Go into any home improvement store, wander into the appliance section, and you’ll see row upon row of stoves without any obvious electric coils or gas burners adorning their tops.
And since manufacturers seek to satisfy the demands of the marketplace, what you’re witnessing is a result of the increasing demand for induction cooktops.
If you’ve been thinking about buying one for yourself you might wonder whether it’s right for your needs.
There are several reasons people choose induction stovetops over more traditional options.
They’re safer than gas because there’s no open flame to worry about.
In addition, if you’ve ever cooked with gas, while it’s fast, it can take time to get used to and it heats your surroundings too (hence the saying, if you can’t take the heat…)
When you’re using an electric coil stovetop, those coils get pretty hot, as does the cooktop surrounding them. This can cause a fire hazard from oven mitts, paper or other items getting left on the stovetop.
Also, those coils remain hot for a time after you turn them off, which means you could set something on what you think is a cool burner, causing damage.
An induction cooktop, however, remains cool; only the pan gets hot, making them safer than either gas or electric coil stovetops.
An induction stovetop uses over ninety percent of the electric used to heat it up. Gas and electric coil elements, however, use only about half of the heat and energy created.
This means that nearly all the electricity that you’re using for cooking goes towards heating the food rather than heating the kitchen.
The faster you can cook, the more time you have for doing other things.
An induction stovetop can boil a gallon of water in about five minutes, compared to 20 minutes on a gas or electric coil stovetop.
Responsive and accurate
Unlike a gas or electric coil stovetop, an induction cooktop will change temperature almost immediately. This means no more removing a pan from the heat to prevent scorching or time waiting for it to heat up.
Single burner induction cooktops are less clunky than their gas or electric counterparts. They’re lightweight and compact, making them perfect for small spaces such as dorm rooms, camping…anywhere you want to prepare food.
Easy to clean
When cooking on a gas or electric coil stovetop when something spills over and it hits the burner, it immediately begins to scorch, causing a mess that’s a pain to clean.
As an induction cooktop doesn’t heat up it’s easier and faster to clean as you’re cooking.
Most people would agree that the pros of an induction cooktop outweighs the bad, but when buying any appliance it’s important to consider all aspects of its use.
You have to be quick
It takes a bit for either a gas or electric coil stovetop to get to temperature, but not so with an induction stovetop.
If you’re used to putting a pan on the stove to heat up while you’re preparing food, with an induction stovetop, this can cause a lot of burnt food if you’re not used to it.
Can be difficult to master the temperature control
When cooking with traditional stovetops cooks will judge the height of the flame and/or the settings low, medium and high to get the right temperature rather than a particular degree.
This can be tricky at first, so be prepared to be diligent to what you’re doing the first few times you use an induction cooktop.
An induction cooktop is made of glass and ceramic materials, making them very easy to clean up. However, they’re also easy to scratch and require specialized cleaning products to prevent damage.
The one benefit of a gas cooktop is that you can still cook food when the power goes out. Not so with an induction cooktop, so if power outages are common in your area, keep this in mind.
You can’t use just any type of cookware with an induction cooktop. They work by creating a magnetic field, so they need cookware with magnetic and/or highly conductive materials in order to work with, such as cast iron, iron or stainless steel.
Unless you already have these types of cookware, you can add on more cost to purchase products that work with an induction stovetop.
While not horrible, induction cooktops create a magnetic field that makes a buzzing or humming sound when you use it.
The more pots you’re using, the louder the noise will be.
Finally, induction cooktops are more expensive than their gas or electric counterparts.
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