June 24, 2019

How to Buy a Cooktop

Gas or electric? Smooth top or coils?  We’ll help you sort out your options.

Features and Frills:

  • Popular finishes: stainless steel and black; followed by white and bisque.  An oiled bronze finish is also newly available as is a “clean” steel which doesn’t show fingerprints.
  • Some models offer more than one type of burner- induction plus electric or gas, plus a warming zone.
  • A bridge burner can combine two burners to handle larger pots and more evenly cook the food.

What to look for:


  • Smooth ceramic surfaces- they’re pricier than coils, but easier to clean.
  • Warming zones for keeping cooked foods ready.
  • Touch pads for precise tempetaures.
  • A “hot-surface” light that warns when burners are too hot to touch.


  • Look for heavy cast iron grate and burners in various sizes and temperature ranges
  • Gas on glass- easy to clean coking grates sit on top of a smooth, easy to clean ceramic surface.


  • A magnetic field heats the pot or pan, which then heats the food- the cooking surface never gets more than slightly warm to the touch.

There is a cooktop for every budget, ranging in price from just over $250 for a Maytag with electric coils all the way to a KitchenAid induction cooktop for $2,249.00.  Of course there are many choices in the mid-range, such as a GE gas cooktop for $599.

Even the simplest meals usually involve some cooking- take your time and visit a few showrooms to check out all your options.
(Thank you to FamilyCircle magazine.)

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