If you are looking to replace your old gas cooktop with a shiny new electric one, you're in the right place. The best electric cooktops are more energy efficient, cleaner and also safer to use than their gas counterparts. This guide will show you the best electric cooktops on the market, whether you are on a tight budget, have a small kitchen, or a large family.
Electric induction cooktops utilize induction heating to warm pots and pans, rather than heating the surface of your cooktop. They are more energy efficient than others as they transfer heat and energy directly to your cookware. They also cool much down much quicker, greatly reducing the risk of burns - this makes them a great choice for families with small children.
Electric cooktops with a centralized heat source transfer heat to the surface which then heats your cookware. They take longer to cool down after being turned off, which can be a benefit as the residual heat can be used to keep cooking food or keep it warm without using any energy.
Both types of electric stoves are completely smooth and flat and are much easier to clean than gas cooktops. Many of them now also come with automatic shutoff and other safety features. For example, a lot of them detect objects on their surface and will switch off automatically if needed - so you don't need to worry about setting your favorite washcloth on fire!
Some high-end cooktops also have a number of smart features such as Wi-Fi control for slow cooking and stewing - great for keeping an eye on your dish without having to leave the comfort of your couch.
The bigger the cooktop, the more burners you have. The majority of the cooktops in our guide have 5 burners, which is more than enough for a family and perfect for hosting guests.
If electric cooktops aren't what you're looking for, then be sure to check out our guides to the best induction cooktops or the best gas ranges.
The best electric cooktops
The LG LCE3010SB measures only 30 inches wide, but its compact size nonetheless includes an abundance of helpful cooking and safety features, and it looks terrific.
This ceramic glass cooktop gives you five heating elements including one with multiple heating rings. These include six inch, seven inch and eight inch standard burners, a dual burner that can expand from six to nine inches, and a six inch warming burner.
With so many heating areas, you can use different sized pans and easily cook a variety of foods at different temperatures at the same time. The touch pad controls are arranged in a semi-circle in the central front part of the cooktop and each control area has its own semi-circle of indicators that shows the temperature setting. On the left, you’ll find the “warm” and “child lock” controls.
It has valuable safety features such as a child lock to help prevent youngsters from getting burned, a hot surface indicator and an automatic shut-off function, which is not often found on electric cooktops. If you turn the power on and do not select a burner (LG calls them “cooking zones”) within 15 seconds, this cooktop will automatically turn the heat off to protect you and your kitchen.
- Read our LG LCE3010SB Electric Cooktop review (opens in new tab)
You may be thinking that the Samsung NZ36K7570RG doesn’t have much of an edge on the other five-burner models in our rankings. However, this isn’t the case, as this particular electric cooktop hits the mark due to its incredibly versatile design.
Firstly, the Samsung NZ36K7570RG has two burners with bridge elements so that you can bring larger pans into play by connecting the two elements. Then, things feel extra roomy as two of the other burners are expandable so that you can swap between six or nine inches.
Also in its favor, the Samsung NZ36K7570RG has an impressive 15 heat settings and WiFi compatibility, which allows you to cleverly snoop on your food from elsewhere. Plus, it’s a family-friendly pick, as the cooktop has a child lock and hot surface indicator light.
- Read our Samsung NZ36K7570RG Electric Cooktop review (opens in new tab)
Decked out with a downdraft, the KitchenAid KCED606GBL Electric Cooktop eliminates the trouble of ventilation as you won’t need to fork out on a separate hood. While it’s not exactly cheap, this handy appliance is one step ahead of other cooktops that don’t have the added convenience of a downdraft.
With the KitchenAid KCED606GBL Electric Cooktop, you’ll also be well-set to simmer away fairly large dishes, as the cooktop has an expandable burner that can make enough room for a 12-inch pot or pan.
The cooktop also takes safety pretty seriously, which is especially handy if you’ve got children pottering around the house. This includes a warning light, so you’ll know if there’s any heat lingering around the surface.
- Read our KitchenAid KCED606GBL Electric Downdraft Cooktop review (opens in new tab)
While easy on the wallet, the budget-friendly Frigidaire FFEC3025UB is far from basic. It only has four burners but it also has some of the frills you’d get with higher-end cooktops, including a Quick Boil setting and one burner backed by 3,000 watts of power.
The burners are where a lot of the action is at when it comes to the Frigidaire FFEC3025UB because there are seven heat settings per burner and the cooktop’s largest burner can be tweaked between six and nine inches.
You won’t have to fret about the cooktop not being the perfect fit for your kitchen either, as the Frigidaire Fit Promise takes care of any costs up to $100. This scheme will put things right if the appliance doesn’t quite fit right, another cost-friendly benefit for an already budget-friendly cooktop.
- Read our Frigidaire FFEC3025UB Electric Cooktop review (opens in new tab)
If you want to cook in oval or square casserole dishes, or simply keep premade dishes warm, then this cooktop will be a great choice for you. It features two standard circular burners for normal pots or dutch ovens, and 4 rectangular burners for other longer pots. This cooktop will also connect via Bluetooth to your other Samsung appliances such as extractor fans and lights, turning them on and off automatically while you are cooking.
The Samsung NZ30K7880UG is also very easy to clean, with a greaseproof fingerprint-resistant surface that can be wiped down with a damp cloth and basic cleaning solutions - ideal for when you have been cooking something messy that leaves debris all over your cooktop. It has Virtual Flame technology which uses LEDs to shine light onto pots to give them the visual effect of a gas cooker, while using precision induction to heat your food.
This cooktop also boasts very impressive efficiency, with 90% of the heat being transferred to cookware (for reference, about 50% of heat is transferred via a conventional gas cooktop and about 70% with a conventional electric cooktop). Another impressive feature that is worth mentioning is the controls. With the Samsung NZ30K7880UG, you can choose between removable magnetic knobs or digital touch controls for ultimate flexibility - the removable knobs also help with the cleaning process making it super easy to wipe down.
The GE Profile has a simple, intuitive design. It has five burners with 11 heat settings as well as a triple element that can reach 800 degrees Fahrenheit for fast boiling. The controls are easy to access and use, and the burners have graphic representations on each button.
This cooktop has dual burners that bridge to let you cook evenly on a griddle. Also, each of its burners has an individual timer to help you track cook times for multiple dishes simultaneously. After you finish cooking, a heat indicator light stays on until the burners cool.
To protect young children, the GE Profile has a control lock, which likewise gives you burn-protected counter space when the cooktop isn’t being used. This cooktop has a clean, modern look. Although it’s more expensive than many of the cooktops we reviewed, its versatility and ease of use make it an excellent buy.
- Read our GE Profile PP9036SJSS Electric Cooktop review (opens in new tab)
The GE JP3021DPBB is designed for smaller kitchens, with a compact 21-inch surface. This cooktop features only two burners on a small ceramic-glass panel with ribbon heating elements. While two burners don't sound like a lot compared to other cooktops on this list, it is enough for singles or couples with a small kitchen and not a lot of mouths to feed.
The burners are ribbon heating elements, paired with the glass surface to provide speedy, even heating. While also aiding heating, the ceramic-glass cooktop surface is quick and easy to clean, with a quick spray and a wipe down with a damp cloth being enough to leave it spotless.
The cooktop features standard knobs for controlling the heat, and indicator lights to let you know when the cooktop is on or hot. It also comes with a one-year parts and labor warranty in case anything goes wrong or gets broken.
The Cafe CHP95302MSS is a great cooktop for experienced home cooks. This cooktop features a melt setting for butter and chocolate - you can ditch the glass bowl on top of hot water technique and still have silky smooth melted chocolate without any burnt bits. The rapid, precise heat control allows you to make a number of your favorite dishes, with four induction elements for maximum cooking potential.
This cooktop also comes with "Gourmet Guided Cooking" where you can sync your cooktop with videos as it automatically adjusts the temperature and cooking time for perfect results as you follow the cooking guides. This works alongside the WiFi connectivity, which allows you to control your cooktop from your phone so that you can switch it off or change the temperature without leaving the comfort of your couch.
It also features a multi-element timer so you can manage all the elements of your meal at once and set several pots to finish cooking at different times. If you have a dutch oven or extra large pot that you want to use, then you can group several parts of the cooktop to heat together evenly, ideal for batch cooking.
What to look for in the best electric cooktops
Number of burners
If you cook for lots of people, or simply love to get plenty of good food ready, then a five-burner cooktop would no doubt be just right for you. However, if you don’t use that many pans, four burners could easily do the job – typically for less money. Frequently, good-quality electric cooktops have double- or triple-burner cooktops, meaning rings-within-rings of elements that heat up as needed when you set the controls. These work well to fit the type of pan you’re using on that particular burner.
An especially popular feature is the bridge, which is a heating area that links two burners and can be used to cook foods in long, oval roasting pans, or for use with grills or griddles. It also makes cooking easy when you have multiple cooking settings for heat levels and preset temperatures for favorite dishes. A burner with a fast boil feature can be very helpful as can a simmer burner.
Most of the cooktops in our lineup have control locks to render the cooktop unusable, so a curious child can’t turn it on when you’re not around. Most cooktops have glowing burners that mimic a coiled burner, so there is no mistaking when it is hot, but this goes away when you turn off the burner, even if it’s still hot.
It’s therefore important to have heat indicator lights to let you know when it is safe to touch, especially if you have kids around. It helps to have controls positioned in front of the burners so you don’t have to reach across hot burners to get to them.
We reviewed cooktops ranging in price from under $700 to more than $1,400. Although many consumers look for units priced below $300, these cheaper cooktops don’t have as many burners, settings and features as our favorite models. If you’re looking for a cooktop on the highest end, expect to spend up to $3,500.
Electric cooktops FAQs
What are the different types of electric cooktops?
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There are two different types of electric cooktops. A radiant-coil electric cooktop and smooth-top model. Here’s what you need to know about each type:
This type of electric cooktop works by passing electricity to heat a spiral of flattened metal which is either positioned inside or suspended over the cooktop surface.
The heat is then sent out in waves through the metal spiral. The heat settings for radiant coil cooktops range from low to high. This type of model is generally more affordable than smooth-top model cooktops.
However, they are a little bit more tricky to keep clean because you will need to carefully remove the spiral to rid any crumbs that may have found their way in.
When it comes to smooth-top electric cooktops, there are two types to choose from: radiant and induction. Much like the radiant coil cooktops, radiant smooth-top cookers operate in a similar way. However, the metal spirals lie under a sleek and smooth ceramic surface, so no crumbs can slip in. This makes smooth top cooktops a lot easier to clean.
Induction smooth-top electric cooktops use electromagnetism to transfer heat to magnetic metal pots and pans. These models tend to be more expensive as they can heat up and cool down much more quickly than other models. But just remember: induction hobs can only be used with the conductive cookware we mentioned above.
What are the most common sizes for electric cooktops, and why does size matter?
Electric cooktops range in size from 15 inch models to 48 inch designs.But the most common electric cooktops are between 30 inches to 36 inches, because they correspond to the most common cabinet widths.
The bigger cooktop, the more burners you can expect to come with the model. A standard cooktop will usually feature four burners and this will enable you to fit four medium-sized pots and pans at any one time. But if you have a large family to cook for, or often use your hob with lots of big pots and pans on the go, you may want to consider a cooktop that comes with more than four burners.
That way, you can cook multiple foods at any one time, without worrying about your pots and pans fitting. Essentially, the size of your electric cooktop matters because it will impact how you cook. You want to strike the balance between functionality and space.
Are electric cooktops easy to clean and maintain?
If your old gas cooktop regularly gathers old cooking oils, fats and other gunk, an electric cooktop may be what you’ve been looking for. With no removable pan support to attract dust and grease, and no burners to take apart and clean, simply wipe your glass-ceramic cooktop down once it’s cooled to keep it clean.
While you can purchase specialist cleaning solutions for electric cooktops, the most straightforward way to clean one is to use a little soap detergent, hot water, and a soft cloth. Wipe away cooking debris, spills and crumbs after cooking (but wait for the cooktop to cool down completely!) for the easiest clean, as dried-on or burnt food is harder to scrape away. A little baking soda paste can help with stubborn spots.
It’s better not to use abrasive pads on your cooktop as these may leave scratches on the surface and even damage your burners. If you have a really stubborn spill that even baking soda can’t lift, use a razor-blade scraper at a 45-degree angle to scrape away the gunk.
For a gleaming surface, buff your cooktop to a high shine with a soft, dry cloth to keep it sparkling clean.