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Induction Cooktop is a wise choice for your modern kitchen to make it efficient and unique. Compare to Gas or Electric cooktops, this technology is based on magnetic induction. The outcome is clean, energy efficient and cool gadget for your modern kitchen. The induction heating is basically the transfer of magnetic energy from a coil of wire into the pot. The pot should be made of the material that has the potential of being magnetically conductive and ferromagnetic.
Induction cooking was present for several years, but recently it has as become more popular. The main reason being the subsequent drop in the price and increase the use of induction cooktops by professional cooks.
Benefits of Induction Cooking
An induction cooktop is heating the cooking pan directly with magnetic induction principle. This is different from traditional electrical coils and gas burning. Since the heat is conducting directly to the cooking vessel, this technology is faster and more energy-efficient.
The top of the stove (usually ceramic glass) stays cool when it is in use and there is no sort of wasted heat or flames generated for cooking. Since no flame or direct heat, the cooking pot will be always free from carbon, or any other kind of dirt and dust.
With an Induction cooker, a great amount of heat is generated in a short time and can be increased continuously. You can cook and boil faster also simmer the temperature with more precision as compared to the traditional cooking methods.
In short, Induction cooker offers a highly efficient, clean, and fast cooking experience. There are a lot of manufacturers are making this product and offering a bunch of cool features. It should be wise to select the required features that match the requirement while you pay from the pocket.
Best Induction Cooktops
Secura 9100MC is a single coil cooktop adopts a modern design. The display panel is LED and the induction cooktop has 15 power levels from 200W to 1800W. You can set cooking temperature from 140℉ to 460℉. You can set a count down timer up to 170 minutes. The saftey fetures includes auto-pan detection, over heat protection, low-high voltage warning, etc. This 1800W induction cooktop offers upto 83% efficianecy. You can buy this single cooktop from Amazon for 70 bucks.
Duxtop 9620LS is a Portable Double Induction Cooktop with LCD. Duxtop offers 20 preset power levels, to select your cooking mode easily. There has seperate temperature and power mode that you can control individually. There are 8 cooking settings to select for quick cook mode selection. You can buy this double cooktop induction cooktop from Amazon for 152 USD.
When you shop for the induction cooktop, check the voltage rating of the induction cooktop. The US version is coming with 110V rate and the European version may be with 220V.
Induction Cooker Power Efficiency
The induction cooktops offer more efficint operation compatred to heat element based cooktop. The induction cooktop offer above 80% efficiency. Since there is no open flame or hot cooking element, there is no heat dessipation outside the cooking pan or the cooktop surface. The induction process produces heat direct on the cookware, that makes induction cooker more efficaient than an electrical cooktop.
Element/Cooktop Power Rating
Most induction cookers rate between 1000-1800W @ 120VAC or 240VAC. The higher power means fast cooking but might be expensive in terms of price and cost of electricity consumption. For 120V supply, if you select a cooker more than 130W, you may need a dedicated high power 20A outlet. If you connect 1800W cooktop to your regular power outlet, you may face frequent pops of your fuse or create a fire hazard. Please be aware of the trade-off between the speed of cooking and the cost of electricity while you chose the element power of the induction cooker.
Induction Cooktop Power Ratings
While you cook certain foods, you may need to control the power to heat the food precisely. The induction cooktops come with power levels that allow you to set the amount of heat that is needed for a particular food. Most of the Induction cooktops come with different power levels that can set while cooking. For example, for an 1800 watts Induction cooker coming with 10 different power levels that range from 200 to 1800 watts to preset while cooking.
Cooking Timer for Induction Cooktop
Just in case, you want to boil or heat something for a while!. Better to choose an Induction cooker with timer feature. You can set the amount of time for which you want to use the induction cooktop and after the time exhausts the cooktop shuts down immediately. Ideally, the cooktops come with a built-in countdown digital timer inheriting 1 min increments that range up to 170 minutes. After the pre-set time, the cooker will turn off automatically. This will stop consuming additional power to save energy and accidental fire.
Induction Cooktop Control Panel
The settings for cooking are available on a digital control panel from where you can access the simple and intuitive controls. The control panel is coming with tiny press buttons or touch panels like the mobile screen. Touch panels are more sophisticated and a little bit expensive compared to press buttons.
Pre-set Cooking Menus for Induction Cooker
Preset menus are defined for certain food, set with defined heat and time for each food. Many modern induction heaters have pre-set cooking menus like the grill, stir, boil, milk, fry, etc,. These menu buttons make your life easy and let you select a fast cook setting rather than adjusting the heat and power for each food every time. In addition to these menus, the control panel has LED/LCD indicators, child lock, timers and pre-set menus that are useful for cooking seamlessly and with ease.
Induction Cooker Portability
Portability is purely a choice, you can get small portable cooktops or fixed ones from the market. A portable induction cooktop can be taken anywhere and used whenever we want to cook. Whether you host a party on your rooftop or in your backyard just carry and place it in the most suitable location to cook.
Capability to Set Temperature Levels
With the help of temperature control, you can cook your food to perfection and avoid any burning or overcooking. There has an ideal cooking temperature for each type of food to avoid losing nutrition and taste. For best results, it is better to get temperature controllable cooktops that are adjustable from 140 to 430 degree Fahrenheit
Induction Cooktop Auto-pan Detection
Induction Cooktops also offer the automatic pan detection feature. This ensures heating is turned off as soon as the cookware is removed from the cooktop. Most of the induction cooktops automatically shut off after removing the pan from the cooktop. This is to make sure less wastage of energy and electricity.
Pot Compatibility of Induction Cooker
This is very important if you are a new user of Induction cooktop. While you select the cooktops, you should be careful with the compatibility of the cooker with pots. The vessel used on the induction cooktop should have either the ferrous bottom or magnetic conducting body. This is to make sure that the heat is conducted with maximum efficiency. These induction cookers are best with the cookware such as stainless steel with a magnetic bottom or cast iron.
To check that your existing cookware is compatible for use, take a magnet and place on the base of the cookware if the magnetic piece sticks well on the cookware bottom, then you are good to go. Normaly, the cookware bottom built with cast iron, iron, magnetic steel, enameled iron, stainless steel manufactured with a magnetic bottom, ferrous bottom will work with induction cooktop. Also the cookware need minumum base size to work with the induction cooktop.
Pan Size for Induction Cooktop
There has minimum and maximum Pan Size supported for induction cooker. If your pot is smaller than the minimum size, the Cooktop will not detect your pan and won’t turn on the coil to heat the pot.
Ideally, the pan size should match the induction cooktop internal coil size (diameter) for maximum efficiency. The more size offers fast heating, but you may lose the portability. The pans are coming near to 10 inches in wide and one must select the size as per the requirement. If you have a 14-inch coil, then the circular hotspot will be about 7 inches in diameter.
Induction Cooktop – Number of Elements
The pan capacity should be decided as the workload and number of people in the house. If you are good at multi-tasking, better to go with at least 2 element cooker that can cook two pots of food at the same time.
If you want to set the induction cooker for primary use in your kitchen, then go for 4 element cooktops. Based on your requirement, you can select Induction cooktops with 1 to 5 pan capacity.
Induction Cooktop Noise
Induction cooking is a noiseless process as the energy generated by the electrical coil is silent and there is no moving part involved. The cooling fan from inside the cooktop may make some noise. Also, the vibration of light weighted vessels be encountered at high power settings.
Now, it is the time to move away from the conventional methods of cooking and cooktops and start over the newer means to make cooking fast and better. Induction cooktop will be a great addition to your kitchen and would be a good decision.