The Best Electric Cooktops in 2020 | Review and Buying Guide

An Electric smoothtop cooktop is without a doubt equally in demand if not more than their gas-flame or electric coil counterparts. Homeowners with modern kitchen designs prefer electric cooktops for their sleek and streamlined design, elegant yet subtle aesthetic appeal and ease of use. The seamless cooktop surface on a radiant electric cooktop being made from durable glass and ceramic materials also makes for easy cleaning as compared to other variants.

Given their persistent and growing demand, leading kitchen supplies manufacturers can be seen coming up with feature-packed high-end electric cooktops that are in a league of their own. Depending on your budget, you may opt in for the best electric cooktops that come with functional and contemporary features like bridge elements, illuminated cooktops, keep warm mode and more. As convenient and reliable as they may sound, you must always ensure that your selection comes form a trusted brand.

In our compilation for the best electric cooktops in 2020, we’ve devoted great attention to attributes like overall brand reliability and their after-sales consumer support besides ensuring the actual product’s robust quality, functionality and durability. We’ve also briefly discussed how you may independently research and find reliable electric cooktop reviews in a comprehensive buying guide later in this article. Whereas, if you’re here only for our top recommendations; here is our list of the best rated electric cooktops in 2020.

Best Electric Cooktop Reviews - 2020

  • Powerful 3000 W power broil right front element
  • 800 W bridge element connects the two 1800 W left elements for longer griddles
  • Downdraft ventilation makes for a cleaner kitchen
  • Safety indicators tell if an element is active or too hot to touch
  • Control lock
  • Seamless glass base plate
  • 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
  • Expensive
  • The glass baseplate is prone to scratches
  • 4.9/5.0

GE amid scattered criticism continued to innovate kitchen appliances like no other brand. The company has now evolved to be one of the most prevalent names in modern kitchens and high-end restaurants. So much so, the plaudits have far outnumbered the brickbats for this giant. The fact that GE caters frugal kitchens too while maintaining its diverse range of sophisticated and modern kitchen appliances makes it a rather dependable brand. This is the reason you may find more than a couple of our selections are from GE.

This downdraft electric cooktop in particular ranks among one of the most premium models that you could find for your contemporary kitchen. From sleek and modern appeal to exceptional functionality, the radiant electric cooktop has got it all. To begin with, the 30-inch cooktop is a guaranteed fit for any existing 30-inch cutout and if it isn’t, the brand compensates with up to $100 in fitting modifications.

The electric cooktop features 4 powerful radiant heating elements; of which two of the left 7” elements connect with a bridge element giving you an extended cooking area. This feature comes in handy when you’re cooking some omelettes or pancakes over an elongated griddle. The bridge element ensures that the pan is evenly heated throughout its length.

At times when you need quick and powerful heating for a pan measuring 6”-9”; the right front element has you covered. With optional diameter selections, you can set the front right burner to heat just the concentric 6” part of the element or the complete 9”. Surpassing the 1800 wattage of the left pair of burners, the right front element is rated at 3000 watts. Similarly, the right rear element peaks at 1500 watts at 6” of diameter.

The cooktop’s downdraft exhaust system deserves a special mention here. Unlike standard cooktops and ranges, this one exhausts fumes beneath the unit through a duct pipe. This unique feature is what puts this one in a class of its own and separates from all the other standard options you find below.

Further, the unit has multiple indicators that ensure better safety of the user than some other models. There’s a “cooktop on” light that directly communicates if any of the elements are active besides 4 “hot surface” indicator lights that let you know if the surface over any element is too hot to touch after its is turned off. Further, there’s even a control lock to the cooktop that allows you to prevent unsupervised use while you’re away. All in all, the radiant electric cooktop delivers well over expectations and can be seen as a worthy kitchen investment that would last you years if not decades.

  • Two flexible elements that can be adjusted according to the size of the cookware
  • The pair of extreme left burners can be synced simultaneously to uniformly heat up elongated griddles
  • Backlit knobs add an appealing contrast to the glass smoothtop surface
  • The 6” burner doubles as a keep warm zone
  • 5 hot surface indicator lights warn if the glasstop surface is too hot to touch
  • Melt setting gently heats delicate foods to avoid them from scorching

1 year manufacturer’s warranty

  • Cast iron cookware may scratch delicate glasstop surface
  • 4.5/5.0

Conforming to the elite standards of General Electric, this unit is another accurate display of the company’s emphasis on impeccable performance, unmatched functionality and superior aesthetic appeal. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to state that PP7036SJSS is definitely among one of the best 36 inch electric cooktops on the market in 2020.

As with any of their drop-in electric cooktops, GE claims a precise fit if you’re replacing an old 36” cooktop or even if you’re going to be installing it for the first time. If there persists any need of modification for a perfect fit, the brand covers the overhead cost. Coming to the external appearance of the cooktop, it is as elegant as it gets. The black glass smoothtop surface gives the radiant cooktop an immaculate visual appearance. Adding to it, the red backlit knobs bring along a neat contrast to the package.

The 36” electric cooktop houses 5 well-defined radiant heating elements. The pair of burners on the extreme left are both 7” in diameter and have a power rating of 1500 watts.

Both of these can be either operated individually or simultaneously to heat up a large pan or a pancake griddle. Despite absence of any bridge element between the two burners, the SyncBurner feature owing to the thoughtful setup, gives you the same functionality.

The central element here is the focal point. It is a versatile burner that can be adjusted to employ just the 6” element ring or the concentric 9” or the complete 12 inches of it. The central tri-ring burner is rated the highest at 3000 watts. Similarly, the right front burner is an adjustable 8”/5” 2400 watts element. Both these flexible elements can be used for different sized pans and pots.

The right rear element has a smaller diameter of 6” and has a power rating of 1200 watts. This element also doubles as a keep warm zone besides being a full-fledged independent burner. The setup is a literal example of a be-all end-all kitchen cooktop. The unit can very well handle small, medium and hefty cooking requirements in high-end domestic and commercial kitchens.

Besides a flexible and versatile selection and combination of burners, the cooktop also features very convenient settings. For instance, there’s a child lock feature for preventing unsupervised usage, a melt setting to gently melt delicate foods without burning in addition to the resourceful keep warm and SyncBurner features. All in all, the electric cooktop is a complete package with essential and convenient features; completely justifies its cost.

  • All knobs are placed on the extreme right; gives you a more comfortable space to cook
  • Flexible front elements; can be adjusted to suit the size of your cookware
  • Keep warm element; consumes very little energy and keep the food fresh for long
  • Hot surface indicator tells you if the baseplate is too hot to touch over any element
  • Seamless black ceramic glass material beautifully complements all kitchen décor schemes
  • No built-in exhaust system
  • No bridge element
  • No child lock feature
  • 4.7/5.0

Sitting a bit lower on the price scale, we have a yet another versatile 30 Inch electric cooktop; this time from Frigidaire. The brand has a rich and proficient history in the field of kitchen appliances and has been a reliable go-to option for frugal homeowners across the states. While Frigidaire’s catalogue seems to be inclined towards more cost-efficient kitchen gadgets, the brand also has some high-end products to choose from.

This 30-Inch electric cooktop being cost-efficient yet contemporary with regards to features and looks makes it an ideal choice for the average homeowner. While it certainly pulls back in terms of some fancy features, you still have a pretty impressive deal for the price you pay. First things first, the cooktop looks neat, seamless and functional. Unlike the traditional central position of the knobs, this model pushes it to the right giving you an uninterrupted workspace around the elements.

Each of the five knobs on the extreme right of the unit control one of the five burners. Both the front elements are much more powerful than the rear ones and can be set to employ either 6” or 9” of the concentric heating coils. While you select either of the 6” or 9” setting, the power also switches between 1600 watts and 3000 watts respectively. This is clearly a very convenient setup for busy kitchens with average cooking requirements.

The seamless black ceramic glass cooking surface extends beyond with three smaller elements. The left and right elements measure 6” and 7” in diameter and carry a power rating of 1200 and 1500 watts respectively. Whereas the central element in the back is a 6” keep warm burner that’s rated at 100 watts. Overall, the electric smoothtop very well justifies its cost and may be viewed as a reliable option to choose if you’re out to find good value on a budget.

On the downside, the unit doesn’t have a child lock option. This could potentially put-off some people that have curious children roaming around in the kitchen. Also, unlike our top pick, this one doesn’t feature a built-in exhaust system. If you could do well without these, which most kitchens would, the Gallery series 30” electric cooktop is a decent option to consider.

Faring on similar standards in terms of functionality and appearance, you could save another couple of hundred dollars with the Frigidaire FFEC3025UB. This one has an even lower price point as it skips the keep warm element and only has one adjustable element. If you’re a small to moderate sized family with not-so-hectic cooking sessions, you should do good with this one as well.

  • Inexpensive
  • All knobs paced to the right; gives you an open and convenient handling space
  • “Cooktop on” lights indicate if any burner is active
  • “Hot surface” indicator lights warn if the surface is too hot to touch
  • Standard 6” and 8” burners cater most prevalent cookware sizes
  • “Melt” and “keep warm” convenient features
  • 1 year manufacturer’s warranty (parts & labor)
  • Glasstop surface prone to scratches
  • Plastic knobs look unimpressive
  • 4.9/5.0

Priced at almost half the previous GE electric cooktop, this 4 element unit might just be the best budget pick for you if you classify as a frugal shopper. However, buying an appliance at a bargained cost doesn’t necessarily need to translate to a compromise in quality. At least, not for this one. The GE JP3030DJBB 30” electric cooktop is a rather popular model because of its optimal price to features ratio.

The cooktop includes just enough settings for regular households to suffice their needs and correspondingly costs less. For our readers that find no value in fancy features like bridge elements or flexible burners that change diameters; this one skips those. However, the cooktop still manages to perform up to the mark for regular domestic requirements.

The smooth glasstop has 4 radiant burners with all the knobs positioned on the extreme right of the unit. The bigger elements placed diagonally opposite measure 8” each and are have a power rating of 2500 watts. The other two diagonally opposite burners are 6” in diameter each and peak at 1200 watts. The upper smaller element doubles as a melt burner while the lower smaller element works as a keep warm zone besides its regular usage. As for the safety features, the unit has “cooktop on” lights to let you know if any element is active and “hot surface” indicator lights to tell if the glasstop over any burner is yet too hot.

  • Budget-friendly
  • Flexible burners; can be adjusted based size of cookware and heating requirements
  • Child lock
  • Auto shutoff
  • Programmable timer setting
  • 1 year manufacturer’s warranty
  • Not a renowned brand; might be a pain to find replacement parts
  • No melt or keep warm settings
  • 4.7/5.0

Amidst competing established brands, Gasland CH77BF has seen some commendable acclamation from its existing users. So much so, the feedback can be used as a pragmatic factor to consider this radiant cooktop as your new investment. After all, the model is cheaper, has essential features and is backed approval of hundred of users.

The unit is essentially a built-in coil radiant smoothtop like others on this list. The cooktop features 4 discrete elements that have their own dimensions and power ratings. The top left and bottom right burners are identical measuring 6.5” each and peaking at 1200 watts of power rating. The top right burner is an adjustable one and can be switched between 1000 to 2200 watts. Similarly, the lower left element is a flexible 6.5”/10.5” burner that switches between 1100 to 2000 watts.

The second highlight of the product is that it replaces standard knobs with digital sensor touch controls. This is the first model on our list that doesn’t have mechanical knobs to operate the heating elements. Further, the unit also features a safety lock to avoid unintended usage and auto shutdown after the set timer is complete. The timer can be set up to 99 minutes.

Best Electric Cooktop - Buying Guide

What is an Electric Cooktop?

An electric cooktop is a stove that is integrated with an electrical heating device. The heating device heats the elements placed beneath the cooktop surface and as they get heated up till the required temperature, they heat the cooktop surface which is used for applying heat to the base of your pans and pots.

How is an Electric Cooktop different from an Induction Cooktop?

Electric Cooktop vs Induction Cooktop
Electric CooktopInduction Cooktop
1. Cleaning FactorEasy to CleanEasy to Clean
2. Kitchen TemperatureCoolCooler
3. CostInexpensiveVery Expensive
4. CookwareNo Special Cookware Requires Conductive Cookwares
5. Heat LossMinorNone

The key difference between electric and induction cooktops lies in the cooking technology. Here, we are considering ceramic glass electric cooktops as they offer a smooth surface just like the induction cooktops. While cooking with the electric cooktops, the heating device embedded within the cooktop surface heats up the cooktop which in turn heats the base of your cooking pans. On the other hand, induction cooktops use electromagnetic coils that are placed beneath the glass cooktop surface. These coil transfer energy to the metal objects that generate heat. As a result, it heats up your cooking vessels while the cooktop surface itself remains cool.

The induction cooktops offer a much safer and unparalleled cooking experience, but despite that only, 1 per cent of stoves in the US households have induction cooktops. It seems like they get more familiar cooking experience with their traditional electric cooktops and moreover, they are more economical as compared to the induction ones.

Factors to Consider while Buying the Best Electric Cooktop

1. Size

The first and most crucial aspect to consider is the size of the cooktop you are going to purchase. The standard cooktop sizes available in the market are either 30” or 36”. If you are thinking to replace your old model, then make sure to note the dimensions of your kitchen countertop or the available space where you will fit the new unit, as it will eliminate the stress of returning the cooktop, in case it doesn’t fit ideally in your kitchen space. The size of the cooktop also regulates the number of cooking zones and you should prefer selecting the large unit if you want more of them. The larger unit offers more controls while accommodating big pots and pans. So, select the size as per your cooking preferences and needs.

2. Number of Elements and Cooking Power

The distinct cooktop models in the market feature a different number of elements. The range of elements varies in terms of size, power, cooking zones and positioning. Most of the predominant cooktop styles offer numerous cooking zones that can easily accommodate large pots and pans. Additionally, they offer an ideal arrangement so that you can position different skillet-based dishes at the same time. It totally depends on your cooking requirements which one you want to choose. 

Moreover, electric cooktops with varying elements differ in power utilization as well. Select the one that satisfies all your cooking demands as sometimes there is a requirement of high-powered heating while on the other hand, there are times when you would require ultra-low simmer temperatures for delicate cooking tasks such as melting butter and chocolate, simmering sausage, poaching eggs etc.

3. Type of Baseplate

The baseplate generally refers to the type of material that is used in the manufacturing of the cooking surface of the cooktop. The three most popular materials are -White enamel, Stainless steel and Glass-ceramic. 

White enamel surface may look sturdy from outside, but they can break easily. That’s why the most commonly used one is the Stainless Steel as it is extremely durable and can withstand wear and tear of everyday kitchen tasks as well. Moreover, it offers an elegant and sleek look to the cooktops. But, they require regular maintenance also and it is recommended to wipe off the spillovers immediately with some warm water and a soft cloth. 

On the other hand, glass-ceramic is the most expensive one. The surface tends to look transparent or opaque when it’s colored. Though they make cleaning convenient for you, yet they are more prone to scratches and to sustain their bright and shining look, you have to do the polishing periodically. 

4. Controls

Electric cooktops are mostly integrated with the control knobs rather than digital touch controls. There are some models that support the digital controls as well, but it’s very rare as they are manufactured from plastic material and are responsive to melting. That’s why manufacturers prefer to use control knobs after testing to conclude which materials work best on the knobs.

5. Budget

It is one of the significant aspects to consider as not all the cooktops come with a reasonable price range. You will find some basic models in the price range of $100 featured with a single or two cooking zones and a limited number of controls. Whereas, there are some high-end models as well that fall in the price range of $300-$400 offering you multiple cooking zones and advanced controls. So, having a reasonably large budget will expand your selection options so that you can pick the one that is ideal for you as per your demands and necessities.

6. Additional Features

Some of the extra features that a high-end electric cooktop incorporate are as follows:

1. Child Lock

Most of the times parents use the child lock to prevent children from turning on the cooktop. You just need to touch the child lock for 4 seconds and the cooktop will be locked and similarly, you can cancel the lock to turn on the unit.

2. Keep Warm

The keep warm component permits you to keep food set on a specific burner warm for whatever length of time that burner turned on.

3. Bridge Element

It expands the cooktop usage by offering the option to join two burners to make one large cooking surface. If you own a model that features this element, then there would be no need to use two standard elements for a griddle.

4. Automatic Shutoff

You can use this feature to automatically shut off the unit when there is no motion detected. The timing can be either set up to 5 minutes or can be adjusted up to 15 minutes as per your preference. 

Conclusion

We have compiled the extensive reviews and comprehensive buying guide so that you can analyze all the above-mentioned factors while making a purchase. There is a wide variety of electric cooktops available in the market, but we would recommend you to prefer the reviewed models as a starting point of your search to find the ideal fit for your kitchen space. After that, you can surely dive into the endless domain of cooktops. Ensure to select the budget-friendly model that satisfies all your cooking requirements.

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