Cooktops have been increasingly popular kitchen appliances in recent years, thanks to the flexibility they offer the homeowner. They can be installed on countertops or kitchen islands, meaning they're not limited to placement on top of an oven. High-end cooktops can really take your cooking to the next level, thanks to their use of the latest cooking technology. If a top-of-the-line cooktop is on your list of needs for your kitchen, read on for our expert-picked list of the best cooktops of 2021.
This Frigidaire gas cooktop from the Professional Series features five gas burners that are sealed for easy spill cleanup. The PowerPlus® burner provides up to 18,200 BTUs of cooking power, making it easy to sear and sauté your favorite meats and veggies. And continuous cast iron grates provide durability while making it easy to slide pots and pans across burners. The unit even comes with a removable griddle plate for added flexibility.
Electronic pilotless ignition saves energy and can be ignited manually when electricity is out, and PrecisionPro Controls™ make it a snap to adjust the temperature to the best level for your dish.
Finally, this unit's sleek stainless steel finish will blend seamlessly in your kitchen with other Frigidaire appliances from the Professional Series.
Next up on our list is this 30-in. 200 Series electric induction unit from Gaggenau, which brings German-engineered cooktop technology to your kitchen. Four heating elements provide up to 3,600W of power for fast and thorough cooking. With induction technology, moreover, cooking is not just faster but safer. Magnetic waves induce heat directly in the pan for quick boiling and intense sears, leaving less heat on the surface.
For increased versatility, the Flex function on this induction unit allows you to combine elements for a larger cooking area. The cooking sensor function provides temperature control for your pots, and the frying sensor does the same for your pans. You can even make use of the booster function for extra quick cooking, while the keep warm function makes sure your food is just the right temperature when you're ready to serve it.
Safety is also an essential consideration with this unit. The auto shut off feature will turn the cooktop off automatically if it has been operating for an extended period of time, while the child lock function prevents it from being accidentally switched on.
Rounding out our list of the best cooktops of 2021 is this 42-in. natural gas cooktop from Miele, which provides a maximum burner output of 16,500 BTUs. With six sealed burners, it allows you to cook numerous dishes at once and easily clean up any spills. Use the simmer function to keep heat levels low yet even, so you don't need to worry about scorching your delicate sauces.
This cooktop comes equipped with a wok burner, ideal for quickly sautéing your meats and vegetables. Plus, this unit's continuous grate allows you to slide pots and pans across the cooktop effortlessly while you cook.
With this unit's fast ignition system, your burners will be up and cooking in an instant. And in the event of a power outage, the automatic reignition system will relight your burners automatically. Should the unit ever be left operating for an excessive amount of time, the gas will shut off automatically for added safety.
Finally, a stainless steel frame and finish give your kitchen a striking, modern look. And the stainless steel knob controls make it a snap to adjust settings as needed.
Do chefs prefer gas or induction cooktop?
Electric induction and gas cooktops each have their own pros and cons, and the best one will depend on what and how you cook. However, chefs generally prefer those powered by gas because they heat up faster and offer more precise temperature control while cooking, making it easier to sear, grill, and simmer your food.
How do I choose a cooktop?
When buying a cooktop, considerations of space are important, as well as questions of budget. Induction cooktops are usually more expensive than gas or electric models. For gourmet cooking, gas and induction cooktops are most popular thanks to the ease of temperature control that they afford.