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Electric Cooking

Electric Cooking

What are induction stovetops?

Induction stovetops are an all-electrical cooktop that use induction technology. These stovetops use electromagnetism to send electric pulses into the cookware, heating it directly without heating the surrounding surfaces. This also allows for rapid rises and drops in temperature, making induction stovetops an appealing alternative to the traditional gas stove. This technology is a safe and efficient way to cook your food quickly without polluting your home with gas appliances.     

Induction stoves are often confused with electric glass stovetops. There are several ways to distinguish between an electric stove and induction stove: heating times, methods of heating, and stove top surface heat.

The electromagnetic heating property of induction stoves does come with a caveat:  your cookware must be magnetic for the stovetop to work efficiently. Pots and pans made of magnetic stainless steel, iron, or nickel will work with induction stove technology. Glass, copper, aluminum, and ceramic pots and pans won’t work with induction stoves. Check the bottom of your pan to see if the material it’s made of is listed. Test if your cookware is compatible with an induction stove by placing a magnet on it – if it sticks, it’ll work on an induction stove.

Factors to consider when picking out an induction stovetop for your home:

  • Power rate of the cooktop;
  • Pan size of the cooktop;
  • Safety features (i.e., auto-pan detection);
  • Portability of the cooktop; and
  • Cord type (i.e., 4-prong cord)

Disclaimer: Individuals with pacemakers are advised to stay at least two feet away from induction stoves while in use. The electromagnetic fields from the stove can interfere with the function of the pacemaker.

What is an electric stove?

Conventional electric stovetops use heat-producing elements to generate heat beneath a glass surface or through coils. The heat transferred onto the glass surface or through the coils heats the cookware placed on top of it.

Because electric stoves heat the cookware indirectly through the surface of the stovetop, they are compatible with all cookware. If you are indifferent to faster cooking times, and want to continue cooking with your existing cookware, an electric range is a great option.

Modern day electric stovetops with a glass cover can look very similar to induction ranges. Here are a few ways to distinguish between the two:

  • Color: Induction stoves will not glow red when heating up. Conventional electric stovetops will.
  • Cookware Material: If your cookware is made of a non-magnetic material, it will not work on an induction stovetop, but it will on an electric range.
  • Surface Test: When cooking, if the surrounding surface on your stove top is hot, it is likely a conventional electric stovetop.
  • Time: if you can boil water in under 2 minutes, it is likely an induction stove.

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