Best Electric Cooktops for Induction Home Brewing

by Karl | Updated: August 20, 2021

With sustainability being the top priority in everyone’s lists, electric cooktops and kettles bring sustainable advantages of energy conservation to the forefront while quenching your appetite.

These innovations also let you dabble between your culinary skills and flaunt your love for this art to those who matter.

Electric kitchen appliances have different applications. The electric cooktop or electric stove makes use of induction to offer you the desired results without flaring up the temperatures. And is as environmentally-friendly as it gets.

You wont even need to clean up the kitchen when you are done. 🙂

The induction cooktop has a lot of applications that will leave you awestruck and wanting to possess one of these nifty appliances immediately. Want to whip up a scrumptious turkey feast for your loved ones during Thanksgiving, or brew indoors without burning down the house? Well now you have the perfect tool for it.

Electric Brewing indoors homebrew setup
Source: Matus Kocur in Homebrew Academy FB Group

Electric Brewing Statistics [2021]

3884 Active members of the Homebrew Academy Facebook Group were surveyed in Jan 2021 in regards to using a propane burner unit or an electric cooktop to do their homebrewing, and this is the response.

44.7% Brew with Gas Only, 39.6% Brew with Electric only, and 15.5% brew with a mix of both.

The overwhelming reason for using an electric unit is that it’s safer to use indoors that a gas unit. And you can’t argue with that.

Here’s the Data:

House Fire Statistics How NOT to become one Homebrew Academy

Why You Should Seriously Consider Induction Brewing

From talking to other homebrewers, I sense many of us went through the same and somewhat predictable progression when it came to getting our wort to a boil.

Most of us started out on our kitchen stoves and realized bringing 3.5 gallons (or more!) of wort to a boil was a lengthy task. We quickly learned that we needed more power.

In fact, I was ordering my Bayou propane burner within hours of pitching yeast into my first batch! But firing up a burner indoors is consider “dangerous.” Oh, bother….

After we toughed-out a few batches with the propane burner, battling the extremes mother nature threw at us, we started to wonder how we could get back in the house to make our beer. These thoughts lead us into the realm of electric brewing.

Induction Brewing: A Different Type of Electric Brewing

Electric brewing used to be a rather scary idea. Fearful of the unknown, homebrewers would assume liquid and electricity are bound to result in electrocution.  Or an even worse assumption, high-voltage heating elements will scorch the wort!

A few pioneers emerged and theelectricbrewery.com was formed to enlighten all homebrewers on the benefits and how-to’s of brewing with electricity. Some of us who are less electrically inclined, were still left out in the cold, literally and figuratively.

But thankfully there was some new technology emerging to solve our dilemma – induction cooktops.

Induction cooktops differ from other electric hotplates or stoves that we are accustomed to since the induction cooktop itself generates no heat.

Induction cooktops generate eddy currents which react with ferromagnetic (iron) in the cooking vessel. This reaction directly heats up the cooking vessel. By design, induction heating is a more efficient transfer of electricity to heat compared to a typical heating coil in a stove or hotplate.

Think about it: a traditional stove goes Electricity → Heats Coil → Cooking Vessel.

Induction takes Electric Current → Heats Cooking vessel.

Induction cuts out the ‘middle man.’  The downside is that your brewing vessel must be ferromagnetic, or contain iron, and have a flat bottom.  An easy way to test for this is to see if a magnet will stick to your brewpot.  If it does then you are good to go.

What’s better about induction?

Initially the problem with induction technology was that it was very expensive and cost prohibitive for brewing. Many induction cooktops powerful enough to heat up 6-11 gallons of wort cost hundreds, if not thousands of dollars. These high energy units were only marketed and used by restaurants.

That was until recently, when a new model came on the market significantly cheaper than the others.  Enter the Mai Cook Stainless Steel 3500W Electric Induction Cooktop.

This unit runs off of a 20 amp 240 volt circuit and with patience and some brewpot insulation, is capable of brewing 10-gallon batches.  If you only brew five gallons at a time, you have more than enough power with this unit.

Advantages of Induction Cooktops

  • No Control Panel – The control panel on an induction burner is built-in.
  • Brew Indoors – This is an advantage compared to traditional propane burners which generally require you to be outside in the elements.
  • Repeatability – On my propane burner, I am constantly fiddling with the gas valve to adjust gas output and control my boil. These units can be set to watt increments and after a couple of uses you can dial in what you need to maintain a rolling boil.  This should also help you achieve a more consistent boil-off rate.
  • Cost of Use – Electricity is significantly cheaper than propane. I normally get four 5-gallon brews out of a tank of propane ($20) so that is $5/brew.  Electric with this induction unit comes out to about $.60/brew based on my electric rate of 6.6 cents/kWh.

Disadvantages of Induction Cooktops

  • Temp Control – These units cannot be controlled by a P.I.D. or other temperature sensor so you won’t be able to utilize an induction cooker in a HERMS or RIMS system – those components would be separate.
  • Power – This cooker is 3500 watts which is more than enough for five gallon batches, but really pushing the time limits for a 10-gallon batch, though it is doable with patience.
  • Use of Existing Equipment – If you don’t have magnetic flat bottom brewpot already, you may need to upgrade before utilizing induction
  • Initial Cost – This unit at ~$200 costs three to four times more than a propane burner.

So now that you are aware of what an induction burner is, and how it might be useful in your brewery, you want to know how well it works, right?  Here is how long it takes for me to heat things up:

  • 4.5 gallons of strike water can be raised from 119℉ to 175℉ in 14 minutes. About 4℉ per minute increase
  • 7.5 gallons from mash 152℉ to boiling in 33 minutes. Right under 2℉ per minute increase.

This is pretty good considering I start to heat while I am sparging, so much of this time is occurring while collect wort into the kettle anyways.  I also measure these numbers without any insulation on my brewpot, which can be really useful, especially when boiling 11+ gallons.

So if you are looking for a relatively economical way to get back to brewing indoors, induction brewing on an electric cooktop may be the route for you! 

The Best Electric Cooktops You Can Buy Today

The induction current allows you to obtain the crispy and caramelized exteriors of different meat with the juicy insides intact. It can also help you in preparing dishes that get done in low moisture but are not too dry and also in toasting your bread and stuff.

Duxtop Portable Induction Cook Top:

Homebrewers' Choice
Duxtop Portable Induction Cooktop with Sensor Touch, 1800W
$101.74

HIGH EFFICIENCY: Choose from 20 preset power levels (100W to 1800W) and 20 preset temperature level settings (100°F to 460°F).

SENSOR TOUCH PANEL: Built-in LED screen touch panel

EASY-TO-CLEAN FULL GLASS PANEL: This commercial-grade quality induction hot plate features a seamless glass cooktop, making clean up easy.

Detail Page
10/16/2021 03:37 pm GMT

Product specifications :

This mega-offering from Duxtop packs a solid punch as this lightweight and portable induction cooktop can make its way into your backyard cooking plans to your recreational vehicle outing to your boating sessions or camping expeditions.

It can also work perfectly well in your dorm rooms or home kitchens with 120 Volt 15 Amp electrical outlets being provided.

The sleek design sports a unique touch-sensored screen with visible LED controls of 20 preset temperature levels and 20 preset power levels; that provide an 83% energy efficiency rating and saves a lot in comparison to traditional energy sources. The stainless steel casing provides much-needed durability and reliability and the commercial-grade glass panel provides you easy cleaning solutions.

Principle of action :

Compatible with a 120 Volt 15 Ampere supply of power, the Duxtop induction cooktop is one of your culinary dreams coming true. Its lightweight design makes it tremendously portable and can get it a place in any of your outing or celebration plans.

The 20 preset temperature levels between 100 degrees Fahrenheit to 460 degrees Fahrenheit and the 20 preset power levels between 100 Watts to 1800 Watts helps you to specifically tune and adjust to your desired control settings. The 83% energy efficiency rating is a measure of the sustainability that this product brings to your household. The sleek design is loaded with features like a touch-sensor screen and LED displays.

The stainless steel housing provides your induction cooktop with toughness whereas the commercial-grade of glass panel on the exterior and the absence of an open-flame burner makes it easy for you to clean the cooktop without much hassle.

Advantages :

  • Temperature and power controls: The 20 preset temperature controls between 100 degrees Fahrenheit to 460 degrees Fahrenheit and the 20 preset power levels between 100 Watts to 1800 Watts makes it easy for you to adjust to your desired settings for the recipe that you want to prepare.
  • Portability: The lightweight yet compact design makes the induction cooktop tremendously portable for all your outdoor and indoor cooking adventures.
  • Energy efficiency: The Duxtop induction cooktop provides an energy rating of 83% which is a huge bonus in terms of your energy-saving efficiency, compared to traditional sources of fuel.
  • Sleek touch sensor: The touch-sensitive screen and the LED displays provide immense control for all your cooking requirements.
  • Elegant design: The elegant design of the induction cooktop is accentuated by the highly durable stainless steel housing and the presence of an exterior glass panel of commercial-grade which makes your cleaning woes vanish in a jiffy.

Disadvantages :

  • The dimensions of the cooktop guide circles are completely misleading according to which the induction compatible cookware should be used.
  • Temperature control and safety lock features are a tad flaky.

Duxtop 1800 Watt Portable Induction Cooktop Countertop burner :

Best Seller
Duxtop 1800W Portable Induction Cooktop Countertop Burner
$56.99

120V 15 amp electrical outlet - standard in all North American homes; lightweight and compact for easy handling and storage. Digital control panel; Built-in count-down digital timer with 1 minute increments up to 170 minutes; 10 temperature range from 140 °F to 460 °F; 10 power levels from 200 to 1800 Watts.

Detail Page
10/16/2021 03:38 pm GMT

Product specifications : 

Give your kitchen and cooking space a stylish look and play on the impressions of your near and dear ones by bringing home this beauty from Duxtop. Having the standard 120 Volt 15 Amp electrical outlet as the rest of North American homes, this cooktop is handy, portable and lightweight.

The digital control panel sported by the cooktop ups the appearance quotient while portraying temperature, timer and power controls.

The absence of any open-flame heating element is good for your utensils and the burner itself; thus making its cleaning operation look effortless. The heat radiates at a rapid pace and cleaning your cookware with a damp cloth or towel can be done in a flick.

Principle of action :

This unique offering from Duxtop has a novel design which is a blend of superior technology as well as classy finish which makes it lightweight, compact and perfect for easy handling as well as storage. The electric outlet is a standard 120 Volt 15 Ampere one with the power ratings having the ease of modulation between 200 Watts to 1800 Watts.

The digital control panel sports the built-in digital countdown timer with 1-minute increments up to 170 minutes and a multitude of temperature settings in the range of 140 degrees Fahrenheit to 460 degrees Fahrenheit; as well as power regulation settings.

No open-flame heating element being present; you don’t need to worry about food being burnt while being cooked and hence you can clean your burner with ease using a damp cloth.

The 7-blade fan radiates the heat rapidly to cool your burner down in no time. The auto-pan detection system is a marvel in itself! It shuts the induction cooktop automatically after 60 seconds if no cookware is detected atop the burner and thus saves a lot of energy.

Diagnostic error message system, as well as a low and high voltage warning system, keeps you alert against any impending danger or threat that might creep up due to your lapse in attention while cooking. No worries still; because your smart induction oven will be the one coming to your rescue.

Advantages :

The few advantages presented by the Duxtop portable induction cooktop can be enlisted below for your convenience.

  • Low-temperature system: The cooktop employs an induction system to cook food and thus the adequate heat energy is obtained at a very low temperature.
  • Ease of handling: The design is stylish and the build is compact. This unique product by Duxtop definitely packs a punch because of its portability and ease of handling which can be attributed to the extremely lightweight of the product.
  • Digital controls: The induction cooktop sports digital control panel. A number of its variants often come with touch sensor settings while a couple have button control settings. Anyhow, digital control makes the cooktop look sleek and sporty.
  • Vast range in every setting: The induction cooktop has a timer setting that features 1-minute increments up to a maximum of 170 minutes. The temperature controls vary from 140 degrees Fahrenheit to 460 degrees Fahrenheit whereas you can toggle the power levels between 200 watts to 1800 watts.
  • Safety: One of the most important areas where this unique kitchen appliance trumps the others, is safety. The induction cooktop features an auto-pan detection system that shuts the entire system down if no cookware is detected for a whole minute and this prevents wastage of energy. The diagnostic error messages and the low and high voltage alarming systems also rev up the factor of safety. Most of its variants sport the safety child lock feature.
  • Effortless cleaning: The absence of any open flame burner and the presence of a 7-blade fan to radiate the formed heat rapidly; helps in cleaning the cooktop with just a damp cloth.

Disadvantages :

  • The cookware needs to have a magnetic bottom with at least 5 inches diameter and a 2-year service and customer warranty if you want to use it with this induction cooktop.
  • Few units report problems of faulty temperature controls and an objectionable high-pitched whine when switched on.

ZAVOR Pro Portable Induction Cooktop :

Induction Cooktop
Portable Induction Cooktop 1800W

8 quick launch buttons: Warm, simmer, boil, rapid boil, sauté, brown, sear and stir-fry | Temperature ranges from 140°f - 465°f and can be adjusted in ten degree increments using the + and – buttons. Safety lock button disables all touch controls on the panel. Temp. Button is used to activate the Cook-Top once it’s plugged in. The built-in timer is programmable up to 180 minutes.

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Product specifications :

This suave and lightweight offering from ZAVOR is a must-have if you are going on any expedition, field trip, or for your college dorm, studio apartment and practically anywhere which has a standard 110 Volt electric outlet.

The quick launch buttons help you to achieve whichever level of cooking you need to do with your dish. The built-in temperature and timer settings are easy to use and have a wide range of operations. The Pro portable induction cooktop works magnificently with compatible cookware and the absence of open-flame of emission-based burning system renders the cooktop surface cool and unsticky.

Principle of action :

The ZAVOR Pro is a marvel in the portable induction cooktop region. The temperature button is used to activate the induction cooktop once you plug it in. The wide range of adjustable temperature settings between 140 degrees Fahrenheit to 465 degrees Fahrenheit will enthrall your culinary instincts and keep you hooked to the product.

You can program the built-in timer up to a maximum of 180 minutes. The ace in the sleeve lies in the 8 quick launch buttons which helps you to achieve various cooking levels of your food like warming, simmering, boiling, rapid boiling, saute, browning, searing and stir-frying at just a touch.

Advantages :

  • Portability: The sleek and lightweight finish with a net weight of around 5.9 lbs makes the induction cooktop easily portable and a hit in your college dorm or studio or camping expedition and practically anywhere which sports a standard 110 Volt power outlet.
  • Safety: The safety lock button immediately disables all touch controls on the induction cooktop. The induction cooktop only works with induction compatible cookware and will not start to operate under any other alternative condition.
  • Digital controls: The induction cooktop sports adjustable temperature controls that you can toggle between 140 degrees Fahrenheit and 465 degrees Fahrenheit as well as a programmable built-in timer that can be adjusted to a maximum of 180 minutes when required.
  • Quick launch: The 8 quick launch buttons helps you achieve any mode of cooking you desire; between stir fry to sear to saute to boil, simmer and to even just warming your food.
  • Cleaning: The ease of cleaning can be attributed to the cool and unsticky surface that is a direct result of the absence of an open-flame burner or emission burner.

Disadvantages :

  • The compatibility of the cookware needs to be tested against induction settings if it has to be used on this cooktop.

CUSIMAX Portable Electric Stove :

Economy Choice
Portable Electric Stove, 1200W Infrared Single Burner
$45.99

Works with ALL types of Kettles. Infrared burners take only a few seconds to heat up. Powered by 120V and 1200-Watts. Single Dial Temp Control

Detail Page
10/16/2021 03:38 pm GMT

Product specifications :

Cusimax brings a unique offering to the forefront with its 120 Volt 1200 watts powered infrared burner which lets you cook any kind of delicacies you desire, practically anywhere and using any kind of cookware you possess.

The infrared heating feature can effectively reach your desired temperature in a few seconds and also nullifies the presence of any form of detrimental electromagnetic radiation.

The ceramic cooktop and the stainless steel back makes the product extremely durable and perfectly fine for your regular usage. The automatic safety functions with temperatures regulated by a thermostat and ease of cleaning make it a product you would reach out for in your office, college dorm, recreational vehicle or campouts to cook up a storm within minutes.

Principle of action :

The Cusimax portable electric stove works seamlessly with a 120 Volt 1200 Watt power source and lets you create any magnitude of culinary art that you wish to conceive on the plates.

The electric stove sports an infrared heater which lets you achieve your desired temperature controls within seconds of plugging in the device and even negates the possibility of any kind of electromagnetic radiation emanating from it.

The infrared stove works perfectly fine with all kinds of cookware- be it copper, glass, aluminum or cast iron and minimizes heat loss in all of them. The sleek design and the compact body made out of a ceramic top and stainless steel back provides much-needed resilience for frequent usage and increases the portability of the product.

Thus you can cook practically whatever you wish from pasta, spaghetti, scrambled eggs, ramen, grilled cheese, sauces, vegetables, soup and the like, and wherever you wish; using this item. The automatic safety shutoff function with the temperature regulated by the thermostat boosts the safety feature of the stove.

Advantages :

The numerous advantages sported by the Cusimax infrared stove are the following.

  • Compatibility: The Cusimax portable electric stove is compatible with all kinds of cookware like copper, aluminum, glass, induction compatible ones, cast iron and the rest minimizing heat loss in all of them.
  • Portability: The sleek design, small dimensions and the lightweight finish makes the stove tremendously portable and can be transported practically anywhere from your office to the studio to college dorm to campouts and anywhere where you can have access to a 120 Volt 1200 Watt supply line.
  • Toughness: The stainless steel back and the ceramic top provides tremendous resilience to the stove for your daily usage.
  • Safety: There is a safety shut off function and the temperature regulations are maintained by a thermostat.
  • Cleaning: You can clean this infrared stove with great ease using a damp cloth or a towel when it is cool.
  • Infrared heating: The infrared heating feature allows you to cook up anything you wish to within minutes because of the rapid heating function. Also , there is no sign of any harmful electromagnetic radiation.

Disadvantages :

  • Frequent reports of burner disruption and burning of the glass due to excess heat are the downsides.
  • Short circuiting of the product is a hazardous possibility.

Duxtop portable induction cooktop with LCD sensors :

Best Seller
Portable Induction Burner Hot Plate with LCD Sensor Touch 1800 Watts
$116.96

110/120V 15 amp electrical outlet–standard in all North American homes. ETL listed and built to North American electrical standards. It is lightweight and compact for easy handling and storage. Touch control panel: child safety lock keeps the cooking and timer settings from being accidentally changed once they have been set; fast boil button; keep warm button (for 1-30 minutes at 140°F); up to 10-hour timer button. 1800 Watts of Power

Detail Page
10/16/2021 12:33 pm GMT

Product specifications :

As with all the other offerings from Duxtop, this product is also quite similar in finesse and efficiency and will definitely enhance your culinary skills.

Working with a standard 110/120 Volt 15 Amp power supply; this lightweight and portable induction cooktop can be a major asset in your dorm room or office or studio apartment or home kitchen and even in your RV or fishing boat.

The 20 preset power and temperature settings offer you the ease of navigating through your desired settings and the 83% energy efficiency rating provides a sustainable edge to it.

The various timer, keep warm and touch boil buttons amplify its versatility and the safety lock feature prevents the settings on your touch-control panel from being changed drastically.

Principle of action :

The Duxtop portable induction cooktop works extremely well with any kind of 110 Volt/120 Volt 15 Amp electric outlet and its lightweight nature helps you to carry it effortlessly to any of your indoor or outdoor cooking escapades.

The 20 preset temperature setting between 100 degrees Fahrenheit to 460 degrees Fahrenheit and the 20 preset power settings ranging from 100 watts to 1800 watts offers you an extreme precision to switch between your exact needs.

The digital LCD sensor comes with an inherent safety lock feature that prevents the setting being changed accidentally. You will be glad to find out some additional features like the keep-warm button which lets you keep the food or water warm from 1 to 30 minutes at 140 degrees Fahrenheit, the fast boil button and the timer button that can be extended up to 10 hours.

The auto-pan detection feature shuts your entire unit off if an induction compatible cookware is not detected for 60 seconds at a stretch.

Advantages :

The advantages that this unique product boasts of can be enlisted below for your convenience.

  • Low-temperature system: The cooktop employs an induction system to cook food and thus exhibits very low temperatures.
  • Ease of handling and portability: The stylish design and the compact build reinforced by its lightweight nature makes this unique product by Duxtop extremely portable and easy to handle.
  • LCD touch sensor controls: The induction cooktop sports an LCD touch-sensitive control panel with improved visibility.
  • Huge range in every setting: The induction cooktop has 20 preset temperature controls varying from 100 degrees Fahrenheit to 460 degrees Fahrenheit and 20 preset power controls from 100 watts to 1800 watts.
  • Safety: One of the most important areas where this kitchen appliance becomes unique, is safety. The induction cooktop features an auto-pan detection system that shuts the entire system down if no cookware is detected for a whole minute and this prevents wastage of energy. The safety child lock feature prevents the controls from being changed by touch.
  • Effortless cleaning: The absence of any open flame burner and the presence of a sleek glass panel; helps in cleaning the cooktop with just a damp cloth.
  • Versatility: The fast-boil, the keep-warm and the up to 10-hour timer features are the priceless additions to this model.

Disadvantages :

  • The Duxtop induction cooktop can only be used when you have an induction compatible cookware to go along with it.
  • Multiple layers of metals sandwiched together render high-pitched unpleasant sound during the induction operations.

Conclusion

Induction cooktops and infrared heating operated stoves can be alternative forms of cooking apparatus which work more efficiently than traditional propane burner units do.

These employ the conventional sources of energy, ensuring cooking remains easy for you. Ditch that gas burner today.

Lead marketer, brewer, dad, and husband. Pretty much an all-round awesome guy.