If you’re in the market for a new cooker, a deciding factor can often be the type of hobs that come with the appliance. There are a range of different hobs to suit different needs and with different practical benefits.
In this article, we look at the types of hobs that are available and what the benefits and drawbacks for each, to help you decide which would suit you best.
Generally considered the ‘traditional’ option when it comes to hob cooking, gas hobs are connected to the gas supply in your home and use a spark to create a controlled flame.
Gas hobs are a solid choice, offering plenty of heat quickly and across a wide area. They also allow for the greatest level of control when it comes to heat, as you can make tiny adjustments in the size of the flame, allowing you to cook at the exact temperature you want.
With their traditional look, gas hobs look great in either a modern or older style kitchen. One thing to note however is that you may need to put a bit more effort into washing up pans that have been used on gas hobs.
A more recent innovation, induction hobs work by delivering an electric current to a metal coil underneath the hob’s surface. This creates a fluctuating magnetic field which transfers heat to the bottom of your cooking equipment when it is placed on the hob.
One key benefit of an induction hob is their safety. They won’t generate surface heat unless a metal object is placed on top; when one is removed the hob will stop heating. Induction hobs will heat up quickly too, faster than gas, so it’s possible to reach boiling points faster and cook quicker.
They have a sleek appearance, being mostly a flat black surface, and so are very easy to clean compared to a gas hob.
The main drawbacks include the fact that you will have less control than with a gas hob and not all pots and pans will work with an induction hob. You will have to make sure your kitchenware will be suitable for induction cooking, otherwise you won’t be able to cook at all!
Ceramic hobs look very similar to induction hobs but work slightly differently in the way they heat your pans. A heating element under the hob heats the glass which in turn heats your pans.
With benefits also similar to induction hobs, ceramic hobs benefit from easy cleaning, sleek design as well as ease of installation.
However, they are not as quick to heat up and have less control compared to induction and gas hobs. There is also the possibility of smashing the glass surface.
Electric plate hobs
These hobs feature circular metal plates that heat up and transfer heat to your pans.
They are arguably the least attractive hobs available, however are the most cost-effective option, using less energy.
As a result, they are less effective in heating up quickly and will also give you less control than the other available options. However, if you don’t have a big kitchen or aren’t big into cooking, this may be a more sensible option for you.
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