Does the Ridgemonkey Connect XL Sandwich Toaster Still Rule the Roost in 2023? – A Comprehensive Review.
"Arguably the gold-standard for versatile, well thought out pans/toastie makers for camping and vanning - but is the XL version worth it?"
Hello, fellow outdoor enthusiasts! Geoff K here, your go-to guy for all things camping, with my trusty sidekick, Jess. With four decades spent beneath the stars all across Europe, I've picked up a tip or two along the way, and now I'm excited to share my latest find with you: the 'Ridgemonkey Connect Sandwich Toaster XL, Granite with Integrated Tools'.
Over the years, I’ve held onto the belief that a great camping trip means optimising space without compromising convenience. Ridgemonkey heard me and incorporated that philosophy into their Sandwich Toaster XL. From casual picnics to week-long treks, this wonder cooker has elevated my outdoor culinary experience, and I feel it could do the same for you.
So, if you have a passion for starlit meals that don't compromise on taste or quality, stick around as I delve deeper into this nifty device's who's, what's, and why's. Let's see if it can cut your camping checklist - it made mine!
Weight 0.95 kgs Material Aluminium Dimensions 20.5 x 23.5 x 4 cm Good For Toasties, pies, slices, naans, wraps, omelettes, cinnamon swirls
The improved design of the Ridgemonkey Connect Sandwich Toaster XL charmed me right off the bat. The granite-style coating exhibits superior non-stick properties that makes both cooking and cleaning a hassle-free experience. Not only is the cooking surface virtually non-stick, but it also encourages healthy cooking by requiring less oil. Its durability and toughness is truly commendable, having used it both at home and whilst camping.
While its name suggests it to be just a toaster, it’s so much more than that. The unique design allows it to function as two separate pans in addition to making amazing toasties with a complete clamp. I found it to be an absolute boon for making a wide variety of foods - from toasties to pies, omelettes and even wraps. Furthermore, its aluminum construction allows even heat distribution. By providing a strong and durable pan, it has irrefutably raised the bar for compact cookware.
Its utility goes far beyond its cooking capabilities. Not only can it be used on traditional stoves and direct heat sources, the toaster also boasts a super convenient neoprene carry case, protecting it from potential damages during travels or adventures. This feature, coupled with its lightweight construction, makes it an ideal camping accessory for outdoor enthusiasts. The versatile and detachable handles essentially gives you two pans in one - an absolute necessity for those who cherish cooking after a day of hiking or fishing. The Ridgemonkey Connect Sandwich Toaster XL not only simplifies the cooking process but also significantly enhances the overall camping experience.
Is this the best Grill/Pan/Toaster for you?
Check out our full roundup: Best Versatile Grill & Toaster for Camp Fires, Gas Hobs and Induction
While the Ridgemonkey Connect Sandwich Toaster XL is touted as being versatile, I found it to be somewhat limiting. Despite the claim that it can be used on all traditional stoves and direct heat sources, it's unsuitable for induction hobs. This was a bit of a letdown as I primarily use an induction hob at home, but it's fine for my van and open fires.
Another issue I encountered was with the size of the pans. While the product description boasts about the toaster's generous design, the pans are still quite small when separated. This limits the amount of food you can cook at once, which can be inconvenient when preparing meals for more than one person. The pans are also quite heavy, weighing in at 950g with all the components included. This might not be an issue for some, but if you're planning on taking it camping or travelling, the weight could be a drawback.
Should You Buy?
Within the realm of versatile, multipurpose cookware, the Ridgemonkey Connect Sandwich Toaster XL has carved out a robust presence. Its admirable design and granite-style coating showcase exceptional non-stick properties and encourage healthier cooking practices. Additionally, its commendable durability, ease of use, and thoughtful features are hard not to appreciate, particularly for those embarking on camping or vanning adventures.
It stands as much more than a toaster: it's a seemingly essential outdoor cooking companion, doubling up as two pans and capable of a diverse range of dishes. Its flaws, however, aren't to be overlooked. The incompatibility with induction hobs was a disappointment. Furthermore, the split pan size may limit the quantity of your culinary exploits and the weight, at 950g, could pose a hurdle for nomadic users.
With this balance in mind, our verdict leans favourably towards this product for seasoned explorers and camping aficionados, who are less likely to be reliant on induction cooking. The Ridgemonkey Toaster XL certainly encapsulates the ideal of thoughtfully designed compact cookware but keep in mind your own cooking environment, requirements, and stove type before jumping in. Masterful in its niche, it may not be 'one size fits all,' but presents a strong cooking competitor in its own right within the world of outdoor cookware.
(Price When Reviewed: £42.99)
Co-founder of Destiny River, with over forty years of experience camping throughout Europe, I'm happier sleeping under canvas than sleeping under a roof! I hope to inspire others to appreciate and protect the remarkable landscapes that our planet has to offer.More posts by Geoff K.