Frigidaire’s Gallery cooktop comes in a choice of two different sizes. Go for the 30-inch version and get four burners. Or if you’ve got plenty of room, opt for the 36-inch version with five.
Whichever size you choose, you’ll get a range of helpful features. The cooking surface heats up quickly, and the heat distribution is nice and even.
Both sizes also come with auto-sizing pan detection to heat up only the parts of the cooktop needed. You won’t be using up energy to generate heat to areas not covered by the pan. That’s great news for the environment and your energy bills.
The cooking temperature is selected using touch controls at the front. There’s a choice of settings from 1 to 9, allowing you to do everything from keeping food warm to rapid heating.
And when it comes to boiling water, the extra power boil setting is brilliant. It will get your pot bubbling in the space of about a minute.
The cooking surface is very easy to keep clean too. It’s completely flat, so there are no grooves to collect grease or dirt. Just invest in a cleaning agent specifically designed for induction hobs to avoid scratches.
One thing to watch out for, though, is spills. They won’t be a problem to clean off – just give the cooktop a wipe over. But we have heard complaints that the controls will stop working if the surface isn’t completely dry.
There are also some niggles with the locking function. This is intended to allow you to lock your burners at a particular temperature. It’s a good idea, avoiding accidental temperature changes if you brush the touchscreen.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work as well as we’d like. Knocking a pan can switch it off, and it’s all too easy to turn off the whole cooktop.
9 settings on each burner, plus a power boil function to get water or sauces bubbling fast
Energy efficient auto-sizing pan detection
Spills can interfere with the touch controls
The locking function isn’t as effective as we’d like.
Gasland’s Chef series offers induction cooktops in a range of sizes to suit any kitchen. Choose from a compact 12-inch model with two cooking zones, or 24 or 30-inch options with four. And if you’ve got a big worktop and do lots of cooking, there’s a 36-inch model with five zones too.
Each ring offers a choice of nine settings, giving you plenty of scopes to fine-tune cooking temperatures. There’s also a fast boil setting, great for heating up liquids quickly and efficiently. You’ll be able to use that for up to five minutes at a time. That’s more than enough to bring even chilled liquids to the boil.
The 36-inch option offers different levels of power to the different cooking zones. That means you won’t have to use more energy than you need. The outer cooking zones are each 7.1 inches across. Two of them have a maximum power of 1,800 watts, while the other two have a 2,000-watt maximum.
The central cooking zone is a little larger, with a diameter of 8.3 inches. It too has a maximum power of 2,000 watts.
All of the cooking zones are controlled by a touch panel at the front of the cooktop. A simple gauge allows you to slide your finger from left to right to increase the temperature. It’s very intuitive and easy to use.
There’s also a handy timer function. You can use it as a simple minute minder, or to turn off individual cooking zones after a set period. The timer can be set for anything between one and 99 minutes.
If there are children in your household, you’ll appreciate the safety lock. Engage this to prevent cooking zones from being turned on by accident. Another nice feature is the auto-shutdown, which kicks into action if you forget to turn off the cooktop.
The vitro ceramic glass is tough and scratch-resistant, so your cooktop will stay looking good. And the smooth surface is easy to clean.
So far, so good. But is there anything not to like?
Well, like many induction cooktops, the cooking zones will buzz a little as they heat up. The noise is quiet enough that it won’t bother most people.
And the installation instructions aren’t all they could be. Wiring it in is a particular challenge. If you’re not confident with electrics it may be best to bring in a professional.
Intuitive sliding scale to adjust the temperature
Timer can be used as a minute minder, or to turn off cooking zones automatically
Safety lock prevents accidental activation
Prone to a gentle buzzing on higher temperature settings
This model from GE is 30 inches wide and offers four different cooking zones. Between them, they provide three differently sized cooking surfaces.
And if you’ve got especially large cookware, you’ll love the clever “synch” function. This allows you to use two 7-inch cook zones at exactly the same time. It’s particularly useful if you’re using a griddle.
The largest individual zone is a very generous 11 inches in diameter. It offers a maximum power of 3,700 watts. It’s the mightiest induction element GE makes, and it’s considerably more powerful than many other cooktops.
At the other end of the spectrum, each burner has a “melt” setting. As the name suggests, it offers a gentle heat, perfect for melting butter or other fats.
Each cooking zone has its own sensor. This will detect the size of the pan and heat up exactly the right area. It will also detect if no pan is present, so you won’t waste any power.
There’s also a control lock. Set that to prevent little fingers from accidentally turning on any of the cooking zones.
A touch panel controls each of the cooking zones. Three controls switch it on and off, and increase and lower the temperature. There’s also a separate timer, to help you keep track of your cooking. You won’t, though, be able to set it to switch off cooking zones automatically when the time has elapsed.
The design of the control panel is a little busy for our liking. Together with the outlines of the cooking zones, there’s quite a lot of etching on the glass. If you’re looking for a minimalist aesthetic, there are better options out there.
Installation is fairly straightforward. And GE offers a guarantee that if you’re replacing a similar cooktop, theirs will fit the cut-out. If it doesn’t, they offer a set cash sum towards modifications.
Synch function allows simultaneous use of two cooking zones for large cookware
Very powerful 3,700-watt cooking zone, great for boiling liquids fast
Sensors detect the presence and size of cookware for maximum energy efficiency
The design of the control panel is a little fussy for our taste
Empava is another brand that offers cooktops in a range of dimensions. For those working in a compact space, the smallest is a mere 12 inches wide, with two cooking zones. The IDCF9, however, is 36 inches wide, and slots into a 35-inch cut-out in your counter.
The cook zones here are distinguished by being pure black against a lightly speckled background. There are five of them, but the configuration is unusual. Two zones on either side can be used individually or together. That gives you the option of heating up two large pans at once. It’s a brilliantly versatile design.
The powerful central zone is 11 inches in diameter, and offers up to 13,000 BTU of thermal power. The two 8-inch burners on the left offer up to 9,000 BTU. And the two 7-inch burners on the right offer up to 7,000 BTU in “power boost” mode. That can run for up to five minutes.
There’s a timer which can be used to set cooking times of up to 99 minutes for each zone. When the time’s up, the zone will switch off automatically, so there’s no need to worry about burning anything. A red “H” will display until the zone is cool enough to touch.
It also comes with a child safety lock. Once engaged, this will stop any of the cooking ones from being turned on.
It’s designed to be installed flush to the countertop, and the completely smooth surface is easy to clean. It’s made of toughened vitro-ceramic, so it’s less prone to scratches. It will resist discoloration and staining too, looking good for years.
Installation is best carried out by a professional. This is a high wattage system – using all cooking zones at their maximum level will use over 10,000 watts. The cooktop will need to be connected to a fully earthed electrical system.
And bear in mind that the dimensions here are slightly smaller than you’re likely to find with older units. If you’re installing this as a replacement, try to check the measurements of your worktop cut-out before you buy.
Flexible cooking zone configuration offers space for large or small cookware
Timer can be applied to each cooking zone individually
Child safety lock prevents accidental activation
Best installed by a professional electrician
Smaller than older units – check the size of your cut-out if you’re replacing an existing cooktop.
If you’re looking for a built-in induction cooktop to suit a small space, Noxton’s model should be on your shortlist.
It’s just 11.4 inches wide, with two cooking zones positioned one in front of the other. The rear one is the biggest at 7.1 inches in diameter and offers up to 2,000 watts of power. The one at the front has a maximum power of 1,500 watts and measures 6.3 inches across.
Each has a choice of nine temperature settings. There’s no booster setting for boiling water, though.
It comes with a timer, with a maximum run-time of 120 minutes. That’s considerably longer than any other timer we’ve found.
There’s also an automatic shut-off function to prevent overheating. The only downside is that this means it will turn itself off if you’re cooking for several hours. Do yourself (and your energy bills) a favor and purchase a crockpot instead for slow cooking.
The cooktop comes with a child safety lock, to stop any little ones turning on the cooking zones.
The ceramic glass plate has clean lines and a simple, uncluttered design. It’s designed to be installed flush to your counter, so it’s super easy to clean. And it even comes with its own scraper to remove any dried-on food residue without scratching.
One thing to note is that the fan here is a little louder than some. For most people, it won’t be an issue. But if you’re very sensitive to noise, you might prefer another option.
Compact, space-saving design
Timer runs to a generous 120 minutes
Child safety lock prevents accidental switching on of the cooking zones
No power boost option for boiling water
The fan is a little noisier than some other cooktops.
True Induction’s 30-inch wide cooktop provides four cooking zones, each of a different size. It will work well with any induction-friendly cookware from 4.5 to 12 inches in diameter. It runs off a 240-volt outlet and uses a maximum of 7,400 watts.
The controls are simple to use and very responsive. Each cooking zone has an on-off control, one to increase the temperature, and one to decrease it.
It’s powerful too, with a choice of nine different temperature settings. Using the power boost setting, you’ll be able to boil a pan of water in around 70 seconds. The boost setting will stay operative for a minute, before switching back to level 9.
There’s also a timer, with the same easy-to-use plus and minus controls. In this case, the timer operates as a simple minute minder. It will help you organize your food preparation but won’t turn cooking zones off automatically.
It is, though, nice and quiet. If you’re worried about fans or induction coils buzzing, this is a good choice. All you’ll hear is a gentle hum.
And there’s no need to worry about children activating the touch controls. This is another cooktop that includes an effective child safety lock. Activate the lock, and the cooking zones can’t be turned on until it’s deactivated again.
This one has a plug, rather than being hard-wired into your electrics. It’s made of ceramic glass, rated to withstand far higher temperatures than you’ll ever get in your kitchen. And it’s tough enough to resist scratches and stains.
The design is as smooth and groove-free as other induction cooktops.
It is though, rather heavy on graphics. Each of the cooking zones is demarcated by a double ring, with the manufacturers’ logo displayed prominently in the center. Together with the controls and a safety warning, this makes the surface a little cluttered for our liking.
Four cooking zones, each with a different size
Simple, responsive touch controls
Boost setting runs for a maximum of a minute at a time
Too many graphics on the cooking surface making it appear rather cluttered.
The HIC3601 from Thor Kitchen is a 36-inch wide cooktop with five circular cooking zones. The largest is 11 inches in diameter, then there are two 8-inch diameter zones, one 7-inch, and one 6.5-inch. You’ll have plenty of flexibility to accommodate different pan sizes.
Each zone offers nine power settings, with a further power boost to bring water to a boil fast. On the boost setting, the largest cooking zone uses 3,700 watts. The wattage decreases with the size of the zones, down to 1,800 watts on the boost setting of the smallest zone.
The touch panel display is very easy to use. Each cooking zone is operated by a plus and minus control to switch it on and adjust the temperature. You’ll get an even heat across the cooking zone. And there’s no separate power button for each one, as with some cooktops.
The timer runs to 99 minutes, and it can be used to set cooking times for each zone independently. If you’re making a complicated meal, it makes life a whole lot easier.
There’s a child safety lock as well, so you won’t have to worry about little ones switching on cooking zones. Just take care when cleaning. Wiping over the relevant part of the control panel can be enough to unlock it.
There’s also an indicator to show when the surface remains hot after cooking. (Although induction heats the cookware rather than the surface, heat will still be transferred from the pan.)
The cooktop is made of ceramic glass manufactured by market leaders Schott Ceran. It’s resilient and resistant to scratches.
And we like the discreet, symmetrical design. There are no ring shapes to mark out the cooking zones. Instead, they’re solid black against a background of subtle lines. And the LED display is sharp and clean. We particularly like the fact that it’s blue, rather than the standard red.
We’ve heard of some issues with an error code on the back burner, for which there’s apparently no fix. Thor has, though, dealt with this promptly where it’s occurred, shipping a replacement cooktop without delay.
Smart, sleek design
Good choice of different sized cooking zones
Very powerful maximum of 3,700 watts from the largest zone
It’s a little too easy to deactivate the child safety lock
Occasional issues with an unfixable error code – though Thor has responded promptly with a replacement unit.
So you’ve checked out the reviews, but still aren’t sure which is the best induction cooktop for you. Don’t worry – we’re here to help! Here are some things to consider before you buy.
How many cooking zones do you need?
Start by considering how many different pots and pans you’ll use at once. It’s worth thinking about special occasions as well as day-to-day use.
If you have the space, induction cooktops with four or five zones will offer you maximum flexibility. And you won’t have to worry so much about carefully coordinating your food preparation.
But if you’re working in a compact kitchen, or rarely use the cooktop, why not save some space? There are some excellent options out there with only two cooking zones.
The neat Noxton cooktop on our list will require just 11.4 inches width of counter space. It comes with plenty of features and looks just as good as larger models.
Think about your cookware
The first thing to remember is that all induction cooktops will require you to use magnetic pots and pans. If they’re not magnetic, the induction coils won’t heat them up.
But just as important is to think about the size of your cookware. Check that the cooking zones are big enough for your larger pans. Some models allow you to synchronize the use of two zones. That’s great for heating up very big pots or griddles.
And look at the way the cooking surface is configured. Some designs place the cooking zones at irregular intervals. They’re not as attractive as symmetrical designs, but they can make it easier to accommodate differently sized pots.
What about other features?
Finally, consider whether there are other features that would make your life easier.
We love induction cooktops with timers that can be set for each cooking zone independently. They’re great if you’re cooking lots of different things at the same time. You can set the timer and relax, knowing the cooktop will switch off each zone when the time’s up.
And if you share your home with children, a safety lock is an important feature. Touch screen panels are great, but it’s all too easy for stray fingers to switch on cooking zones. Investing in a cooktop with a reliable lock will give you peace of mind.
Let’s get cooking!
We hope you’ve enjoyed our reviews of some of the best induction cooktops available today. With so many models out there, you’re sure to find one that suits your needs.
Our top pick is the Gasland Chef IH90BF. We love its intuitive temperature control, and the timer which takes the stress out of remembering cooking times. For households with children, the safety lock is a major bonus.
Whichever cooktop you choose, you’ll love the convenience and efficiency of induction cooking. And that clean glass surface will look great in your kitchen too.