What does it smell like inside? The Cuisnart non-stick interiors are getting a reputation for smelling like toxic fumes - definitely not something I want around my food. What have people's experiences been with this?
asked by Kathy Connolly on November 4, 2007
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We recently purchased a similar version of Cuisinart TOB-195 from Costco. We washed the pans and racks before using them and ran the TOB-195 oven at 500 degrees for 15 minutes to burn off any residual oil/grease from the manufacturing process. During the burn-off we did not smell any fumes or odors, so it seems that the Chinese factory that makes the Cuisinart TOB-195 has a relatively clean manufacturing process.
UBHappy answered on October 17, 2009

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Got one for xmas. Noticed no smell whatsoever.
Kathleen answered on December 25, 2007

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It smells like whatever you're cooking. I was making rosemary cornish game hens the other night and the inside smelled like rosemary cornish game hens :)
TJ Hock answered on December 28, 2007

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Brimstone--

My husband has a PhD in organic chemistry. Many years ago, he told me not to heat foods in plastic containers (by microwave or otherwise) and not to buy acidic items such as vinegar in plastic bottles/jugs. This is because plastics are made of organic molecules derived from oil, most of which are toxic to living cells. Maybe there are not definitive 30 year studies yet on the effects of ingesting compounds released into plastic frozen-dinner trays, but as you & I are composed of living cells, it is probably a good idea to limit ingestion of these compounds.

Heating plastics causes them to release volatile components into their surroundings, which in the case of containers and microwaves means the food. Storing acidic substances in plastic containers does the same thing.

This is part of the reason labs store their chemicals in glass, and conduct experiments in tempered glass equipment ("Pyrex") --- it does not react with the contents.

Dupont already has warnings not to keep pet birds in kitchens in which Teflon pans are heated (some people get their pans very hot, to stir-fry or sear meat/tortillas). The Teflon does release fumes which are toxic to birds, and a number of pet birds have been killed in this manner.

Whether you choose to breathe substances which are known to kill birds quickly, and probably are not good for you over the long term, is up to you. But it's only right to let people know about it so they can make the choice for themselves, don't you think so?
Elly answered on February 11, 2010

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FYI: If the DeLonghi toaster oven you are getting has the DuraStone II "enamel" interior beware that "Durastone II enamel is made of substances of clay particles of Teflon". Do an internet search for Durastone II enamel.
I've been researching and it's really frustrating. Does anyone know of a toaster oven that doesn't have a non-stick interior? Most manufacturers don't state what type of material is used to coat the interior.
Fresh Water answered on January 6, 2011

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I noticed no smell either. I have had mine for about 1 month now.
J. Buckner answered on December 26, 2007

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I wound up buying another brand. When I read the manual on that one, it said that some sort of grease coating that needed to be removed was on some of the parts on the inside. I can see how some people would get really toxic smelling fumes if they didn't remove the coating first - it burns off.
Kathy Connolly answered on October 8, 2009

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I have never owned any cookware that has Teflon or any other non-stick material. I would not buy a toaster over or any other appliance with those materials in them.

As others have mentioned, Teflon and other non-stick coatings release toxic chemicals when heated. This is a FACT. It has nothing to do with hysterics. As for birds -- If you have a bird, ANYWHERE IN YOUR HOUSE!! DO NOT HAVE TEFLON COOKWARE! It doesn't matter if the bird is in another room. The toxic fumes from overheated Teflon, even in minute amounts, will kill birds within a few minutes, even if they are in a diferent part of the house. These toxic fumes do not necessarily have an odor, so just because you can't smell them, it doesn't mean they are not being given off.

If the fumes can kill another living being within minutes, do you really want to be breathing them in?? It will take a little longer, but the toxins will affect humans, too.

As for plastics, as others have also mentioned in the comments -- I've been actively involved in scientific research in the area of environmental endocrine disruptors. These are chemicals found in the environment that either act as hormone mimics or block hormones from acting the way they should.

People who laugh these things off as "hysteria" have not done any of their own research. They're just parroting what other ignorant (probably media types) are saying.

In any event, I will not be purchasing this toaster oven. I will be purchasing the DeLonghi convection toaster oven. No toxic non-stick interior and it has an interior light. We have an older model now, and absolutely love it.
sailorgal answered on March 12, 2010

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ALL models of Cusinart TOBs [incl this newest TOB-195] has the non stick coating and it is NOT PTFE/PFOA free!!! [I am a bird owner & that's a life and death question for my pet] I got differing answers from CS 800 on this model and I finally had corporate office of Cusinart call me and state NONE of their ovens are PTFE/PFOA free.
I hope they will change that in the future, but for now, it is not.
[PS you must get this type of info from corporate levels, Breville and Calaphon ovens are also not PTFE/PFOA free, if you do not see it in writing under the description of the product, then it is not "leaglly" so, many CS's said it was PTFE/PFOA free, I said show me where you have it in writing... they could not and corporate got involved, then you get the answer you really need.
I will call Oster next, they are coming out with many new ceramic lines of electrics that are PTFE/PFOA free; I hope an oven is incl, can't call tonight, they are already closed.
andiebiz answered on November 11, 2013

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I pretty well 2nd what Elly said, and thank you Elly, for taking the time to write in. The organic chem process was just discussed, I won't take the time to go into how those chemicals react w/ your own chemicals - your body, but how about trust me on this.... The bird, a living organism, died quickly. The same basic processes apply to "most" living organisms. So, the difference we are discussing is not one of harm, that is established, it is one of timing instead. As in, how long it takes to 'kick the fumy bucket', otherwise known as a 'slow stinky, death'. Not very appealing to most of us.

Do you really want to go that way?

Consumer Reports: lots of great things, but lots of 'medical' mistakes, also.

Smelling rosemary: Well, that makes sense, when you have cooked w/ rosemary. But, if you stop to think, you know that you cooked other ingredients, also, but do not smell each one of them individually. There are "fumes" that you don't notice individually, over 'stronger' fumes/smells. So, not a great test of air quality.

Brimstone: Thanks, I know you wanted to help us, and that is why you wrote in and provided some research (consumer reports), but, you might try some of your own advise... not getting too 'hysterical'. For me, if I find myself, or someone else, using a lot of hyperbola, especially the insulting kind, I take a closer look at the lack of facts that usually comes w/ it. When the facts are there, they are usually provided, like Elly did.

Facts are good, they are our friends, aren't they?:).

All of our kids are going to be marrying all of your kids, and having kids of their own. I want the best for them, and the best for the world they live in. To me, that means taking care of my other 'friends' that inhabit this planet. Those organic chemicals that Elly mentioned, and their results, stick around for a long, long time.
Y. Roberts answered on March 3, 2010
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