If your home oven is not very good at baking cakes or you simply don’t have enough space in your kitchen for a massive wall oven, then you should look for the best countertop oven for baking cakes.
Obviously, a countertop oven works for so much more than cake baking. You can bake and roast and broil and toast and do all kinds of recipes. Just like you would do in a regular home oven. The main difference is that the ovens that I’m going to review go on the countertop. Or anywhere you have space for it. They’re a lot smaller in size but not in capabilities.
Just because we’re looking to save some space in our kitchen it doesn’t mean that we’re going to save on quality. What I’m trying to say is that all the models that I’ll review can be considered the overall best countertop ovens at the moment, and not only when it comes to baking cakes.
Best Countertop Oven for Baking Cakes: Top Picks
The whole point of looking for the best countertop oven for baking cakes is to find the few models that are absolutely superb at baking.
Cakes are the main focus but it should also handle all the other dishes with the same expertise.
1. Hamilton Beach 6-Slice Countertop Toaster Oven – Cheapest Best Countertop Oven
This model might seem too cheap to be the best countertop oven for baking cakes but don’t you worry. People actually mention how good it is for making cakes, cookies, meatloaf, meat, cupcakes, muffins, pizza.
From all these models, I’m actually impressed by Hamilton Beach the most because it’s a small oven that quite a lot of people can comfortably afford. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that this manufacturer also makes one of the cheapest, best stand mixers and an awesome gluten-free bread machine.
A $300+ oven is definitely awesome but not for everyone. This Hamilton Beach has an under $100 price. But if you want a model that goes around $200, check out the countertop oven from KitchenAid.
The design is not exactly pretty but it’s functional. The control panel has 3 large easy-turn contoured knobs that work easily.
Dimensions: 15.24 x 18.74 x 9.41 inches.
It’s pretty much the smallest on the list but not by much.
Users still manage to bake a 12-inch pizza, which is great. It will work with a large majority of cake pans. Hamilton Beach will fit a 9 x 11 inches bake pan.
It only weighs 11.4 pounds, which makes it incredibly light. You’ll be able to move it anywhere you want.
It has the bake, broil & and toast functions. The bake function is what interests us but the rest are good, too.
Temperature range: between 150 and 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
There’s also a 30 min timer with auto shutoff but it also has the stay on option.
- baking/broiling pan
- oven rack
- crumb tray
- 1 year warranty
2. Breville Smart Oven BOV900BSS – Overall Best Countertop Oven for Baking Cakes
The Breville Smart Oven has a multitude of functions and features for a really high price. The most expensive, actually. But I also think it’s overall the best choice, as long as you can easily afford it.
The brushed stainless steel design is really nice.
The dimensions are: 21.5 x 17.5 x 12.7 inches.
This is not a small oven. It can even bake a 14 pounds turkey, a 13-inch pizza, and it fits a 12-cup muffin tray. It also works with a 5 qt Dutch oven. There’s more than enough space to bake any cake you want.
- 13 inch non-stick pizza pan
- wire rack (2) with 8 different rack positions
- 9 x 13 inches broiling rack
- 9 x 13 inches enamel roasting pan
- air fry basket
- crumb tray
- 2 year warranty
It works as: convection oven (2-speed convection fan), air fryer, dehydrator, dough proof box.
It comes with a very high temperature range, the highest from these models: 80 to 480 degrees Fahrenheit.
To power all that up, it uses a 1800 watts motor, which makes it quite powerful.
Its cooking functions are: toast, bagel, broil, bake, roast, warm, pizza, proof, airfry, reheat, cookies, slow cook, dehydrate.
Other features that you can select from the buttons are: oven light, convection, phase cook, and frozen foods button.
For the Breville Smart, you absolutely need to read the user manual in order to understand all the ways in which you can use it. There are preset options but each can be personalized.
Their recipe e-book, which can be downloaded from their website, includes a few desserts but no cakes.
3. KitchenAid KCO211BM Countertop Toaster Oven – Great Price & Quality
Even their other model, Countertop Oven with Air Fry, is cheaper than most of these other models. It’s still more than 2 times more expensive than the Hamilton Beach but it can be worth it. Especially for lovers of KitchenAid.
You can choose between the one without Air Fry and the Air Fry model, which is a bit more expensive.
The black sleek design looks pretty awesome. Not the prettiest but still close to the top.
Dimensions: 16 x 17 x 11.3 inches.
It’s not the biggest, just a bit bigger than Hamilton Beach.
But as we saw, even small models can handle baking 12 inch pizzas and large cakes.
You’ll be able to fit in a 9 inch cake pan without problems.
Users love how desserts, breads, pizzas, meat and so many other dishes turn out. It’s only fair that I recommend it as one of the best countertop ovens for baking cakes.
I talked about how simplicity is the best word to describe this oven. That’s because there are only 5 buttons: 2 knobs to control the cooking functions and temperature/time and 3 smaller buttons for Start, Cancel, and Frozen.
If you press the Frozen button for 3 seconds you can switch the temperature units between Fahrenheit and Celsius.
The cooking functions are: toast, bagel, pizza, roast, cookies, bake, broil, reheat, keep warm. Everything that you might need.
- broiling rack
- oven rack
- 9 x 13 inches enamel-coated pan
- crumb tray
- 1 year warranty
4. Calphalon Performance Cool Touch Toaster Oven – Quite Impressive
I love the design, I think it’s one of the prettiest ovens I’ve ever seen. Despite the overall black design, I think it can blend in pretty nicely in a kitchen on any countertop or wherever you want to place it.
It looks a bit similar to Breville but still manages to be different.
The dimensions are: 16.8 x 19.2 x 12.1 inches.
It doesn’t only look compact but it actually is.
The touch panel is a nice idea but the buttons don’t light up, which makes it hard to navigate in a dimly lit kitchen. I know that it’s a weird thing to mention but out of all the rooms, I need my kitchen to be the room with the brightest light quality because I spend a lot of time in it. But not everyone spends as much time in the kitchen so, I can understand this complaint.
Moreover, it seems that the crumb tray is miss-sized. You have to bend the lip on the tray to avoid banging it against the door. That’s a pretty big flaw for an oven this expensive.
It has Quartz Heat Technology with Turbo Convection that’s supposed to deliver 40% more even heat and preheats faster. I like the sound of more even heat.
I also like the Cool Touch Exterior that keeps the outside of the oven cooler.
There are 12 preset cooking functions: toast, bagel, bake, roast, broil, pizza, cookies, reheat, dehydrate, keep warm, defroost, bread proof. It’s quite similar to Breville but it misses the air fryer function.
Even though it’s a smaller size, it still manages to fit up to a 12 inch pizza. So, it’s quite roomy inside.
- 12 inch pizza pan
- baking pan
- dehydrate basket
- wire rack
- crumb tray
- 3 year warranty
5. Cuisinart TOB-260N1 Chef’s Convection Toaster Oven
There are a lot of good things to be said about this model. But there are also some cons to consider. Plus, the price is a bit high. You could basically buy 3 Hamilton Beach for the price of this one.
Overall, I really do like it. It has some very interesting features and there are a lot of users for its ability to bake cakes perfectly.
I’m not a big fan of how it looks but I totally support the fact that it’s geared towards creating a lot of baking space inside.
I like the blue backlit LCD display. Unfortunately, people have mentioned that the button labels rub off. You’ll be able to figure out which is which by looking in the user manual, if you haven’t memorized them.
Dimensions: 20.87 x 16.93 x 11.42 inches.
It’s the biggest, after Breville, but there’s not a huge difference in size between the two.
You can easily tell by the 13-inch pizza stone that comes with the oven.
It will be able to fit in 12 cup muffin pans and 9 x 13 inches cake pans or a quarter sheet pan.
It has 11 cooking functions: toast, bagel, waffle, dual cook, bake, broil, roast, pizza, sandwich, keep warm, leftover.
There are also a number of useful buttons: selector (for the cooking functions), +30s (add 30 seconds cooking time to any function), oven light, conv (convection button), speed conv (eliminates preheating), dual cook (combines 2 cooking functions or 2 temperatures), Start/Stop.
If you’re baking cakes you can choose the simple bake function or you can choose the convection bake function.
The convection feature can be turned on and off as you like. The same goes for the other functions, too.
- 2 oven racks
- baking/drip pan
- broiling pan
- round pizza stone – the only model to actually include a pizza stone and it’s a 13-inch round model
- crumb tray
- 3 year warranty
6. Cosori CS130-AO Smart Air Fryer Toaster Oven Combo
Does that make it all the more interesting? I certainly think so. It’s always nice to make comparisons between models that provide pretty much the same functions and in a quite similar design.
Some name it the best appliance purchase they’ve made in years. That’s reason enough to consider it one of the best countertop ovens for baking cakes and so much more.
Dimensions: 20.1 x 16.5 x 12.5 inches.
It’s not much smaller than Breville or Cuisinart.
This one can also bake a 13-inch pizza. Space is not going to be a problem when baking cakes.
It only weighs 19.6 pounds, which makes it the second lightest model on this list, after the Hamilton Beach. But I’m impressed that it’s so light since it’s also one of the biggest.
There are 12 cooking functions: toast, bagel, pizza, bake, roast, airfry, broil, cookies, rotiss, dehyd, ferment, warm.
Rotiss stands for rotisserie, which is an interesting addition.
Ferment is the function under which you can proof dough and make yogurt under the 80-110 degrees Fahrenheit temperature range.
The Smart part of the name means that you can use your smartphone to adjust temperature and time, choose recipes, monitor cooking, connect to voice control. I’m sure that there are people who are excited by this.
- wire rack
- food tray
- crumb tray
- fry basket because it works as an air fryer
- rotisserie fork set
- rotisserie handle
- 1 year warranty
I love the fact that you can download the recipe book from their website. And it’s a nice cookbook with a lot of recipes. I didn’t expect to find so many.
Since we’re here to review the best countertop oven for baking cakes, let’s check out the desserts section. It includes: orange & lemon pound cake, sponge cake, New York cheesecake, a bunch of soufflés, cupcakes, cookies, brownies, baked apples, etc.
How to choose the best countertop oven for baking cakes
In general, cake baking is done at 350 degrees Fahrenheit. The exception is made by convection ovens where the temperature is lowered by 25 degrees Fahrenheit.
We’re not exactly looking for an oven that can reach high temperatures. That’s reserved for pizza makers.
That means that we’re looking for even baking and consistent temperatures.
How much you’re willing to spend on the best countertop oven for baking cakes is also another important factor you need to consider.
Some models are definitely cheaper than others. First establish a budget and then look for the best models within that budget.
I reviewed models that fit a wide array of budgets. Some have prices under $100, while others easily exceed $300. But they all work for desserts, that you can be sure of.
Some are able to bake a 12-inch pizza, while the bigger models can fit a 13-inch pizza. The conclusion is that they can all handle cake pans.
Can a countertop oven replace a regular oven?
Absolutely. Otherwise, I wouldn’t be here writing this article. A countertop oven can do everything that a regular home wall oven can. Maybe not huge pieces of meat because those won’t fit inside.
As I’ve mentioned before, the difference is in size.
Obviously, an oven that goes on the countertop is also more mobile. Although, some models are not the lightest.
When I wrote my article on the best countertop pizza ovens, I selected a few different models than the ones I reviewed for this article. That’s because baking pizza requires other features than baking desserts does.
But I still chose to also include the Hamilton Beach and the Cuisinart due to their versatility and good price tags. Plus, the Cuisinart actually comes with a stone.
However, I wanted to write a different article on the best countertop oven for baking cakes so that I can focus on models that can truly handle desserts without damaging your recipes.
But these ovens for baking cakes can also make a pretty decent homemade pizza if you get a good baking stone and preheat it for a pretty long time.
Cuisinart TOB-260N is the only best countertop oven for baking cakes that comes with a pizza stone. Breville and Calphalon, each comes with a pizza pan but no baking stone.
There are always solutions that you can come up with to expand what you’re cooking and baking.
A countertop oven can easily replace a regular oven but you must first establish what you’re primarily buying it for.
What’s the difference between a countertop oven and a toaster oven?
There isn’t any difference. Any of the above models that I’ve reviewed as the best countertop oven for baking cakes can be called toaster ovens.
Once upon a time, the difference might have been in the size of the oven.
Toaster ovens were made to be more compact since they were mainly designed for toasting a bunch of slices of bread at the same time or for 9-inch pizzas. So, an 8-inch square/round cake pan will be able to fit inside.
As long as you use pans that fit, then you can bake desserts in a small toaster oven because the temperatures go high enough (450 degrees Fahrenheit usually) and they even have the bake function included in their control panel.
Nowadays, there isn’t any difference between them because countertop/toaster ovens are geared towards extreme versatility. They basically want to scream that they can handle anything and bake anything, as long as it fits inside.
Can you bake cake in a convection oven?
When it comes to convection ovens, the general worry is that the batter won’t receive the steady heat it requires for a beautiful rise.
However, let’s see what a convection oven is to better understand if that’s true or not.
The convection setting simply means that an oven has a fan and exhaust system. Hot air is blown around the food, with the purpose of getting it to cook more quickly.
So, this convection feature helps food cook faster, more evenly, with a better browning and it saves energy. That’s pretty much what it’s all about.
But what about baking cakes?
It’s considered that blowing air on delicate batters like cakes can create lopsided results. Or that the batter won’t receive the steady heat it requires for a beautiful rise.
However, a lot of convection oven cookbooks include a dessert section where recipes for cakes are also included.
Moreover, when I selected my best countertop ovens for baking cakes, I made sure to only select those models that are really good for desserts, whether they have a convection setting or not. Or a convection setting that can be turned on and off, like it’s the case with Cuisinart TOB-260N.
How do I bake cake in a convection oven?
One thing to keep in mind is that when you’re using a convection oven you should lower the recommended oven temperature by 25 degrees Fahrenheit. This is the most important tip to keep in mind.
Preheat the oven and bake cakes at 325 degrees Fahrenheit instead of the usual 350F. Some might even be baked at 300F. Another example is that a cheesecake should be baked at 300F instead of the usual 325F.
You should also check on the batter from time to time because foods cook more quickly.
When I reviewed the best microwave convection oven combo, I came across the Microwave Convection Oven Cookbook by General Electric Co, which also has a chapter for desserts.
Under that chapter, we’ll find recipes for: fruit tart, pear and spice cake, chocolate cheesecake, caramel Bundt cake, bananas foster, a few very delicious pie recipes, cream puffs, peach torte, sour cream cake, a few recipes for cookies, recipes for brownies, toffee cake, and a bunch of other dessert recipes.
So, you can definitely bake cakes in a convection oven. If you already own a microwave convection oven combo you won’t need to get a separate countertop oven for desserts.
Getting a cookbook can give you an idea about how the whole process goes. However, I also found this article and I think it has a few useful tips.
Basic tools & tips for cake baking
I must also say that in order to make delicious cakes, besides an awesome oven, you also need: good quality pans, a hand mixer if you don’t have any room for a stand mixer, cooling rack, measuring tools, rubber spatula, parchment paper, and an offset spatula. These are pretty much the basics but I might have missed a few.
When it comes to flour, you can use all-purpose flour. Obviously, choose the unbleached variety. If you’re trying to make them gluten free, almond flour can work as a replacement in a 1:1 ratio. Or you can use a gluten-free measure for measure flour.
For making really tasty cakes, you should rely on buttermilk.
One last thing and that’s it: natural cocoa powder is used when the recipe calls for baking soda. Unsweetened Dutch-processed cocoa pairs well with baking powder. The Dutch-processed cocoa has a darker color, a deeper flavor, and it dissolves more readily in liquid.
Moreover, adding instant espresso powder can make chocolate taste even better and the sweetness of caramel can be tempered a bit with it.
Canola and rapeseed oil are two awesome options when the recipe calls for neutral oil. Some recipes will also call for olive oil but that’s completely different than using neutral oils.
All in all, I hope that these tips can be a bit helpful. What I mostly hope for is that you are able to find the best countertop oven for baking cakes and that it all goes well with your dessert recipes.