A microwave convection oven does more than a simple microwave by being capable of more than reheating or defrosting food. It can also toast, roast, brown, bake, steam, crisp, broil, cook, and defrost food. A grill microwave oven is similar but this time it uses a grill attachment to also grill food.
A bona fide oven set to broil or toaster oven are more straightforward in making decent toast though. With that said, let’s discuss how to toast bread in a Microwave Convection Oven.
Yes, You Can Make Toast in a Convection Microwave
A microwave and convection oven combo is good mainly because of the convection part. You can defrost or warm your bread in the microwave then put it on the metal rack for about 10 minutes at 425°F.
It takes about 10 minutes, which allows you time to cook eggs in the meanwhile for the perfect breakfast. Regardless, convection heating is what you need because toasting bread requires dry heat or the Maillard Reaction.
The Maillard Reaction and the Issues with Convection Microwave Toasting
Convection ovens, even microwave convection ovens, use convection that replicates the Mailliard reaction. The convection feature of your microwave is what toasts your bread. The microwave feature isn’t as helpful.
However, convection microwaves aren’t true convection ovens. They use convection currents and microwaves together, which in turn toasts the bread. However, because steaming might occur, this inhibits the Maillard reaction necessary for bread toasting.
Further reading: Can You Make Toast in a Microwave Grill?
Convection Microwave Toasting vs. Non-Convection Microwave Toasting
An oven toaster or a conventional oven set to broil can cause the Maillard reaction better than even a microwave could. Also, certain convection microwaves couldn’t toast bread excellently either. The problem is that there’s a possibility your bread will burn before it gets toasted.
Technically, the best convection microwaves work so similarly to oven toasters and conventional ovens that they can toast, roast, brown, bake, steam, crisp, broil, cook, and defrost food. However, not all convection microwaves are created equally.
Convection Microwave Toasting
Some convection microwaves can only roast and bake instead of toast and grill. Others require the grill attachment to give your bread that toasted grill mark effect. Many others cause too much steam to run inside your microwave, resulting in soggy bread instead of toasted bread.
Many a convection microwave at best can lightly toast bread with a specific set of rules, such as warming the bread up first then toasting it, or using paper towels to absorb the water and steam that should escape from it.
Non-Convection Microwave Toasting
The radiation from your microwave or convection microwave tends to cook bread with its own juices or water molecules. Toasting happens through outside radiant heat instead. Certain convection ovens can do radiant heat better than others.
Actually, it’s better to avail of a grill or toaster microwave oven if you want to toast something inside a microwave. Cooking a piece of chicken makes more sense in a convection microwave than toasting bread anyway.
How to Make Toast with a Convection Microwave
Even if it’s a convection microwave, you should do the following to ensure the best toasting results. The better and more advanced your convection microwave is the more perfect your toast will get, especially if it has a grilling element.
- Put paper towel strips along with your bread, specifically on top of them. Close your microwave door.
- Nuke the bread for about 30 seconds at the highest power setting. Afterwards, check the bread if it’s sufficiently toasted.
- Don’t overdo your microwaving because you can end up with soggy bread or, at worst, burnt or rubbery bread.
- For best results, use the grill element or put your convection microwave setting to toast or broil if they’re available.
- Alternately, you can instead use slices of bread ½-inch thick then brush the sides with butter, olive oil, or canola oil to make them easier to cook and tasty to boot.
- Put it inside your preheated grill microwave then cook it until it forms grill marks from the included grill accessory. Lightly toast the bread for about 2-3 minutes at about 30-minute intervals.
Why Does Bread Get Hard or Stiff when You Microwave It?
When the starch or dough is baked or heated up, it comes gelatinous when cooked on a preheated oven. Microwaves work in a different way. They heat up the food by making its water molecules excited, leading to hot water in a minute instead of 5-10 minutes.
At first, the bread ends up becoming softer due to the regelatinized starch. However, as you microwave it more, the bread will harden to the point it’s as stiff and rubbery as pizza dough. If you go even past that point, it will burn before you can toast it.
Microwaving it for a few minutes ensures that it’s a little softer but microwaving it too much can turn it hard and stiff like hardened dough due to how starch reacts to microwave rays. When toasting bread on a convection microwave oven, it’s the convection heat toasting it not the microwave rays.
Which Microwave Convection Ovens Can Toast Bread?
Microwave or radiowave cooking is not conducive to making toasted bread because the resulting steam from your bread can lead to gelatinous dough and no browning until you heat it up to the extreme, which will instead burn the bread before it even gets toasted.
Convection microwaves theoretically can toast bread but only because it has convection heat aspects to its function. However, its microwave function and tendency to create steam as the food is heated can defeat the convectional heat it might produce.
The dry heat needed for toasting is more easily achieved from microwave toaster ovens or grill microwaves, but convection microwaves might do the trick if they have toast, broil, or grill functions included in their bag of tricks.
The Big Picture
Convection microwave toasting can be a bit difficult to do. Even if you do research on the Worldwide Web or read operating manuals for Bosch and Sharp microwaves, you’ll end up mostly empty-handed.
However, some users have successfully toasted the bread using specific techniques and microwave types. It mostly depends on getting the right microwave on hand or settling for subpar toasting.
Even if you succeed in toasting the bread, chances are the results are inferior to toaster toasting. You can’t make toast in a microwave but you can warm it up. You can theoretically use the grill or convection features of a convection microwave, but results can also vary.
- Faith Durand, “How To Warm Bread In the Microwave“, TheKitchn.com, April 16, 2008
- “Toast bread slices in a convection microwave?“, StackExchange.com, November 17, 2010
- Emily Lane, “Can you make toast in a microwave?“, CookersAndOvensBlog.co.uk, June 8, 2018
- “Can you make toast in a microwave grill?“, FindAnyAnswer.com, April 26, 2020