I am tired of waiting and getting only dehydrated bread with a hint of color. Toasters these days just don't get hot enough! My sister has the family GE model we grew up with and having toast at her place (50yr old thing doesn't pop any longer) makes me want a REAL toaster too. Apparently others agree: http://www.flamingsteel.com/me-blogging-the-dog/the-last-great-toaster

I perused review sites but don't see any explicit HEAT rating. What criteria should I use in looking at manufacturers details?

Is speed equated with a hot toaster? Should I search for a brand that is considered fast?

  • This question seems like an oblique equipment recommendation request, which per meta.cooking.stackexchange.com/a/978/14401 is off topic. – SAJ14SAJ Jan 18 '13 at 18:14
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    Essentially he's asking for what toasters give the highest BTUs (Is that the correct unit), which isn't necessarily a "opinion" request. I think this question can stand (maybe with some edits) as is. I've had the same question and frustration and would find this valuable. – talon8 Jan 18 '13 at 18:59
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    That information is best gotten from the manufacturers. – SAJ14SAJ Jan 18 '13 at 19:35
  • BTUs might be what I need to search for in product info then. I should start with the old toaster as comparison; would clarify matters – Pat Sommer Jan 20 '13 at 4:28
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    Pat, to avoid this getting closed, you might want to edit your question to be a little less like a rant and a little more clear about what you're actually asking. – Cascabel Jan 22 '13 at 18:01

It's a bit tricky to tell from your question what your standards for "real" toasters are, and it sounds like you're exaggerating. Every toaster I or my family has ever owned has been capable of doing a lot more than dehydrating bread and adding a hint of color; they've all been able to burn the toast if you set them too high.

That said, at least as of four years ago, very hot toasters still existed. I have one of these, and it's hot/fast enough that the only problem I have is that sometimes when the toast is sufficiently browned, the center of the slice still isn't as hot as I'd like. I'm sure this isn't the only such toaster; if you look for negative reviews complaining of that problem, you can probably find others.

  • ha ha, never thought about looking at negative reviews! under 75 seconds hits the nail on the head – Pat Sommer Jan 23 '13 at 0:38

A toaster works by converting electricity to heat using resistive heating. This is going to approach 100% efficiency (a little is lost as light). So the heat output (in BTU/hr) is going to be about 3.4 × watts. So, more or less, 5000BTU/hr is the most you can get on a standard US circuit.

The real question is how effectively the toaster delivers that heat to the bread (etc.). That's going to mean looking at reviews, not heat specs.

Depending on what you want, maybe just heat a cast iron pan to ridiculous and toast one side at a time?

  • yes, have done that in a pan and results are interesting but still good. not quite same somehow. have used under grill but that's a bit excessive for a single slice. – Pat Sommer Jan 20 '13 at 4:24
  • sorry, don't understand 'effectively delivers heat' – Pat Sommer Jan 20 '13 at 4:26
  • @PatSommer A lot of toasters use more or less the same wattage, so they're generating almost the same amount of heat. But they perform differently, because some are effective in directing that heat at the bread and some aren't. That's what I mean by how effectively the toaster delivers the heat. – derobert Jan 20 '13 at 10:38
  • more wattage transferred to coils? hand over toaster method best judge of that? – Pat Sommer Jan 21 '13 at 16:59
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    @PatSommer No, more wattage (heat) transferred from coils to the bread. Best method to judge for that would be to make a slice of toast. – derobert Jan 21 '13 at 17:49

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