heating systems make them a good choice for those looking to save on energy costs.
It’s Convection Cooking Time!
Whether you’re looking to bake cookies, cook a roast, or broil some vegetables, a convection toaster oven can do all of these tasks and more. Save time and energy with a convection toaster oven!