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Easy Bake Oven gets a new look, new heating element

The New Easy Bake Oven

Several months ago, I posted that Easy Bake Ovens were going to get a makeover. The popular kids toy is how many of us got our start in the kitchen over the past half century, since the launch of the original Easy Bake in 1963. The makeover was not just to update the look of the machine to appeal to today’s kids, but to replace the 100-watt lightbulb that provided the heat to make easy baking possible. Compact fluorescent lamps are replacing incandescent light bulbs in the US, the EU, Australia and Canada and may completely replace them by sometime in the next year. That means that in just a few months, it won’t be possible to find those 100-watt bulbs to power the easy bake ovens.

The new and improved models just hit store shelves with a new look and a lot of new features. For starters, they look more like a real kitchen appliance (I actually had a microwave that strongly resembled the new Easy Bake when I was in a dorm at college) than a toy and they have a heating element that is more like that of a real oven, providing stronger and more consistent heat. The new heating chamber can now reach 375F and hold baked goods that are 50% larger than the original sizes. A higher baking temperature means that you can bake a wider variety of products in the new ovens. The mixes have been updated to include things like whoopie pies, party pretzel “dippers” and cinnamon twists, along with the classic cake mixes.

So, even if you’re partial to the classic Easy Bake look, there is no doubt that the newer models will be better bakers. Still, if you have an old one, stock up on a few extra bulbs while you still can because there will always be something magical about how a lightbulb powered toy can bake a cake.

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  • Hpmc
    September 15, 2011

    Up to 375*?! I thought that the point of an Easy Bake was that it was kind of (but not totally) safe. I suppose sliding the food into the side rather than opening a door would make it a bit safer … except for the model that was recalled.

    With temps like that, why not just get a toaster oven? At $50 it’s the same price, looks to be the same size, and would do the same thing. And you can make toast. Isn’t that the first thing that nearly every kid “cooked?”

  • The Sweet Cupcaker
    September 16, 2011

    I used to love my easy bake oven! I didn’t even know they were still making them!

  • JD's kitchen cafe
    September 16, 2011

    Oh, no.

    No, no, no, and no.

    Like you, Sweet Cupcaker, I also loved (more like adored) my Easy Bake Oven when I was a kid. I had one of the late 60’s Kenner models – I loved making not only cakes, but also pizzas and pretzels and all of the other mixes that were available.

    Forgive me for coming across as a party pooper, but this new fangled, so-called improved and ultra-modern version has nothing on the original classic. I loved the fact that the cakes were miniature – fit for a miniature person with only a little appetite.

    And that’s another thing – why do the cake mixes and baking pans have to be 50 percent bigger than the original? What was wrong with the original sizes?

    I also agree with what Hpmc wrote – why does it have to be a hotter oven temp? Half the fun was watching and waiting for that light bulb to fully bake the cakes or pretzels or pizzas. Like a real oven. Not like a microwave instant-fix must-have-food-cooked now oven.

    The charm of the original toy has completely been updated and tweaked and ultra-modernised out of any original charm it possessed in abundance. At least, that’s what it looks like from the photo. The word that comes to mind here is … ugly!

    It’s sad to see something that was once upon a time so sweet, so much fun, and so lovely turned into this…this…monstrosity of a thing. Looks more like an alarm clock, the more I look at it. I don’t want it to look just like a microwave oven. I want it to look like an Easy Bake Oven.

    I can appreciate the fact that it’s been decades now since the original Easy Bake Oven hit the toy shops. Really, I can. And I can appreciate that things have to ‘move with the times’ and all that. But this? This is what they come up with? Ugh.

    Okay. Rant over.

  • hpmc
    September 16, 2011

    The more I think about this thing, the more I dislike it. JD makes a good point about instant gratification. Is it really a good thing? One of the hardest things that I have had to teach my kids about cooking is patience. That it’s worth it. Is homemade bread better than store bought? Yup, and you’ve gotta wait for it. How many kids would have the patience to cook or bake half the items on this blog?

    The bigger portions are not necessary, either. Supersize it, I guess, like everything else.

  • Awesome Gal
    September 17, 2011

    The idea of a toy reaching 375 degrees scares the living daylights out of me and I’d never buy one for my kid (if I had one).

    Quite frankly, with temperatures getting that high you may as well start training your kid to use the real oven in your kitchen. Not only would they learn a valuable life-skill by learning how to bake properly, but you’d be able to have some parent-child bonding time. Not to mention the added supervision while using the oven that most parents wouldn’t bother with if their child were using an Easy-Bake.

  • Kelsey
    September 20, 2011

    I read about that on your blog so I’m happy to see an update 🙂

  • Jeff
    December 25, 2011

    Relax people. My daughter just got one for Christmas and she loves it. It’s more modern for a different generation. Internal cooking temperatures aren’t just about “instant gratification” , it’s also about food safety. Higher temps mean it’s more likely they won’t eat undercooked and possibly hazardous foods. Case gets warm, but not even remotely “hot”. And besides all that, it says Adult Supervision. This isn’t a babysitter, it’s a way for a parent and a child to interact. That to me is far more important than anything else.

  • gina
    December 27, 2011

    I had to laugh when I read this article and the comments. The article makes it seem like this new design is so cutting edge. The portions are basically the same size as before! And the higher temperature difference is barely discernable. It is very safe- the only way to really burn yourself is to tick your fingers WAAAY into the slots or touch the pan right when it comes out. There is no instant gratification-my kids wait impatiently during the cooking times just like generations of easy-bakers before them. Its still an easy-bake oven. 🙂

  • leslie
    December 29, 2011

    WE so far are not impressed with the new easy bake oven. We are not using their recipe packets but jiffy mix and our own recipes but the temp. does not reach 375. everything we are baking is coming out uncooked and we are leavin it in there much longer than it shoule be. Might have a faulty machine going to have to check another one out to make sure.

  • A&P
    January 1, 2012

    Same problem here. Not a faulty thing. I think something is not set right. Can’t cook anything to temp.

  • Lori
    January 1, 2012

    My daughter loves hers! We’ve made the red velvet cupcakes and they came out great! Daddy and daughter made pretzels yesterday all by themselves and that was a sight to see! LOL I am very intersted in finding DIY recipes that go with the new oven and pans.

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