An electric skillet is simply a regular skillet with enhanced feature that is to cook without a stovetop. All you need to do to operate this is to plug it into an outlet, and it allows you to cook variety types of foods. Such portability and versatility are just some of the most important reasons why electric skillets are so popular nowadays.
What factors to consider when buying an electric skillet?
Cooking Capacity (Size)
The first thing to think about is your desired cooking space of an electric skillet. If you have an entire family to prepare food for, then a jumbo size one is probably suitable for you. A smaller variation would be great if you live alone or you would rather cook smaller portion of dishes at a time. There are many differences in those sizes, so it is important that you think beforehand about how many people you will serve in your daily meals. In general, skillets are bigger than a typical stovetop pan, whereas a jumbo-sized one can be as wide as 16 inches.
Unlike clothes or fashion products, most consumers are not fond of the idea of having their electric skillets replaced every one or two years. Also, some people prefer to have a skillet with a Teflon surface that prevents food from being stick to the pan. However, Teflon-coated pans leave flakes that might get onto the food. In this review, we will see what consumers comment about durability of each product on the list.
The lid, much mundane as it seems, subtly matters when it comes to pick up one skillet that suit you best in term of your cooking preferences. If you often cook soup and stew, then an electric skillet with glass lid will serve you best. This feature allows you not to lift the lid every time you need to check on the food. Because soups are often cooked in a long period of time using very low temperature, you might realize how important it is to maintain the heat inside and never to waste any by removing the lid. In contrast, a plastic lid will do just fine if your regular meals require medium to high temperature and only take a few minutes to cook. In general, people tend to opt for a glass lid as it is hard to resist the urge to peer in on the food as it cooks, which is one enjoyable part of cooking.
You might consider a stainless steel electric skillet if you are going to cook food that leaves behind a lot of residues because it will make your cleaning part less tiring. Besides, one that is made of aluminium and has non-stick coating also allow easy washing up.
Any experienced cook knows the crucial role that temperature adjustment plays in cooking. More often than not, what distinguishes a poorly or a nicely-cooked dish lie in the right temperature. Therefore, you will certainly have to think of temperature control feature.
To deep-fry, you will need a skillet that can perform at least 450 degrees Fahrenheit. Many models can only reach a maximum of 400 degrees, which is obviously not suitable for deep-frying food. Therefore, remember to take this into account when you look at the manuals. Skillets that can only reach up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit is good for stir-frying and dishes that require lower temperatures.
Besides materials, you might picture your electric skillet being hand-washed or machine-washed. While some appliances are designed to fit into a dishwasher, some can only be cleaned with solution and a rag. If you prefer using dishwasher, then you must definitely look for dishwasher-friendly ones.
In addition, while many models involve the skillet and heating apparatus permanently attached, you might prefer to have a detached version if you want to use a dishwasher. Otherwise, an attached model would do just fine.
One other feature that you might want to consider is shape. As for the shape, they usually come in rectangle, square, oval or oblong. Round is another shape that is less common. Among those available in the market, some are much better than others, depending on what you want to cook. Usually, you will discover that a square or oblong-shaped versions have larger capacity, accommodating more food, regardless of cooking styles. For reasons like aesthetics, you might opt for a round model, which offers less space yet brings a refreshing look for the dishes being displayed.
Much surprised as you might be, some electric skillets come with very short sides. This can cause certain inconvenience in cooking some types of food in a correct manner. Particularly if you often prepare meals that contain braising or deep-frying recipes, then it is crucial that you choose a model with high sides. High-sided skillets accommodate more food than shorter ones.
Heat-resistant handles are another essential feature you would want to consider. Cooking process involves multiple small tasks that can make you forget this simple act of safety, which is to wrap some cloths around before lifting or moving the skillet. Kitchen accidents could be easily avoided by using a skillet with heat-resistant handles.
Similar to a pan, a model with stainless steel handle is more preferable yet much pricey as compared to one with an aluminium handle.
The price ranges very widely for an electric skillet. While some cost more than $300, others cost under $30. Therefore, you must decide on your budget to determine how much money you are willing to spend. Having a price range in mind will help narrow down the options. We will discuss about three best skillets within the average price range of an average customer.
Review of top three electric skillets
1. Presto 06626 11inch Electric Skillet w/glass lid
Cooking Capacity (Size): Being a mid-sized skillet, this can serve main dish for a meal of two or even accommodate side dishes for a small party. Larger versions are available for bigger groups.
Durability: The product is durable and energy saving, making it much more efficient than a normal oven or burner.
Cooking Style. The glass lid was absent from the previous model of Presto is now available in this updated version. This means that you are able to cook a wider range of dishes, including braise, soup and stew with discreet manner and still can avoid the heat leaking out.
Temperature Controls. You can set a temperature level between 200 and 400 degrees. The warm setting allows you to store food after cook while waiting to be served. There is also a Master Control for the heat, which make sure the skillet will always operate at an optimal temp.
Cleaning Method. Because this model of Presto is dishwasher-safe, you can easily remove the heating parts and clean this at great comfort.
Shape. The rectangular shape is extremely convenient for storing large food and also very easy for you to manage the inside, which make it so versatile that it can be perfectly used for every meal in a day, from breakfast to lunch and dinner.
Side’s height: High sidewalls allow you to cook more food and in multiple ways as you want from braise to deep-frying. A larger version can also accommodate a full chicken or large roast.
Price. It is clear that this product offers great values. Even better, it is offered at a super cheap price compared to its amazing features. This is definitely a wise choice for those with a budget and still seeking for quality.
- Having glass-lid that prevents loss of heat due to frequent opening.
- Keep food warm after cook.
- Master Control keeps temperature at right level when cooking.
- Can cook a wide variety of food styles.
- Accommodate a large amount of food.
- Can buy larger version of the same model that offers more space.
- Great quality with affordable price.
- Max temperature at 400 degrees Fahrenheit does not support deep-frying.
2. Precise Heat 16-Inch Rectangular Surgical Non Stick Stainless Steel Electric Skillet
Cooking Capacity (Size): The Precise Surgical Stainless Steel skillet is larger than the first candidate in term of capacity. With a 16-inch width, this large-sized product can accommodate a significant amount of food.
Durability: Made of stainless steel, this skillet can sustain much better than many of its counterparts. You do not have to purchase new one every one or two years if having this Precise Surgical skillet in your kitchen.
Cooking Style: Many reviewers say that this appliance cooks very nicely golden brown chicken and fishes, making it an excellent choice for stir-frying. Having a domed elegant lid instead of a glass one, this product is less likely to cook braise or soup as its smaller opponent above, except that you do not have to lift the lid too often during the process.
Temperature Controls. The temperature quickly rises up; therefore, you must be wary during cooking process. Some people suggested cooking at its lowest temp to prevent burning. Using a stainless steel coating, this skillet score higher in satisfaction level among customers who are against this Teflon non-stick layer in cooking spot.
Cleaning Method: Because you cannot submerge the spot from its heating system, you have to hand-wash it.
Shape: Common rectangular shape will satisfy most customers with different cooking preferences.
Side’s height: The depth of around two inches allows you to cook many things from Swiss steak, chicken Cordon Bleu to breakfast items like pancakes, bacons or omelettes. However, you cannot roast large or a whole chicken with sidewalls this low.
Heat-resistant handles. Yes. While hollow handles will remain cool during cooking time, the lid handle can get hot. Prepare a mitten when you have to open the lid and this is enough protection.
Price: Can be a little pricey but it’s worth the money. Many customers reported that this is a must-have item in your kitchen. Minor drawbacks are very well outweighed by the amazing qualities.
- Big and deep space that can store a lot of food.
- Very durable thanks to its stainless steel material.
- Non-Teflon coating prevents unexpected flakes on your food.
- Heat-resistant handle.
- Can cook various styles of food.
- Temperature is up to 450 degrees F, allowing for stir-frying and deep-frying alike.
- Overall excellent quality.
- Having an attached heating system so it is not dishwasher-safe.
- Expensive as compared to other competitors.
3. De' Longhi BG45 Electric Skillet
Cooking Capacity (Size). De’Longhi BG45 Electric skillet is another 16-inch appliance, just like the Precise Surgical one. It offers huge cooking space that every family cook loves because not only you can serve family members but you can use for party purposes as well.
Durability. It is made of good quality aluminium and can sustain up to years.
Cooking Style. The tempered glass lid prevents heat from escaping, maintaining moisture, freshness and nutrients for the output that satisfy demanding gastronomical fans. You can also cook many types of food with a glass lid design.
Temperature Controls. Thank to the embedded heating system, this appliance cooks food evenly without overly hot or cold spots. The culinary results from De’Longhi is therefore can be made into aesthetically pleasing entrees for a family dinner of 4-6 or a side dish for larger meet-ups. We have heard excellent reviews from customers about temp controls and actually never received any negative feedback.
Beside normal heating element, the product does have adjustable steam vent holes that allow easy steam evaporation while cooking.
Cleaning Method. It is very easy to clean with dishwasher-safe lid and non-stick skillet base.
Shape. Oblong shape allows multiple ways of setting up food and different recipes.
Side’s height. Having one inch deeper than the previous one, De’Longhi can perform well in deep-frying as well as stir-frying. It also offers huge space for food at one time, making larger meals easier and more convenient.
Heat-resistant handles. The product is designed with safety-first slogan, for which reason, the handles are heat-resistant, allowing for easy movement once the cooking is done.
Price. As compared to other product of the same excellence, De’Longhi is the best of the best in both terms of price and quality.
- Huge cooking space with wide and deep spot.
- Long-lasting aluminium material.
- Having glass-lid that prevents loss of heat due to frequent opening.
- Excellent temperature controls that cook food evenly.
- Heat-resistant handles.
- Cook many kinds of food easily with all of its essential features.
- Excellent quality offered at a reasonable price.
- Users who prefer higher price for higher quality might not feel good at such a price that De’Longhi offers.
All being said, we would highly recommend the last candidate for your kitchen. This model simply has everything you want in an electric skillet. I would say that De’Longhi is a stellar product for a moderate price.