In our advice column, Ask the Strategist, we take your most burning shopping questions and quiz our friends, scour the internet, call up experts, and draw from personal experience to answer them. As always, please comment with one of your own — we’re here to help.
Question: I need your help. Is there such a thing as an extra-long toaster? When I buy nice breads from the bakery, they don’t fit in my regular toaster, and I don’t want to buy a toaster oven because they’re just too big and bulky. But I still need my breads toasted. What can I do about it?
I have two words that will change your life: long slot. These are toasters that are at least 14 inches long, often more, and are specifically designed for home bakers and those who prefer artisan loaves. The options aren’t as vast as you might hope for, but we’ve collected a few of the best, below, based on Amazon reviews, best sellers, and general good looks.
Cuisinart’s “The Bakery” is 14.75 inches across, so it’ll fit two smaller slices in each slot, or one longer, fancier, more delicious one. It also has six toast settings, defrost and reheat functions, a pull-out crumb tray, and a classic chrome finish.
For something even longer, there’s the KitchenAid, which measures 16.5 inches across. This one has seven toast settings, will match your KitchenAid mixer, and comes in three colors: silver, red, and black.
Looking at Amazon reviewers’ top-rated long-slot toasters brings us to the Breville Lift and Look, which is 15.5 inches long with five toast settings and still managed to hang on to four stars after 1,048 reviews. As one recent buyer said: “Bought this because I like artisan bread, which is usually long. This [toaster] is quick, and easy to get the setting right, which will be lower for plain white breads but higher for hard-crust artisan breads. I love the ‘30 seconds more’ feature, which allows me to guess low when I change bread types and adjust up on the fly. Can do two long artisan breads or four regular bread slices.”
Breville’s pricier long-slot smart toaster, at 14.9 inches across, is also a fan favorite. The lift-and-look feature allows users to pop up and see the bread without interrupting the toasting process. Here’s what one reviewer had to say: “Love the ability to adjust size of bread (bagel) and also toast just one side. Also love all the other features: toast a little more, lift to see, status light … For me, the cost of this item is worth it. Best toaster I’ve ever had.”
What the Toast Toaster gives up in inches (this one’s the shortest at 14 inches across here), it makes up for in design cred. It’s made in Italy and was designed in 1997 by Gae Aulenti, whose work is featured in MoMA’s permanent collection.
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