Microwave vs Toaster Oven

What is a microwave oven?

Microwaves are used in households to cook, reheat, thaw, and sterilize foods. They work by heating objects from all sides with electromagnetic waves that excite molecules in the food to produce heat. Microwaves are also used for heating water or other substances that do not have a high boiling point because they are non-magnetic. The frequency of microwaves emitted by a microwave oven is 2.45 gigahertz or billions of cycles per second. The audio frequency of a microwave is 300 MHz or megahertz, which is the measurement unit for the number of cycles per second.


A microwave oven uses a magnetron, which is a device to generate radio waves. The magnetron is fed by radio frequency power through an antenna system which usually consists of a vertical wire antenna, horizontal wire antenna or parabolic reflector and a waveguide that directs the microwaves into an oven compartment to heat food or water.

What is a toaster oven?

Toaster ovens are made for cooking using convection, which is by using hot air to circulate around food inside the oven. Toaster ovens heat food by directly heating the surface of the food, rather than by electromagnetic radiation that passes through it. This heating method is called infrared radiant heating. When infrared radiation heats food, water molecules convert to steam and create heat. The majority of substances in a toaster oven are non-heating materials like plastic and metals (the exception is glass).


Toaster ovens use an electric heating element, which has high resistance to withstand high power. This element is mostly made of carbon metal which can withstand high temperatures. Toaster ovens also use convection heating; this is the process by which air circulates to convey heat evenly throughout the oven area, thereby cooking food quickly and efficiently. The air circulating in the oven body does not change temperature while heating food; instead, it resists changes in temperature.


Toaster ovens are usually rectangular-shaped pieces of furniture with rounded bases because circular-shaped designs would make it hard to open. Some larger toaster ovens are square shaped (the square shape allows for better ventilation).


Differences between microwave oven and toaster

Microwave ovens use microwave radiation to heat food. There is no convection mechanism that uses hot air to circulate around the food to cook it.


Toaster ovens use hot air without convection to circulate around the food while cooking. Toaster ovens heat the surface of the food and not heat other parts of it. There is no element in a toaster oven which can withstand high temperature and convert water molecules into steam.


Microwave`s heating element

The heating element in a microwave oven is made of high resistance carbon metal, because the higher its resistance, the higher its temperature tolerance. With this heating element, we can cook foods very quickly and evenly while saving energy with little loss in nutrition.


Toaster oven`s heating element 


Toaster ovens use a heating element with a metal core to withstand high temperatures. But, a toaster element is made of a metal alloy which is very thin and brittle, and the element may easily break while cooking foods at high temperatures, since its low resistance would lead to high power losses. Also, toaster elements are not supposed to be able to withstand high power levels. With this heating element, we should take more time when cooking foods at high temperatures because it is not as efficient as a microwave. In addition, the metal alloy in the toaster element would corrode easily.


Different functions in different materials: 

The materials used in microwave ovens are chosen to withstand high temperatures. For example, the glass in microwave ovens is chosen to withstand high temperatures, since microwaves are electromagnetic waves.


The materials used in toaster ovens are chosen because of their ability to withstand high temperatures. Also, the insulated walls in a toaster oven are made of ceramic, which is very good at resisting temperature changes since its coefficient of thermal expansion is higher than steel for instance. Yet, ceramic may contain lead oxide in it, which may be hazardous for human health.


Toaster ovens use less energy than microwave ovens. Different foods require different amounts of time to cook, but the amount of time required for cooking different foods is easily compensated by adjusting the time settings of a toaster oven. Also, you save money with a toaster oven because this appliance uses much less electricity than a microwave oven.


Microwave appliances are generally designed for cooking food quickly in short periods of time – for example, heating up baby formula in only thirty seconds. Toaster ovens are designed specifically to cook food evenly and slowly. This method gives overdoing heat more overkill heat and slows down the cooking process.


Do microwave ovens do the same function as toasters?

Both microwave ovens and toaster ovens are for cooking, but they differ in the ways that they heat food. Microwaves heat food directly by passing through it, whereas toaster ovens heat food by hot air circulation.


It is important to know how the different heating methods affect the final product so you can take advantage of each applicant’s strengths. For instance, if you are cooking something that needs to be heated all the way through, like meat or poultry, microwaves cook faster than toaster ovens. But if you want a crusty surface on bread or frozen pizza crust, a toaster oven might be a better option because it will make a crisper crust without overcooking the inside of your meal.


Does the continuous use of microwaves cause cancer or is it just a myth?

Microwave radiation is not toxic in itself. It is actually relatively harmless. However, it can cause problems when used excessively. When microwaves are used in the kitchen, they are confined to the inside of the appliance and do not expose people to radiation. They are also very effective for cooking food quickly. Some scientific studies have found that tumor growth increases in mice that were exposed to high levels of microwaves over several years, though these results have never been duplicated in humans.


A common misconception is that microwave ovens cause cancer by cooking your food with microwaves emitted from the machine itself. Microwaved foods may become very hot, especially if they are put directly into the oven. The food itself is not cooked by microwaves, but rather by the heating elements of the oven.


Why do most microwave ovens and toasters keep on breaking down?

Most microwave ovens have two parts: an interior drum, which heats food, and a heating element, which converts electromagnetic energy from the microwave cavity into heat. The heating element may overheat because it is too thin. Also the surface temperature of the heating element may not be hot enough to convert water molecules into steam so that hot air can circulate around the food.


Toaster ovens have one heating element that heats a metal ring at the center of a steel plate covered with a thin layer of ceramic material. If that plate becomes too hot for a long time, you will eventually get a burnt taste or smell from your toasted bread or toast.

Is there any form of electromagnetism present in ovens? 

No, there is no electromagnetic radiation generated by the microwave oven while operating normally. To operate a microwave oven, a magnetron creates electromagnetic radiation that creates electromagnetic fields in the microwave oven. When food is placed into the oven, it receives these fields and converts them into thermal energy.


Some microwaves have a metal cover over the food while others do not. In either case, the metal cover acts as an antenna and reflects these radiations back to your food. This process allows more heat to reach your food faster and more evenly, but it also means that you will get a better seal on your food this way, which allows steam to build up inside your food while cooking.