Hamilton Beach 31344D Roll Top Toaster
Last updated date: October 12, 2020
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We looked at the top Toaster Ovens and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Toaster Oven you should buy.
Editor's Note October 12, 2020:
Checkout The Best Toaster Oven for a detailed review of all the top toaster ovens.
You'll find the Hamilton Beach 31344D Roll Top Toaster easy to clean after each use thanks to the included bread crumb tray and the removable glass roll top door. The unit is smaller than other models on the market, but still cooks up to four slices of toast at a time, as well as a 9-inch pizza. There are also two rack positions, so you can bake or broil your favorite foods.
In our analysis of 96 expert reviews, the Hamilton Beach Hamilton Beach 31344D Roll Top Toaster placed 15th when we looked at the top 20 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
User Summarized Score
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An Overview On Toaster Ovens
If you’ve never used a toaster oven, the first thing you need to know is that it’s not a toaster. Mind you, you can make toast with it, but that’s hardly its only use or even the primary one. Depending on the household, it can fill a surprisingly wide gap between the microwave and a traditional oven. Need your snacks warmed up quickly, but hate that microwave sogginess? Need your potatoes, pies or side dishes baked while your main course is taking up the oven? The toaster oven is a perfect solution, and it does all that while using less power.
Depending on the size of the toaster oven, it can even be used to cook those main dishes. Many models have modes tailored to pizza, for instance. The same goes for baked goods like cookies, cupcakes and bread, which toaster ovens are particularly good at in small batches. And finally, they’re a life-saver when foods need thawing out quickly.
How does it do all this? The heating methods vary depending on the model. Like traditional ovens, many toaster ovens use convection heating or at least offer it as an option for baking. That essentially means there’s a fan inside the oven to circulate the heat, and while it’s not as crucial in a small area as it is with a full-size oven, convection does generally mean things will cook more evenly. Other models make up for the lack of convection with multiple heating elements placed around the oven, like the Panasonic FlashXpress Compact Toaster Oven and its “double infrared heating.”
As you might imagine, an appliance that heats all these foods is going to get dirty. Luckily, most models are as easy to clean out as a traditional toaster, if not easier. There’s generally a tray at the bottom that catches crumbs, melted cheese or other debris. Pull it out and wipe it down, and most of your cleaning is done.
The Toaster Oven Buying Guide
- The primary thing you’ll want to consider when buying a toaster oven is size. Bigger is not necessarily better, especially if you’ve got limited counter space and you’re primarily using it to heat up snacks. If you’re making the occasional meal with it, scan the “quick-select” settings for a general idea of what a particular model can handle, but also check the measurements. Just because there’s a “pizza” setting doesn’t necessarily mean you can fit a large pizza inside. Many larger toaster ovens also include multiple racks, which is a plus for baking cookies or making toast for large groups.
- Another quick way to gauge what meals a toaster oven can handle is to take a quick look at the maximum setting on the timer. If it only goes up to 20 minutes or so, that means it’s not exactly built for roasting a turkey.
- Convection heating is a big plus, but may not be a total necessity if you’re just warming up bagels. The wattage can tell you a lot about how powerful the heating element is, with 1500 being a good median. Of course, that high wattage setting will also mean it’s using more power, which can defeat the purpose if you’re using it to save energy on side dishes and reheats.
- Just like regular ovens, most toaster ovens will need time to reheat, though it generally won’t take nearly as long as their larger counterparts. Check reviews to see how long that tends to be. Some models with alternative heating elements power on with almost no preheat at all, which can be a big plus for those on the go.
- Finally, consider the cleanup. Most models do have a crumb tray to catch all the cooking debris, but some can be easier to remove than others. As for the rest of the interior, non-stick stainless steel or similar materials are a plus. Something that gets this much use is going to see its share of stains.
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