I recently tried out the Proctor Silex Extra Large Toaster Oven Broiler for a period of eight weeks. I did this so I could provide an in-depth review to anyone considering purchasing this model. I banished my usual toaster oven to storage for the duration of the review period so I could get an accurate idea of how this Proctor Silex toaster oven performs with regular daily usage. Here is my review, plus my ratings for this toaster oven are at the bottom of the page.
It is important to point out that this is one of the cheapest toaster ovens available today. It will cost you just under $25 including the shipping. Obviously expectations should match the price level; it should certainly not be expected to perform as well as a high-end model. This Proctor Silex toaster oven is available in either white or black; the model I chose was the former. I removed it from the box and immediately saw it was much smaller than the toaster oven I am accustomed to. I am a bit surprised that Proctor Silex used the term "extra large" when naming this item. I suppose it is large compared to the small units that were popular in the 1970s, but it is certainly smaller than the average modern toaster oven. The glossy white finish looks fresh and clean and would be quite at home in a country kitchen or traditionally styled kitchen. The materials and construction appear to be flimsy and a bit cheap, but after all this is a cheap option. A baking pan is included and it is of similar quality. This Proctor Silex toaster oven features old-fashioned dials rather than digital controls.
I like to start out a toaster oven review period by making toast, since this is one area where many toaster ovens fail to impress. The manual instructs the user to position the rack in the "U" position although it seems to be an odd choice. That position is towards the bottom of the toaster oven rather than the center, and the center is where even toasting is most likely to occur. I decided to follow the manufacturer's instructions and put in four slices of whole wheat bread. The slices all fit, although there was not much room left for adequate air flow. My suspicions were confirmed when my toast was burnt on the bottom before the top was properly browned. It was also quite dry and unappetizing throughout. During the rest of the review period I only used the toaster oven for two slices of bread at a time and I positioned the rack in the more centrally located "N" position. This produced good, but not outstanding, toast.
This is a rather small toaster oven, as I mentioned earlier. I was unable to use it for all of my baking needs throughout the review period. Some of the items that were too large for this toaster oven include a whole chicken, a pork butt roast and a corned brisket. Those items needed to be cooked in my full-sized oven. The single rack won't allow for multiple dishes to be baked at once, and many meals require more than one component.
I didn't find this Proctor Silex toaster oven to be very useful for baked goods such as cookies, cakes or muffins. First, the heating just isn't even enough for proper baking to occur. Second, there isn't enough room to fit a decent sized batch of baked goods.
I did find this Proctor Silex toaster ovenl to be very handy for side dishes. It worked well for sweet potato "fries," garlic cheese bread and roasted vegetables. This can be very useful if you are baking something at a different temperature in your full-sized oven. This way you can slow roast a hunk of meat at 325 degrees F while crisping up some potato wedges at 400 degrees F. This toaster oven is also handy for heating up leftovers.
Overall, this is a toaster oven with very limited use. However, it might still deserve a place in your kitchen depending on your individual needs. It is certainly well-priced.
All ratings are on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest possible rating
Appearance rating: 6
True to set temperature rating: 6
Even heating/cooking rating: 5
Overall rating: 6