The KitchenAid Toaster is the Perfect All-Purpose Appliance

Updated: Jun. 14, 2024

The KitchenAid toaster is a slow and steady appliance that oozes quality. With its retro look and even kiss of golden brown, this mid-price pick wins the toaster races.

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You probably know KitchenAid as the brand that churns out one of the kitchen biz’s most widely loved stand mixers. Fans rave about the sleek aesthetics and rainbow of color options available for both KitchenAid’s beloved countertop and hand mixers. However, the real appeal of the brand is its high-quality materials that make up some of the most innovative stand mixer attachments available. This extends to its other countertop appliances, from KitchenAid coffee machines to the KitchenAid toaster.

In our recent hunt for the best toasters, the KitchenAid toaster impressed us with more than just its shining exterior (which, to be fair, is gorgeous). With a library of settings, even results and looks that befit a mid-century modern dream kitchen, it topped our list as the best all-purpose option. Here’s why we keep popping our bread into this gleaming, retro-style appliance.

What is the KitchenAid Toaster?

Are you nostalgic for the glossy, space-age designs of yesteryear? The KitchenAid Toaster is made for folks like you. It’s a retro-style toaster that calls to mind mid-century home appliances with a shiny chrome body and sleek, rounded corners. Available in brushed silver, red and black, the toaster embodies 50s aesthetics without feeling dated. There’s also a four-slice option that functions as two toasters in one for folks with larger families. For our tests, we chose the Empire Red two-slice version.

Like most KitchenAid appliances, it’s undeniable that this toaster looks chic on a counter. The sides are reflective red plastic, and the top band is a beautiful brushed stainless. The controls, logo and lower base are trimmed in black. Chrome vents on the side give it a retro automobile feel. A five-point shade dial, pull-down lever and buttons are all on one end, while the other boasts a generous 38-inch cord that ends in a three-prong plug.

There are thoughtful touches throughout, including a bagel symbol that indicates which way to insert halves for the best outcome. A rather loud bell sounds when each toast session is finished, so you never forget about your breakfast while distracted by the morning rush.

We Tried It

KitchenAid Toaster

The KitchenAid Toaster is a sleek, shiny retro-style toaster that delivers even browning and comes in several kitchen-complementing colors.

How We Tested the KitchenAid Toaster

Kitchenaid Toaster How we TestedTMB Studio

Over the course of several days, our Product Testing Team dedicated their time and Testing Lab to find the best toasters for every budget and need. This endeavor introduced us to various options, from a high-quality Breville pick to practically-priced budget options like the Beautiful toaster. The KitchenAid toaster impressed with its sturdy components and sleek look, earning it the best all-purpose award. It flawlessly tackled tests in the following categories:

  • Size and unit of measurements
  • Packaging and shipping quality
  • The fit of test foods, including thick-cut brioche, sourdough, English muffins, pastries, bagels and frozen waffles
  • Any special settings and the performance of those settings
  • Appearance, material and overall quality
  • Ease of care and cleaning
  • Quality compared to price

Testing Team Analysis

Kitchenaid Toaster Testing Team AnalysisTMB Studio

The toaster truly is the perfect multipurpose pick, whether you prefer toaster pastries, English muffins or a slice of crispy, crunchy peanut butter toast. Five darkness settings and two “other” buttons (bagel and cancel) offer up a range of options for brunches, breakfasts and midday snacks. A simple control dial with an audible “click” ensures folks enjoy toast in the shade they expect.

While there are five darkness settings, we found the highest setting churned out smoking pieces that looked pretty inedible, and the medium setting was a bit more brown than we’d like. That said, most folks will find that the sweet spot is the lowest setting, which churns out an even golden brown that extends the whole length of each bread slice.

Out of all the toasters we tested, the KitchenAid toaster’s bagel setting offered the most even browning. It is comparable, color-wise, to white bread we toasted on medium. It’s worth noting that the toaster does take a while to get there, opting for a “slow and steady” approach rather than a faster toast at higher temperatures. That said, we definitely prefer the accuracy of this toaster to the splotchy results from speedy competitors.

While it doesn’t offer a frozen setting or pastry buttons, both waffles and toaster pastries fared well on the first setting. The lever is a little bouncy, but other than that, it seems like it should last a long time. We’d love to see improvement in the lift function of the lever, which we needed to remove an English muffin. The edge of the muffin was barely above the opening of the slot, making it a bit awkward to retrieve. Other than that, we found few negatives to report.


  • Sleek look that comes in six shades and finishes
  • Incredibly stable and lever feels high-quality
  • Shade dial has an audible click, so you know it’s properly set
  • A bell sounds when each toast session is finished
  • Bagel symbol indicates which way to insert halves
  • 1-year warranty


  • Toasts a bit slowly
  • 3-prong plug may not work with all outlets
  • Fingerprint magnet

One Month Update

Kitchenaid Toaster 1 Month updateKari Kober/Taste of Home

After testing the toaster against 13 other options in our Testing Lab, Editorial Business Assistant Kari Kober volunteered to continue using it as her primary toaster in her own home. Regarding long-term performance, Kari is impressed with the sleek, retro look and the even kiss of brown on toast, bagels and English muffins.

“The toaster itself is very nice looking with the red. I feel that it looks good enough to leave out on the counter. I go just past the first setting, and it toasts my toast, bagels and English muffins perfectly,” says Kari. “One of my favorite features is the beep it makes just before it pops up because if I have started something else, it’s a nice reminder rather than getting too sidetracked.”

In terms of overall quality, KitchenAid gets a thumbs up from Kari. “You can tell the quality is there in the toaster, and it’s well made and built to last. I feel it’s worth the price for a better-quality toaster. I don’t feel that it’s too expensive, either,” she says.

Why You Should Trust Us

Our testing team has three years of experience testing and evaluating everything from the best coffee subscriptions to the best flower delivery services. Many of us have backgrounds in kitchen and culinary careers ourselves. The remainder of our team are passionate home cooks who want to recommend the best products using honest and fair testing practices. Regardless of the brand’s popularity or size, we never recommend a product we don’t love.


How to clean a KitchenAid toaster?

First, unplug the toaster and let it cool. Second, grasp the center of the crumb tray and slide it out. Finally, simply shake the crumbs into a waste container. We recommend emptying the crumb tray after each use. The Crumb tray is hand-wash only.

Similarly, wipe the toaster with a soft, damp cotton cloth. Do not use paper towels, abrasive cleaners or liquid cleaning products. Do not immerse the toaster in water. Return the crumb tray to the toaster. Press it in firmly until it clicks into position. Never use a toaster without a crumb tray in the proper position!

How do I reset my KitchenAid toaster?

Press the “cancel” button to reset a KitchenAid toaster.

Why is my KitchenAid toaster not toasting evenly?

A full crumb tray is the number one reason your toaster might not be toasting evenly. Emptying the crumb tray after each use ensures you get a nice, all-over golden brown rather than a spotty piece of bread.

Where to Buy the KitchenAid Toaster

Apart from its impressive performance, the KitchenAid toaster comes very reasonably priced at under $60. In addition to its mid-tier price point, we love that it’s readily available at most stores, including Amazon, Walmart and Wayfair.

We Tried It

KitchenAid Toaster

The KitchenAid Toaster is a sleek, shiny retro-style toaster that delivers even browning and comes in several kitchen-complementing colors.