The best electric cooktops offer incredible convenience at relatively affordable prices. The flat cooking surface doubles as an auxiliary countertop, and they’re extremely easy to clean. Best of all, electric cooktops are also remarkably consistent, taking all the guesswork out of cooking.
That said, electric cooktops also vary substantially with respect to both quality and price. After considerable research, and adding up all the pros and cons to each model, we’ve put together a definitive list of the 5 best electric cooktops currently on the market.
This ECOTOUCH 30 inch electric cooktop is a very powerful, very affordable electric cooktop, and a great option if you’ve just started designing your kitchen. That may sound odd, but I’ll explain exactly why I mention this in a few short paragraphs.
To start off, let’s cover all things power. First, this cooktop operates on a 208 ~ 240V/60Hz power supply, super common for large kitchen appliances these days, but something to make note of – you can’t plug this thing into a normal outlet. If you don’t have a 208 ~ 240V power supply already (most new developments do, older buildings might not) you’ll need to hire an electrician to install one for you.
The nice thing about these outlets is that they support higher power machines, and this ECOTOUCH is no exception. It’s pretty powerful, with a combined 6800 watts of output, distributed across four burners. Two of these are dual burners, meaning you can alternatively increase or restrict the size of their footprint, while the other two are fixed, standard size.
Each burner is controlled by a single digital control panel sliding scale, which you can use to adjust both time and temperature. The temperature is adjustable to nine different power levels, perfect for everything from a slow simmer to a roaring boil.
The only issue I have with the sliding scale is that the panel itself has 14 notches, which seems to arbitrarily indicate temperature increase, while the power levels, as I’ve stated earlier, are on a 1 – 9 scale. Why the notches wouldn’t correspond perfectly with the power levels is beyond me, but to be clear, this doesn’t affect performance in any way, just a design quirk.
Installation is pretty easy also, given the 4.9 foot power cord, which is long enough to give you a bit of wiggle room. Be advised though, this “30” cooktop is not quite 30 inches, smaller in fact, and as such you will either need to fill in gaps along the edges with trim or silicone beading.
This is what I was referring to above when I mentioned “starting to design your kitchen,” because if you haven’t yet measured and cut your countertop, then there’s no problem. Just be forewarned about these measurements if you’re buying this to fit into an already existent cut out.
Finally, the ECOTOUCH is full of great safety features, which I’d say are pretty important for something that gets this hot. These include overheating protection, a hot surface indicator to prevent accidental burns, child locks and an automatic shutoff.
The first thing that I have to say about this General Electric, 36 inch electric cooktop is that it’s simply stunning. I just had to get that out of the way, though I realize that it’s not particularly helpful, and I’m sorry. But aesthetically, it’s just so cool.
The GE JP5036DJBB is large and in charge. The 36 inch width and just under 20 inch depth creates a sizable cooking surface that easily fits five burners, some of which are themselves quite large.
Let’s start with the central burner, since it’s by far the largest and most powerful. Named the “Power Boil Tri-Ring,” this burner can be adjusted to three different sizes, creating an expanded footprint with each additional ring. This burner also puts out up to 3000 watts, making it by far the hottest burner on this stove.
Next, there is another adjustable burner in the lower right hand corner. This “Power Boil Dual-Ring” burner is similar to the central burner, but expands with two rings rather than three, and puts out a maximum 2400 watts, which is still plenty strong. Additionally, there are three more burners in the top right, top left, and lower right hand corners, putting out 1200 watts (x2) and 1500 watts, respectively.
One of the things that I really like about this cooktop is the fact that the digital power control has different controls for each burner. While separate controls might appear cluttered, I ultimately find them to be easier and quicker to use than single panels. That said, the controls make annoying beeps when adjusting for time and temperature, and this seems to be a feature that cannot be turned off.
Each burner can be adjusted to nine different power levels (beyond the size adjustments on the central and lower right hand burners, as discussed above) and on top of that there are plenty of cool features like warmer and melt settings, control locks, and of course, a hot surface indicator.
While this electric cooktop is large, powerful, and loaded with features, it also comes with a significant price tag. The GE JP5036DJBB is definitely the best electric cooktop on the market, but for this price you might want to start looking at induction cooktops. They won’t necessarily be better than this GE, but if you’re shopping in this price range you might as well explore all your options.
The second General Electric electric cooktop on this list, the JP3030DJBB is a 30 inch model with a few notable deviations from the larger 36 inch model above. Besides the obvious size difference, this 30 inch model is also more of an economy option, with fewer special features.
Let’s take a minute to cover the layout of this range before going into detail on specific features. There are four burners, two large and two small, positioned opposite one another, with a line of control dials down the right edge.
In the top left and lower right hand corners are two 8 inch “Power Boil” burners, which can put out a combined 5000 watts. And in the lower left and top right hand corners there are two 6 inch burners, capable of putting out a combined 2400 watts. The positioning of these burners, alternating as they are, is actually quite smart, since it prevents bigger pans that might bump into one another from being placed side by side.
Unlike some of the more expensive electric cooktops, this range is controlled with dials, rather than a digital touchpad. While the dials are made from a relatively cheap plastic, they are also extremely easy to use, heating the elements across nine different power levels, from low, “keep warm” and “melt” settings all the way through “power boil.”
Although the dials are relatively cheap, most people don’t realize that this is an easily replaceable and customizable item. Just check out these stainless steel replacement knobs that I used to switch out the dials in my own kitchen; it was the best $9 I’ve ever spent.
Lastly, while the JP3030DJBB doesn’t have loads of extra features, it’s quite affordable, coming in at just over half of some of the other electric cooktops on this list. And of course, this is still a General Electric product, which always counts for something.
This NOXTON built-in electric cooktop isn’t going to win any awards for pushing the technological envelope, but it might just be the best electric cooktop for small spaces. Whether you’ve got a small studio apartment or looking to outfit your cabin, look no further than NOXTON.
I like this stove because it’s incredibly compact, and sometimes that’s just what you need. 23 inches across and just 20.5 inches deep, this cooktop still comfortably fits four burners. Like the General Electric cooktop above, this NOXTON positions its burners in an asymmetrical, alternating pattern, which prevents big pans from bumping into one another if they were to be placed side by side.
These big burners, by the way, put out a maximum of 1800 watts, while the smaller burners put out a maximum of 1200 watts a piece. Each set puts out pretty decent heat, though these are certainly not the most powerful burners we’ve seen. Again, this is a small stovetop, designed for small kitchens.
Despite the small size and affordability though, I do quite like that the control is still digital. Ceramic top electric stovetops are so valuable because they’re flat, and can thus be used as auxiliary countertops. In my opinion, anything other than a digital control (something that preserves the flatness of the cooktop) kind of spoils that, and defeats the purpose.
While the NOXTON is relatively slow to heat up – again, think small, compact, efficient, but not as powerful as the full sized GE – it still has everything you’ll need to prepare fantastic meals. Each burner can be adjusted to nine power levels, and in terms of safety, the stove is equipped with child safety locks and a hot surface indicator.
Lastly, one of the best things about this stove is actually what it doesn’t have, and that’s a loud, annoying beep. You know what I’m talking about, those beeps that wake up the house when you’re trying to sneak in a late night snack. Those jarring digital beeps that startle anyone not used to them. This thing may purr, but otherwise, it’s silent.
If the NOXTON electric cooktop above is perfect for small spaces like studio apartments and cabins, then this Cusimax hot plate electric stove is the right choice for dorm rooms. Well, to be honest, it’s also great in small apartments and cabins as well. And perhaps even more conveniently, the Cusimax hot plate functions as a fantastic auxiliary cooktop if your regular stove is getting crowded.
This thing crushes it in terms of convenience. It’s portable, powerful, and extremely easy to use. The 120V power supply means you can plug it in anywhere, and the power output ranges from 100 to 1500 watts, which is even more powerful than some of the built-in stoves above. Impressive!
Aesthetically, the Cusimax is also pretty sleek. I really like the contrast of black glass with stainless steel, and the glow of red when it heats up is actually pretty cool. The handles on each side are also extremely solid and convenient.
The Cusimax is operated through an easy-to-use digital touch control that lines the outer edge of the appliance. There are modes for normal cooking as well as for soup, along with a timer and automatic shutoff, all clearly labeled.
One downside, the power cord is only three feet long, which limits mobility once plugged in. That said, because this thing is portable, you can alway just move it to your closest power supply.
And on the plus side, Cusimax offers an 18 month warranty with a free replacement in the event of quality issues or defects!