Kitchn Love Letters

This Ridiculously Cute $25 Toaster is My Superhero for Easy, Simple Meals for One (It’s Perfect for Tiny Kitchens!)

published Feb 14, 2023
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two pieces of toast with melted cheese on top, and a small bottle of brown sauce on the side.
Credit: Tara Holland

In my last apartment, we didn’t have a toaster. Instead, we decided to give that portion of our precious counter space to our beloved air fryer oven, which not only tackled air frying tasks, but also worked as a conventional oven, baking oven, and toaster oven. However, I wasn’t going to ship that thing across the country, so ever since I moved to New York, I haven’t had a tabletop toasting method. I mean, I have limited real estate when it comes to kitchen surfaces, and TBH, I just didn’t see the point in splurging for a toaster oven when I could just throw a few slices of bread into my apartment’s full-size oven. Seems reasonable enough, right? Well, the only problem is that I eat a heck of a lot more toast than I thought I did. Plus, I’ve used toaster ovens my entire life for a slew of other kitchen tasks that just feel like such a pain in the actual oven.

So, I searched for something I could make work in my new apartment. And, all it took was one look at this model from fan-favorite kitchen appliance brand, DASH, to know I had stumbled upon the perfect fit! It was the teeniest version of a toaster I’d ever seen that was user-friendly, super cute, and the perfect size — since I really don’t have enough room for anything bigger.

Best known for their affordable mini waffle makers, DASH’s other top-notch products are sometimes overlooked. They make one of Kitchn editors’ favorite mandolines, an $80 stand mixer, a superb rice cooker, and tons more. And, while many people on the Kitchn team have at least one DASH find at home, none of my colleagues had seen this adorable little toaster until they heard me bragging about it. Talk about office clout!

What was I boasting about? Well, I was talking about how charming my kitchen felt with the new addition and how the little toasting wonder worked double-time as a perch for my favorite olive oils and salts (sort of like a shelf riser) when not in use. Even though the teensy thing looks like it could only handle a piece of bread the size of an English muffin, I found it works perfectly with any sourdough: My favorite gluten-free style is an artisanal boule, and its elongated shape snuggles in the toaster just fine. It also handles baked goods with ease — homemade banana bread toasted with almond butter and raspberries has been my go-to breakfast since I purchased this — and even bagels fit without issue. No matter what I pop in there, it comes out perfectly toasted, even if it’s frozen. I like my toast a deep, golden-brown, which I effortlessly achieve by twisting the knob between the three- and four-minute mark.

Credit: Stella Totino

But, it’s not only for bread and the like — the DASH Mini Toaster also comes with a tray insert that I use to toast pepitas before adding them to my salad; to quickly release the oils and aromas from walnuts before stirring them into chocolate chip cookie dough; and to get a golden finish on shredded coconut before sprinkling it over my yogurt and granola. I haven’t tried it yet, but I’m pretty sure you could bake a single cookie on that little tray for a midnight snack. Can’t believe I haven’t thought of that before … I’m trying it tonight!

Other features I love are the crumb tray (which keeps my counters spick and span) and mini oven rack are dishwasher-safe for an easy bi-weekly cleanup. Oh, and the little window lets me monitor what’s going on inside in real time. Unlike a traditional toaster, where the doneness of your slice is a total mystery until it pops out, I have total control over when to retrieve my slice if I did happen to miscalculate and turn the knob a little too far. There will be no wasted toast in this house!

Bottom line: I find myself using this darling little appliance multiple times a day, from breakfast to dinner. I honestly can’t imagine how I ever lived without it. For just $25, this mini toaster is a no-brainer — especially if you live in a small apartment or have over-crowded counters. Now, if you’ll excuse me, it’s about time for my mid-morning avocado toast!