Breville Mini Smart Oven
How We Tested
With five precise quartz elements for even heating, our top-rated toaster oven, the Breville Smart Oven, out-toasted, roasted, baked, and broiled the other machines in our lineup. It also impressed us with its simple, intuitive format, with clearly marked buttons for useful preset cooking functions, like “pizza.’’ In fact nothing about it could be beat— except maybe the almost $250 price and its countertop-hogging size. For smaller kitchens and budgets, Breville more recently launched the Mini Smart Oven, using the same quartz heating technology (with four elements in the smaller space) and button format but costing about $100 less. And while it isn’t big enough to roast a whole chicken, heat a 12-inch pizza or bake a full batch of cookies, we used it to cook smaller foods to see how it would compare. Whether roasting a bone-in chicken breast, baking eight cookies, or heating an individual-size frozen pizza, the Mini Smart Oven aced our tests, preheating in five minutes or less and baking evenly. Its accuracy was spot-on, cycling no more than 30 degrees off the target temperature. Its one slight downside was toasting. Only the middles of one side of the bread browned on the first batch (subsequent rounds were far more even). Likewise for broiling: Cheese melted more evenly across the surface of open-faced tuna melts on follow-up rounds. At just about $150, the Breville Mini Smart Oven did almost everything the bigger Breville could do.