Skip to main content

Best Gas Cooktops

We spent 100 hours investigating a range of high-quality gas cook tops choices to narrow the field to the best 10 models. Of these, our favorite was the Thermador Masterpiece SGSX365FS. Its burners have a good variety of heat outputs so you can boil pasta, simmer a Hollandaise sauce and steam asparagus for a meal, all that the same time. This versatile, well-built gas cooktop can give you year of homecooked meals and is easy to clean.  

Best Overall

Thermador Masterpiece SGSX365FS

Thermador Masterpiece SGSX365FS

Star-shape burners evenly distribute heat
Good burner variety
Very low heat setting for melting and simmering
No child lock
No integrated griddle
Relatively expensive cooktop

The Thermador Masterpiece is a durable gas cooktop with plenty of features. Want an endorsement? Julia Child used a Theramador.

The 36-inch SGSX365FS has two burners that reach 9,100 Btu, two that reach 12,000 Btu, and a large central burner that reaches 18,000 Btu. In addition, Thermador’s trademarked “ExtraLow” setting cycles a burner on and off to keep it at 200 Btu, which is low enough to safely melt chocolate or simmer sauces that curdle at high temperatures. Because of the burners’ wide range of heat outputs, you can simultaneously sear meat, gently simmer an already prepared sauce and cook a variety of other side dishes. The five burners are star-shape, which Thermador says evenly distributes heat so no spots in the pan are cooler or hotter than the rest.

This gas cooktop automatically reignites if the flame goes out. Also, it has continuous grates, so you can move pans from one section to another without lifting them. The grates are dishwasher-safe.

However, the SGSX365FS doesn’t come with a griddle or a child lock. This is also one of the more expensive cooktops out there.

Best Budget

Maytag Dual Stack MGC9536DS

Maytag Dual Stack MGC9536DS

Low-heat burner is especially good for simmering
Burners are sealed
Cooktop can handle big and unusually shaped pans
Integrated griddle not included
No hot surface indicator
Knobs aren’t backlit

The reasonably priced Maytag MGC9536DS doesn't have a lot of extras. However, its basic features work well, and it is easy to clean.

The affordable Maytag MGC9536DS gas cooktop has enough features and a varied enough burner selection to be useful, and you don't pay for the frills found on other models.
One of its five burners reaches up to 5,000 Btu, which is low enough to cook delicate foods like chocolate, which can scorch at higher temperatures. Its hottest burner reaches up to 18,000 Btu, which is hot enough to boil water quickly. The cooktop also has a 12,000 Btu burner and two 9,100 Btu burners. With this assortment of burners, you can heat, boil, sear and simmer simultaneously.

The MGC9536DS’s sealed burners keep spills from dripping below the cooktop surface, so it is easy to clean. In addition, the surface doesn’t have seams for gunk to get trapped in, so you can simply wipe up messes. Also, you can remove the grates and control knobs and wash them in the dishwasher.

Since this is an economy model, it doesn’t come with extras like an integrated griddle, and its knobs aren’t backlit. It also lacks a hot surface indicator, something more expensive gas cooktops include.

Most Burners

THOR Kitchen HRT3618U

THOR Kitchen HRT3618U

It has six burners
THOR Kitchen includes a two-year warranty
The grates are continuous, so you can slide pans across them
It doesn’t work with a metal wok ring
The burner caps must be washed by hand
You have to purchase a propane conversion kit separately

The THOR Kitchen HRT3618U gas cooktop has six burners – most top-quality gas cooktops have five burners, and budget models usually have four. The sixth burner on this 36-inch cooktop can make a world of difference in your meal preparation.

Two of the cooktop’s burners reach 15,000 Btu and can drop to a very low 650 Btu, three burners reach 12,000 Btu, and one hits an impressive 18,000 Btu. With this burner variety, you can bring water to a rolling boil, heat vegetables and meats in different pans, and simmer a touchy but delectable Béarnaise sauce all at the same time.

All the burners are sealed, and the cooktop has a porcelain drip pan. In addition, the cast iron cooking grates are level, so you can safely slide pans across them. The THOR Kitchen HRT3618U also has an automatic re-ignition feature, and it comes with a two-year warranty.

This cooktop is easy to clean. However, you need to wash the burner caps by hand since they aren’t dishwasher-safe. This gas cooktop uses natural gas but the company sells a propane conversion kit.

Best Ventilation

Kenmore Elite Downdraft 31123

Kenmore Elite Downdraft 31123

The downdraft ventilation system is effective and convenient.
It only has four burners.

The Kenmore Elite 31123 has a couple distinctive features that set it apart from the competition. It has a unique bridge burner that connects the two burners on the left side of the cooktop so you can cook on long griddles and roasting pans or use them as individual burners.

It has a downdraft ventilation system that draws air from above the cooktop into the ducting below via vents on the cooktop’s surface. The fan of the ventilation system helps draw away heavy odors. A downdraft ventilation is convenient for many kitchens because installing a vent hood can be difficult in a small kitchen.

The bridge burner provides 21,000 Btu for plenty of cooking power. There is a simmer burner for gentle heat so you can melt butter or keep food warm. The design of this layout only allows for four burners, while most of the cooktops in our comparison have five.

Best Primary Burner

KitchenAid Pro Dual-Tier KCGS556ESS

KitchenAid Pro Dual-Tier KCGS556ESS

The primary burner lets you simmer, boil water and sear meat.
It has less space than other cooktops we reviewed.

The KitchenAid KCGS556ESS is a uniquely designed gas cooktop with a clean look and a powerful primary burner.

This cooktop has five burners that allow you to do all sorts of cooking tasks, from simmering to boiling and searing. The 6,000 Btu simmer burner has a diffuser plate that lets you control the flame at the lowest setting for precise simmering. The center burner is the crowing feature of this cooktop. It is a 20,000 Btu dual ring burner. You can use a small flame for precise cooking or a dual flame for boiling or searing meat.

While the layout of this cooktop is clean and attractive, it does have less space than many of the other cooktops we reviewed, with burners that are slightly closer together. This unit also has a limited overall feature package. It lacks an integrated griddle, child lock and hot surface indicator, but it is effective at helping you create meals for your family.

Why Trust Us?

We spent 100 hours researching gas cooktops to find the best models, and we kept in mind that cooks define “best” differently. Cooking style, patience for chores like cleaning up and budget vary significantly from person to person, so there isn’t a one-size-fits-all cooktop.

How We Researched

Our extensive reading, viewing, questioning and interviewing produced an abundance of information about gas cooktops. For example, we learned about functionality, extras and even what makes a cooktop attractiveWe compared each model’s specifications against the group, read information on the manufacturers' websites, studied the fine print in manuals, and looked at warranty details to see how long you’re covered if anything goes wrong. We also considered how visually appealing the cooktops are, since they play a prominent role in any kitchen.

Further Information

How Much Does a Gas Cooktop Cost?

You can spend as much for a gas cooktop as an electric one, but there are gas models out there that are much more affordable. The gas cooktops we evaluated start in the $800 range and go up to about $2,000 – and that is pretty representative of the top-selling brands in the industry. You can find gas cooktops for $500 or less, but they don’t have prime features or as much power as higher-priced models.

Why Many Cooks Love Gas Cooktops

Electric cooktops and ranges with glass ceramic burners gained favor when they came on the scene in the 1970s. They heat up quickly, and many consumers liked their sleek, modern appearance. Still, serious food-lovers, home cooks and professional chefs are devoted to their gas cooktops.

Long-time Utah resident Marilyn Pierce, 87, has been cooking since she was 9 years old and has always cooked with gas. She loves the control it gives her over temperature, whether she's making meals or canning produce in the summer. Although some might disagree with her, she's also convinced that gas is a safer cooking method.

"I've never cooked with anything else, but I have seen what people who cook with electricity have to do if a pan is boiling," she said. "They have to move it because turning the heat off underneath a pan – if it's an electric [burner] – it's still hot. You have to move a big, heavy pan, and that's reason enough to cook with gas."

Olga, the author of the blog Olga's Flavor Factory, also favors gas cooktops. She finds them easy to clean and thinks they offer more cooking space and cost less to operate than electric models. She can also do things like roast a pepper right in the burner flames. And she, too, believes a gas cooktop gives her greater control over heat.

"If you want to turn up the heat or turn down the heat, you can do so immediately with a gas cooktop," Olga writes. "If you are using an electric cooktop, it will take some time to adjust. If you have something about to boil over, you will need to take it off the burner, or have an ugly spillage on your hands. With a gas cooktop, all you have to do is turn the knob."

How to Get Your Gas Cooktop Really Clean

Many cooks love cooking with gas, but with open flames and spills and splashes, some burned on grime and grease is inevitable. It helps to wipe everything down on a daily basis, but from time to time, you need to do a bit of extra work to keep your gas cooktop clean and attractive.

It’s best to check the user manual first to see if the manufacturer recommends special detergents or surface cleaning creams. You want to avoid using any cleaning product or cloth that may scratch your expensive cooktop.

Generally, the first step is to remove the grates and soak them in a sink filled with hot water and either dish soap or whatever product the manufacturer recommends. An article on SFGate recommends a 20-minute soak, but if there is a lot of burned-on food, you can leave the grates to soak overnight. You can then use a mesh pad or a cleaning brush to carefully wipe away the loosened dried-on materials, rinse the grates and dry them. 

As you scrape off burned-on messes on the cooktop’s surface, be gentle and use a plastic utensil such as a plastic knife or spatula so you don’t mar the surface. After that, wipe up what you pried off. 

You can scrub the rest of the cooktop using a cloth and a paste made of two parts baking soda and one part water, then rinse it with clear water and dry. A video produced by Sears also recommends cleaning the burner head slots with an old toothbrush and clearing any food clogging the slots with a paperclip, needle or piece of wire. You can also use these tools to clean the ignition port, which is on the side and slightly under the burner head.

Related Guides: