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Calphalon Quartz Heat Review

A good choice if you want a dehydrating function and sleek aesthetics
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Calphalon Quartz Heat Review
Credit: Calphalon
Price:  $300 List
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Manufacturer:   Calphalon
By Max Mutter and Michelle Powell  ⋅  Jan 26, 2022
73
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#8 of 13
  • Baking - 30% 9.0
  • Ease of Use - 25% 9.0
  • Temperature Accuracy - 20% 3.0
  • Frozen Food - 15% 6.0
  • Toasting - 10% 8.0

Our Verdict

The Calphalon Quartz Heat offers even heating and generally good cooking performance in a toaster oven package that is easy to use and clean. Plus, it offers some advanced cooking functions like dehydrating and a super convection mode to get foods crispy and cooked quickly. The only downside we found with this machine, besides its above-average price, is a lack of temperature accuracy. In our testing, it always ran a bit cold. However, it ran cold at a fairly consistent rate, so it's pretty easy to adjust your recipe accordingly. Still, this can be less than ideal if you're baking something with very little temperature tolerance, and that lack of accuracy isn't something we'd expect at this price point. Overall, the Calphalon Quartz Heat offers all of the functionality and performance, if not the temperature accuracy, of the premium appliances at a comparable price.
REASONS TO BUY
Good baking performance
Good toast
Easy to use
Even convection mode is silent
REASONS TO AVOID
Expensive
Consistently runs cold
Less than ideal for frozen foods
Editor's Note: We updated this review on January 28, 2022, with more information about which ovens we'd recommend to a friend.

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Bottom Line Has some flaws, but generally delivers good performance with a modern aesthetic that will look good in most kitchensA top-notch oven that adds air frying and dehydrating functions as wellPerfect for space constrained, discerning cooksIts small size limits it to snacks, re-heating leftovers, or side dishes, but it's affordable and performs wellLightning fast, small oven that practically replaces the convenience of a microwave
Rating Categories Calphalon Quartz Heat Ninja Foodi Digital... Breville Mini Smart... Hamilton Beach Easy... Panasonic FlashXpress
Baking (30%)
9.0
9.0
8.0
7.0
4.0
Ease of Use (25%)
9.0
9.0
7.0
8.0
5.0
Temperature Accuracy (20%)
3.0
9.0
9.0
7.0
2.0
Frozen Food (15%)
6.0
8.0
7.0
7.0
8.0
Toasting (10%)
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
8.0
Specs Calphalon Quartz Heat Ninja Foodi Digital... Breville Mini Smart... Hamilton Beach Easy... Panasonic FlashXpress
Outer Dimensions 18.7" x 15.8" x 11.6" 19.7" x 7.6" x 15" 15.5" x 14" x 8.8" 11.9" x 16.1" x 9" 13" x 12" x 10.2"
Average Temperature Accuracy 28℉ 5℉ 5℉ 7℉ 35℉
Maximum Pizza Diameter 12" 13" 11" 9" 9"
Accessories Baking pan, pizza pan, dehydrator rack, and wire rack Wire rack, air fry basket, sheet pan Baking pan Bake pan, oven rack, slide-out crumb tray Baking pan
Power Consumption (W) 1400 1800 1800 1200 1300

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Calphalon Quartz Heat offers good all-around performance with a premium list of toaster oven features. If temperature accuracy or getting crispy results from frozen tater tots are high on your priority list, it probably isn't the machine for you. Otherwise, we feel it earns its premium price tag.

Performance Comparison


calphalon quartz heat
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Baking


This oven was right in the mix with the top models in our baking tests, turning out tasty results no matter what we threw at it. In our testing, the Quartz Heat managed to keep a baking tray full of drumsticks incredibly moist while still crisping the skin on the top. It handled cookies with similar aplomb, perfectly browning the outsides while keeping the insides perfectly gooey and chewy. All the cakes we baked came out fluffy and moist with no hot or cold spots to speak of. Bottom line, we don't think anyone will be disappointed by this oven's baking prowess.

calphalon quartz heat - the quartz heat makes some good chicken.
The Quartz Heat makes some good chicken.
Credit: Michelle Powell

Ease of Use


We feel the Quartz Heat provides an exceptional user experience, offering small and thoughtful design touches that make cooking and the requisite cleaning feel quite easy. The machine anchors its user-friendliness with a clear interface. A large LCD screen tells you what settings you have been selecting, while dedicated knobs allow you to quickly scroll through the cooking functions and the cooking temperature/time.

calphalon quartz heat - we loved the cookies this oven baked.
We loved the cookies this oven baked.
Credit: Michelle Powell

One nice thing about the Quartz Heat is that it doesn't automatically start the timer once it's done preheating. Many other models start the timer the second preheating is finished, necessitating that you either pay close attention to the oven and shove your food in right when it beeps, or readjust the timer after you've put your food in. The Quartz Heat asks that you press the start button again once preheating is finished to actually start the timer.

calphalon quartz heat - the quartz heat's large, easy to read lcd display.
The Quartz Heat's large, easy to read LCD display.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

The Quartz Heat also goes against the trend when it comes to the design of its crumb tray. Most ovens utilize drawer-style crumb trays that slide in and out. While convenient, we've found that the space needed to accommodate such a tray tends to collect some crumbs, requiring that you do some deeper cleaning from time to time. The Quartz Heat uses a tray that sits on the oven's bottom and simply lifts out. While this means you can't empty the crumb tray when the oven is still hot, there are no gaps for crumbs to fall into, and the tray itself is quite light and easy to move.

calphalon quartz heat - this oven is one of the few that doesn't just start the timer when...
This oven is one of the few that doesn't just start the timer when preheating is done, you have to press the start button again. Most of our testers loved this feature.
Credit: Jenna Ammerman

Really the only thing we dislike about the Quartz Heat's user experience is that the beeps that let you know cooking has been completed are fairly quiet. This makes it relatively easy to miss the fact that your cake is done and leave it sitting a bit too long in a still-hot oven.

Temperature Accuracy


This main weakness separates the Quartz Heat from other top-tier countertop ovens. While its temperature is consistent, we found it far short of accurate.

No matter what temperature we set it on, our multiple testing thermometers told us it was running colder than the set temperature. The good news is that, once we gave it ample time to heat up, it consistently ran about 15˚ cold. Therefore, we believe you'll generally get good results by adjusting the temperature to 15˚ hotter than a recipe calls for. However, this situation still feels less than ideal for food items that require a precise temperature and is a workaround we wouldn't expect to need in an oven of this caliber.

Frozen Food


We found that the Quartz Heat generally cooks larger frozen items (pizza) quite well and evenly but fails to get great results from smaller items (tater tots).

One of the nice things about the Quartz Heat is that it can accommodate a full-sized, 12-inch frozen pizza. We made many such pizzas with this oven and found it could easily produce an even level of cooking throughout every pizza pie. Possibly because of its propensity to run a bit cold, we had to leave the pizzas in an extra couple of minutes beyond the recommended time to get a nice browning on the lower crust.

calphalon quartz heat - frozen pizza required a bit of extra cooking time to get a crispy...
Frozen pizza required a bit of extra cooking time to get a crispy crust, but turned out quite delicious.
Credit: Michelle Powell

Cooking frozen tater tots was a slightly different story. In our tests, we ended up cooking tater tots for twice as long as recommended to get them fully cooked, and even then, the outsides were only slightly crispy.

Toasting


Most of the toast we prepared with this oven came out quite even, without any inconsistencies between the tops and bottoms of the slices and no cold spots near the crusts. This is about all you can ask for without purchasing a top-ranked toaster.

The only thing that prevented this oven from earning a perfect score in this metric was its toast map. When we filled the oven wall-to-wall with toast, the center slices were clearly more even and a bit darker in shade. Slices on the edges, in contrast, were a bit lighter and had some cold spots near the extreme edges of the oven.

calphalon quartz heat - the quartz heat is definitely a bit warmer in the center of the oven.
The Quartz Heat is definitely a bit warmer in the center of the oven.
Credit: Michelle Powell

Should You Buy the Calphalon Quartz Heat?


The Calphalon Quartz Heat bakes well, is easy to use, and offers an interesting aesthetic. It's not the best toaster oven we've tested, mostly because it tends to run a bit cold, but it definitely carves out enough of a niche for itself that it would be a great addition in many kitchens. The Calphalon Quartz Heat's list price puts it into the premium spectrum, but it lacks the temperature accuracy of most premium ovens. However, it offers a dehydrating function lacking in some of its main competitors. It also offers darker aesthetics to please many people who don't want stainless steel themes in their kitchen. If those things checkboxes for you, and you don't mind constantly adjusting the temperature up or cooking things a bit longer than expected, this oven may represent a good value. Otherwise, if you're willing to pay a premium for top-shelf performance, we think there are better ovens out there.

What Other Toaster Oven Should You Consider?


With similar scores in most metrics and a higher score overall, the Ninja Foodi Digital Oven is the better choice for most readers. This oven is less expensive and offers air frying and dehydration functionality to boot. We see no reason to spend more money for less consistency and we recommend the Ninja over the Calphalon.

Max Mutter and Michelle Powell