Can A Toaster Oven Replace A Microwave? [Expert Advice]

Last Updated on December 28, 2022 by Claire

Ideally in many homes, there are usually a lot of appliances, which causes congestion. The ideal thought would be to use a single kitchen appliance for various purposes. One of the idea is looking at the possibility of replacing microwave with toaster oven. Which leads to the question – can a toaster oven replace a microwave? I decided to run a simple experiment at home and I found an answer.

For some solid food type, a toaster oven can replace a microwave. But liquids like your coffee and water are not advised to go into the toaster oven.

The reason for this is that while microwave heats up water molecules through electromagnetic waves, toasters cook via a heating element which results to crisping and browning of the food.

They both work differently and also produce different results. So in principle, you can may decide to replace a microwave with a toaster, but you are limited to certain food types which we will consider further and you might stick to using a water urn or kettle for your water heating.

Should you decide to downsize to just one appliance, what are your options and which one between the Microwave and the Toaster oven should you keep? Let’s consider some detailed points.

can a toaster oven replace your microwave?

How does an Toaster Oven Work?

Toasters use heating elements within their interior surface of their component to heat the air. These are wires that have high electrical resistivity that once connected to electricity, electrons would build up inside the wire and then heat up the compartment.

There are two ways this heat is distributed – naturally for conventional oven or aided by a fan for convection ovens. Many of these toaster oven have exhaust systems that helps to reduce moisture inside to leave your food crispier.

How does a Microwave Work?

For the microwave, it works through their magnetrons that reacts with water molecules, thereby creating electromagnetic waves and making them heat up.

Which is why if you put a food inside the microwave, at the end of the timer, you’d discover that the food is hot, while the dish isn’t as hot as the food.

Difference Between a Microwave Oven and Toaster Oven

As we have highlighted earlier, the microwave uses magnetron generated by the electromagnetic waves to heat up water molecules in the food. While the toaster oven uses electrons to heat up their compartment, thereby making the food crispy and baked.

Since electromagnetic waves are faster, that’s the reason microwave heats up food faster than toaster oven.

Since the toaster oven heats up their inner chambers, certain materials should never be allowed inside the toaster oven such as plastics. They can melt and probably catch fire.

Cooking Type
Microwave Result
Toaster Oven Result
Can't brown food
Browns easily
Cooking frozen fries
Will make it mushy
Perfect for frozen fries
Reheating large food quantities
Not too good especially inside certain containers like plastic
Heating Leftovers from the refrigerator
Very perfect
Will burn the top before the center is heated
Heating leftover pizza
Will make it mushy
Very perfect
Cooking baked potatoes
The best option
Might burn the skin badly before potatoe is cooked

Can a Toaster Oven Replace a Microwave?

A toaster oven is more versatile than a microwave, meaning it is economical to buy a toaster oven than a microwave. But you should be aware than both devices are different, but a toaster can perform similar function like the microwave.

Since a toaster oven uses direct heat, it tends to crisp and dry food, as opposed to retaining the moisture.

To make your toaster replace a microwave and bypass it’s limitations, you’d have to make some simple tweaks.

These are some simple tweaks that can make your toaster function like a microwave

  • Use of Ceramic plates to heat leftovers. Reduce the bake setting, lower the temperature and cover with a foil sheet.
  • For crisping bacon, put on a plate to catch the grease.
  • For baking potatoes, put inside a foil. It might take a longer time, but it would give a better output than the microwave.
  • To warm leftover pizza, put in a pan. lower temperature and reduce the bake setting.

These are some settings that can help you with replacing microwave with toaster oven. So if you are wondering can a toaster oven replace a microwave, then these settings can help you achieve that.

Can a toaster oven be used to reheat food?

Toaster ovens are effective for warming meals. To prevent burning, place the meal on an oven-safe dish or bowl and wrap it with foil. The ideal temperature for reheating leftovers in 20 minutes is 325°F.

Additionally, as we said above, you must be careful about the sort of container you choose because a toaster oven is not a good place to use plastic or paper.

The ideal designation for glass, ceramic, or pottery is “oven-safe,” so check for it anywhere. After all, a toaster oven is simply an oven that has been miniaturized.

Next, be aware that when food has finished reheating in a toaster oven, you’ll want to move it to a plate or dish. Many of us use the same plate that we heated in the microwave to eat off of, but when it comes out of the toaster oven, it will be considerably hotter and unsafe to handle with bare hands.

Last but not least, if your toaster oven has an adjustable tray, lower it to move the heating element farther from the tray. If not done this way, the result is that the middle of the food remains cold, while the top burns and blackens.

Can you pop microwave popcorn in a toaster oven?

A toaster oven shouldn’t be used to pop microwave popcorn because it presents a fire risk to insert the paper bag inside the toaster oven, it is not recommended to use a toaster oven to pop microwave popcorn. However, you may take the kernels out of the bag and put them inside an oven-safe dish with a cover before popping it.

A metal heating element, which is frequently on the toaster oven’s inside roof, is how a toaster oven warms’ food. It can sometimes be on the bottom or both.

In any situation, paper might readily catch fire if it comes in contact with them. Fire bad, in the legendary words of the Frankenstein monster.

Now, all that is required for popcorn to pop is heat. Your grandfather used to just cook the kernels in some oil in a saucepan on the stovetop back in the day because of this.

But if you truly need a popcorn without having a microwave, stove, or the perfect appliance, here’s how to achieve that with the toaster oven.

  • Locate a small lidded oven-safe metal, ceramic, or bowl (it needs to be big enough to have room for the kernels to pop but small enough to fit in your toaster oven)
  • Remove the corn from the paper bag.
  • Put them into the jar.
  • To the kernels, add a few teaspoons of oil.
  • Set the toaster oven to 450 degrees.
  • Put the container’s lid on.
  • Put into the toaster oven.
  • Heat until the popping ceases or significantly slows down
  • With oven gloves or pads, carefully remove the container, and place it on a potholder on the counter.
  • With an oven mitt, cautiously lift the cover to check if the majority of the kernels have popped.
  • if required, continue to heat
  • optional salt

Should I buy a Microwave or a Toaster Oven?

It depends on three factors which includes;

  • Convenience
  • Versatility


If convenience is a huge factor for and your objective is to reheat food, then you should get a microwave. There are nice microwaves that are newly designed to food taste and quality despite heating.


If you are on a budget and looking to save money, then you should get a toaster oven. It can perform other functions that the microwave can’t perform, and also has similar function as the microwave.

For functions that it can’t outrightly perform as the microwave, you can apply some simple tweaks and get it done. When done right, there is absolutely no question that a toaster oven would produce superior outcomes for the best food quality while baking or reheating dishes. Food becomes more crispy and tends to heat more evenly. It’s virtually tough to get crispy food in a microwave.

But if you have the money and space, it is no question that you need to get both of them – since they are distinct in their operations and functions.

Can I get a Microwave and Toaster all-in-one Appliance?

Yes. A microwave-toaster oven is available. However, the manufacturers do not integrate the microwave’s electromagnetic waves with the heating element found in conventional toaster ovens. They substitute double infrared light, which cooks food around 40% more quickly than a conventional toaster oven.

These microwave and toaster all-in-one appliance will help solve the puzzle of can a toaster oven replace your microwave since they have all functionalities in one.

Two brands have the following characteristics, similar to a microwave:

  • Electronic timer
  • Presets for warming leftovers, thawing frozen items, and bread
  • No need for preheating
  • inner light

The majority of the models then provide the following characteristics, similar to a toaster oven:

  • 250° to 500° range for temperature settings
  • A pulling-down hinged door
  • Portable crumb tray
  • Modes for reheating, baking, and other operations
  • Portable metal tray

With these features, replacing microwave with toaster oven become very easy

Galanz GTWHG12S1SA10 4-in-1 Microwave, Toaster Oven, Air Fryer.

This appliance is more like a microwave with extra features like browning, crisping, and grilling, known as the 4-in-1 broiler. If you have enough space for a microwave, then you should go for this because it serves as a microwave and also a toaster oven.

You can click the button below to check the price.

Check Latest Price on Amazon


  • True Convection: As food rotates 360 degrees in the oven, heated air circulates throughout the appliance, cooking food faster, more evenly, and without hot spots. Even foods that require direct heat, including fish, chicken, and freshly baked goods, can be baked or broiled.
  • A built-in humidity sensor ensures that your food is never undercooked or overcooked with the sensor cook and sensor reheat features. When food is hot and ready to eat, sensor reheat for precooked dishes automatically ceases.
  • Patented Inverter Technology: The Inverter Creates Continuous, Constant, Even Heat To Maintain Exact Temperature Throughout The Cooking Process Unlike Traditional Microwave Heating Systems That Pulse On And Off.
  • Galanz, The Ultimate Cooking Versatility Microwave + Air Fryer, Convection Oven, and Toaster Oven Are All Included In This 1.2 Cu.Ft., 1000W Toastwave For Maximum Cooking Versatility. Prepare more of your preferred dishes.
  • 2450 MHZ is the operating frequency.

Can a toaster oven replace a microwave? Yes, this appliance can double as both.

Panasonic 4-in-1 Microwave Oven with Bake Technology

Another option is the Panasonic HomeChef 4-in-1 Microwave Oven with Air Fryer, Convection Bake, FlashXpress Broiler, Inverter Microwave Technology.

The Ultimate Multi-Oven All-In-One: All-in-one countertop appliance with a microwave, broiler, airfryer, and convection oven! Use each feature separately or in combination for scrumptious dishes every time.

This model can cook, heat frozen food without becoming mushy, grill, make food crispy, and just perfect!


  • Without the need for preheating, quickly moves hot air over food to provide crispy, browned results. Make food items like nuggets, french fries, and more tasty and healthy.
  • As a Primary or Secondary Oven
  • Panasonic’s 1000-Watt inverter microwave technology provides smart, consistent defrosting, reheating, cooking, and warming.


For more information on how to get this product, Click Here to Check Price on Amazon

Final Verdict

So we have analysed if it is possible replacing microwave with toaster oven, and the possible questions surrounding can a toaster oven replace a microwave. I still suggest the following…

  • If you have the space and budget, you should get a Microwave and Toaster oven individually.
  • Should you have a medium budget, then you should get the All-in-one FlashXpress
  • If you have a very low-budget, then you should get a Toaster Oven, since it is more versatile.
  • But if all you want is just a heating device with no further functionality, then get yourself a microwave.