Induction Pros

Induction Pros

What is the Difference Between Ceramic and Induction Cooktops?

two burner induction hob with black ceramic surface

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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