Induction cooktops were almost unknown until 2010, but they’ve come a long way in the past few years in design and price. They work by creating a magnetic field that oscillates to create heat in the cookware set on top of it, which honestly just sounds like magic. During our induction cooktop reviews, we confirmed their energy efficiency and quick heating. They’re also easy to clean and come with plenty of safety features. The unit itself stays at a lower temperature while only the cookware gets hot, making overspills less annoying to clean up.
Anyone who has burned themselves on a gas stove would appreciate the low temperatures of an induction cooktop. Our portable induction cooktop reviews look for functions like power and temperature range, safety features, and built-in timers. If you need a space-saving portable induction cooktop for your kitchen, an extra cooking surface, or a fancy new table centerpiece, our recommended cheap induction cooktop may interest you. Let’s get cooking!
The Duxtop 9600LS is a stylish, technical-looking induction cooktop with a nice LCD screen. This is one of the best portable induction cooktop options for people who want to cook at high speeds: at 1,800 watts, it heats rapidly for faster cooking times. At about 11.5 square inches, it offers plenty of space for pots and pans of a variety of sizes. This is also one of the best induction cooktops for aspiring cooks who like to fiddle with temperature settings. The twenty built-in temperature ranges should satisfy most cooks.
The NuWave Precision Induction Cooktop has a slightly lower wattage than the Duxtop 9600LS at 1300 watts, but a design that’s more space-saving with a nice inch diameter. It has a programmable stage cooking option for recipes that need temperatures to be consistently reduced or increased at certain intervals. It’s lesser known, but you can see it in a series of infomercials that also sell matching cookware. Now it’s available on its own for a great low price. If you want to save money and need a more advanced digital timer plus a broader temperature range, take a closer look at the NuWave.
The Duxtop can reach up to 1,800 watts of power for an intense blast of cooking power. If you value speedy heating, you may prefer the Duxop to the NuWave.
The NuWave has a maximum of 1,300 watts. That’s plenty for making all types of food but will result in slightly slower cooking times than the Duxtop.
The Duxtop has 20 power levels ranging from 100 watts to 1,800 watts. This kind of range might be intoxicatingly powerful for some. Having access to many lower power levels is useful for low-temperature recipes. The power levels basically control how much electromagnetic energy is being put out, which affects the temperature of the cookware.
The NuWave has power levels ranging from 600 to 1,300 watts. It still reaches the same low and high-temperature ranges as the Duxtop, so this difference in power levels may not be important to some people looking for the best affordable induction cooktop for their needs. What’s the verdict: 600-1,300 watts is a great range for almost all recipes.
The temperature can be adjusted by 20 settings in 20° increments from 100°F to 460°F. You can set it to “keep warm” to, well, keep something warm, and to “boil,” which takes the unit to its maximum temperature, with a push of a button. Duxtop offers a lot of simple settings here but is outperformed by NuWave.
The NuWave comes with 6 pre-programmed temperature settings, but the temperature can be adjusted in 10° increments from 100°F to 575°F for a whopping total of 52 settings. Having the 100°F setting available is great for things like melting chocolate, while the higher settings are ideal for frying, boiling, and sauteing. Overall, NuWave beats Duxtop in this comparison.
Because induction cooktops use an oscillating magnetic field to produce heat, cookware needs to be magnetic to work. This excludes materials like aluminum, glass, and copper, but some cookware contains hidden iron or steel, like ceramic Le Creuset. Check your cookware with a magnet to find out for sure!
The NuWave is compatible with the same kind of magnetic cookware as the Duxtop. Note that clad cookware might make weird high-pitched sounds, but while annoying, it’s still safe. Pans of up to 12 inches in diameter can be used effectively with the NuWave.
The Duxtop operates on a standard 120V, 15 amp current, and induction cooktops use up to 70% less energy than conventional gas or electric cooktops.
The NuWave also operates on a standard current and has the same energy-saving possibilities as the Duxtop. It’s nice to know that an extra cooking surface won’t noticeably affect your electric bills.
The Duxtop has a few safety settings, including one that turns off the unit 60 seconds after cookware is removed from its surface, or if it detects incompatible cookware. It also has a Child Safety Lock and a low and high voltage warning system. A fan cools down the cooktop for about a minute after you stop using it.
You can set the NuWave to shut off automatically after a certain cooking time has gone by, and it additionally automatically shuts off when cookware is removed from its surface. This is a must-have safety feature and great for peace of mind. Like the Duxtop, a fan cools the device after cookware is removed.
The digital timer can be set in one-minute increments, up to a whopping ten hours. This works well for a range of recipes, from a quick fish fry to the long simmering required for soups and stews. The wide range of cooking times makes the Duxtop great for all kinds of recipes, including slowly heating and cooking food for added health benefits.
The NuWave also has a digital timer, with a delay function and programmable stage cooking abilities. Multiple stages can be stored in the cooktop’s program memory for reuse--an advanced feature that is not available in the Duxtop. For example, you can set the NuWave to boil for 10 minutes, then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes. This is very handy for things like cooking rice or potatoes without your constant supervision.
The Duxtop’s cooking surface is about 11.5 inches square, and the full unit measures 16.9 x 13.8 x 4.1 inches. It’s a counter-space saving design and quite compact.
The NuWave has a 9-inch diameter cooking surface, and the full unit measures 14.4 x 15.9 x 6.3 inches. It saves space by not needlessly devoting materials to non-cooking surfaces.
The Duxtop weighs 7.5 pounds. That’s a standard weight for an induction cooktop product and light enough to move it easily.
The NuWave weighs 6.3 pounds. The difference in weight isn’t significant, but a lighter weight is always great in our opinion.