The DeLonghi brand has been quite well-known and respected for many years throughout Europe yet it only boasts a small (but loyal) following in the United States. The De'Longhi family first set up shop in Italy in 1902 and since then have produced top-notch products first for Italy, then for the rest of Europe, and now for the world. How does the DeLonghi 6 slice toaster oven measure up to their long-standing reputation for quality and innovation? I recently tested it for 8 weeks for the purpose of providing an in-depth review to those considering this model. Here is that review, plus you'll find my ratings for this toaster oven at the bottom of the page.
First, it is important to note that this DeLonghi 6 slice toaster oven falls mid-range as far as toaster oven prices go. It will run you about $120 with shipping included. So my expectations for it are obviously higher than what I'd expect from a cheap model from the local discount store but lower than what I'd expect from a $250 Breville smart oven. Straight out of the box, the DeLonghi 6 slice toaster oven looks pretty much as I'd expect it to. Not too fancy or heavy-duty but it certainly does not have any kind of cheap feel to it. It looks sleek and well-constructed and has a very modern updated boxy look to it. The shape provides more interior room without taking up a ton of room on your countertop. It is stainless steel and black, which is likely to go with any decor. It has digital controls yet lacks the usual keypad with a ton of numbers and function buttons. At first glance, the controls seem to fall right between the old-fashioned, simple to use dials and the ultra-functional, yet sometimes difficult to discern digital controls found on many modern toaster ovens. The DeLonghi 6 slice toaster oven has one ingenious feature: a quick function guide that pulls out from the bottom of the unit. This means there is no fumbling around for the user's manual when you forget which buttons you need to push. Why didn't anyone think of this sooner?
This DeLonghi 6 slice toaster oven conveniently comes with an included baking pan, broil pan and two cookies sheets, eliminating the need to buy any type of toaster oven bake ware set separately. One special feature that you don't find on most toaster ovens is the interior light. Having used many toaster ovens, I've grown accustomed to the lack of a light. It is, however, a common complaint among first time toaster oven owners. Not an issue with this toaster oven.
Another thing that sets this DeLonghi toaster oven apart from the average toaster oven is the enameled interior in place of the usual non-stick coating. Even the makers of the non-stick coatings, also known as polytetrafluoroetheylene (PTFE), admit that they may emit toxic fumes at temperatures as low as 464 degrees F. That temperature can easily be exceeded when broiling or roasting, so it's nice to know DeLonghi opted for enamel instead of a potentially dangerous material.
One of the first things I attempted was to put 6 slices of whole grain bread into the DeLonghi toaster oven. After all, they list this as a 6 slice unit. I must say, there is no way I could fit all 6 in without seriously smashing the bread. I suppose maybe there are some smaller loaves which would allow it to accommodate 6 slices of bread, but mine did not. So I toasted 4 slices and they turned out perfectly. The beeping when setting this oven, as well as the alarm that sounds to let you know the cooking cycle is over, is extremely loud. I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing. I like it when I'm in another room and can still tell when the toaster oven is done; I hate it when everyone in the house hears me heating up a late-night snack. I wish DeLonghi would have offered an adjustable sound level.
This DeLonghi convection toaster oven heats very quickly and evenly. The broiler and roasting capabilities are top-notch; it's heating elements are strong enough to provide proper browning, which results in top-notch flavor. It is spacious enough to cook 2 twelve inch pizzas at once. I have made somewhat large beef roasts and an entire chicken in this toaster oven with no trouble. I never even had to fire up my standard full-sized oven once during the test period; the DeLonghi 6 slice toaster oven did it all. The handle stays cool, even when using this unit at the highest temperature settings. I checked the actual temperature at several different settings and it always was true to temperature within a degree or two. All in all, this is an excellent toaster oven and a great value for the price.
All ratings are on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest possible rating
Appearance rating: 8
True to set temperature rating: 10
Even heating/cooking rating: 9
Overall rating: 9