Synonymous with breakfast, a slice of toast is a staple for many households when it comes to starting the day. Regardless of whether you think jam should be placed on a crumpet before cream, or if you believe butter belongs on every slice (including ones with peanut butter), at least most of us agree that a crunchy piece of toast for breakfast can be enjoyed whether you’re in a rush to get out the door or have plenty of time to lounge around. But when it comes to picking up a new toaster, consumers are often met with a wall of options, making the decision a tricky one. To give you an idea of which toasters are worth investing some dough into, Canstar Blue has compared the top brands on the market.
Canstar Blue surveyed 932 Australians for their feedback on the toaster(s) they’ve purchased and used in the last two years.
Respondents rate their satisfaction with their toaster brand(s) from zero to ten, where zero is extremely dissatisfied and ten is extremely satisfied. Brand satisfaction was rated by respondents on the following criteria:
The winning brand is the one that receives the highest Overall satisfaction rating once all the scores from the Overall satisfaction criteria are combined and averaged.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included, so not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The brands rated in this survey are listed below in order of best overall satisfaction.
• Russell Hobbs
• Big W Brilliant Basics
Our latest ratings suggest there’s plenty to ‘loaf’ about Kambrook toasters, with shoppers rating them best for performance, features and functionality, value for money, ease of use and cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction. In fact, Kambrook was the only brand to earn five stars, with most other brands in our review earning four stars.
Find more detailed information on our ratings methodology.
Kambrook popped up with a solid win across the board, scoring five stars for performance, features and functionality, value for money, ease of use and cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction.
Kambrook boasts one of the most affordable toasters ranges on the market, offering several two-slice and four-slice options from $39.95 up to $89.95. Coming in a variety of both plastic and stainless-steel finishes, Kambrook may be the option for those on a budget, or those who don’t need all the bells and whistles. Its 2-Slice Wide Slot Toaster is the brand’s cheapest model and includes many common features found across the range, including reheat, defrost and cancel settings, plus six browning levels to help you get the perfect level of crispness for your toast. The toaster is also said to provide extra wide and deep toasting slots. Kambrook’s priciest model, the Kambrook Deluxe Collection 4-Slice Toaster, offers a bit more with a seven-stage browning control, an extra lift function for easier removal and built-in cord storage.
Russell Hobbs earned four stars for performance, features and functionality, ease of use and cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction. It finished on three stars for value for money.
A veteran in the kitchen appliance market, Russell Hobbs has been operating for more than 60 years, with products readily available from local appliance retailers. With plenty of two-slice and four-slice models for households to choose from, Russell Hobbs is worth checking out if you’re in the market for a new toaster or a kettle to match.
The two-slice toasters are split across several designs, such as Camden, Attentiv, Groove, Paddington and Velocity. These generally cost between $50 and $150, with each of these generally available in either silver, white or ombre with the inclusion of some models in colours like ‘denim,’ green, burgundy and ‘pink fade.’ Otherwise, you can snag a larger four-slice model from several series including Heritage, Midnight, Legacy, Brooklyn and Addison. These come in a wider variety of designs and colour schemes, each retailing between $80 to $130.
De’Longhi rated four stars for performance, features and functionality, ease of use and cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction. It earned three stars for value for money.
Operating for over 100 years, De’Longhi is an Italian manufacturer producing a wide variety of kitchen appliances, including coffee machines, kettles and toasters. With its wide range of colours, finishes and flashy designs, De’Longhi may be a suitable option for those looking to make a statement in the kitchen, at a price of course. The cheapest toaster available, the Icona, will set you back $89. This comes with the basics, including six electronic browning settings, an extra-lift position, a removable crumb tray and other electronic controls to defrost, reheat and a bagel function. Interestingly, the top-end model, the Distinta Moments, features very similar functions to the Icona, but boasts four slots instead of two.
Sunbeam scored four stars for performance, features and functionality, ease of use and cleaning, and overall satisfaction, plus three stars for value for money and design.
Sunbeam has one of the largest offerings of toasters, catering to everyone in a pinch as well as those willing to spend big. There are two-slice and four-slice models available across all series, plus long slot toasters for larger slices. For those looking for a high-end toaster, Sunbeam offers plenty of toasters with additions to make breakfast time a bit easier, like the Kyoto City Collection 4-Slice Toaster. This model features a ‘gentle glow illumination’ which provides a subtle highlight for night-time toast activities, the ability to check the browning of the toast without interrupting the cook function and a high-lift function to avoid finger burns.
Breville achieved four stars for performance, features and functionality, ease of use and cleaning, and overall satisfaction. It finished on three stars for value for money and design.
A worldwide kitchen appliance brand, Breville provides a slightly wider range of toasters to suit different types of food, such as bagels, pastries, thicker loaves as well as the standard slice of toast. These are available as two-slice and four-slice, mainly in white and stainless-steel designs to fit with most kitchen aesthetics.
Breville’s introductory toaster, the Lift & Look model gets its name from the ‘Lift & Look’ function, which allows you to manually lift the lever to check the progress of your toast without interrupting the toasting cycle, meaning burnt toast can be a thing of the past. With a cool-touch plastic exterior, the Lift & Look has multiple settings to cook your toast how you like it, along with a wider slot design for larger cuts of bread.
Bellini scored three stars across the board including for performance, features and functionality, value for money, ease of use and cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction.
Bellini has a modest offering of toasters, split between two-slice and four-slice models across several designs such as Retro, Countdown and Original, as well as one retro breakfast pack which includes a toaster and a kettle. The toasters share basic, but essential common features like up to six individual browning controls, removable crumb trays, defrost, reheat and cancel settings, as well as muffin and crumpet settings. Bellini toasters are available in silver, green, cream, purple and even in a diamond textured pattern.
Big W Brilliant Basics rated four stars for performance, features and functionality and ease of use. It got three stars for value for money, ease of cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction.
Retail chain Big W gets back to basics with its, well, Brilliant Basics collection. Starting at $7.50, Big W toasters are highly affordable and come with essential features such as adjustable browning controls and slide-out crumb trays for simple cleaning. They also include defrost, reheat and cancel functions. So, if you’re looking to buy a cheap toaster, your local Big W might be the next place to hit up! Big W also sells a variety of toasters from brands including Breville, Kambrook, Kenwood, Russell Hobbs and Morphy Richards.
Kmart earned four stars for performance, features and functionality, value for money, and ease of use. It got three stars for ease of cleaning, design, and overall satisfaction.
Despite its low prices, Kmart still manages to keep up with the trends and offers plenty of stylish designs and affordable alternatives to some high-end appliances on the market. Prices for Kmart toasters typically start from $7.50 for a simple two-slice toaster and go up to $55 for a four-slice model.
One of the most expensive and eye-catching toasters from Kmart is the 4-in-1 Breakfast Maker (pictured), which retails for just under $50. If you’re willing to spend extra on convenience (or novelty), the Kmart 4-in-1 Breakfast Maker has two wide slots, seven browning controls, a removable crumb tray and the unique egg cooker function. Otherwise, you can opt for cheaper models like the Kmart 2-Slice Toaster which has a basic toasting function, slide-out crumb tray and cord storage. Keep in mind that certain models might only be available in-store or online.
Not all toaster brands in the market qualify for our ratings (based on minimum survey sample size), but that doesn’t mean they’re not worth considering. Here are several more brands to check out before making a purchase decision.
What makes a toaster good vs average? It’s an important question. Luckily, our buying guide covers purchase considerations, toast preferences, brand advice and more.
What makes a toaster the butter to an Aussie’s bread? Our survey found price to be the biggest factor that swayed shoppers’ minds at the checkout (40%). Analysis of our research also revealed respondents are replacing their toasters after six years. We also found consumers are spending more on a new model, with Aussies now spending an average of $55 on a new toaster.
Other factors consumers consider when buying a new toaster include:
Most people surveyed opted for a four-slice toaster (50%), while 47% picked up a smaller two-slice option.
The perfect slice of toast is in the eye of the beholder, some like it barely warmed, while others won’t eat it without a singed crust, but there is some general consensus on how toast should be browned. Our survey for example found that medium, golden toasted bread is the most popular (65%), followed by lightly toasted (23%), dark toasted or charred (10%) and finally warmed but not toasted (1%) – as to whether that counts as toast at all is an entirely different question.
Read more: How much electricity does a toaster use?
When it comes to kitchens, toasters are one of the first appliances you’ll think of, handy for breakfast or a quick snack. But with plenty of brands offering similar features, finding one that will suit your kitchen and household may prove a big ask, making the final decision a stressful one. For an all-rounder, our ratings suggest you can’t go past Kambrook, which rated best across the board, proving a solid choice, especially in important categories like performance and value for money. However, if you’re looking to spend a little less, but you’re still looking for value, it’s worth noting that Kmart earned four stars for value for money, (and was the only brand to do so) in addition to four stars for performance, features and functionality, and ease of use.
As with all appliances, it’s best to do your research. Toasters may appear the same at first glance, but some brands will offer you even more cooking options, as well as handy features such as timers, bigger slots for larger slices, as well as additional safety features, making it worthwhile to explore your options.
Megan is Canstar Blue’s Home & Lifestyle Editor, leading the team that focuses on consumer products and services, ranging from supermarkets and groceries to home and personal appliances and retail stores. She interprets Canstar Blue’s bespoke research on the thousands of brands that we compare, rate and review, to help shoppers make better purchasing decisions.
Samantha Howse is Canstar Blue’s Consumer Research Specialist, coordinating the consumer research program behind our customer satisfaction awards across Canstar and Canstar Blue in Australia and New Zealand. Sam has earned a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) from Griffith University and, with seven years in market research and 2 years in marketing, she is experienced in survey design, implementation and analysis, coupled with an understanding of marketing principles and best practice.
*Prices are taken from respective retailers and Appliances Online correct as of December 2022.
Picture credit: Pixel-Shot/Shutterstock.com
Here are the past winners from Canstar Blue’s toaster ratings:
Appliances - September 28th
If you’re wanting to add a touch of style to your kitchen without breaking the bank, having a matching toaster and kettle combo is a great start. While this won’t instantly make your kitchen the …– Read more
Appliances - January 18th
If you think of kitchen appliances with rounded shapes, chrome details, and bright colours, there’s only one brand that comes to mind – Smeg. The Italian premium brand is renowned for its 50s retro-style appliances, …– Read more
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