Singles Serving: Toaster Lovin'
- Warm plates before serving. Many large ovens only go down to 200°F which can be too high. A counter-top oven goes lower. I like heating plates for 5 minutes at 170°F.
- Toast nuts. Arrange in a single layer on included pan or a sheet of aluminum foil. 350°F for 10-15 minutes, agitating to turn nuts every 5 minutes.
- Make small batches of cookies, muffins, individual cakes
- Cook side dishes (like stuffing) while the main oven is occupied with something bigger (the turkey).
- Roast small batches of meat: a whole roaster chicken, quartered, fits easily, as does a pork tenderloin, a few pounds of ribs, etc.
- Re-heat left-overs.
- Defrost frozen ingredients.
- Bake potatoes.
- Melt cheese on top of French Onion Soup.
- Anything you'd use the broiler for with the added bonus of using less energy and having more control: your broiled food will be at counter-height with a see-through window.
Other ideas mentioned in the comments on the original post include s'mores, toasted sandwiches, small casseroles, and a brilliant suggestion for heating taco shells (which tend to burn when too close to the heating element) - turn the oven all the way up, then turn it OFF. Put shells in the hot - but powerless - oven until warm.
One item obviously missing from the list is the one the appliance is named for: toast. Which, ironically, most toaster ovens don't do very well. But with fresh-baked cookies at your fingertips, who needs toast?!