Glass stoves have more recently become an important part of almost every kitchen. Not only do they give a sleek and stylish look to your kitchen but their smooth surface also offers ease of use and cleaning. Electric stoves are available in different shapes and sizes and to cook properly on each one of them, we need pans and pots.
Especially if you’ve recently transitioned from the conventional induction cooktop or gas range to an electric stove, you will realize that you need special pans to use on the electric cooktop. Why exactly do you need to invest in the best pans for your electric stoves? Well, for one, using utensils compatible with your cooking appliance will ensure its longevity. Secondly, the best pans for electric stoves make your cooking experience relatively hassle-free.
The cookware set that is the most ideal for your electric stove is the one that has a solid build, non stick, non-scratch features, is durable, and has a long useful life. In addition, the best pans for your electric stove are good conductors of heat and therefore, transfer the heat evenly. They are also lightweight. Depending upon your needs and budget, you can choose from a wide variety of pans that are compatible with your electric stove.
There are several do’s and don’ts when purchasing the best electric pans for your electric stove. In the article that follows, we shall discuss in further detail the materials that work best with electric stoves, the number of pieces that are ideal for your use, and which materials you should not be used on your electric stoves. Let’s get started.
Things To Know About The Best Pans For Electric Stoves
There are certain points that come in as absolute essentials when buying a pan for your electric stove. Some of the most important points that need to be remembered have been listed below.
Flat Bottoms Are Essential
The most well-suited choice of pans for an electric stove are the ones that have a flat bottom that perfectly fits on the stove and therefore, cook meals without wasting a considerable amount of heat. Using a pan with a flat bottom will ensure that your food will be cooked faster and the cookware will not be scratching the surface of the stove. This, in turn, helps with preparing soups, stews, etc.
Match The Pan To The Burner
When you plan on cooking on an electric stove, make sure you opt for a pan that’s more or less similar in size to the circle on the cooktop of your burner. Note that any part of the cookware that is not positioned appropriately on the burner will not heat up. Consequently, the food you’re preparing won’t be cooked to perfection unless you constantly stir it.
Don’t Use Untreated Cast Iron Cookware
Untreated cast iron has a rough surface that can easily scratch the glass surface of the electric stove. You can always opt for cast iron that is coated with porcelain enamel given that the finish on the button of the pan is smooth and therefore, will not cause any damage to the glass surface.
Avoid Glass Or Stoneware
You should never use glass or stoneware pans on electric stoves even if you’ve been told by the cookware manufacturer that they are safe to use. Using pans made out of these materials will simply scratch the surface and will, therefore, not heat evenly.
Check For Induction Compatibility
If your electric stove is equipped with induction burners, you will have to buy some special cookware. If you want to check the compatibility, you can follow a simple method. Take a magnet and bring it close to the bottom of the pan. If the magnet sticks, then you’re good to go.
What To Look For In Pans For Electric Stove?
Several factors need to be taken into consideration before purchasing a pan for your electric stove. Whether you want the pan to suffice for only two people or a large family, whether you wish to buy a pan with durable material or one that offers ease of cleaning are some of the questions that need to be well accounted for before making the choice for the perfect pan for your electric stove.
It is worthwhile to note that not every material is an ideal option for cooking on an electric stove. The material of the pans will determine their potential to conduct, distribute, as well as hold the heat. However, the most compatible pots and pans for an electric stove are the ones that are made from carbon steel, aluminum, copper, and cast iron.
You can go for pans made out of stainless steel if you’re considering options that are both durable and offer ease of use. However, note that in the absence of sufficient cooking oil, delicate foods such as eggs are likely to stick to the bottom of the surface. Likewise, pans made out of cast iron can last forever if they’re treated with proper care and maintenance. Remember that cast iron pans can not be used for the preparation of acidic food items and require regular seasoning to maintain proper condition.
If you were to choose the best material of pans for electric stoves, it’d undoubtedly be stainless steel. Not only are these pans durable but also retain their color for a long period of time. In addition, stainless steel pans heat quickly and evenly throughout. To improve performance, stainless steel pans are often made by mixing other materials such as copper or aluminum. Stainless steel pans are known for their versatility. They can cook different varieties of food ranging from acidic to alkaline. Additionally, stainless steel utensils can simply be loaded into the dishwasher for cleaning purposes.
Stainless steel pans are especially well-suited for cooking food items that stick to the surface of the pans and as a result, burn. Cookware that is the best fit for electric stoves is the one that’s a combination of easy maintenance, high durability, and ease of cleaning. Luckily enough, stainless steel possesses all these features and much more.
The only demerit of using stainless steel pans is that food items that are delicate and tender, such as fish fillets or eggs usually stick to the cooking surface. However, such instances can be avoided by using a large amount of cooking oil.
Hard Anodized Aluminum
While pans and pots for electric stoves derived from aluminum are one of the best options, aluminum leaves off residue. As a result, aluminum is blended with a variety of other metals to form hard anodized aluminum. The aluminum pans that result from this process are not only a healthy option for cooking but also act as good conductors of heat as compared to a number of other materials. In addition, these pans work magnificently well on electric stoves and therefore, emerge as one of the best materials for making pans and pots for electric stoves. Remember that aluminum pans must be washed by hand and not in a dishwasher.
Cookware made out of copper is an excellent conductor of heat. Consequently, they have a useful application on an electric stove. Cooking with copper cookware also eliminates the likelihood of hot spots. However, a major drawback of copper cookware is that they’re expensive and require high maintenance. They tarnish relatively easily and might even stain the glass surface of your electric stoves. Furthermore, pure copper tends to retain a lot of heat and definitely makes up heavy utensils. Although they are a great option when it comes to cooking stews or other such food items, they take a long period of time to heat up and are not a well-recommended option for frying.
Cast iron is an ideal option when it comes to cooking steaks or searing vegetables on an electric stove. If you want to invest in a pan that has a long useful life, pans made out of cast iron are the most-recommended options. Cast iron pans don’t have any coating on them and if maintained well, they can be passed over from one generation to another as family heirlooms. Although it is one of the best items to make pans and pots for electric stoves, it is heavier as compared to aluminum pans and stainless steel and also does not offer a smooth surface.
Consequently, it might not be the most recommended option for an electric stove with a glass top because there are strong chances that it can scratch or break the stove. However, it can easily be used for an electric coil stove. You can even opt for enameled cast iron cookware because it has a smooth surface that doesn’t cause any damage to your electric cooktop.
Cast iron pans can cook various food items, including steaks, fries, burger patties, cutlets, pork chops, mozz sticks, and every other thing that has to be fried in oil, but they’re not a suitable option for acidic foods. This is because the reaction of the acid with the metal surface causes the food item to leach and thereafter, give off a metallic taste.
Number Of Pieces
Now, the number of pieces required in your electric stove pans is dependent upon a number of factors, such as how many people you are going to cook for, what is the size of your kitchen, and how often you use an electric stove to make your meals.
So, if you prepare meals for a family of four or more, then an ideal option for you would be to go for a complete set of electric stove pans which are usually 17-piece or 14-piece. On the other hand, if you plan to make meals for only one or two people, a 5-piece set of pots and pans will be an ideal option for you. Note that the number of pieces you go for should be chosen after taking into consideration your storage space as well.
What Pans To Use On An Electric Stove?
The best pans to use on an electric stove are the ones that are made out of hard anodized cookware, copper, cast iron, or stainless steel.
Stainless steel pans are a budget-friendly and lightweight option. They can also be bonded with aluminum to enhance their ability to act as a good conductor of heat. Similarly, aluminum is a good conductor of heat and an inexpensive option. However, exposing aluminum pans to high temperatures can leave off a residue. Nonetheless, anodized aluminum pans are a good option to prevent such an occurrence.
Although cast iron and copper are heavy materials and therefore might scratch the glass surface, the properties offered by both these materials can’t be ignored. You can easily use pans made out of copper or cast iron on an electric coil cooktop to enjoy their desirable traits.
Do All Pans Work With Electric Stove?
Generally, all types of pans are compatible with smooth-top or coil-top radiant electric stoves. However, if you’re talking about induction stoves, they only work well when operated using ferromagnetic cooking vessels.
What Pans Should Not Be Used On An Electric Stove?
Ceramic or glass cookware is not a recommended option for electric stoves. These pans might scratch the surface of the electric stove, thereby resulting in poor performance. Since glass is a poor conductor of heat, it will take a long period of time to cook anything in glass cookware and such pans might also require constant attention when cooking. In addition, stoneware utensils shouldn’t be used on an electric stove because they might also scratch the glass surface and lead to bad performance.
Therefore, it is evident that the type of cookware you opt for depends on a number of factors. There are plenty of lucrative options available in the market. The choice of the best fit for you, however, depends upon your needs and budget. There are three categories of electric stoves: smooth-top, coil-top, and induction. The type of pans that will work best with your cookware depends upon the type of electric stove that you’re using it on, as well as the way it transfers the heat to your food.