Best Portable Induction Cooktop

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Looking for the best portable induction cooktop? Look no further. I've reviewed the top ones, and my favorite is the Duxtop 9600LS Induction Cooktop.

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Induction cooktops have increased in popularity, and it’s no wonder. They’re safe, energy-efficient, and have a sleek design. They’re also easy to clean.

Portable induction cooktops are appealing because they add an extra burner to a small kitchen without having to purchase an entire cooktop unit. They’re also lightweight and portable for easy transport.

I like the Duxtop 9600LS Induction Cooktop for its performance, safety features, efficient induction cooking, and durability. But other induction cooktops are worth considering.

What’s the best portable induction cooktop? Keep reading to learn more.

At a Glance

My Pick
Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop
Best on a Budget
NUWAVE Flex Precision Induction
Premium Choice
Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction
Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop, Countertop Burner Induction Hot Plate with LCD Sensor Touch 1800 Watts, Silver 9600LS/BT-200DZ
Nuwave Flex Precision Induction Cooktop, 10.25” Shatter-Proof Ceramic Glass, 6.5” Heating Coil, 45 Temps from 100°F to 500°F, 3 Wattage Settings 600, 900 & 1300 Watts, Black
Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction Cooktop 1800W Digital Electric Countertop Burner Sensor Touch Stove, 9620LS/BT-350DZ
It’s one of my favorite induction cooktops in terms of performance and durability.
The NUWAVE Flex features a slim design with patented insulation technology that brings the heating coils closer to the cookware for faster and more even heating.
If you need more than one burner, I recommend the Duxtop Double Burner Cooktop. It’s a little more expensive than most induction cooktops, but it’s the best for induction cooking.
My Pick
Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop
Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop, Countertop Burner Induction Hot Plate with LCD Sensor Touch 1800 Watts, Silver 9600LS/BT-200DZ
It’s one of my favorite induction cooktops in terms of performance and durability.
Best on a Budget
NUWAVE Flex Precision Induction
Nuwave Flex Precision Induction Cooktop, 10.25” Shatter-Proof Ceramic Glass, 6.5” Heating Coil, 45 Temps from 100°F to 500°F, 3 Wattage Settings 600, 900 & 1300 Watts, Black
The NUWAVE Flex features a slim design with patented insulation technology that brings the heating coils closer to the cookware for faster and more even heating.
Premium Choice
Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction
Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction Cooktop 1800W Digital Electric Countertop Burner Sensor Touch Stove, 9620LS/BT-350DZ
If you need more than one burner, I recommend the Duxtop Double Burner Cooktop. It’s a little more expensive than most induction cooktops, but it’s the best for induction cooking.

Portable Induction Cooktop Reviews

Duxtop 9600LS Portable Induction Cooktop: Best Overall Portable Cooktop

The Duxtop 9600LS Portable Induction Cooktop is lightweight and compact for easy handling and storage. It’s perfect for the kitchen, dorm, RV, boats, and more. It comes in a silver and black trim finish.

Duxtop claims the induction cooktop has 83% energy efficiency, more efficient than traditional gas or electric stoves.

The 20 preset power levels go from 100W to 1800W to allow you to choose your energy output. The higher the power, the faster food will cook. Use the highest level to boil water quickly.

This is a single burner that has 20 preset temperature settings, from 100°F to 460°F (40°-240°C). The temp mode is ideal for frying, sautéeing, browning, and any other cooking method that requires temperature control to avoid burning.

The non-stick glass surface is easy to clean, just wipe it with a damp towel. And the digital LCD sensor touch panel allows you to adjust the function, temperature, and power, set the timer, or turn on the child lock.

The angled control panel enhances visibility and makes it easier to select the desired temperature setting.

Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop, Countertop Burner Induction Hot Plate with LCD Sensor Touch 1800 Watts, Silver 9600LS/BT-200DZ

This Duxtop induction cooktop has several built-in safety measures. The child safety lock prevents the cooking and timer settings from being accidentally changed once they have been set. The burner also features automatic shut-off and overheat protection.

This portable induction burner offers convenience to the busy cook. The fast boil button will switch the power mode to a max level of 10 while setting the timer to 10 minutes.

The keep-warm button allows you to keep your food warm at a temperature of 140°F (60°C) for up to 30 minutes. And the timer button goes up to 10 hours, providing high-precision cooking.

It’s important to strictly use induction-compatible cookware with this Duxtop burner. Cookware must have a magnetic bottom and a diameter of at least 5 inches to be compatible.

The auto-pan detection will shut off the unit automatically after 60 seconds if no cookware is detected.

Induction cooking is a noiseless process, but there may be high-pitched sounds from the cookware due to multiple layers of metals sandwiched together. If this whining sound bothers you, simply turn down the power level until the noise goes away.

Duxtop offers a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty on the 9600LS induction cooktop burner.

Customers were impressed with the Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop. Many purchased it to supplement a small or insufficient range.

Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop, Countertop Burner Induction Hot Plate with LCD Sensor Touch 1800 Watts, Silver 9600LS/BT-200DZ

They loved the fast cooking and the easy cleaning. Users had success boiling water and cooking a variety of dishes in less time and without spills or messes.

There were a few minor issues, none of which were dealbreakers. For instance, the unit has rubber feet on the front, but the hard plastic feet on the back tend to slide around on the countertop.

Reviewers did prefer the power settings to the temperature settings. There isn’t as much fluctuation in the heat with the power settings.


  • 20 power and temperature presets
  • Energy-efficient
  • Child safety lock
  • Timer goes up to 10 hours
  • Easy to clean
  • Lightweight, portable
  • Relatively quiet
  • Angled control panel


  • Temp settings fluctuate
  • High-pitched whine when on the highest power levels
  • Tends to slide around

iSiLER Portable Induction Cooktop: Overall Runner-Up

The iSiLER Portable Induction Cooktop features a single burner designed to meet your various cooking needs.

You can simmer, deep fry, boil, sauté, sear, steam, slow cook, and grill with ease.

This induction burner has 18 power levels, ranging from 100W to 1800W. Choose the power level best suited for your cooking task.

The 17 preset temperature settings range from 140°F (60°C) to 460°F (238°C). The temperatures can be set in 20°F increments (long press for 60°F).

This iSiLER cooktop has large digital touch buttons for enhanced usability. The timer goes from one minute to three hours, ensuring precise cooking. Long press for 10 minutes.

As for safety features, this portable induction cooktop has overheat protection, a child safety lock, and rounded edges.

The cooktop surface measures 6.7 inches (17 cm) in diameter to fit frying pans with a diameter of 3.9-8.6 inches (10-22 cm). It’s compatible with cast iron, steel, and stainless steel cookware.

You may not be able to cook with an extra-large pot on this burner, but it is highly portable, making it great for transporting and storing. It’s suitable for areas with limited space.

The premium glass surface has excellent wear resistance and easy cleaning after use. And the 6-blade fan dissipates heat quickly and efficiently.

Buyers were pleased with the performance of the iSiLER portable induction cooktop. By far, the most common praise was for the rapid heating.

Some found the fan to be a little noisy, and others had trouble getting larger pans to work on the smaller hob. But overall? People were happy with this cooktop.

And a nice bonus? It’s affordable, so you get a lot of value.


  • Heats up quickly
  • Includes safety features
  • Wide temperature range with 20°F increments
  • Easy to use
  • Affordable


  • Fan is noisy
  • Small burner diameter

Hamilton Beach Portable Single Cooktop: Best for High Heat Cooking

The Hamilton Beach Portable Single Cooktop is designed to meet all your cooking needs. Cook a family meal, heat soup, boil water, and more with this portable induction cooktop.

This burner heats 40% faster than a typical smooth top range when boiling water. It goes from zero to boil in just 7 minutes, so you’ll benefit from less waiting each time you boil water for pasta or hot beverages.

Hamilton Beach Portable Single Induction Cooktop Countertop Burner Hot Plate with Fast Heating Mode, 1800 Watts, 10 Temperature Settings up to 450F, Black (34104)

The flexible cooking controls with display give you maximum control over the induction cooking process. Choose a heat level from 1-10 or cook with an exact temperature, ranging from 180°-450°F (82°-232°C).

You can cook on the Hamilton Beach induction cooktop with everything from a small 4-inch diameter saucepan up to a 10-inch diameter frying pan and stockpot. It’s like having a fifth burner right where you need it.

This burner comes with an induction test magnet. If it sticks to the bottom of the pan, you know it’s induction-compatible cookware.

The 150-minute timer is generous, while the automatic shut-off means the cooker will turn off at the end of the cooking time.

The smooth glass cooktop just requires a quick wipe with a damp cloth to clean.

So what did customers think? They liked this unit for boiling water and other high-heat cooking methods. They also said the portable cooktop was easy to clean and lightweight, perfect for transporting or storing.

There were mixed reviews on the noise level. Some found it to be quiet, while other buyers thought the unit was loud. Some noise level is to be expected with any induction range.

The biggest complaint, however, was the lack of lower temperature settings. Multiple customers said they were unable to simmer or slow-cook food because it was simply too hot.

If you want a portable cooktop for boiling water or other high-heat cooking, the Hamilton Beach cooktop will work well. But if you want something versatile enough to simmer or cook on low? This might not be the best option for you.

Hamilton Beach Portable Single Induction Cooktop Countertop Burner Hot Plate with Fast Heating Mode, 1800 Watts, 10 Temperature Settings up to 450F, Black (34104)


  • Boils water quickly
  • Light and portable
  • Auto shut-off
  • Includes induction test magnet
  • Affordable


  • Lowest temp is too high

NUWAVE Flex Precision Induction Cooktop: Best Budget Portable Induction Cooktop

NUWAVE makes a variety of kitchen appliances, including this portable induction cooktop. With a circular shape and a space-saving design, this portable induction burner packs a lot of utility in just a little counter space.

Choose from six convenient preset heat settings or fine tune your temperature from 100°-500°F (38°-260°C), in 10°F increments. You have maximum temperature control.

Another nice feature is that you can adjust the temperature or add or deduct cooking time during the cooking cycle. Other induction cooktops require you to start over if you want to make any adjustments. You have optimal control with the NUWAVE cooktop.

The Flex’s intuitive digital control panel is easy to operate and features responsive buttons. And with 45 precise temperatures at your fingertips, you can keep delicate sauces warm, boil water, or sear a steak easily.

Nuwave Flex Precision Induction Cooktop, 10.25” Shatter-Proof Ceramic Glass, 6.5” Heating Coil, 45 Temps from 100°F to 500°F, 3 Wattage Settings 600, 900 & 1300 Watts, Black

The cooking surface is heavy-duty shatter-proof ceramic glass. The surface has been rigorously tested to withstand intense heat without shattering.

The Flex precision induction cooktop has plenty of safety features, as well. For starters, it will shut off automatically when the set cook time is completed.

When the cookware is removed from the cooktop, the Flex will not start. As with all induction cooktops, there are no open flames or hot coils to burn fingers.

The NUWAVE Flex features a slim design with patented insulation technology that brings the heating coils closer to the cookware for faster and more even heating.

One nice feature is the ability to use a lower temperature for tasks like melting chocolate. You need a double broiler on a gas or electric stove, but with the Flex you can set it at 120°F (50°C) and stir the chocolate until it melts.

This low-temp cooking is perfect for making delicate sauces like Hollandaise, Beurre Blanc, and Beurre Fondue without burning.

This portable induction cooktop offers three settings of 600, 900, and 1300 Watts, which allows you to cook anywhere, even where the power is limited. This is a great option for RVs and camping for that reason.

Customers had plenty of praise for the NUWAVE Flex Precision Induction Cooktop. They were pleased with the fast cooking time and the amount of space it saved.

Some buyers did complain about the plastic buttons. They will wear down over time. Also, be careful not to set a hot pan on top of the plastic part to avoid damage.


  • Small footprint, circular shape
  • 10°F temperature increments
  • Wide temperature range
  • Energy-efficient
  • Affordable


  • Plastic buttons wear down easily
  • Tends to run hotter
  • Fewer features

Aobosi Portable Induction Burner Cooktop: Best for Quiet Cooking

The Aobosi Portable Induction Burner is designed for use in the kitchen, office, dorm room, RV, and more. It’s lightweight and compact for easy portability.

This cooktop has a high-quality glass ceramic panel that can withstand everyday cooking. When it comes time to clean, you just need to wipe it down with a damp towel.

Aobosi Portable Induction Burner Cooktop 1800w Fast Efficient Cooking,Digital Sensor Touch LED Screen Countertop Burner,Electric Stove Cooker Black Crystal Glass Surface 9 Power 10 Temperature Setting With locking function

Storing is a cinch with a sleek profile. Plus, this single induction burner can be stored in an upright position, saving even more space.

This portable burner is compatible with any induction-ready pan with a diameter between 4-10 inches (10-26 cm). The powerful fan heat dissipation function helps to protect the induction hob.

There is a low noise emitted during the cooking process.

This burner has nine power settings, from 200 watts to 1800s watts, allowing you to cook in a camper or your kitchen with no problem. The 10 temperature modes range from 140°F to 464°F (60°-240°C) for precise temperature control.

The digital timer goes up to three hours, so you can cook low and slow or use rapid high heat.

This induction burner has excellent energy efficiency and saves time with fast cooking. The safety system includes automatic pot detection and overheat protection.

No open flames or exposed heat coils make it safer than gas or electric cooking, while the safety lock prevents children (or even pets) from accidentally turning on the cooktop.

Aobosi provides a 1-year warranty from the date of purchase and a 30-day free trial, which is nice for peace of mind.

So what did customers think?

They gave glowing reviews to the Aosobi induction cooktop. They liked the constant temperature and even heating. They also liked cooking a meal without having to heat the entire kitchen.

There were a few that got defective units on the first try, but they were able to get a working replacement without hassle. The customer service got good reviews, as well.

There was a small inconvenience for some people. They noticed that when they made any adjustments during the cooking process, the unit would go to the default setting. This wasn’t a dealbreaker, but it’s good to be aware.


  • Easy to use
  • Cleans up well
  • Plenty of cooking space
  • Good temp control
  • 3-hour digital timer


  • Goes to default when you change the temp/power

Duxtop P961 Professional Portable Induction Cooktop: Splurge Single Burner

The Duxtop Professional Portable Induction Cooktop is easy to handle but sturdy enough to support a large, heavy pot.

This cooktop has high efficiency, with 20 preset power levels, ranging from 100W to 1800W. It also has 20 temperature settings ranging from 100°F to 460°F (38°-238°C).

With an energy efficiency rating of 83%, this induction cooker is more efficient than an electric or gas stove while still cooking quickly.

The sensor touch panel is sensitive to touch and easy to operate. The angled control panel features a large LCD readout display screen, making it easy to see, even from a distance.

The stainless steel body is durable and reliable. The 7-blade fan rapidly dissipates heat, and the lack of an exposed electric coil makes this unit safer.

When it’s time to clean, just wipe the cooktop with a damp towel. Simple!

Of course, you must use an induction-ready pan with this burner. The good news is that this is a heavy-duty burner, so you can put a thicker pan on top without problems. Your cookware must have a minimum diameter of 5 inches (12.7 cm) to be detected, however.

This Duxtop Professional Induction Cooktop is designed with both professional chefs and home cooks in mind.

Duxtop Professional Portable Induction Cooktop, Commercial Range Countertop Burner, 1800 Watts Induction Burner with Sensor Touch and LCD Screen, P961LS/BT-C35-D, Silver/Black

The customer reviews back up the manufacturer’s claim for quality. They were impressed with the fast induction cooking and the sturdy construction.

The Duxtop Professional cooktop is more expensive than other options, so I would only get it if you need something that can accommodate heavier cookware.


  • Easy-to-read display panel
  • Space-saving
  • Temperature ranges from 100°-460°F
  • Heavy-duty
  • Easy to clean
  • Excellent temp control


  • Not as sleek as other cooktops
  • Expensive

Cuisinart ICT-60 Double Induction Cooktop: Budget Double Burner

This Cuisinart ICT-60 Double Induction Cooktop has double induction burners for larger cooking capacity. It uses induction technology to heat pans quickly and efficiently.

This induction range can save energy, using up to 70% less energy than gas or electric cooking.

The Cuisinart double burner induction cooktop has dual control panels for the burners. There are eight power settings on the left burner and five settings on the right burner, giving you the best temperature control.

Each burner has 150-minute timers and individual ON/OFF switches for more precision.

For safety, the heat automatically turns off 30 seconds after the pot or pan is removed. And the smooth glass top looks sleek and is easy to wipe down after use.

Cuisinart ICT-60 Double Induction Cooktop, Black

However, the plastic encasing around the cooking surface will melt if you set a hot pan on top of it. Use extra caution when removing pans from the burner.

Customers had mostly positive things to say about the Cuisinart Double Cooktop. They liked the ease of cleaning, the sleek design, and the independent temperature control of each burner.

But several did say that the burner was slow to heat and took longer to cook food. If you’re considering induction cooking to save time, the Cuisinart probably won’t get you the fast results you want.

If you have extra counter space and want an affordable option, the Cuisinart might be the best portable induction cooktop for you.

Cuisinart ICT-60 Double Induction Cooktop, Black


  • Double burners
  • Independent heat settings
  • Attractive design
  • Simple to use
  • Easy to clean


  • Slower to heat
  • Plastic encasing is problematic

VBGK Single Portable Induction Cooktop: Budget Portable Induction Cooktop

The VBGK Single Portable Induction Cooktop is designed for standard 110V-120V power sockets. It’s light, compact, and easy to carry and store. This is a good option for small apartments, dorms, campers, etc.

The VBGK cooktop features nine preset power levels, ranging from 100W to 2000W. The nine preset temperature heat settings range from 176° to 510°F (80°-265°C).

This portable induction cooktop heats pans quickly, bringing water to a boil within minutes. The time-efficient cooking is great for busy home cooks.

The timer button goes up to three hours, however, so you can do everything from searing to sous vide cooking.

Like other portable induction stoves, this VBGK induction hot plate has a smooth cooking surface. The LED touch screen is easy to control, although some customers wished it was easier to see.

There are safety measures in place, as well. The safety lock allows you to prevent children from accidentally turning on the burner, while the automatic pot detection function will turn off the burner after 60 seconds. Lastly, the rounded edges provide an extra measure of safety.

VBGK Portable Induction Cooktop With Ultra Thin Body, Low Noise Hot Plate With 1800W Sensor Touch Single Electric Cooktops Countertop Stove With 9 Temperature & Power Levels, 3-hour Timer, Safety Lock

As with other induction cookers, you must use magnetic cookware with this portable burner. The cooking vessel must have a diameter of 5 inches (12.7 cm).

While many reviewers loved the VBGK burner, some felt that it lacked the durability of other induction cookers. Others had a lot of trouble with the control buttons.

The buttons are sensitive to touch, which sounds great in theory. However, their location means it’s easy to accidentally press them and mess up the cooking cycle.

Despite that issue, the performance, affordability, and slim design earn it a spot on my list of best portable induction cookers.


  • Slim profile
  • Safety lock
  • LED touch screen
  • Precise temperature settings
  • 9 power levels
  • Automatically detects pans
  • Affordable


  • Buttons are in a bad location

VBGK Double Portable Induction Cooktop: Best Double Burner Cooktop

Is one burner not enough? You might try this VBGK Double Induction Cooktop. This cooktop features dual heating zones with independent heat settings for extra cooking space.

Each burner is 2000W and can cook two dishes simultaneously. However, that might require too much power to make it practical for low-power environments, like a dorm room, for instance.

Each burner has an independent LCD display, as well. The cooktop cooks food through electromagnetic induction heating, so there is no heat loss between the cooking surface and the pot, such as you might find with gas burners.

What’s more? The VBGK double cooktop makes cooking faster. The child safety lock, timer and overheat protection device, and the rounded edges all provide safety for users.

The timer goes from 1 minute to 180 minutes, perfect for a wide range of dishes. The noise-cooling fans help minimize the whir you might hear with most portable induction cooktops.

With a wire drawing ceramic glass design, the induction cooktop looks very modern and sleek.

VBGK Double Induction Cooktop, 24 inch 4000W Electric cooktop with hot plate, induction stove top with LCD Touch Screen 9 Levels Settings with Child Safety Lock & Timer 110V Induction cooktop 2 burner

This induction hot plate will automatically turn off after 30 seconds if no compatible cookware is detected. The diagnostic error message system makes it easy to see when a pan isn’t compatible or detected.

If you aren’t sure if your pan is suitable for induction cooking, you can stick a magnet to the bottom. If it sticks, you’re good to go.

The user reviews were mixed with this unit. Some people loved it, while others felt it left much to be desired.


  • Safety features
  • 3-hour timer
  • Independent LCD displays
  • Dual heating zones
  • Sleek, slim design
  • Quiet performance


  • Not ideal for low temp cooking

Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction Cooktop: Splurge Double Burner

Need an extra burner? No problem. While the Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction Cooktop might be a splurge, you’ll get every penny’s worth in terms of performance.

This professional digital countertop cooktop is equipped with two independent heating zones that allow you to set each one separately using the LCD display screen. This burner uses 120V power outlets, the standard in North American homes.

Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction Cooktop 1800W Digital Electric Countertop Burner Sensor Touch Stove, 9620LS/BT-350DZ

When it comes to power and temperature, you have plenty of options. There are 20 preset levels per mode so you can select the perfect one for your cooking task. Switching between modes is as easy as the press of a button.

Duxtop recommends temperature mode for steaming, frying, deep frying, and sautéeing. The power mode is best for keeping food warm or for bringing water to boil quickly.

This cooktop creates heat directly in the cookware without losing energy around the pan or on the heating coils. This helps the Duxtop Double Burner Cooktop have maximum energy efficiency.

The Power Sharing Feature is designed to avoid electrical overload, which makes a huge difference in areas where the power level is lower. The burners can share power between them in this mode.

As for safety measures, you won’t lack any with this cooktop. The child safety lock prevents injuries such as scalding. No open flame or hot electric coil means you can cook more safely.

The touch control panel is simple to operate, while the rapid heating makes cooking fast and easy. Cleaning is also a simple task; simply wipe with a damp cloth.

This cooktop is great for a cast iron skillet or magnetic stainless pan. It’s not designed for non-magnetic cookware.

Duxtop LCD Portable Double Induction Cooktop 1800W Digital Electric Countertop Burner Sensor Touch Stove, 9620LS/BT-350DZ

Customers gave rave reviews for the Duxtop Double Burner Portable Cooktop. They were pleased with the performance and the unique features, even if it is a pricier pick.


  • Dual heat settings
  • LCD display screen
  • Touch control panels
  • Power sharing mode for efficiency
  • 20 preset heat levels


  • Expensive

Rosewill Portable Induction Cooktop Burner: Versatile Induction Cooktop

Last but not least is the Rosewill Portable Induction Cooktop Burner. This is a single burner with a lot of value, earning it a spot on my list of best induction cookers.

Unlike others on the list, this induction cooker has eight pre-programmed cooking modes: keep warm, simmer, milk, steam, boil, fry, deep fry, and boost.

Select from the menu on the touchscreen control panel without worrying about finding the right temperature, power, or cooking time. The preset programs have the time and heat settings built-in.

If you prefer to adjust manually, though, you still have that option. The digital 3-hour timer gives you plenty of flexibility.

The temperature ranges from 140°-464°F (60°-238°C), so you can cook a wide range of dishes and recipes with precise temperature settings. The power settings range from 200 to 1800W, with a total of 10 increments.

Multiple safety protections help you cook without worry. Lock the control panel to avoid accidental changes in your settings. The automatic power off will prevent the burner from heating without a pan.

This Rosewill cooktop includes a food-grade stainless pot that’s compatible with the induction cooker, so you can get started cooking right away.

The heating panel has a diameter of 10.2 inches (26 cm) to accommodate a variety of pan sizes.

Buyers were happy with the Rosewill Portable Induction Cooktop. They liked using the unit with a cast iron skillet, and they were impressed with how much time this cooker saved them. They liked the presets and the superb temperature control, as well.


  • 10 power/temp settings
  • 8 cooking programs
  • Safety lock, auto shutoff
  • Excellent temp control
  • 3-hour timer
  • Digital control panel


  • Lowest setting is too hot

Buying Guide: Portable Induction Cooktops

Your guide to buying the best portable induction cooktop

What Is an Induction Burner?

An induction burner is a glass-topped magnetic heat source used for cooking. An induction cooktop can be a free-standing range, slide-in, or portable.

The induction burners in this article are portable, meaning you can use them anywhere there is a compatible electrical outlet.

Induction burners have been around for home use since the early 1950s, but they lacked widespread popularity due to the exorbitantly high cost.

Over time, induction cooktops have steadily gained in affordability and popularity.

How Does Induction Cooking Work?

Basic electric burners work using thermal conduction, where the heating element generates heat and, in turn, heats the cookware on top. Induction cooktops, however, use electromagnetic induction to turn the pan itself into the heat source. Here’s how it works:

The copper coils in an induction cooktop create a magnetic field, passing an electric current to the iron in the induction-compatible cookware. The molecules in the pan move so rapidly that the pan becomes hot.

The cooktop itself does not get scalding hot, making it safer. It does get warm to the touch, due to the heat of the pan. The cookware is what heats, not the burner.

Induction cooktops are equipped with sensors that effectively shut off or pause the burner when you pick up a pan. The reason is that the electromagnetic current has nowhere to go.

Many portable induction cooktops offer a power level and a specific temperature setting. Most are compatible with a standard 120V outlet.

How to Use a Portable Induction Cooktop

To use your portable induction burner, follow these simple steps:

  1. Plug in the cooktop.
  2. Switch on the cooktop. The power symbol should be lit up.
  3. Place your induction-compatible pan on the burner and add food to the pan.
  4. Select either the power or the temperature sensor to the desired setting. Most induction burners allow you to choose one or the other: power or temperature-based settings.
  5. Once done with cooking, remove the cooking vessel and turn off the cooktop. Most portable burners have an auto-detection that will turn off the unit after a few seconds.

What’s the Difference Between Induction, Gas, and Electric Stoves?

Gas and electric stoves transfer heat to pots and pans, and the food inside gets hot.

Gas stoves transfer heat via a gas flame. It’s important to match the flame to the size of the pan to avoid lost heat. Gas stoves have easy temperature regulation.

An electric stove uses a coiled heating element that is exposed under a glass or ceramic top. The coil heats up when you turn it on, glowing red. Electric burners get very hot.

They take longer to heat up and cool down than gas or induction cooktops. Due to the residual heat, you can still burn yourself on an electric stove after it’s turned off. You must wait for the stove to cool.

Is An Induction Cooktop the Same Thing as a Glass Cooktop?

All induction cooktops are glass, but not all glass cooktops are induction.

Several standard electric cooktops also have a smooth black glass top. So how can you tell the difference?

When you turn the burner on, the electric burner will glow red and you will feel heat emanating from it. The induction burner won’t heat up and the control panel will probably flash an alert.

Are Plug-In Induction Hobs Any Good?

Plug-in induction hobs, or portable induction burners, offer several advantages.

First, they’re easy to clean. The flat glass top won’t accumulate crumbs or grease. Secondly, they’re energy-efficient, more so than gas or electric cooktops.

Third, portable induction burners don’t heat up, making induction cooking safer. The cooking vessel is what get’s hot, not the burner. You don’t have to wait for the burner to cool down after removing the pan.

Fourth, portable induction cooktops are quick to heat and responsive to temperature changes. Boil water in a matter of minutes and heat food quickly.

Lastly, portable induction cooktops are convenient. They’re easy to transport and easy to store, making them great for a dorm room, RV, small apartment, camping, etc.

There are a few disadvantages, however. Induction burners are typically more expensive than gas or electric burners. They also require compatible magnetic cookware, and they can be louder than other hobs.

Which Pans Work on an Induction Cooktop?

Cooking chili in a small pan

Pots and pans must be magnetic to work on induction burners. The reason for this is that induction cooktops use a magnetic field to create heat.

Generally, cast iron (including enameled cast iron), steel, magnetic stainless steel, and carbon steel pots and pans work on induction. Aluminum and copper cookware won’t work on induction burners.

Certain cookware features a magnetic disc on the bottom that makes the pan induction-compatible, even if the body of the pan is not magnetic. If you have a non-stick pan that’s induction-compatible, it likely contains this disc on the bottom.

Unsure if your pan will work on induction? Simply place a magnet on the bottom. If the magnet sticks, you’re ready to start cooking. If not, your pans won’t work.

Best Portable Induction Cooktop: Conclusion

Want the best portable induction cooktop? I’d go with the Duxtop 9600LS Induction Countertop Cooktop. It’s one of my favorite induction cooktops in terms of performance and durability.

If you need more than one burner, I recommend the Duxtop Double Burner Cooktop. It’s a little more expensive than most induction cooktops, but it’s the best for induction cooking.