The usual method of toasting bread is by the use of a toaster, a small appliance made for that purpose. Bread may also be toasted in an open oven, lying on an oven rack. Toaster ovens are special small appliances made to be able to toast bread or heat small amounts of other foods.
Bread may also be toasted over an open flame. Special toaster utensils are made for this purpose.
Toast is an important component of many breakfasts, and is also important in some traditional bland specialty diets for people with gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea (such as the BRAT diet consisting of bananas, rice, apples, and toast).
Toast is most commonly eaten with butter or margarine spread on it, which ideally melt into the toast once spread. It may also be eaten dry or with preserves or other toppings. Toast is sometimes used instead of fresh bread for making sandwiches.
Toasting is also a common method of making stale bread more palatable.
Bread is sometimes cubed and toasted, sometimes after being coated with seasonings, and then used in salads or other dishes. These bread cubes are called croutons.