Top Toasters

Celebrities, high tech, and toasters? These three things don't usually go together. But Consumer Reports finds they do now.

Its lab toasted about 300 slices of bread to check out dozens of toasters, including ones from some big names.

Celebrity Chef Gordon Ramsay is known for berating cooks on his "Kitchen Nightmares" TV show. Now he's putting his name on a toaster for Kmart.

On the Food Network, it says, "Everybody needs a few ideas for a quick dinner up their sleeve."

And the Food Network, with its celebrity chefs, is putting its name on a toaster sold at Kohl's.

Consumer Reports tested these toasters along with dozens of others.

Dan DiClerico of Consumer Reports says, "We found it's actually not so easy to find a toaster that turns out evenly browned toast."

Testers evaluate how well a toaster makes light toast as well as dark. They test whether the pieces of toast come out evenly.

And testers check to see if successive batches produced the same color toast. Gordon Ramsay's toaster didn't do well.

DiClerico says, "These slices of toast are pretty dark. This is the worst toaster in our ratings."

And the Food Network's toaster wasn't great at making multiple batches, either.

Then there's the Nostalgia Electrics Egg' n' Muffin Toaster that lets you cook bacon or fry an egg while it toasts.

DiClerico says, "Unfortunately, the Nostalgia's griddle is pretty slow. It took more than ten minutes to fry bacon and cook eggs."

When all the tests were done, the 80-dollar Cuisinart CPT-420 topped the ratings. It consistently delivered evenly toasted bread with the push of a button.

For much less, the Hamilton Beach Digital 22502 is a Best Buy for 35 dollars. While it has fewer features, it rated excellent for toasting evenly.

If you are making toast for a crowd, Consumer Reports says a very good four-slice toaster is the 50-dollar Hamilton Beach Digital model number 24502.

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