As long as I can remember I have always had a stove and oven in every apartment and house that I have lived in. The amount of times that I actually used the behemoth of an oven can probably be counted on one hand. This was for a number of reasons. I thought that it used too much energy. I was a little intimidated by its size. It was much simple to by frozen microwavable dinners or eat out. Plus I was never much of a cook. I simply used it to store my pots and pans that I never used. At least it prevented them from collecting dust.
Cut to about 20 years later and things have changed. My poor diet choices have caught up with me. What I was able to get away with when I was younger is now show its ugly side. So I decided to finally do something about it and change what I eat and the way that I eat. The last year has been a real learning experience. I bought a countertop toaster oven and started cooking for myself and it has really started to pay off. Hopefully this can be useful to anyone who was in the same place that I used to be.
Advantages Of Home Cooking
There are several benefits to cooking for yourself. I was always aware of them but never really paid that much attention to it since the convenience of eating out was so appealing.
Getting to work in the kitchen is typically going to be cheaper than eating out in a restaurant. You can get everything you need for a recipe that feeds 2 to 4 people and have plenty leftovers for the following days. Stretching it out will save you a lot in the long run. Plus you don’t have to tip your waiter.
Being in control of the ingredients is important as well. Choosing healthy and natural foods for yourself and go a long way to improving your overall health. This can also be beneficial to those with allergies. You can avoid the bad stuff and be confident about what you are eating.
Preparing as much or as little as you wish to eat is another crucial benefit to home cooking. If you are looking to lose a little weight then portion control will help. Even if you cook more than you need you can have leftovers the next day.
Cooking For Others
Slaving in the kitchen is more rewarding if you have others to cook for. Those with kids can see real benefits by having a homemade meal as it brings the family closer together. Getting the kids involved by letting them help you can also have long lasting advantages. Showing them how to eat right at an early age is something that they can carry with them for the rest of their lives.
Advantages Of Using A Toaster Oven
This is where things really changed for the better in my case. As I laid out earlier I had plenty of reasons that I never used a full sized oven. However, once I took the plunge and splurged on a toaster oven my whole world changed.
There are several different types of countertop ovens out there but I went with one that had convection. If you plan on cooking a wide range of recipes then this is something that I would recommend. They may be a bit more expensive but for every day cooking it is a great feature to have. It can help speed up cook times and it gives a nice even result.
Luckily there are many high quality brands from which to choose. Some of the newest toaster oven reviews rank Breville the highest but KitchenAid, Cuisinart and Oster are all great options for your kitchen. Typical prices range from $75 up to $300 for this small appliance. But is it worth it? Here are some of the benefits to using a countertop oven.
Generally these smaller ovens use less energy than their bigger brothers. Getting something with a convection cooking feature will also help you reduce the amount of time that the oven operates. They also heat up quicker. Energy savings leads to cost savings over time.
Simple To Clean
Most of the popular models are made of stainless steel, have non-stick interiors, and have easily accessible drip trays. This all lends itself to an easy to clean appliance. A simple wipe down with a wet rag is usually all it will take to keep your oven shiny and new looking.
Convenience and Versatility
Not only toaster ovens portable, but they are more convenient to use than a standard oven. Their smaller size and simple controls make it quite easy to use on a daily basis. The more expensive models also feature a wide range of cooking functions. You bake, broil, roast, reheat, defrost and toast to name a few. This lets you prepare a variety of different recipes and handle a bunch of different tasks all in one machine. Not only can it do just about everything your full size oven does but it can even replace your microwave in a few instances.
I have never been a huge fan of homemade meals before because of all the work involved. While there is still work, using the oven now is less intimidating and is more fun. For family’s it is probably even better.
Getting my own toaster oven was probably one of the better purchases I have ever made for myself. Not only is my diet better now, so is my outlook. I enjoying being in the kitchen now and my waistline is seeing the benefits. If you are looking for a way to shake up your eating habits and have better control of what you eat then perhaps this is the direction worth going. It was for me and I look forward to my next cooking adventure.