As with most things in life, there are both pros and cons of induction cooking. Some love it, some don’t, and others aren’t even sure what it is. No matter what your thoughts, induction cooking is quickly sweeping through the latest kitchen designs – and it does not show any sign of stopping.
Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of induction cooking – and, of course, discover what it even is.
What is induction cooking?
Induction cooking is a method in which a magnetic field works to heat up the metal cookware without actually heating the surface. Although it looks like a typical glass cooktop, it is so much more. Underneath the surface, you will find a coil that has an electric current.
Once a pan or pot is placed on the burner, the magnetic field helps generate smaller electrical currents in the pan’s metal, heating it up. In turn, it begins cooking your food.
Pro: The Surface of an Induction Cooktop is Cool to the Touch
Safety is always a big factor when it comes to kitchen appliances – especially the stove. Many children and pets are injured with burns every year due to the stove. Whether touching the burner or stovetop while it is turned on or while there is simply residual heat, the burn is still the same.
One of the biggest pros of induction cooktops is the fact that the surface never gets hot. So, no matter when your child – or pet – touch the burner or cooktop, there is a zero chance that he or she will suffer from a burn as the surface remains cool to the touch.
Con: You Need to Be Careful About Leaving it On
One of the biggest complaints over the years with induction cooktops is that it is difficult to see when it is on. With traditional cooktops, you will see either a flame or an orange glow, but due to its cooking method, you will not see any of this with an induction cooktop. Granted, the surface will not get hot, but you are wasting energy.
Manufacturers have started adding an orange glow to induction cooktops to simulate a typical cooktop – and signal that it is turned on. Not all models offer this.
Pro: Induction Cooking is Faster
Did you know that induction cooktops can cook faster than any other option? Induction cooking is faster than cooking with traditional gas cooktops.
Electric cooktops have to wait for the elements to heat the burner and then the burner, in turn, must heat the cookware which will ultimately cook your food.
Gas cooktops cook a bit faster, heating with a flame, rather than heating a burner. However, the heat from the flame is still not enough to outweigh the quick cooking efforts of an induction cooktop.
Con: You Need Induction Ready Cookware
Because induction cooking works with a magnet field, it is important to utilize the proper cookware. You need to use metals that are able to use this magnetic current to heat the pot or pan. You are in luck if your current cookware has magnetic bottoms. If it does not, however, you are going to be looking at the expense of purchasing new cookware.
Related: What is induction ready cookware?
Pro: Precise Cooking and Temperature Control
While using an electric cooktop, have you ever turned the burner off and left your pan sitting on it? If so, then you know what happens – your food continues to cook because the burner is hot. This won’t happen with an induction cooktop.
First, the cooktop itself is cool. And yes, this includes the area under the hot cookware. Plus, once you turn the burner off, the magnetic field dissipates and there is no current reaching the pan to cause it to heat and cook.
Overall, induction cooktops make it easier to manage your cooking temperatures.
Con: Induction Cooktops Aren’t the Most Economical.
Induction cooktops have a lot of positive cooking experiences to offer kitchens everywhere. They are new to the market and are found mostly in high-end designs. And, for this reason, you will find that induction cooktops cost more than your average cooktop.
Pro: The Most Energy-efficient Cooktop
While it may cost more initially to purchase an induction cooktop, you can actually save money over time by choosing this type of cooktop instead of a gas or electric option.
Take a moment to think about the heat that gets produced when you cook in your kitchen. Every time you turn on your stove, whether gas or electric, it heats the surface, your cookware, and your kitchen. If you have a well-ventilated range hood, you may be able to cut down on the amount of heat in your kitchen, but typically some will be felt. As a result, the cooling system in your home will have to work overtime to cool your kitchen down.
Now, imagine an induction cooktop that does not heat the cooktop. There is no real output of heat – so nothing to necessarily heat up your kitchen. The result? Your cooling system will continue to function as normal.
Over time, this simple change between the various types of cooktops can allow you to save money on energy costs.
Induction cooktops have been around for many years in Europe. But, as they begin to infiltrate the U.S. market, you will likely learn more and more about the benefits that they provide. You will also see that these benefits far outweigh the cons that may surface.
So, if you would love a cooktop that offers you precise heating control, a safe and cool surface, a fast cooking method, and one that is energy efficient, then you should consider all the other pros that come with adding an induction cooktop to your kitchen.