Gas versus electric: Which is better in the kitchen has been a heated debate amongst home chefs for years. And recently gas stoves have become a hot political topic as well. What you may not realize is there’s a newer option: induction.
Last year, Leah Brickley said farewell to her gas range and bought an induction range for her home kitchen. As a professional chef and baker, she says she was conflicted.
“I was a little nervous when they actually pulled the gas stove out and put the induction in, but I haven’t looked back and I don’t miss cooking on gas at all,” she said.
Consumer Reports’ Paul Hope says if you’re looking to replace an old range, don’t let fear of the unfamiliar keep you from switching to induction.
CONSUMER REPORTS: Best Induction Ranges of 2023
“Induction uses an oscillating magnetic field to actually transfer energy directly from the element to the pan. The result is it’s much more efficient and it heats up faster, too,” he explained.
And contrary to what you may have heard, Hope says you probably won’t need to buy all new cookware.
“It’s true that induction only works with magnetic cookware but that really isn’t as limiting as it sounds,” he said. “Cast iron, most stainless steel, even an enamel cast iron Dutch oven all work. If you’re not sure, stick a magnet to your pan. If a magnet sticks to it, it’s going to work with induction.”
Hope says aluminum doesn’t work but anodized aluminum might.
“Traditionally Anodized aluminum cookware didn’t work with induction but more and more we’re seeing pieces like this that come with a special base that’s induction compatible.”
Another plus: In Consumer Reports’ range tests, induction burners typically outperform other types of cooktop burners.
The Frigidaire Gallery GCRI3058AF, from $1,250, earns top scores for low- and high-heat cooking, plus very good scores for baking. And it costs thousands less than many of the other recommended induction ranges in Consumer Reports’ ratings.
WATCH: The Induction Cooktop Chocolate Test