As fossil fuel resources are slowly depleted, manufacturers in all industries spend increasing amounts of time looking for more efficient product designs. When it comes to household appliances, this change can mainly be seen in the kitchen. Gas ranges and ovens are slowly being phased out in order to make room for a new type of product that only requires electricity in order to cook food.


This having been said, electric stoves have been around for a while, however, they have recently gone through several major upgrades, many of which affect both, efficiency as well as ease of use. While these appliances were once considered to be a gimmick or a conversation piece more than a reliable cooking utensil, things have recently changed, bringing new models that even seasoned chefs have started using in their kitchens.


When looking at the type of products that are commercially available, we see that the manufacturers have chosen two very different internal and functioning designs for their products: Induction and radiant.


Two types of electric stoves


While both induction, as well as radiant stoves, only use electricity in order to cook food, the way in which they function is very different, with the latter one being more similar to the way a gas range works.


Radiant cooktops

Radiant Cooktop Example

These models work by passing electricity through a metal heating element that is positioned under a ceramic surface. The heat is transferred from the metal to the ceramic and then to the pan or pot placed on top. From a functional point of view, this type of appliance works the same way to how a gas range does, in the sense that the cookware is heated actively, using an external heat source.


Induction Stoves

Induction Stove Example

Induction cooking appliances, on the other hand, do not actively heat up cookware. Basically, they pass electricity through copper coils in order to create a small magnetic field. This field interacts with compatible cookware place in the marked areas of the appliance’s surface and heats it. In other words, the cooktop itself does not heat up, apart from the electronics. The metallic pan or pot acts like a hot plate in order to cook food.


What is the healthier option?


This depends on what each individual’s definition of healthy. Both design cook food without actually interacting with it in a way that is different from how a gas range would, however, there is the issue of cookware.


The big difference when it comes to radiant electric vs induction cooktops is the fact that the latter one offers a lot less flexibility in terms of containers that you can use to cook food. To be more precise, you have to use induction-compatible cookware as glass or ceramic will not interact with the magnetic field. Those who prefer to cook using pots that are made ceramic or glass will find that a radiant cooktop is better suited to their needs.


What do manufacturers have to offer?


While there are two types of electrical cooking appliances, manufacturers have not engaged in an induction vs electric cooktop competition. There are dozens of products from both designs and they mostly are quite affordable, even when compared to gas ranges. 


Those interested in getting one should be able to find anything from professional appliances that come with enough space for 4 pans or pots to portable models that can be packed up and stored away in a matter of minutes.


Naturally, larger appliances that come with more features will cost more than the ones that only have enough space for one pan, however, one thing that they all have in common is their reduced size when compared to gas models.


Final Thoughts


Overall, there is no better choice in terms of how well induction stoves and radiant ones can cook food. The difference that usually plays a major part in the customers’ choice is the fact that one works with any type of cookware while the other required induction-compatible pans. Furthermore, the fact that induction models cool down much faster after being used should be taken into consideration by those looking to get a portable model.

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