Courtesy of Catherine Northington
Toaster oven cooking may seem elementary, but it can make for some tasty cooking! The toaster oven is a great appliance to keep in your kitchen, as its heats up in seconds and can make for many versatile last-minute dinner dishes. The toaster oven heats and crisps meals to perfection, and it tends to involve substantially less effort than its conventional brethren.
Lemon-Thyme Bruschetta is featured to kick-off dinners cooked in a toaster oven. This light and lemony dish makes a great last minute appetizer or snack. Flavored with thyme, this delicious finger food has an added touch of honey, lending a sweet balance to the dish. They’re a warm, crisp addition to the menu and take only around 15 minutes to prepare. This recipe from the Kitchn yields 10 appetizer servings.
- 1 baguette; thinly sliced
- 8 ounces ricotta cheese
- 1 lemon; zested
- 8 springs fresh thyme
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix together ricotta and lemon zest. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. Toast baguette slices in the oven for 5 to 7 minutes until slightly browned and warm. Spread liberally with seasoned ricotta. Drizzle with honey, sprinkle with thyme. Serve warm.
2. Miso-Glazed Toaster Oven Salmon
Quick, easy, and tasty! The tangy and sweet flavors of the soy sauce and vinegar are nicely offset by the addition of a dry, fragrant sake to the marinade in this dish. This miso glazed salmon from Serious Eats takes just 15 minutes to complete and yields 4 servings — a great choice for last minute dinner prep.
- ¼ cup red or white miso
- ⅓ cup sake
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- ¼ cup sugar
- 4 skinless salmon filets, at least 1 inch thick, 5 to 6 ounces each
Whisk together miso, sake, soy sauce, oil, and sugar. Rub mixture over every surface of salmon filets. Transfer to a plastic zipper lock bag or sealable container. Proceed immediately to next step, or for best results, marinate for about 30 minutes or up to two days.
Preheat toaster oven to high on broiler. Cover a small broiler pan with aluminum foil. Rub excess marinade off of salmon and place on broiler pan. Broil until top surface is well charred and salmon is barely warm in the center, about 5 minutes, using the foil to protect any areas that threaten to burn. Serve immediately.
3. Moroccan Pork Kebabs
Cooking in your toaster oven isn’t just simple — it’s delicious! These Moroccan-inspired pork kebabs are savory and complex addition to your next dinner menu. They’re low in calories, high in protein, and packed with flavor. This recipe from Real Simple yields 4 servings and takes about an hour and 15 minutes to complete.
- ¼ cup orange juice
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons kosher salt
- ¾ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 ½ pounds boneless pork loin, cut into 1 ½-inch chunks
- 1 small eggplant, unpeeled, cut into 1-inch chunks
- 1 small red onion, cut into 8 wedges
- Pita bread or flat bread, for serving
- 1 half-pint container store-bought tzatziki (cucumber-yogurt sauce; optional)
- ½ small cucumber, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
- Wooden skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
Heat toaster oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, whisk together the orange juice, tomato paste, garlic, cumin, cinnamon, 2 tablespoons of the oil, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and ½ teaspoon of the pepper. Add the pork and toss. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes and up to 8 hours.
Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the eggplant, onion, and the remaining oil, salt, and pepper. Place the vegetables on skewers, alternating eggplant and onion. Transfer the skewers to a foil-lined toaster-oven baking tray. Bake for 20 minutes. Turn the vegetables.
Place the pork on skewers and add them to the tray. Bake until the vegetables are tender and the pork is cooked through, turning the pork and vegetables once, about 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, wrap the bread in foil and place on top of the pork during the last 5 minutes. Transfer the skewers and bread to individual plates. Spoon the tzatziki (optional) on the side and sprinkle with the cucumber and mint.
4. Biscuit Mini Batch for Toaster Oven
These biscuits are a 15-minute shortcut to savory goodness. Instead of whipping together a whole batch, just throw this simple dough into the toaster oven for a few minutes. These are hot, soft, and flaky and are delicious when accompanied with gravy or simply served on the side with a dinner main. This recipe from Food takes 15 minutes to complete and yields 6 biscuits.
- 1 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 tablespoon butter, melted
- ½ cup milk
Pre-heat toaster oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix together flour and baking powder. Work in melted butter. Add milk and mix into a soft dough. Drop 6 biscuits onto a small baking sheet that will fit into your toaster oven. Bake 8 to 12 minutes or until done.
5. Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Stuffed mushrooms may look, sound, and taste complicated — but this recipe from Mother Would Know is deceptively simple! This vegetarian-friendly recipe is bursting with flavor: basil, onion, and garlic add character to the dish, all baked inside of a lightly crusted portobello mushroom. The dish takes about 45 minutes to complete and yields 2 servings.
- 2 large portobello mushroom caps
- 2 cloves garlic
- ½ medium onion (about ? cup)
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 6 ounces fresh baby spinach
- 2 tablespoons ricotta cheese
- ½ cup tomatoes, chopped (about 6 cherry tomatoes or 8 to 10 grape tomatoes)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons chopped basil
- ¼ cup bread crumbs
- ¼ cup shredded or grated Parmesan cheese
Lightly oil toaster oven pan. Clean the outside of the mushroom caps with a bit of water and dry them. Cut off the stems and use a small spoon to gently scoop out the black gills.
Chop onions, garlic, and basil. Preheat the toaster oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Preheat pan with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onion and garlic and cook under a medium heat until they are transparent (about 5 minutes).
Add spinach to the onion and garlic. Cook a few more minutes until the spinach has wilted. Add the ricotta cheese, tomatoes, and basil, then mix to combine all the ingredients in the pan. Add salt and pepper to taste. Place mushroom caps on the oiled pan. Stuff half the contents of the pan into each of the 2 mushrooms.
Put the bread crumbs and most of the Parmesan cheese into the now-empty pan, toss together, and divide between the mushrooms. Add the remaining bit of Parmesan on the top of the mushrooms and sprinkle with the last tablespoon of oil. Bake for about 20 minutes, until the top is crusty and the filling looks hot inside.
6. Herb-Roasted Chicken Tenders
You’re never too old to enjoy chicken tenders for dinner! Celebrity chef Eric Ripert shares this quick and easy meal with Today. Herbes de Provence lend the dish its flavorful character. It’s savory and delicious — particularly when served alongside a sweet honey Dijon medley for dipping. This recipe takes 20 minutes to complete and yields 2 servings.
- 7 ounces chicken tenders
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- ½ teaspoon herbes de Provence
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon honey
Heat toaster oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Drizzle half of the olive oil onto the toaster oven tray. Season the chicken with salt, pepper, and herbes de Provence.
Arrange the chicken in a single layer on the tray and drizzle the remaining olive oil over the seasoned chicken. Bake the chicken for 8 to 10 minutes, until cooked through.
While the chicken is cooking, stir together the Dijon mustard and honey. Serve the chicken tenders with mustard on the side. Alternately, serve the chicken tenders on skewers as an appetizer or with an arugula salad.
Try any of these six recipes for a quick and delicious toaster oven dinner. Toaster ovens are great options for small spaces, studio and tiny house living where space is limited.
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