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How to Shop for the Best Induction Cooktop [Buying Guide]

by Pam Silvia

Table of Contents

  1. Best Overall Induction Cooktop
  2. Best Budget Induction Cooktop
  3. Best 30 Inch Induction Cooktop
  4. Best 36 Inch Induction Cooktop
  5. Best Smart Induction Cooktop
  6. Best Luxury Induction Cooktop
  7. Best Two Burner Induction Cooktop
  8. Best Induction Cooktop Brands
  9. What to Consider When Buying an Induction Cooktop
  10. Induction Cooktop FAQs
  11. Where to Buy Induction Cooktops

Looking to step up your culinary game? We say: Induction cooktops are a good place to start. Different from traditional forms of cooking, induction cooking generates heat directly in the pan, meaning that the cooking surface itself is cooler than conventional gas or radiant stoves.

There is also no heat loss when cooking with induction since all of the heat is created in the pan, and the smooth cooktop surface can quickly cool down, making post-dinner cleanup a breeze. In the same way, induction cooktops can heat up quickly, too, and they can be powered off by simply removing the pan from the induction element—without turning a dial or pressing a button.

But best of all, with induction, you have the power to prepare for anything—from weekend breakfasts to grand parties.

Intrigued? Here are our tips for buying the best induction cooktop.

father and daughter have fun flipping pancakes over induction cooktop

Our Top Picks

First, here are some of the best induction cooktops according to product experts:

Best Overall Induction Cooktop

The GE Profile Series 36" Black Induction Cooktop (PHP9036DJBB) allows you to enjoy a new level of rapid, precise heating with a cool-to-the-touch surface that is easy to clean. It’s not hard to see why this GE Profile induction cooktop is our favorite of the bunch: Two 7-inch elements can be controlled simultaneously to evenly heat large cookware or griddles while the pan presence and size sensors heat the size of your pan and automatically shut off when no pan is present.

Priced at a premium cost, this large induction cooktop offers the essentials and a few bells and whistles (e.g., a melt setting, control lock capability, and a built-in kitchen timer) while exuding a high-end look with red LED display and a black glass surface.

Best Budget Induction Cooktop

Abiding by a modest budget does not mean you have to settle for less. Case in point: the Thor Kitchen 30" Black Induction Cooktop (HIC3001). Retailing for an astoundingly low $799, this cooktop surpasses all expectations with a lustrous pro-style appearance, four induction elements, digital-touch controls, residual heat indicator, nine power levels, and an individual boost, timer, and lock for each cooking element.

Best 30 Inch Induction Cooktop

Designed to fit most in-counter cutouts, the four-element Frigidaire Professional 30" Stainless Steel Induction Cooktop (FPIC3077RF) is a worthy contender for homeowners that are seeking restaurant-grade quality. Not only does it evenly distribute heat to deliver consistent results, but this Frigidaire Professional induction cooktop boasts a PowerPlus™ option that boils water in less than two minutes and the speed, control, and consistency of gas—without the hassle of installing a gas-line hookup.

Best 36 Inch Induction Cooktop

Offering the same amenities as its 30-inch counterpart is the Frigidaire Professional 36" Stainless Steel Induction Cooktop (FPIC3677RF). Spanning to a width that matches most pro-style cooking appliances, this top-tier Frigidaire model gives you even more room to experiment in the kitchen with an extra induction element for a total of five. Like the 30-inch model, this cooktop can quickly adjust from a powerful boil to a gentle simmer to whip up the best rice, soups, and sauces.

home cook uses Frigidaire Professional induction cooktop to sear meatballs

Best Smart Induction Cooktop

Where there’s tech-forward innovation, there is Samsung. Not just a champion in the electronics sector, Samsung has also made a name for itself in the kitchen with appliances as exquisitely designed as the Samsung 36" Stainless Steel Induction Cooktop (NZ36K7880US). Along with offering flexible cooking zones, convertible digital-analog controls, and WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, this Samsung induction cooktop flaunts a beautiful LED light display that resembles a virtual flame, emulating the visual of gas cooking but with the precision of induction.

Best Luxury Induction Cooktop

Live out your culinary ambitions to their full potential with a smart induction cooktop from one of our favorite luxury brands. Instead of having discrete induction elements, the surface of the Thermador Masterpiece 36” Dark Gray Induction Cooktop (CIT36XWB) functions as one large element with 56 inductors embedded to detect the size, shape, and position of your cookware regardless of where it sits.

True to form, this Thermador induction cooktop boasts a wealth of accommodating features, like the MyZone™ feature, which allows you to change a preset power level simply by moving a pot or pan on the cooktop. It also offers a function that allows you to transfer all of your settings of one cooking position to another cooking position, a residual heat indicator, WiFi connectivity, PowerBoost®—and more.

Best Two Burner Induction Cooktop

If you prefer a more minimal cooking appliance, the two-element Wolf 15” Stainless Steel Transitional Induction Cooktop (CI152TF/S) may fit the bill. For starters, this Wolf induction cooktop promises great speed and heat efficiency—in addition to faster boils, the ability to create a custom cooking array, and an industry-leading full two-year warranty.

Best Induction Cooktop Brands

Frigidaire Professional Series

Available in 30- and 36-inch options, Frigidaire Professional induction cooktops are teeming with ultra-convenient features, including a Keep Warm Zone to preserve the warmth of your dishes while the rest of the sides finish cooking and PrecisionPro Controls™ to help you prepare a range of dishes with precision, whether you’re simmering, sautéing, searing, or boiling.

But perhaps most compellingly, a few Frigidaire induction cooktops have a SpacePro™ Bridge Element that combines two elements into one to accommodate a large pot or a griddle.

GE Profile

True to the brand’s premium market position, GE Profile induction cooktops feature digital touch controls, a Power Boil element, auto-pan size detection, control-lock capability, and a built-in kitchen timer. In addition, several GE Profile models come with smart burners that turn off when the cookware is removed so you don’t have to worry about forgetting to turn your cooktop off.

product image of GE Profile induction cooktop with breakfast ingredients

Monogram

GE Appliances’ luxury sub-brand, Monogram, hasn’t missed a beat when it comes to keeping up with the ever-changing culinary landscape. In addition to glide touch controls and two-in-one SyncBurners, 30- and 36-inch Monogram induction cooktops offer a gentle melt setting for delicate sauces and the option to personalize your cooktop settings to fit your cooking preferences.

And if you’re partial to stylish, tech-forward design, the white LED display against a patterned silver-glass surface blends in with most modern kitchen finishes.

Thermador

If you know anything about Thermador, then you know this high-end brand doesn’t fail to impress with restaurant-grade products that blend in perfectly with a residential layout. Among Thermador induction cooktops’ most inspiring features are a full-screen touchscreen display, 17 highly precise power settings, a booster burner, and smart sensors that can recall individual settings for your pots and pans every time you move them.

closeup of luxury Thermador Masterpiece induction cooktop

Samsung

Featuring digital-analog controls, Samsung induction cooktops are relentlessly modern. Other amenities on their premium 30- and 36-inch models include a large Flex Zone that accommodates your largest, smallest, or most uniquely shaped pots, WiFi connectivity so you can monitor your cooktop from your smartphone, and a Power Boost option that channels focused heat that can adjust on each on each burner to boil water faster.

Know Before You Buy: Induction Cooktop Pro Tips

Because an induction cooktop is a costly investment compared to most electric cooktops and entry-level gas cooktops, maintenance is paramount so that your purchase is the best induction cooktop. Not only that, but its hefty price tag also compels prospective users to educate themselves on the product beforehand to ensure an induction cooktop is compatible with your lifestyle, culinary habits, and technological prowess.

To make the most of your new induction cooktop, check out the following cleaning directions and list of popular features.

How to Clean an Induction Cooktop

Step 1: Make sure all induction elements are shut off and that the surface is cool to the touch.

Step 2: Use a dry cloth or cooktop scraper to gently remove stuck-on debris or crumbs.

Step 3: Wipe away any splotches with a damp sponge, and then, add a small amount of cooktop cleaner cream to the surface.

Step 4: Use a paper towel to gently work in the cooktop cleaner cream, using circular motions.

Step 5: Use a dry cloth to wipe off any remaining cooktop cleaner cream.

Bonus: To remove hard water spots, use a clean cloth, distilled white vinegar, and your cooktop cleaner cream.

Common Induction Cooktop Features

  • Digital Touch Controls – While most induction models feature digital readouts of accurate cooking temperatures, slide touch controls are, for the most part, only available on premium- and luxury-brand induction cooktops.
  • Auto-Shutoff – Available on most induction cooktops, this feature conveniently turns off an element in the event of overheating or after you remove a pan.
  • Hot Surface Indicator Lights – This feature entails the use of LED lights to indicate which induction elements are in use and whether the cooking appliance is on.
  • Booster Burner – Designed for home cooks on a time crunch, this cooking zone automatically heats up the pot of water or pan of food quickly at the highest setting and then gradually reduces the heat to a pre-selected lower setting.

Induction Cooktop FAQs

Q1. What is an induction cooktop?

An induction cooktop uses a high-frequency induction coil below the cooktop’s smooth surface to heat up cookware with a magnetic field—rather than using an open flame generated by a gas cooktop or the heated coils on an electric cooktop. Induction cooking is the only method that directly uses the cookware as a part of the cooking system.

Q2. How do induction cooktops work?

An induction cooktop looks just like an electric one, and while it does use electricity to create heat, it does so differently. A magnetic array, called an “inductor,” is placed under the glass surface, and it vibrates at a high frequency so that the molecules in the pan pulsate to generate heat, thereby making the pan itself the heating element.

Q3. What pans work with induction cooktops?

Not all cookware works on an induction cooktop, so to create the magnetic field to heat the cookware, the bottom of the cookware must be made of iron. The best way to verify if a pan will work is by using a magnet; if the magnet sticks to the bottom, the pan gets the green light.

smiling mom cooks on induction cooktop with toddler on her hip

Shop for Induction Cooktops at Spencer’s

Be sure to read induction cooktop reviews on our product pages as you scroll through our catalog!

And if you have other questions about any of our best induction cooktops, please feel free to call or visit your friends in the business at Spencer’s TV & Appliance. Proud to have served our customers since 1973, we have 10 locations in the Phoenix, Scottsdale, and Glendale regions. Call or visit us today!