Difference between a Toaster Oven and Convection Oven

December 20, 2016 by Editorial Team

It’s likely that you’re planning to purchase a convection oven and you may want to know how it is different from your trusty toaster oven. Maybe you already have both and you wish to know which will better suit your cooking needs. Look no further because you’ve come to the right place.


A toaster oven

A toaster oven is a small oven usually used for warming up food that won’t fit in a toaster, such as muffins, thick bagels, or leftover pizza. Heating coils inside the toaster oven positioned at the bottom or top generate heat than let you broil, toast, dehydrate, bake, roast, and even defrost frozen food. Toaster ovens feature thermostat and timer controls for steady cooking temperatures when needed.

Some newer toaster oven models come with a built-in fan found in convectional ovens. Toaster ovens are generally smaller and more portable than convectional ovens, which means finding a spot for one in the kitchen is easy, or you can store it away when it is not needed. This also means a toaster oven is easy to clean.

convection oven
A convection oven

A convection oven features a built-in fan that circulates the heat generated within the oven. This results in the even distribution of heat and it also accelerates the cooking process. This helps lock in the juicy, succulent taste of the meat. Generally speaking, it is advisable to set the timer to 5 minutes less than you would in a conventional oven, unless the food can be cooked in under 15 minutes. Chicken skin becomes brown and crispy considerably faster when roasted in a convection oven. Convection ovens are used in grilling, roasting, and baking cookies, cupcakes, and pies. They have a bigger capacity than toaster ovens, thus ovens of this kind are more expensive than the toaster kind. A convection oven runs on both gas and electricity.


The main difference between these two cooking appliances is the size. A convection oven is bigger than a toaster oven, thus costing considerably more. This also means it can accommodate larger or more food that a toaster oven. However, the smaller size of the toaster oven makes it easier to clean and move around the kitchen as needed.

Internal heating coils at the lower and upper portions of the toaster oven heats up the food. This results in food being cooked only on both sides. A convection oven, on the other hand, has a built-in fan that distributes the heat to cook the food, resulting in more even and thorough cooking. The built-in fan in a convection oven allows it to cook a bit faster than a toaster oven. A toaster oven can only run when plugged into an electricity source, while a convection oven will work on electricity and gas. Toaster ovens are ideal for smaller cooking tasks, whereas q convection oven can grill and roast just about anything that will fit inside.

Comparison Chart

Toaster OvenConvection Oven
Smaller in sizeBigger in size
Cooks food with internal heating coilsUses built-in fan to distribute heat generated by heating coils
Upper and lower parts of the food get the majority of the heatCooks evenly
Runs on electricityRuns on electricity and gas