Induction Pros

Induction Pros

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Frying pan on modern induction stove

Chef’s Star Stainless Steel 17-Pc Induction Cookware Set Review

This stainless steel induction cookware set is built with 18/8 commercial stainless steel and an impact bonded aluminum base. The pots and pans can be used on induction, electric, gas, infrared, glass, and ceramic stovetops. They are oven safe up to 550ºF and can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer.

Chef’s Star 17-Piece Pots & Pans Stainless Steel - 17 Piece Professional Grade Pots & Pans Set - Non Stick Induction Ready Cookware Set w/Impact Bonded Technology – Toxin Free, Dishwasher Safe

What's Included

  • 8” frying pans (no lids)
  • 10” frying pans (no lids)
  • 1.6-quart saucepans with lids
  • 2.5-quart saucepans with lids
  • 4.2-quart casserole pan with a lid
  • 8.6-quart stock pot with a lid
  • 5.5-quart sauté pan with a lid
  • Broiler basket
  • Steamer basket
  • Spoon; slotted spatula; and a 2 pronged fork
pros
cons
  • One year no questions asked warranty
  • Interior is 18/8 stainless steel
  • Anti-slip satin finish handles
  • Can be put in freezer and refrigerator
  • Vented glass lids
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Handles get hot
  • Only a single layer of stainless steel on the walls of the pots and pans

Chef’s Star 17-Piece Pots & Pans Stainless Steel - 17 Piece Professional Grade Pots & Pans Set - Non Stick Induction Ready Cookware Set w/Impact Bonded Technology – Toxin Free, Dishwasher Safe

Chef’s Star Stainless Steel 17-Pc Cookware Set

This is a stylish all-inclusive cookware set. You'll have all you need if you are cooking for a social occasion or a daily meal.

Review

Construction

The base of the Chef’s Star 17-Piece Pots & Pans Stainless Steel - 17 Piece Professional Grade Pots & Pans Set - Non Stick Induction Ready Cookware Set w/Impact Bonded Technology – Toxin Free, Dishwasher Safe is comprised of three layers: stainless steel, aluminum (middle layer), stainless steel. The interior layer is 18/8 stainless steel. The bottom of the cooking vessels is encapsulated with an impact bonded aluminum, which helps ensure that the heat is distributed evenly throughout the base.

Impact bonding is a procedure whereby pressure and friction and not adhesive, are used to form the bond between the base of the pot or pan (stainless steel) and the disc (a heavy gauge aluminum).

In the manufacturing process, the disc is put on the base of the vessel, then placed in an impact bonding machine where pressure and friction are applied, resulting in the formation of a bond. 

The sides of the pots and pans are single stainless steel with a thickness of .6mm (per Chef's Star customer service).

Lids

The lids are glass and have a vent. They are high temperature resistant up to 482°F. The handles and rims are stainless steel. 

Handles

The handles are ergonomically shaped and have an anti-slip satin finish, ensuring that you don’t drop your food when transferring the cookware.  

Warranty

The product comes with a one-year no questions asked warranty policy.

Customer Service

I emailed Chef's Star customer service was a few queries and received a friendly, complete and timely response.

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two burner induction hob with black ceramic surface

What is the Difference Between Ceramic and Induction Cooktops?

When you’re planning to purchase a cooktop, you want to ensure whatever you get is the best it can possibly be and is easy to operate. Before purchasing your specific cooktop, there are many factors to consider such as price, the amount of space available in your kitchen, and the features that will be beneficial for you.

There is often a lot of confusion between ceramic cooktops and induction cooktops and although they look alike there is a big difference when it comes to cooking and how they work. That’s why we thought it would be helpful to supply you with this guide of the differences between the two.

Black pan on induction stovetop

How They Work

The main difference between a ceramic and induction cooktop is how they create heat and how it spreads and transfers into the pot or pan.

Under the glass/ceramic surface of an induction cooktop lies a coil through which electric current flows.  A magnetic field is created which goes through the bottom of the induction compatible pan or pot that sits on the surface of the cooktop. A current is then generated in the base of the cookware. This electrical energy is changed to heat energy which is transferred from the vessel to the food. 

Underneath the top of the ceramic/glass cooktop lies coiled metal elements. These elements are heated to the set temperature. The coils heat the cooktop surface and then heats the cooking vessel. Finally, after heating the ceramic surface of the cooker, the heat is transferred to the pan.

Compared to each other in terms of how they heat up pans, we would say that the induction cooker wins, as it is more efficient as it only heats up the pan itself. 

Safety

One of the main features to consider before buying a new cooker is its safety. This is an essential part of the purchase process, especially if you have young children.

While ceramic cooktops retain considerably more heat than induction cookers, there are now a lot of modern models that come with a heat indicator that tells the user the hotter parts of the cooker. However, induction cooktops are ideal for homes with small children as the top hardly gets hot, and is only activated if it is switched on and an induction ready pan or pot is on the top of the cooker. Some models have a lock feature that when activated, prevents settings from being changed. Ceramic cooktops also offer safety features which vary according to the model selected.

Cleaning

While both a ceramic and induction cooktop are both flat and smooth, thus making them equally as easy to clean (you can normally just wipe them down with the wet cloth), there is the issue of ceramic cooktops being hot and if anything is spilled on the top of it while it is hot, it can dry or bake onto the surface.

In this case, it is essential that you clean it up as soon as you feel it is safe to do so. If burnt or spilled food is left on the cooker top for a while it can cause more problems in the long run.   


Cookware

Another factor to consider before purchasing or choosing your model of the cooker is the cookware you will use. Induction cooktops require certain cookware pieces. Therefore, if you already have a collection of cookware in your house, you can use the magnet test to see if they’re compatible (if the magnet sticks securely to the base of the cookware then it is induction ready). If your pots and pans aren’t compatible, then you will have to consider the expense of new cookware. However, all types of cookware can be used on ceramic cooktops  – as long as it has a flat bottom.

Conclusion

Overall, there are some differences between the ceramic and induction cooktops, but both are unique and it is ultimately up to personal preference which one you opt for when you purchase your cooker. 

Some consumers purchase a portable single or double induction cooktop. They are much less expensive than built-in or full induction and ceramic cooktops.

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pot and frying pan on induction stove

What is an Induction Cooking Hob?

Induction hobs heat a cooking vessel electrically by magnetic induction, as opposed to a flame or an electrical heating element. 

Cooktops are available as portable units, built-in, or as a full-size oven. They can be used in home or office kitchens, food trucks, convenience stores, restaurants, or in your RV, boat, cabin or dorm room. Some portable induction cooktops are designed only for commercial use. 

How Induction Hobs Work

An induction compatible cooking vessel is placed on the glass ceramic surface of the induction cooktop.  Underneath the cooktop are electromagnetic coils made from copper wire. When the unit is switched on, an electric current flows through the coils. This produces a magnetic field which generates electric currents in the pot or pan's metal. The base of the pan will be heated directly. Heat is transferred to the food because the cooking vessel acts as a heat source. 

The only part of the glass ceramic surface that is heated is where the pot is contact with the induction hob or if there is heat given off by the cookware. 

What Cookware Can Be Used on an Induction Hob?

Only ferromagnetic materials such as steel, magnetized stainless steel, enameled cast iron and cast iron work with induction cooktops.

As induction cooktops become more popular in the United States, companies are manufacturing cookware that can be used on conventional stovetops such as electric or gas as well as induction hobs. They simply place a layer of magnetic stainless steel in the base of the cooking vessel. This provides the consumer the versatility of using it on several heat sources.

It is easy to determine if your pans and pots are induction ready or not. Place a magnet on the bottom of your cookware and if it sticks strongly to the base, it is induction ready and can be used on your induction cooker. If the magnet has no pull toward the base of the pot or pan, then it doesn’t have the metals needed to create heat with an induction cooker. 

Advantages of Induction Hobs

  • Digital temperature readings available.
  • Reacts quickly to a change in temperature/power settings.
  • Cools down rapidly. 
  • Less heat is wasted since more heat goes into the pan than electric or gas stoves.
  • No electrical heating element or flame. 
  • A variety of safety features are available depending upon the model.
  • Easy clean up.  
  • If someone uses a wheelchair, it is certainly easier to use a portable induction cooktop since it can be placed on a table enabling easy access since the user's legs can go below the table.
  • Disadvantages of Induction Hobs

  • Some people complain about fan noise while others don't find it annoying.
  • If you don't have compatible cookware, then the additional cost of new induction ready pots and pans has to be factored into your decision.  
  • The full-size ranges are expensive. However, some consumers view it as an investment rather than a one-off purchase.
  • Most cookers automatically shut-off after 2 or 3 hours.
  • Induction Cooktop Efficiency

    There has been a lot of hype about induction cooktops being much more energy efficient than an electric or gas range. Most people will agree that since heat is transferred directly to the pot, little is lost to the surrounding environment. This means your kitchen won't get so hot, which is great during the summer.  In addition, induction cookers heat up faster than electric or gas stoves and react more quickly to temperature changes.

    The question as to whether using an induction cooktop is less expensive than electric or gas has been discussed on various review sites and forums. Prior to stating whether the cooking efficiency of induction cooking is or isn't better than electric or gas, I wanted to review the results of a technical assessment that addressed this query. I found one that was conducted by the private firm, Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI). The cooking products used were: full-size gas and electric ranges and two single burner induction cooktops. 

    Water was heated from 70° to 200° F to conduct the electric and induction tests. Three tests were completed and the results averaged. In terms of electric vs induction, the results showed when the cooking vessel covered the burner, induction efficiency was higher (83.4% vs 77.4%). On the other hand, when the bottom of the cookware was smaller than the heating coil, induction was more efficient, (76.2% vs 41.5%). In the end, the amount you would save on your electric bill is negligible.[1]

    Since the EPRI test was conducted on a gas stove at 50°F and on an induction stove at 70°F one cannot make a direct comparison. However, the results do show the efficiency level of gas. When a vessel was used that covered the burner, the gas range was less efficient than induction cooktops (77.4% vs 35.2%).  This was also true when the cookware was smaller than the burner (76.2% vs 30.2%). The EPRI finding concluded that the annual induction energy cost is slightly higher than that of gas even when a small vessel is used ($8.49 vs $7.05). [1]

    Best Built-in Induction Cooktops of 2018

    The History of Induction Technology

    The induction cooker was originally produced and put on the market in 1933 at the World’s Fair in Chicago. During the fair, several demonstrations were conducted showing how to use the cooker, along with an explanation of the different types of cookware that can be used on an induction cooktop.

    Then, in 1970, more modern developments of induction cooking developed in the United States. Since technology had moved forward, improvements were made and the induction hob became a lot better and more popular with the general public. Westinghouse developed an induction cooker (including matching and compatible cookware) and started selling it to the public. However, there were many problems with induction cooker technology and the idea of them never really took off in the US during this time.

    It has only been since the fan noise has been reduced in induction cookers that it has become more popular. While induction cooking failed in the US (during its first few years of being in the market), it thrived in Europe and Asia. As technology advancements in many different areas were taking place, a few companies invested development money in the area of induction technology.  Slowly, these products became more well known and understood in the United States. Sales increased when companies reduced the fan noise (although not enough according to some consumers)  and manufactured products with fewer reliability issues. The concepts of minimalism and living in small spaces has given induction cooking more visibility. Appliances such as these are of interest to those who prefer a modern looking kitchen as well as those who are curious about products with newer technology.

    Frying Pan on Induction Cooktop


    Conclusion

    Induction cooking is an interesting way of preparing your meals. It does take a little getting used to, however, given its benefits, it's certainly something worth considering. The decision as to whether to add a portable single or double burner cooktop,  a commercial cooktop, a built-in unit or a full-sized induction range to your kitchen, boils down to your cooking style, budget, and what works best for you. 

    [1] https://aceee.org/files/proceedings/2014/data/papers/9-702.pdf

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    white digital rice cooker in white background

    What Can I Cook with a Rice Cooker?

    It has been over 60 years since Toshiba released the first rice cooker that was commercially successful. After they increased in popularity, other companies started getting involved and making their own that had varying capabilities  and multiple features.  

    The term rice cooker was formerly used to describe rice-cooking utensils throughout Japanese history (and all throughout the world), however, the modern rice cooker is known as a suihanki. After it’s invention, rice cooking changed for people all over the world as it was now a lot easier to cook rice to the perfect consistency.

    Despite initially using a heating mechanism to heat up the rice until it reached a certain point, rice cookers have come a long way since then and are now a lot more efficient and energy saving.

    What Foods Can I Cook in a Rice Cooker

    Contrary to popular belief, foods other than rice can be prepared in a rice cooker. Since it’s invention and increasing popularity, people have been finding different ways to successfully use it to cook other foods including oatmeal, eggs, vegetables, beans, grains and even desserts.

    Oatmeal

    Oatmeal can be prepared by adding water and steel cut oats to the inner cooking pan. After placing the pan in the body of the cooker, plug the unit in.  Depending upon your rice cooker, use either the "steel cut oatmeal" or the porridge setting.  After the Keep Warm setting is activated, open the lid, stir and add milk or half&half and brown sugar if desired.  Some rice cookers are equipped with a timer function that allows you to put the oats and water in the cooker the night before and it will be ready in the morning. Depending upon how you like your oatmeal to taste (soft or crunchy) then you may want to leave the rice cooker on for a longer or shorter amount of time.  

    Boiled Eggs

    It seems that every blogger has the right technique for making the perfect boiled egg. It was surprising to learn that it can be done using a rice cooker (the eggs are actually steamed). The two advantages are being able to cook a number a eggs at a time and ones that are easy-to-peel.

    Place a cup or two of water and the eggs in the steamer tray and set it in the pot. The time needed to cook the eggs is dependent upon your unit and whether you prefer soft or hard boiled eggs.  Most units come with recipes and suggested cooking times. After reviewing several websites it seems the most common range is 10-25 minutes. 

    Vegetables

    If you’re looking for the perfectly cooked piece of broccoli or carrots, then boiling and steaming them in a rice cooker could completely change up your meal planning.

    Beans

    Here is a great description of how to cook beans in a rice cooker. The beans can be soaked before placing them in the cooker or soaked in the cooker.

    Macaroni and cheese

    Fixing macaroni and cheese in a rice cooker is fairly straightforward.  A simple, tasty recipe can be found here

    Other foods that can be prepared in a rice cooker are: pork roast, cheesecake, chocolate cake, chili, stew and a whole host of soups.  

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    stainless steel pots on four burner built-in induction cooktop

    Things to Consider Before Buying an Induction Cooktop

    Buying a new induction cooktop seems fairly straightforward at first. Then when you start reading about the various types, sizes, features, colors, and number of burners, it seems like you'll need to make a spreadsheet. There is plenty of information available that will explain why one cooktop is better than another. If you’re thinking about buying an induction cooktop, we have put together a list of induction types and features to assist you in making a decision.

    If you aren’t already aware of what an induction cooktop is, it’s essentially a type of cooktop that doesn’t require a naked flame or gas. Inside the cooktop (under the glass/ceramic surface plate), there is a coil through which electric current flows, creating a magnetic field. This field goes through the base of the induction ready pot or pan that is on the cooktop surface.  A current is generated in the bottom of the cooking vessel and the electrical energy is changed to heat energy. This heat is then transferred from the cookware to the food.  

    A certain type of cooking vessel is required when using an induction cooktop.  The base of the vessels has to either contain iron or a layer that has magnetic materials. Induction compatible cookware types are: cast iron, steel, enameled cast iron, ceramic clad and magnetic stainless steel. This is discussed in more detail in this article.

    Size, power, temperature, safety and other features, and design are some of the factors to consider before buying an induction cooktop.

    Things to Consider Before Buying an Induction Cooktop 2

    Size

    The first decision to make is whether to buy a por​​table induction cooktop, a built-in unit or a full-size induction range.

    Portable cookers  have either one or two burners.  The size of single burner cooktops are around 14x11.5x2.5 inches (LxWxH).  The double burner cookers are generally 23.6 x 14.1 x 2.6. These units can easily be used on a countertop or table. Sometimes consumers buy one of these cooktops to see if they like it before purchasing a built-in cooktop or full-size oven. Others purchase one for use as an extra burner at home or to take to a social occasion or to use in their dorm room, RV, cabin or boat.  

    The next step up in size is a built-in cooktop. These appliances generally have either two, four or 5 cooking zones.  They range in width from 20 to 41 inches.  

    The most popular freestanding induction ranges are 30 inches wide and have four burners along with an oven and sometimes a steam rack. However, some are available that are 36 inches wide.

    A single zone tabletop unit is cost-effective and  portable but won’t offer the same power or flexibility as the larger models. However, the bigger the size you opt for, the more expensive it is going to be.  It is essential to measure how much space you have in your kitchen to see if a bigger model can fit or if you should select a smaller one.  

    Power

    The power for the single induction cookers range from 1300 to 1800 Watts.  Most portable double cooktops have a total maximum output of 1800 Watts. The power of the burners varies according to model and the wattage given is the TOTAL for the unit. The following are three examples of how the wattage is split.

    1.  One burner is 1200W (use a larger pan) and the other is 600W (use a smaller pan) on the other burner.  They can be used simultaneously. 

    2. One burner can be used at 1800W or both burners can be used at the same time at 900W.

    3.  Some units have 10 power levels.  Both burners can be used at 1800W; however, not simultaneously as the combined total power is 10. One burner can be used at power level 3 and the other unit will automatically adjust to level 7.

    The built-in units either split the wattage between the burners or they have a fixed wattage for each burner. Generally, the wattage ranges from 1800 to 3700 per unit. Examples of the power for the burners on models with fixed wattages are: 1200, 1800, 2500, 2800, 3300, 3600, and  3700 Watts.

    The number of power levels on your cooktop is another consideration.  The portable cooktops have either 10, 15, or 20 levels.

    Things to Consider Before Buying an Induction Cooktop 3

    Temperature 

    The temperature range varies among the portable induction cooktops.   Most brands range from 100-450°F or 140-460°F. The number of temperature settings also differs according to model; having either 10, 15 or 20 settings.  The temperature increments are in 25 degree steps while others are in 15° or 20° increments.

    Safety Features

    The single and double burner cooktops have a variety of safety features.  However, not all of them have a lock that prevents settings from being changed. An automatic shut-off function is available on some cooktops but not others.  This is helpful for those who are concerned about their food boiling over or overcooking.  A sensor underneath the glass cooktop, senses when the pan is getting too hot and the unit will automatically cease operating. 

    Although not strictly a safety feature, a timer is extremely helpful, especially for those of us who like to multitask. It can save the headache of overcooked or burnt food.

    It is important that your induction cooker is ETL approved and FCC Part 18 compliant (FCC has authorized its use and marketing). ETL approval verifies the appliance is compliant with North American Safety standards.

    Design

    Design is an important factor to consider prior to buying your induction cooker.  It is especially critical if your kitchen already has a specific decor or color scheme. Stainless steel and black induction ranges are much more prevalent than white ones. One of the nice things about induction cookers is that they are very modern and sleek. 

    Extra Features

    The single induction cooktops also vary in the type of one touch features, the type of controls and the cooktop surface design.  Some cooktops have boil, simmer or keep warm settings. The control on the top-of-the-line units are touchpad as opposed to buttons or dial.

    The one burner induction units have a surface that is either tablet like or has a slanted control panel.  The Max Burton 6400 and the newer 6450 model and the Duxtop 9600LS unit are examples of those with an angled interface. The benefit of this design is that it lessens the chance of the touchpad settings being changed accidentally or heat from the vessel touching the display as the pot or pan is being removed from the cooktop. 

    Conclusion

    If you are not sure if you want to invest in an induction cooktop, this article details the advantages and drawbacks of these units. 

    The following is a checklist to use if you are considering purchasing an induction cooktop.  

    • Size and power capabilities - portable, built-in or full-size
    • Power levels - 10, 15, or 20  
    • Temperature settings - 10, 15, or 20
    • Is the temperature increment important to me?
    • Do I want a settings lock?
    • Do I want automatic shut-off?
    • Do I want a timer?
    • Is it ETL approved and FCC Part 18 compliant?
    • Portable units - tablet or slanted display panel?
    • What will fit into my decor?
    • Do I want a touchpad as opposed to buttons or a dial?
    • What is the quality of customer service of the manufacturer?
    • What is the product warranty?

    Hopefully, this article gave you a better idea as to whether an induction cooktop is something that will fit both your lifestyle and cooking needs.

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    iron griddles on hob

    Lodge Cast Iron Square Grill Pan Review

    Lodge Cast Iron Square Grill Pan:
    QUICK OVERVIEW

    Features

    Construction

    Durability

    Affordability

    What We Like

    • Ribbed bottom for low-fat cooking
    • Pre-Seasoned and ready-to-use

    What We Don't Like

    • Prone to rusting  
    • Hard to clean

    For grill lovers and home cooks alike, this cast iron square grill pan from Lodge will help you create delicious foods you and your family will love. Cast iron cooking has a long history, dating back to the 19th century, and is beloved by millions thanks to both its durability and the flavor quality it delivers.  

    Lodge Cast Iron Square Grill Pan REVIEW

    Lodge 10.5 Inch Square Cast Iron Grill Pan. Pre-seasoned Grill Pan with Easy Grease Draining for Grilling Bacon, Steak, and Meats.

    The Lodge foundry and brand of cookware has been around since 1896. Starting with their traditional smooth round skillets, they’ve branched out to more specialized cookware, like this square grill pan. Grill pans have been around for several decades, and this tried-and-true model is a staple for any household.

    Who Is This For?

    Cast iron cooking is a pleasurable experience for any kind of cook, from beginners to more advanced at-home chefs. This cast iron grill pan is also ideal for camping, using on an outdoor grill, or just enjoying meals at home.  Cast iron needs to be taken care of and is not the same as using stainless steel or non-stick pans.

    Overview of Features

    A generous 10.5” square size is the dominant feature of this Lodge 10.5 Inch Square Cast Iron Grill Pan. Pre-seasoned Grill Pan with Easy Grease Draining for Grilling Bacon, Steak, and Meats.. You can cook four burgers or chicken breasts or two large pieces of fish simultaneously, so it’s definitely family sized. You’ll notice the twelve evenly spaced raised ribs along the bottom of the pan, which are about ½” apart. They create the grill marks on your food. The pan is square, with gently rounded corners. This gives you more cooking area than a round grill pan.

    The handle is nice and long and evenly balanced. It does get very hot, so you are advised to use an oven mitt or silicone holder when moving the pan. The other feature you’ll notice is the weight. Cast iron is heavy; it’s solidly made and weighs around four and one-half pounds. The iron itself is very thick along the bottom of the pan and up the sides of the grill. It heats evenly and should only be used on medium-high heat or lower. Cast iron is magnetic, so you can definitely use this with an induction cooktop.

    How to Get The Most Out Of It

    Cast iron will last for more than one generation if it’s kept in excellent condition and used with care. Although this Lodge Cast Iron Square Grill Pan comes pre-seasoned, to ensure its best use and help it become more non-stick, you are advised to season it before cooking for the first time.  

    Alternative

    Need a bit more space for grilling? When the 10.5” square grill pan won’t do, then pick up this  Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Grill and Griddle Combo. Reversible 20" x 10.44" Grill/Griddle Pan with Easy-Grip Handles. With a size of 20” long and 10.44” wide, you get plenty of room to cook up an entire meal. 

    Drawbacks

    One pattern in the negative reviews of this grill pan was that it rusted.  Another was that it was very hard to clean around the ridges.

    Conclusion

    Cast iron cooks are converts for life. If this is your first foray into cast iron cooking, you’re in for a treat. But even for serious cooks Lodge 10.5 Inch Square Cast Iron Grill Pan. Pre-seasoned Grill Pan with Easy Grease Draining for Grilling Bacon, Steak, and Meats. will be a welcome addition to your collection.

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    cast iron griddle with kebabs

    Lodge Cast Iron Round Griddle Review

    Lodge Cast Iron Round Griddle:
    QUICK OVERVIEW

    Features

    Construction

    Durability

    Affordability

    What We Like

    • Foundry seasoned, ready to use upon purchase
    • Use on all cooking surfaces, grills and campfires
    • Oven safe

    What We Don't Like

    • Short sides

    You can almost smell Sunday breakfast cooking on this handsome Lodge 10.5 Inch Cast Iron Griddle. Pre-seasoned Round Cast Iron Pan Perfect for Pancakes, Pizzas, and Quesadillas.! It was designed for making your foods smell and taste delicious; is built to last, and has the time-tested brand name of Lodge behind it. Add this griddle pan to your collection, and make it a part of your family’s cooking tradition for more than one generation to come.

    Lodge Cast Iron Round Griddle REVIEW

    Lodge 10.5 Inch Cast Iron Griddle. Pre-seasoned Round Cast Iron Pan Perfect for Pancakes, Pizzas, and Quesadillas.

    Founded in 1896, the Lodge cast iron foundry has been creating exceptional cookware for well over a century. Besides their basic 10” and 12” skillets, this 10.5” griddle is a pan they’ve offered for several decades. Basically, it gives you all the benefits of a skillet, but with much lower sides to make it easier for flipping foods or cooking flatter foods like crepes, omelets, and eggs.

    Who Is This For?

    Cooking with cast iron is a pleasurable experience for any home cook who’d like to try this time-tested and still popular cookware. A griddle pan is best for those who need a large, flat surface area for cooking that isn’t as large as a pizza pan, but isn’t as small as a one-egg skillet.

    This griddle has such a nice surface for cooking, so it’s excellent for families who like to cook up big batches of pancakes, eggs, tortillas, or toasted sandwiches. This wouldn’t be a good cast iron pan for those in small spaces, when a regular skillet would be able to do the job just fine.

    Overview of Features

    You get a generous amount of cooking area with this Lodge 10.5 Inch Cast Iron Griddle. Pre-seasoned Round Cast Iron Pan Perfect for Pancakes, Pizzas, and Quesadillas.. It’s enough to cook up pancakes, eggs, bake small pizzas, toast sandwiches, and warm up tortillas. This pan is made of solid cast iron, including the handle, which is its stand-out feature. A flat griddle surface evenly distributes heat throughout the entire pan and up the very short side walls. It’s 0.5” deep, so perfect for foods that need to be flipped. Since the handle is also cast iron, it gets very hot so you'll need to use an oven mitt or handle holder.

    Cast iron is magnetic and is great for induction cooking. You can use it on top of either an electric or gas stove, in the oven, or at the campfire, too. While this pan is heavy, at 4.5 pounds, it’s lighter than a traditional skillet of the same size since the sides are shorter.

    How to Get The Most Out Of It

    Cast iron will last for more than one generation if it’s kept in excellent condition and used with care. Although this Lodge Cast Iron Round Griddle comes pre-seasoned, to ensure its best use and help it become more non-stick, you are advised to season it before cooking for the first time. 

    Alternative

    Need higher sides for deeper frying and more versatility? The basic but essential Lodge Seasoned Cast Iron Skillet with Hot Handle Holder - 10.25” Cast Iron Frying Pan with Silicone Hot Handle Holder (BLACK). is a must have for your kitchen. It gives you the same century-long high quality as the griddle pan, but with higher sides to prevent splatters and keep foods from spilling over.

    Conclusion

    The more you use your Lodge 10.5 Inch Cast Iron Griddle. Pre-seasoned Round Cast Iron Pan Perfect for Pancakes, Pizzas, and Quesadillas., the more it will give back to you. Your foods will taste better, and your cooking repertoire will expand. These durable and long-lasting cast iron pans easily fry eggs, make crepes or omelets, or gently brown tortillas for Taco Tuesday. You’ll love using them in brand new ways, too!

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    cast iron fry pan with fork

    Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Grill Griddle Review

    Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Grill Griddle:
    QUICK OVERVIEW

    Features

    Construction

    Durability

    Affordability

    What We Like

    • Reversible Cast Iron
    • Fits over two stovetop burners
    • Easy care: Hand wash, dry, rub with cooking oil

    What We Don't Like

    • Not recommended for some glass top stoves

    Passionate home cooks and food lovers enjoy cooking in cast iron because it’s durable, heats evenly, and provides that delicious flavor. When you cook with this Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Grill and Griddle Combo. Reversible 20" x 10.44" Grill/Griddle Pan with Easy-Grip Handles, you have enough space to feed a crowd. It’s a great addition to the time-tested Lodge line of cast iron cookware.

    Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Grill Griddle REVIEW

    Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Grill and Griddle Combo. Reversible 20' x 10.44' Grill/Griddle Pan with Easy-Grip Handles

    Back in 1896, when the Lodge cast iron foundry began, they focused on one product line: cast iron cookware. This long and reversible grill/griddle pan is very similar to some antiques that are over 100 years old! Those were used on wood stoves to either grill or cook large cowboy-style breakfasts. Now you, too, can feed a crowd by using this modern version.

    Who Is This For?

    For entertaining or to make enough food for feeding your family, the Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Grill/Griddle is the ideal cookware. It covers two stovetop burners, so it’s best for larger kitchens and grill lovers. This grill/griddle would be ideal for indoor sports fans or to take to tailgating parties. It brings all the fun of grilling right into your own kitchen. 

    Overview of Features

    This Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Grill and Griddle Combo. Reversible 20" x 10.44" Grill/Griddle Pan with Easy-Grip Handles is a single pan with double handles.  While this pan comes pre-seasoned by the manufacturer, you are advised to do your own seasoning.

    The first thing you’ll notice about this cast iron pan is its substantial size! It measures 20” long and 10.44” wide, which provides over 200 square inches of cooking space on each side. There’s a flat, smooth griddle pan on one side with very short sides, and a completely ribbed grill side on the other. It has 23 grill marks for grilling multiple steaks, chicken, vegetables, and fish.

    This is a heavy, durable piece of cookware, built to last more than one generation. It weighs 16 pounds. Cast iron is magnetic, so you can use this with induction cooktops. It’s good for electric and gas stoves, and don’t forget to take it out to the grill or to the campsite, too. This fits over two stovetop burners, but is not recommended for some glass top stoves. Check with the manufacturer before purchase if you’re unsure.

    How to Get The Most Out Of It

    Cast iron will last for more than one generation if it’s kept in excellent condition and used with care. Although this Lodge Cast Iron Reversible Grill Griddle comes pre-seasoned, to ensure its best use and help it become more non-stick, you are advised to season it before cooking for the first time.  

    Alternative

    Need a grill but in a smaller size or one that is not so heavy? Check out this smaller square grill with a helper handle. It has twelve raised grill ribs, squared-off corners, and deep sides. You still get plenty of grilling area, but in a smaller pan that’s better for either smaller kitchens or for someone who wants a grill that isn't so heavy. Another option is a round griddle that we reviewed. 

    Conclusion

    With over 400 square inches of cooking space, there’s not much you can’t cook on this large and substantial Lodge Pro-Grid Cast Iron Grill and Griddle Combo. Reversible 20" x 10.44" Grill/Griddle Pan with Easy-Grip Handles. You can feed a crowd and enjoy using this cast iron for many years to come. It’s worth it to properly care for your cookware, since it will reward you each and every time you use it.

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    Is Induction Cooking Better than Electric

    Is Induction Cooking Better than Electric?

    Induction cooking has been widely used to prepare food in Europe and Asia for decades. However, the concept never garnered much interest in the United States until a few years ago.  Now consumers are curious enough to research this type of heat source for cooking. Once they understand how they work and their benefits, savvy consumers want to know if it is smart to use an induction cooktop instead of a gas or electric stove.  In a previous article, we compared induction and gas cooking. Here we discuss the advantages of both induction and electric cookers.

    Is Induction Cooking Better than Electric 2

    What is an Induction Cooker?

    An induction cooktop heats cookware in a different manner than electric or gas stoves.  These cookers produce an electromagnetic field underneath the glass/ceramic cooktop surface that transfers electric currents to the induction compatible cookware which then heats up.   

    The surface of an induction cooker gets hot when an induction compatible pan is placed on it.  Part of the cooktop does get hot because heat transfers from the pot or pan to the glass.  However, when the pan is removed, it cools faster than any other conventional burner.

    There are three categories of induction cooking appliances: 1) portable, 2) built-in units and 3) full-size induction ranges.

    There is a large selection of single or double burner portable cookers available. Some manufacturers devote time and money to the research and development of induction cooktops. They continuously improve their existing product line by offering upgraded models. 

    The portable cooktops usually either a tablet-like surface or a flat surface with a slanted display. The advantage of an angled interface is twofold: 1) lessens the chance of settings being changed and 2) liquid/food won't be as likely to spill over onto the display panel. The features to consider are: safety functions, child lock, temperature and power ranges, settings and increments, timer and one-touch settings, and whether the unit is ETL approved and FCC Part 18 compliant.

    Built-in induction cooktops have between 2 and 5 burners. The size of the burners vary according to model. Full-size freestanding ranges are generally either 30" or 36" and either have a single or double oven. 

    Prior to investing in a full-size induction stove or range, some consumers purchase a portable induction cooktop to use for awhile.  After seeing the benefits it provides, they made decide to use it as an extra burner or food warmer in addition to their gas or electric stove. Others choose to use a portable unit as their sole cooking appliance or elect to purchase a built-in cooktop or a full size induction oven.

    Is Induction Cooking Better than Electric3

    Advantages of an Induction Cooker

    • There is no wasted heat when using an induction cooker as the energy is directly supplied to the cooking vessel and transferred to the pan or pot. 
    • The stovetop often stays cool, which is helpful when it comes to preventing dangerous accidents from happening in your kitchen. The surface will only heat up when a  pan or pot is placed on it.
    • The power and temperature settings can be controlled more accurately and responds quickly to temperature changes.
    • Food can be heated and cooked quickly.
    • They are very easy to clean.
    • Portable cooktops are versatile in that they can be taken to social or catering events or used in an RV, boat or cabin. They are also convenient for those who do not have access to or the floor space for a full-size stove.

    Advantages of an Electric Cooker

    • Electric stoves are less expensive than full-size induction stoves.
    • Any pot or pan can be used. However, a lot of cookware now is induction ready. If a magnet securely sticks to the bottom of the cooking vessel it can be used on an induction cooktop.  Many people can use some of the cookware pieces they have on hand.  Cast iron pots and pans are induction compatible.
    • Consumers have commented that electric stoves are more powerful than induction stoves.
    • Electric stoves don't make the humming or buzzing sound induction cooktops tend to make when cooking at higher settings.
    • Digital and analog thermometers can both be used. The magnetic field may interfere with the readings on a digital thermometer.
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    stainless steel pot and cast iron pan on built-in gas stove

    Is Induction Cooking Better Than Gas?

    As the debate between induction cooking versus gas continues, we put together a short guide looking at the pros and cons of both.

    We know that the way people cook is a personal preference and sometimes they are not keen on changing methods.  However,  as time goes on and technology advancements are made, interesting options become available.  Induction cooking is a newer method than gas, and that’s why it’s important to know all the facts before you decide whether to try it or not.

    What is Induction Cooking?

    Induction cooking has been widely used in Europe and Asia for decades.  However, for whatever reason, this cooking appliance hasn't been very popular in the United States until recently. Now, companies such as Max Burton and Secura are spending development dollars to improve upon first and second generation induction cooktops.  Other companies are copying the technology from the more successful brands and manufacturing budget induction cooktops.

    This type of cooker heats a pot or pan using magnetic induction instead of an electrical heating element (like electrical cooking), or a flame (like gas cooking).

    There are two main pieces to most portable cooktops: 1) glass/ceramic cooktop and 2) the user interface, associated electronics (power supply, printed circuit board, components etc.),  micro-controller, sensors, and induction coil.

    Underneath the surface of the ceramic/glass plate is a coil of copper wire through which electric current can pass.  When this happens, a magnetic field is produced. As soon as an induction suitable vessel is placed on the burner, this magnetic field generates electric currents in the pot or pan. The heat is transferred to the ingredients in the vessel.    

    Induction cooking is puts less waste heat into the kitchen and is a lot safer than your average gas cooker. Since the cooktop of induction cookers are flat, they’re easy to clean and the surface doesn’t seem to get very hot compared to the other methods.

    Is Induction Cooking Better Than Gas 2

    What is Gas Cooking?

    Possibly one of the oldest methods of cooking is cooking on a gas stove. Although butane, propane, or petroleum gas can be used, most gas stoves run on natural gas. Before the advent of gas, a lot of very old gas stoves used fuel from wood or coal, but more modern gas stoves just use flammable gases. Chefs enjoy gas cookers because of the accuracy the flame provides and the ability to adjust it visually.  

    There is a wide variety of gas ranges in terms of size, features and price. In addition to the appliance, there is the cost of materials and installation to consider.  The better the energy rating of the oven, the lower your fuel cost. Fuel prices change according to the market of supply and demand.

    Pros and Cons of Induction Cooking

    Despite what everyone says, there are both pros and cons of induction cooking and that’s why we think it’s important you know all the potential outcomes of buying an induction cooker. Everything to do with your household cooking is personal preference so you will want to have a general idea of the advantages and drawbacks of induction cooking before you make your final judgment.

    • Induction cookers heat up very quickly and despite what people may think, they can get really hot. 
    • A wide range of temperature and power settings are available.
    • They’re aesthetically pleasing to the eye and will match up with modern kitchens.  
    • Induction cookers are very easy to clean; you simply just have to wait until they’re relatively cool then you can use a sponge or rag and wipe over it.  

    However …

    • The full-size units are expensive to buy initially which often puts a lot of people off buying them. However, the portable units are reasonably priced.
    • Not all pans and pots are compatible with it.  Cast iron, enamel cast iron, steel and magnetized stainless steel are induction ready. This article discusses induction ready cookware.
    Is Induction Cooking Better Than Gas 3

    Pros and Cons of Gas Cooking

    Even though gas cooking is an older method compared to induction cooking, it too has its pros and cons and that’s what we’re going to list below. This will help to give you a more balanced view of both the types of cookers you can buy.

    • Heat is immediate to any gas cooker, so if you’re in a rush or you need instant heat then it’s definitely a contender.
    • You can use any type of cookware on it, as long as the cookware doesn’t state that it’s not compatible – but there are very few pieces you can’t typically use on a gas cooker.
    • You can turn the temperate up or down using the knobs on the side or front of the gas cooker; this allows you to have control over the temperature and how hot or cold the pan is.
    • Gas cookers aren’t the safest option; there is a naked flame which can be dangerous, especially around young children. There is also the possibility of having an accident with a tea towel burning or even burning yourself by accident.
    • They aren’t easy to clean because there are a lot of components to clean around, and taking it apart after every time you cook can be annoying, especially if you’re in a rush. There are the plates which get dirty, as well as the inside of the rings to think about; if you don’t ensure it is always clean, it can lead to more danger.

    Which One is Better?

    This is a difficult question as it is mostly down to personal preference. One is not necessary "better" than the other. If you’re concerned about the safety of your kitchen and you want a more modern kitchen-friendly cooker top, then you will want to consider an induction cooker. If you don't cook that much and don't have a lot of floor space, then a portable cooktop is an option.

    However, if a naked flame is better for your cooking style, you like being able to control the temperature visually, and you want  to use all types of cookware then a gas oven is probably a better fit for you. 

    For those cooks who are not fans of gas stoves, this quick read discusses electric stoves versus induction cooktops.

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