Pros and Cons of Induction Cooktops
there are many subjective arguments for and against induction cooktops. here we have tried to gather the main comments we have seen, and add in a few of our own thoughts. If you disagree, please do add your comments to our forum
Pros of Induction Cooktops
Induction cookers do a decent job of replicating the output of gas. They are quick to heat up and cool down. you can quickly adjust the heat applied to the pan of food or liquid.
The higher temperature and efficiency of the powerful burners on various induction units allow for much faster boiling for large pans of water.
Induction cooktops provide a very efficient transfer of energy from the cooktop to the pan.
Induction cooktops are easier to clean because the cooking surface does not get hot - nothing burns onto the cooking surfaces.
On a related note, anecdotal evidence around the web suggests that cookware cleanup is easier with induction, particularly cooked liquids. Boiling liquids do not create as much crust on the side of the pan at the liquid line- can only guess that this is because all heat is generated from the bottom of the pan and that there is no residual fire/heat enveloping the sides of the pan.
The kitchen does not get as hot - there is an noticeable difference in ambient heat when using induction- think about standing by a gas range when boiling a pot of waterand you will feel a lot of heat in the air. With induction, you see the water boiling but feel no ambient heat unless you put your hand directly over the pot.
You can cook any type of food on an induction cooktop that you could with regular electric or gas. The only difference with induction cooking is the mechanism for making the pan hot.
You get fantastic temperature control, especially when simmering sauces or other hard to control dishes. Yes, you have to change from the mind set of look at the flame with gas, but an induction cooktop can have as many as 16 power level settings, rather than the usual 6 or 8 on many other forms of electric cooktop.
Safer with children around, as the cooktop almost never gets hot enough to burn anyone
No more burned potholders or towels. no more melted plastic pasta spoons(don't ask).
I hear that you can layer paper towel or newspaper under my pots and pan WHILE frying to make cleanup even easier. (A tip I read on a the gardenweb forum and one I must try- thanks!).
Cons of Induction Cooktops
The cookware used for induction cooking must be magnetic metal. If a magnet will stick to the bottom, the pan will work. Stainless steel and cast iron are good choices, but aluminum, copper, and glass will not work. Suitable cookware with non-stick coatings are also OK to use.
That flat-on-flat feel is annoying when sauteeing anything.
Your kitchen needs to have an adequate electrical circuit to power the cooktop –check the manufacturers notes and ask your electrician if you are not certain. Mostly you should be OK on this but do check!
Noise – some manufacturers freestanding units have fans built in to keep the components cool – and even built in cooktops requires this. Then again so does your PC or laptop. It is such a subjective ‘con’ that I was hesitant to include it, but in the interest of full disclosure I have done so. On the cooktops I have tried this was not an issue at all.
Initial cost - they are more expensive than some other cooktops but in our opinion worth it. The costs have been coming down.