Is Breville’s New Joule Air Fryer Toaster Oven Worth Buying?

We used the all-in-one, app-connected toaster oven for more than a month to find out if it could pass muster toasting, baking, air frying, and more.

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Breville oven with black background

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

Straight to the Point

The Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro is a great option if you’re looking for a versatile, efficient, countertop-friendly—yet still spacious—toaster oven. However, if you want a smart oven that connects to your phone for added convenience and control, we found the app lacking in utility; its true function is to provide recipes. 

I love toaster ovens. I use mine to toast my daily bread, and now, many come with a myriad of other handy functions (air frying, anyone?). And, if the marketing material is to be believed, the Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro is the Hummer of toaster ovens; it can toast, slow cook, bake, broil, roast, dehydrate, proof, and, yes, supposedly air fry to crisp and golden perfection. It also boasts connectivity to an app that uses the same technology as the Joule sous vide app (though, it should be noted up front that this machine does not have an immersion circulator function, and these are two separate apps). I used this bulked-up toaster oven daily for more than a month to find out if it could make do on so many promises. 

Full transparency: Serious Eats collaborated with Breville to provide some recipes for its Joule app, but all opinions are our own, and we reviewed the oven as objectively as we would any other piece of gear.

The Tests

blood orange slices on air fryer basket in the breville oven
We used the Breville for a variety of tasks, including dehydrating orange wheels.

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

  • Toast and Bagel Test: I pretty much have toast or a bagel everyday, so I tested the oven’s toasting ability by tossing in various slices of bread (sourdough, white bread, baguette slices) and bagels. 
  • Air Fryer Test: I used the toaster oven to air fry chicken wings, breaded chicken cutlets, frozen french fries, potato wedges, and more. 
  • Dehydrator Test: I used the oven's dehydrate function to make dried blood orange slices for garnishing cocktails.   
  • Convection Tests: I used the oven’s convection fan and super convection fan to cook all manner of items: pizza, casseroles, roasts, quiche, reverse-seared steak, fish, and more. 
  • App Tests: I used the Breville Joule app that pairs with the oven, testing its “autopilot” recipe function and attempting Google Home connectivity. 
  • Usability Tests: I noted how easy the machine was to use, program, and wipe clean. 

What We Learned

The Air Fryer Element Was Great

french fries in the air fryer basket

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

While we generally think a designated air fryer does a better job at air frying (the smaller capacity allows the device to heat up faster and really concentrate the air circulation around the food), the Breville actually air-fried quite well. French fries came out evenly golden and crunchy (and only required shaking the basket once), as did a very simple Breville recipe for air-fried chicken wings (it just required tossing the wings in baking powder and salt before placing them on a rack in the accompanying sheet tray); the wings came out very crispy, but still juicy and tender inside. Plus, the toaster oven comes with an air fryer mesh basket, ensuring air circulates all around your food.

The App Was Helpful if You Want to Follow Its Recipes, But Could Be Improved Upon Overall

the open breville joule app on a phone

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

Super Convection Cut Down Cook Time 

crispy chicken cutlets in breville, with hand taking temperature with thermometer

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

The “super convection fan” function consistently slashed cooking times by 10 to 15 minutes. This was a lifesaver on nights when I started dinner a wee bit late, or when prep took longer than I thought. Instead of having to run out the door to my fitness class without eating, I just set the oven to “super convection fan” and still had time to have my cake (or quiche, air fryer chicken wings, or pizza) and eat it too. It’s a great feature, and really puts the “oven” in toaster oven. 

All its Cooking Functions Worked Well 

closeup photo of the screen with the cooking functions

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

I used the toaster oven nearly daily for a variety of tasks: toasting bread and bagels, roasting meats, baking desserts and pies, and air frying french fries, breaded chicken, broccoli, chicken wings, and more. All of the functions worked well, though I found that some items, like toast and baked goods, browned a little unevenly (they tended to get darker towards the back of the oven). I also found that the oven frequently collected condensation near the upper right hand corner of the door. According to Breville, this is normal, and they’ve actually installed a small vent on the left-hand corner of some of their smart ovens to allow steam to escape. This is apparently an improvement from the past, when condensation would simply run down the machine onto the countertop.

Standard Half Sheet Pans Don’t Fit Inside

This is a bummer, but, to be fair, most toaster ovens are smaller than a standard oven and won’t fit a standard, half sheet pan inside. This was actually one of the roomiest toaster ovens I’ve used (and I’ve used many). That said, we do wish that the toaster oven came with more than just a single sheet pan, and that it was flush and smooth rather than divoted. If you like quarter or eighth sheet pans, this is the oven to use them in. 

It Has a Few More Bells and Whistles Than Our Winning Toaster Oven

The Breville Smart Oven was our winner in our review of toaster ovens—and it’s a great choice. It sports a convection fan—same as the Joule Air Fryer Toaster Oven—and has nine cooking functions, including toast, bagel, bake, roast, broil, pizza, cookies, reheat, and warm. What makes the Joule Air Fryer Toaster Oven different is its app connectivity, super convection fan (it’s higher-powered and creates more air circulation), and its air fryer, dehydrate, slow cook, and proof functions.

Specs Breville Joule Air Fryer Toaster Oven Breville Smart Oven
Price $500 $270
Presets Toast, Bagel, Bake, Air Fry, Broil, Roast, Pizza, Cookies, Proof, Reheat, Slow Cook, Keep Warm, Dehydrate Toast, bagel, bake, roast, broil, pizza, cookies, reheat, and warm
Size  21.5" x 17.3" x 12.8" 19" x 13.9" x 14.1"
Temperature range  80°F to 480°F 120-450 °F

The Verdict

The Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro Toaster Oven is a great buy if you want to squeeze the most you can get out of an appliance; I loved that I could bake, roast, air fry, toast, and dehydrate all in one machine (freeing up some much-coveted countertop space). The convection feature on this baby was also a fantastic time saver. 

There are a few negatives, though. First, I didn’t find the app particularly helpful; functions like Autopilot, while nice in theory, didn’t really save me that much time or energy, and the notifications were more annoying than useful. I also couldn’t get the oven to connect to my Google Home, which would have been fun to try.

So, if you want to save $100, you could spring for the Breville Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro instead, which seems very similar to the Joule oven (minus the app connectivity), though we haven’t tested it. And if you’re looking for an even more no-frills (sans air fryer and a few other functions) pick, we also like the Breville Smart Oven

Price at time of publish: $500.

Key Specs

  • Weight: 23 lbs
  • Voltage: 120 Volts
  • Wattage: 1800 Watts
  • Dimensions: 21.5 x 17.3 x 12.8 inches
  • Temperature range: 80°F to 480°F
  • Accessories included: 13 inch non-stick pizza pan, 2 wire racks, 9 x 13 inch broiling rack, 9 x 13 inch enamel roasting pan, air fry/dehydrate basket
  • Number of Presets: 13
  • Presets: Toast, Bagel, Bake, Air Fry, Broil, Roast, Pizza, Cookies, Proof, Reheat, Slow Cook, Keep Warm, Dehydrate
  • Care: We recommend hand-washing the pull out tray; the rest of the machine should be carefully wiped down with a damp cloth and mild spray solution, and dried. Take care not to touch the quartz heating elements. 
  • Warranty: 2-year limited warranty
breville oven with black backdrop

Serious Eats / Grace Kelly

FAQs

Does the Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro air fry well?

Yes, the air fryer function made crispy french fries, chicken wings, and more, and it was fast and easy to use. 

How do I clean the Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro? 

Before washing, the manual recommends unplugging the oven. To clean the exterior body, use a soft, damp sponge with a non-abrasive liquid cleaner or mild spray solution. To clean the glass door, Breville recommends using a glass cleaner or mild detergent and a damp sponge. Stay away from metal scouring pads and abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the surface. When cleaning the interior (which features a nonstick coating to make it easy), wipe the walls with a soft, damp sponge and mild spray solution (just make sure to apply your cleaning solution to the sponge rather than directly the interior walls), then dry. Breville recommends avoiding cleaning and touching the quartz heating elements.  

Is the Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro worth it?

While we loved using this toaster oven and found all of its functions performed well, the app isn’t quite up to our functional standards—yet. However, some might find app notifications, Autopilot, and recipes useful. And, of course, it’s still a fantastic toaster oven loaded with other great features (albeit at a slightly higher price point than our winning toaster oven).