Best Toaster Type – To Toast or not to Toast? That is the QuestionAugust 18th, 2023
Best Toaster Types to suit your Business…. But first…
If you fancy yourself as the next Plato or Aristotle, pondering the answers to the Universe, the Meaning of Life, why you propose a toast at a ceremony, how dark is too dark for toast or how many slices of bread do you get in a loaf ? Hopefully you will find some answers here. Did you know Toasting a Ceremony dates back to when the Romans put spiced toast into their punch bowls? Sheldon tells it better!
Whether you like your toast anemic like its got a Norwegian sun tan during the winter months or cremated beyond any former recognition of its former bread self… Besides it all being bread, what does it all have in common?
Lets talk a little about toasters… From pop up to conveyor, we have you covered.
What to know about Pop-up Toasters
The benefits of a pop-up toaster
A pop-up toaster is one of the most common types of toasters, and it’s also the least expensive on the market. Operation is simple with a standard dial to determine the preferred shade of toast, and a straightforward on-demand, push-down lever to “start” the unit up. These toasters typically use less energy and have a smaller footprint than other models. There are pop-up toasters ranging from light- to heavy-duty; choosing an option often comes down to the volume of toast you’re looking to cook up.
Some drawbacks of a pop-up toaster
A pop-up toaster is perfect in the right setting, but like any piece of equipment, there are some drawbacks that come with it. The heating elements in a pop-up toaster can burn out quicker than other models since they’re smaller and aren’t engineered to take on a high volume of continual toasting. The push-down lever is also prone to breaking if constantly handled. And with only two or four slots typically available, toasting is limited.
Where a pop-up toaster shines
It’s familiar and easy-to-use controls make pop-up toasters perfect for front-of-the-house operations such as continental breakfasts, cafeterias or buffets. These settings (as well as coffee shops, small diners, and other establishments that demand less volume of toasted products) are the perfect candidates for a pop-up toaster. Look for a well-crafted, durable toaster with a removable crumb tray for easy cleanup. And longer, wider slots should be considered for increased versatility to toast items like bagels and hoagie buns. Lastly, if you plan to use a pop-up toaster in a front-of-house capacity, be aware of the aesthetics and choose one that not only functions well but also looks great. My recommendations for Popup toasters are the Dualit DB4SP Vario 4 Slot Toaster or the Rowlett CH171 Premier 6 Slot Toaster.
What to know about Contact Toasters
Benefits of a contact toaster
Contact toasters work by pulling a slice of bread or a bun against a heated sheet; this creates a caramelized, sealed surface that supports added condiments or juices from sandwich ingredients. The caramelized seal increases the flavor of the bun and helps limit unsavory, soggy bread. The size of contact toasters can vary; different models yield different volume demands (some toasters can even pump out up to 1,600 slices an hour).
Some drawbacks of a contact toaster
You can’t go wrong with a delicious buttery bun, but there are some drawbacks to a contact toaster. The average cost and larger footprint can be a hurdle for some operations, especially if your main menu items don’t require a caramelized bun surface. Also, there are many moving parts in a contact toaster (rollers, rods and sheets). The more components rumbling around can increase servicing needs and affect the unit’s downtime and maintenance costs. Lack of flexibility can also be a drawback. Changing out the toasted items isn’t as simple as putting in the next bun. To seal the bun correctly, most models require the operator to adjust a dial or other automatic presets to accommodate the height or thickness of each different item. It can be a time-consuming task if your operation toasts more than one type of bread product.
Where a contact toaster shines
Contact toasters are great for busy burger joints or any establishment that puts out a high volume of sandwiches or buttery bagels. Kitchens that don’t have a contact toaster can utilize it to reclaim precious griddle space (often used to get that beautiful buttery seal). They help automate one more task within the kitchen, decreasing the labor of toasting and buttering every slice. Look for a contact unit that is made of stainless steel material and has a solid construction. My recommendations for contact toasters would be the Antunes VCT-1000 Vertical Contact Toaster or the Prince Castle 297-T9FGB Vertical Contact Toaster.
What to know about a Conveyor Toaster
Benefits of a conveyor toaster
A conveyor toaster is the golden standard for high-volume toasting needs. These robust machines can run hard all day long, with some models producing up to 2,000 slices every hour. The parts in most conveyor toasters are durable and typically require minimal maintenance. Multiple bread products can be placed onto the conveyor loading ramp, and a conveyor slides them into the toasting chamber and then out the other side. A conveyor model allows for variety since you can toast different sizes of multiple products. Most of these toasters will modernize your operation with advanced controls, programmable presets and touchscreen displays.
Some drawbacks of a conveyor toaster
The durability, variety and volume conveyor toasters provide are amazing, but the cost can get up there (although there are plenty of moderately priced models out there). Conveyor units can be a little more complicated to operate since they require programming to control the automated conveyor speed. Some units require a fair share of energy to operate and can take up to 30 minutes to warm up. However, purchasing units that offer a power-saving mode can significantly decrease energy costs.
Where conveyor toasters shine
Automation, reliability and increased output make a conveyor toaster perfect for operations with a high breakfast and sandwich demand. Hotel restaurants, higher education cafeterias, hospitals, and busy breakfast or lunch diners can benefit from the convenient, automated conveyor. Staff can enjoy the added ability to multitask without constantly needing to watch over the toaster. Cleaning is also a breeze, with some models offering a removable air intake filter screen or bottom screen that you can easily remove and wipe down. And at 2,000 slices an hour, your operation won’t run out of toast anytime soon. Choose a conveyor toaster with stainless steel construction and a well-crafted design. My Recommendations for Conveyor Toasters would be the Hatco TM3-10 Toast-Max Conveyor Toaster or the Hatco TM10 Conveyor Toaster.
Now you’re clued up on what toaster would suit your business best, The answer to how many slices are in a loaf of bread is between 18 – 20 on average depending on the brand… And that’s including crusts! With all this talk of toast, there’s only one Question left.
Tags: Antunes, Bread, Catering, catering equipment, caterkwik, Commercial Toasters, Contact Toaster, conveyor toaster, Dualit, Dualit Toasters, Hatco, hatco toasters, Pop-up Toaster, prince castle, rowlett, Talkie, Toast, Toaster