DessertStorms,
DessertStorms avatar

People here seem unaware that there exists a 3rd option that isn't either gas or induction - a ceramic hob is electric, heated coils under glass, but you can use it with any pot or pan, so there's no need to spend all that extra money replacing all your cookware, and the hob itself is cheaper too.

calypsopub,

Not unaware, just not mentioning it as an option because it’s so inferior.

Schmuppes,

I got an induction system yesterday and ripped my old ceramic one out. I mean, it worked okay apart from the fact that it was slower and would take a while to cool down again.

What always bothered me was not always having the ideally sized one and seeing all the red glow around the bottom of the pot or pan. “Fuck, I’m wasting 30 % energy right now…”

Phrodo_00,

And they’re terrible at cooking: any change in temperature, including heating up takes a ton.

yildo,

I like my 2012 electric stove. I don't notice any difference in cooking experience when I use my parents' gas stove at their place, except the flames require more aggressive ventilation

DessertStorms,
DessertStorms avatar

They've served me perfectly well for over a decade.
The difference in supposed quality wouldn't be noticeable to most while the difference in cost definitely would be. ¯_(ツ)_/¯

huginn,

How much do you pay for electricity?

Because with an induction stove you’ll be paying 30% less in cooking costs.

ravenbirdly, (edited )

I’d love to electrify my stove (and don’t get me wrong I’m not trying to be whiny about it, I really do want to) but it has to be capable of getting a pan wok burner hot. I also cannot stand glass tops. Is there anything for me? I tried 2kw induction burner once with a heavy cast iron pan, and it was glacial compared to gas. I know people say they work great but how much do you have to pay to get one without glass that can get a pan literally smoking hot in under 2 minutes like gas can?

Omega_Haxors,

What is it with gas stoves? I used one once and it took like 3x as long and burnt my food at the bottom.

Numberone,

I don’t get it either. I always had standard electric in places where I lived until now. My first gas stove: 1. Often smells of gas which implies a slow leak which is scary 2. Isn’t vented at all, so it’s spewing who the fuck knows what, even when it’s working properly. Give me an induction surface and a big air fryer and I’m happy.

ravenbirdly,

And instant pot style automatic pressure cookers are amazing. I can prepare dry beans to perfection in under an hour using a quarter the energy of even an induction stove, and using less water too (because the heat and steam are mostly retained)

I have two!

ravenbirdly,

“Took 3x as long and burnt my food” I honestly don’t see how these things can both be true. You either cooked it too long or too hot.

Omega_Haxors,

Shit heat distribution.

lntl,

How many tons of co2/methane are emitted annually from residential ovens and ranges?

I feel like this number is small and am curious if anyone has chased this rabbit.

Cagi,
PersnickityPenguin,

I cut our gas line 2 years ago from our house! Feels good. Also didn’t want to have to invest in a seismic shut off gas valve.

And the heat pump gives us air conditioning, which is a win-win.

RvTV95XBeo,

pubs.acs.org/doi/10.1021/acs.est.0c00437

Electrifying everything but the gas stove means keeping the entire gas distribution system, which leaks like a sieve.

BulbasaurBabu,

Well why are they building them out of sieves?

curiousaur,

Propane tanks too? Or so you mean the methane pipes?

RvTV95XBeo,

The article I linked is about methane but, as someone who is on propane, I can pretty much guarantee it’s not much better. I don’t know if you’ve ever been around a propane fill-up, but the connection/disconnect process breaks of the odorant - it definitely has a loss on every transfer.

The only good news is the emissions factor for propane is much lower than methane

curiousaur,

I have a propane tank for my range. I’ve only had it for 3 years and haven’t needed to fill it yet.

CCatMan,

There is a lot of tall about everyone replacing their stoves but it’s expensive and really not needed. You can do 90% of your meals with counter top appliances and be good to go.

We have the following: portable induction cooktop top, 6 and 3 qt instapot, 5qt air fryer, and electric hot water kettle. These devices are used nearly everyday and if we need to use the gas stove we do, but it’s pretty rare.

When the kitchen is renovated, an induction stove will be purchased, but for the last 5 years our counter top chefs have been great.

PersnickityPenguin,

I bought a replacement induction cooktop last year and it’s an absolute game changer, but we went from an old crappy electric cooktop that was just awful.

calypsopub,

I’m an indifferent cook, so I don’t really have a dog in this hunt. But I’d like to continue to have natural gas to run my whole-home generator in emergencies.

RvTV95XBeo,

For an individual today? Fine. Long-term at scale? It seems silly and prohibitively expensive to maintain a bunch of leaky natural gas infrastructure just for a handful of seldom operated generators.

calypsopub,

Very true. If solar ever settles into a truly functional technology, we won’t need generators

huginn,

If solar ever settles into a truly functional technology,

If solar what???

Solar beats the everloving shit out of any other power generation source. Not only that but batteries for solar backup are dropping in price right off a cliff.

If you haven’t looked in the past couple years you really should: If you can afford the initial capital expenditure it’s more than worth it in savings.

calypsopub,

I look into it every few years. It doesn’t yet pay for itself, at least for me, and I haven’t yet found a company that I think will be around in 20 years to honor its warranties. I live in an area with hurricanes, so I need to know my equipment can be repaired or replaced in a timely manner. I would dearly love to find a system that lets me kick the power company to the curb, but it’s not quite there yet.

huginn,

Ah yeah hurricanes definitely become a limiting factor there.

You do get a 30% tax credit though right now if that wasn’t part of your calculus

calypsopub,

Yeah. For now I can choose the wind and/or solar option with my power company which I do. Theoretically my power comes 100% from wind at the moment.

systemguy_64,

This should be required watching for every moron who claims gas is better.

If you need that instant temperature drop, remove it from the heat??

Also, induction is even better. Hopefully they become affordable and not priced like fancy appliances in the next decade.

jaidyn999,

Heat storage effect -as soon as you put anything in cold in the pan the whole element goes cold and it takes ages to reheat. Unlike a gas flame.

And “induction” heating is 90% conduction - only a tiny part of the pan is inducted and then the heat has to conduct to the rest of the pan. So in some ways its worse than a conventional electric hob because the heating is so uneven, and you still get the heat storage effect.

PersnickityPenguin,

No it’s not. Buy a decent one and they work really well. I’ve never had any issues with hotspots.

Schmuppes,

Are induction stove tops still expensive where you live? I just bought one used from a colleague at work and will wire it up today. I haven’t really tried to get a good overview of the market since I didn’t buy a new one, but I got the feeling that it doesn’t exactly come with a hefty price tag nowadays.

I’ve been using a standalone portable induction system whenever I didn’t need 2 or more pots/pans at the same time, so I have some experience how neat the technology is. The fact that it wastes no energy going past the pot (like gas), doesn’t require a perfectly sized pot to maximize efficiency and reacts instantly to changes when I turn the knobs made it a very desirable purchase for me. And the fact that it’s a fast way to heat your food. I doubt that I’ll be using my water kettle to pre-heat my pasta water anymore.

PersnickityPenguin,

IKEA has induction cooktops for like $600 or 700 bucks. They’re made by Frigidaire and are backed by a 5-year warranty… If you buy from home Depot that same Frigidaire cooked up, you could only get a 1-year warranty. Otherwise it’s the same exact product.

Okay, the price went up a little bit:

ikea.com/…/saerklassig-induction-cooktop-black-20…

glencairn84,

The main advantage for gas isn’t speed, it’s control. I have both gas and electric, standard halogen etc type stoves are junk compared to the fine (also instant, consistent, and reliably easy to gauge) control that gas hobs provide. Not to mention a very even heat . But I agree modern induction finally provide that similar level of control (though the one induction hob I’ve used, while excellent granular control, did seem to heat unevenly requiring the pan to be regularly turned to avoid one-sided burning).

baru,

did seem to heat unevenly requiring the pan to be regularly turned to avoid one-sided burning).

That’s due to the heating area being incredibly tiny on various crappy induction stoves.

jol,

Induction is better in every way, like power output, heating speed, and control, except being able to lift the pan freely wok style. Cooking with gas indoors is totally stupid.

glencairn84,

Better in every way is nonsense. Cooking indoors is only stupid for morons that don’t know how to safely use a gas stove top. There’s a reason most professional kitchens still use gas and haven’t all rushed to replace with induction - the benefits don’t outweigh the investment.

currentbias,
@currentbias@open-source-eschaton.net avatar

@glencairn84 @jol safely as in...? Properly ventilating the kitchen in the middle of a cold winter?

jol,

It’s cheaper to operate and repair gas stoves. That’s why professional kitchens still use them. But you don’t operate a professional kitchen. You cook twice a day at most.

prime_number_314159,

Demand the best cooking experience, get a propane tank installed, and use that to cook. Heating with natural gas is the big pollution source, and heat pumps (even if the electricity is generated from natural gas) beat it for total system efficiency.

huginn,

If you want the best cooking experience you should ditch the gas all together. It’s way, way worse at cooking.

If you want to keep gas there is only 1 acceptable use case: A torch burner for a wok.

skuzz,

Spent the first 1/3 of adult life with gas and the latter 2/3 with electric. It’s not hard to adapt cooking methods. Food still comes out just fine. It also makes one more adept at cooking when say, traveling and having to use who knows what terrible stove/cooking object.

I’d much rather figure out how to adapt to an electric cooking device that I could 100% self-power if need be, than continue to use an explosive cooking device pumping chemicals I don’t want into my home because the natural gas companies don’t processed the gas to remove them.

Gas had a place in homes in the 19th and early 20th century when we didn’t know better, not anymore.

Alexstarfire,

What do you mean by self power? Cause you’re not using an exercise bike to power it. You wouldn’t even get close.

activistPnk, (edited )

It’s the oven, not the stovetops, where gas is most useful.

Gas ovens give moist heat which is good for baking moist foods like cakes. Electric ovens give dry heat which is good for foods that should be crispy (pizza crust). Ideally an oven would offer both kinds of fuels. Europe lacks in this regard (no thermostatic gas ovens anymore!).

Energy efficiency aside, the stovetop debate is somewhat silly in comparison because you can cook anything on either stove and adapt to the control.

GissaMittJobb,

Seems like you could just add some water to the oven and get the best of both worlds from an electric oven in that case.

kablammy,

My electric oven has some sort of steam-bake option.

CosmicTurtle,

I started baking bread during the pandemic and bought a spray bottle and filled it water.

Does the trick for me.

robotopera,

Wouldn’t it be far more ideal for the electric oven to have a way of introducing moisture instead of requiring all the components for a separate fuel source?

activistPnk, (edited )

A simpler design is an advantage in itself but it doesn’t cover all factors (e.g. pricing).

If your closest power plant burns fossil fuels, then there’s a big inefficiency at the power plant which still has the emissions followed by a considerable inefficiency in the transmission of electricity and still some heat loss from the wall to the food in converting electric back to heat. Electric heat is more efficient if you only measure from the wall to the food. It’s overall less efficient because you have fuel → heat → steam → turbine → electricity → transmission → heat conversion (lossy at every step), when you could simply have fuel → transmission → heat. And as a consequence electric is usually more costly. Exceptionally, some regions manipulate the energy pricing in order to make electric nearly as economical as gas.

So whether gas makes economical sense depends on where you are. The prices can also swing especially in Europe due to the Russian war. Thus having both options is ideal once you consider pricing (esp. fluctuating pricing). Having both options hedges against price swings and at the same time gives you the option to choose the kind of heat you need for what you’re preparing.

power outages

Some folks live out in the sticks and have frequent power losses. Every storm is likely to cause a power outage in some remote areas where the power lines are near trees. And because those communities are small, response time is slow. So the power can be out for days. Several times this happened to someone in my family when they had a cake in their electric oven. The cake would have been ruined had they not had the option to transfer the cake to a propane gas grill.

Telorand,

It does. Stick a pan with water in it in the oven with your baked item. This is necessary even for gas ovens, if you require a moist cooking chamber.

The air inside a gas oven isn’t especially wet at 400°F, because of the inverse relationship of temperature and relative humidity.

CJOtheReal,

Bro induction stoves are a order of Magnitude better and less dangerous.

monsieur_jean,

Any Asians, specifically Chinese in here with induction stoves to give us a feedback? How does it work with thin steel woks?

CadeJohnson,
@CadeJohnson@slrpnk.net avatar

not Chinese, but I cook a lot with a wok. I also have a single induction cooktop and surprisingly, the wok has enough iron to work with it while some old cheap conventional cookware did not. However, wok cooking needs to be hot all over the wok and not just in that little point where the wok is close enough to the induction coil.

I have a conventional propane stove which I need to keep, because here in Puerto Rico the power system is quite unreliable (especially during a bad hurricane year). But the conventional stove burners are not really hot enough. With a 1/16 - inch drill bit I could increase one of the burners capacity substantially. I painted the stove knob red so people have some warning when they light that burner! It burns more gas, but wok cooking is really fast, so in the long run it is probably more efficient than lots of other cooking approaches.

I would definitely consider a wok-shaped induction heater. Induction heating is quite remarkable.

monsieur_jean,

Thanks for the feedback. That's my situation in South East Asia, power can be unreliable at time. I cook with a gas stove and have a portable electric stove as a backup if I run out of gas in the middle of my cooking.

I used to cook with a high pressure stove (the ones you see in Chinese restaurant) that are perfect for woks but my wife was afraid I would burn down the house so I switched to a regular gas stove.

Induction could be an option in the future though, if it allows for that fast heating/cooling style of cooking I use.

CadeJohnson,
@CadeJohnson@slrpnk.net avatar

In the US, stove burners are rated in the confusing units of “BTUs” which is actually a unit of energy, not power. When they say BTU, they mean BTU/hour. The highest-rated burners on a typical stove are about 10,000 Btu (per hour), but high-end stoves can get up to about 18000 - that is equivalent to about 5000 watts. My single-element induction top is only rated for about 1000 watts. So although it heats and cools rapidly, I suspect it is not up to the demands of wok cooking (unless one wants to cook only very small portions).

Kecessa,

No matter what type, at home you won’t have the heat directly on the sides.

SeducingCamel,

Just learned they exist but there’s curved induction plates available on Amazon designed for woks

activistPnk,

I’ve not used one myself but my workplace cafeteria occasionally does made-to-order wok lunches where they pull out induction woks where the induction surface is parabolic so the wok can have the proper wok shape (not a flat bottom). When they crank the heat up, it’s clear from the immediate sizzling that the heat comes fast enough.

monsieur_jean,

I'm more worried with the heat not dissipating fast enough. One nice thing with thin woks is that when you cut the fire food stops cooking almost instantly. That's the main reason why I haven't switched to induction yet, as everybody repeats it needs thick cookware.

Well that and the power cuts.

activistPnk,

The induction woks are separate from the cooktop, so if cutting the power were too slow, you can instantly lift the wok off just as you would with gas. Though I don’t imagine that cutting the power would be any slower than cutting the gas.

monsieur_jean,

Yes indeed, but the wok stays hot and continues cooking after you lift it. With thin woks that's not an issue, they have barely any thermal inertia. With thick ones though that's not the same story, food is going to continue cooking for 15 to 30 seconds after you turn off the heat. With my style of cooking that's not desirable.

But maybe my 1mm thick wok would work on induction? Everywhere I read it works better with thick pans, but does this means it doesn't work at all with a thin one, or it's just a bit less efficient?

activistPnk, (edited )

I don’t have the answer to that. I don’t recall how thick the induction woks were at the cafeteria but I recall how clean they were (not seasoned), which implies they were perhaps stainless steel. I have a thin curved stainless steel wok that I use on a flame. It’s non-magnetic but would still theoretically work on an induction surface. I chose stainless so that I could put it in the dishwasher, but IIUC what I give up is that stainless steel does not get as screaming hot as a carbon steel wok. I cannot boil water in it unless I cover it. Not sure if that info helps you but I don’t have direct experience with induction so no idea if a thin carbon steel wok would have issues on induction as a consequence of less material.

Uranium3006,
Uranium3006 avatar

this is why big gas is cranking up the propaganda on stoves. induction stoves are better, don't believe them

Anticorp,

Why are they better?

PersnickityPenguin,

Safer, cheaper, cleaner.

Safer being no indoor air pollution and to cook surface doesn’t get hot at all. You can literally put a piece of paper between the pan and the cooktop and it will cook without burning the paper.

sour,
sour avatar

no open flame

Kecessa,

Instantaneous control over temperature without the safety issues of gas

theKalash,

They don’t require an explosive to be pumped into your house.

Anticorp,

That’s not really the type of information I was looking for, but thanks anyways.

DroneRights,

They’re out of line but they’re right

Hyperreality, (edited )

Gas stoves also emit stuff like benzene, which has been linked to cancer, and NO2 which has been linked to asthma.

But ignoring the health issues, induction is faster for boiling stuff, and arguably more precise. You likely don't need new pans either. Flat bottom, cast iron works fine and stainless works fine for me.

It just takes some getting used to.

NoIWontPickaName,

You have special stainless then, most won’t work.

If you can stick a magnet to the bottom it will work.

Hyperreality,

I mean, I bought the set in aldi. It was in the bargain bin for something like 60 euros for 10 pots and pans. Was worried it wouldn't work when I moved. Tried it. Worked just fine. Apparently plenty of stainless steel stuff works just fine.

This isn't particularly interesting.

But just to say, before buying new expensive ones that claim to be designed for induction, try the old ones you already own. Chances are they'll work just fine.

poVoq,
@poVoq@slrpnk.net avatar

Better air quality, otherwise they are merely not as inconvenient as other types of electric stoves.

But you need to buy new induction capable pots for them and the pulsing heat they make takes some time to get used to.

PersnickityPenguin,

That’s mainly an issue with aluminum and stainless steel, but only some types of stainless steel. It’s a good stuff that I have all works flawlessly on the induction.

If you buy the aluminum Japanese cookware, they are all designed for induction anyways.

ProdigalFrog,

AFIAK they also work with cast iron cookware.

BrowseMan,

From experience, they work as long as a magnet can stick to it, so yes flany ferrous metal should work.

Induction is the best cooking method to me. Faster and safer than electric and gas, (much) easier to control than electric…

Ah and so much easier to clean than gas!

Only gas advantage I could see is maybe heat “fine tuning”. And even this probably depend on the system (the one I used had roughly 6 heating level, but there is system with more). And is not very important except if you’re a high level chef.

Anticorp,

Any ferrous metal. Right? So anything except stainless steel. I’m guessing you probably want something fairly thick too.

Gnugit,

Yes, very thick otherwise you get a burn spot everytime around the middle.

Also, my stainless pan works fine on my induction stove.

Anticorp,

Does it have a fused base of other metals?

Gnugit,

That may be it, I’m not sure I bought it at a thrift store.

Gnugit,

Yes, aluminium “Sleek Seamless Impact Bonded Sandwich Base with Aluminium Core”

scanpan.com.au/fry-pan-32cm-x-6cm/

Hyperreality,

Stainless often works too IME.

gullible,

Enamel and aluminum are the only ones I’ve had issues with, personally.

BrowseMan,

What they do now is “sanwchich” with a disc of induction-compatible metal inserted in the bottom of the cookware.

Allows compatibility (and better heat spread I think)

Kecessa,

You don’t necessarily need to buy new pots as the ones you have might as well already be ferrous.

silence7,

I’m still using my old cast iron cookware.

The pots that did need replacing when I went from coils to induction were a set of very cheap stainless steel ones that I bought when I was a student.

Akrenion,

Pollution and home safety aside. I found it nice to pinpoint my desired heat. It works so fast and accurate that I got consistent pancakes like i never used to before.

Anticorp, (edited )

That’s pretty cool. Can they heat a pan as fast as a gas stove? One of the major inconveniences with an electric stove is having to wait for the burner to heat up, before you can wait for your pan to heat up. I’ve had resistive stoves for decades now, and they’re not very good IMO. But I’ve never had an induction stove. I’ve really missed the gas stove we had when I was a kid.

set_secret,

it’s noticeably faster than a gas stove. plus the neat thing is it’s not giving you and your family cancer!

intelisense,

Simple answer: yes, induction hobs are fast, maybe even faster than gas.

Anticorp,

That’s really cool.

DroneRights, (edited )

Resistive stoves are slow because heat has to move from the coils, to the air above the coils, to the glass top, to the pan, to the food.

Gas stoves are fast because heat can move from the flame, to the pan, to the food.

Induction cooktops are the fastest because heat gets to move directly from the pan, to the food.

Induction uses magnetic fields to directly impart energy into the metal of your pan. Magnetic fields move energy at the speed of light. That’s faster than gas can move heat. Which means your pan warms up quicker.

FooBarrington,

You can imagine an induction stove to work similarly to a resistive stove, only with your pan/pot being the resistive element. The slow part of resistive stoves is the heat transfer from the element to the cookware, so you can imagine how quickly an inductive stove heats that thing up!

cestvrai,

Back on gas after having induction (moved).

I also grew up on resistive and was as skeptical as you are. Now, I dream about upgrading to induction again once we are able to reno the kitchen. For example, boiling water on induction is more than twice as fast as gas and the temp adjustment goes so quick that even cooking eggs is a breeze.

PersnickityPenguin,

Yeah, when I fry eggs the pan heats up to temperature in literally seconds - not a half a minute, but like 5 to 10 seconds.

Krotiuz,

In addition to the other comments about it being just as quick, if not faster and easier to get a consistent heat, I also found the noise level was way better - it'll hum if the pan isn't centered properly, and the power is turned up, but when simmering, it's pretty much silent which was weird but suprisingly nice.

sxan,
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

While I don’t agree they’re better, a key feature over conventional electric (and one of the main benefits of gas) is that the stove surface doesn’t inherently retain heat. They get hot, but only because the pan is hot. When you turn down the heat, it’s immediate, like a gas stove.

I don’t know about how fast they can heat; gas can output a ridiculous amount of BTUs, but at 240v I wouldn’t be surprised.

sushibowl,

Have to keep efficiency in mind as well. Practically all of the heat produced by induction goes directly into the pan bottom. With gas, quite a bit of the heat doesn’t end up in the pan.

In my experience, induction on high settings heats much faster than gas. Sometimes faster than is desirable actually. A pot of water will boil at the bottom when the top is only somewhat warm.

768,

I don’t know about the US, but in Germany it’s common that the individual or two plates of the induction stoves have their own 380V cable and breaker.

Kecessa,

North America has one 240v plug for the whole appliance, 120v is what’s used for regular electric items.

sxan,
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

The US often has some appliances wired for 240V; I assume stovetops are, but IDK. Large appliances have their own breakers. I was told that if we wanted to install a built-in microwave, it’d require a new, dedicated wire and breaker.

PersnickityPenguin,

Yeah, in the US for an electric range you’re looking at a single 240 volt split phase 30 amp circuit.

silence7,

A lot of places have code requirements that the microwave have its own breaker even though they’re almost all 120v; it’s because they use almost all the amps on the 120v circuit so you tend to trip the breaker if you have anything else big going on, like an electric kettle or a vacuum cleaner.

sxan, (edited )
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

I didn’t have a gas stove until I was in my late 40’s. I will not willingly go back to conventional electric. Gas stoves are better. Finer control, faster temp changes (esp. when decreasing).

I’d be willing to try an induction stove. They’re rare in the US, but my limited experience with them was positive. Not quite as nice as a gas stove, but miles better than an conventional electric range, and good enough that the easier cleaning would tip me over.

You mention propeganda; it’s odd that the only propeganda I encounter is the anti-gas kind. It’s non-stop on NPR and social media. I haven’t heard or read a single pro-gas piece.

Edit: I think you were only talking about induction, so I changed some phrasing.

Hyperreality,

I haven’t heard or read a single pro-gas piece.

Right-wing media apparently. Not American, but from what I gather if you watch NPR, you're a communist and a homosexual. So that means you won't be watching real American media like Fox News.

Stuff like this from a member of congress:

"I’ll NEVER give up my gas stove. If the maniacs in the White House come for my stove, they can pry it from my cold dead hands. COME AND TAKE IT!!"

https://twitter.com/RonnyJacksonTX/status/1612839703018934274?t=ptxUxaAhqE1ax8FwY15cyA

Franzia,

from what I gather if you watch NPR, you’re a communist and a homosexual.

Cmon, I’m not impressed by your knowledge. This is written in the first paragraph of the constitution.

Ramvorg,

Idk why “watch NPR” is so funny to me right now lmao

I’m so sleep deprived

activistPnk, (edited )

Gas stoves are better. Finer control, faster temp changes (esp. when decreasing).

Gas stoves are better in some ways, but “finer control” is debatable. If you turn the knob from 0 to 10, it’s obvious that the energy output is non-linear. On my stove the flame has like 50% of its increase between level 2 and 3 or 4. You also have a more narrow range of heat with gas. That is, the lowest setting has to be high enough that the flame does not blow out, so the min heat is higher than the min level on electric. Electric also gets hotter than gas on the high end.

With electric you get precise control. Power level 5 gives exactly half the heat energy that 10 gives; power level 6 is exactly triple the heat of power level 2. You don’t get that precision with gas. You can only eye-ball it which means harder to get reproduceable results.

You probably meant to say gas gives you /immediate/ control. Conventional electric is quite slow, but induction is fast.

sxan,
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

Maybe it’s a brand or quality difference; I can pretty finely control the flame on our range.

“Control” is the ability to adjust to a desired temp with fine accuracy, right? I can see the flame, and observe changes more rapidly, with gas. Isn’t this finer-grained control?

A common residential electric range outputs a max 7,000 BTUs. A common gas stove outputs max 18,000 BTUs. Electric stoves are not hotter on the high end.

activistPnk, (edited )

“Control” is the ability to adjust to a desired temp with fine accuracy, right? I can see the flame, and observe changes more rapidly, with gas. Isn’t this finer-grained control?

You’re eye-balling it, so you have good control over what your eyeball sees, but then that mental image has to lead to a judgement. Imagine if you were doing a scientific experiment where you need reproducible results and the amount of heat energy were important to the experiment. Would you write in the scientific paper “the flame looked like about 1cm with each sample tested”? You could meter the gas but the heat losses are higher as the flame grows because you’re heating increasingly more of the air around the pan.

A common residential electric range outputs a max 7,000 BTUs. A common gas stove outputs max 18,000 BTUs. Electric stoves are not hotter on the high end.

Gas stoves probably lose half their energy by heating the air all around the pot so you have to account for that. With electric much more of the BTUs actually make it to the food (esp. induction). When I search around, articles out in the wild are all over the place… some saying electric coils get hotter than gas and some saying the contrary. One article concurs with you, saying a gas burner reaches 1950°C and electric 900°C. I don’t see any articles mentioning electric burners that get into the four figures among those that actually give temperature figures so perhaps you’re right. But it’s worth noting that a pot of water boils faster on electric than gas.

sxan,
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

You’re eye-balling it

You’re right. I’m not a scientist. I’m not even a professional chef. What matters to me (and most American homeowners, which is who the article is the granular control available to me. I don’t much care what’s possible in a lab. It’s at least part of the reason why, as the article states, many of us are unwilling to give up the control we get with gas.

Gas stoves probably lose half their energy by heating the air all around the pot

I’ve seen that, too. I don’t believe it’s accurate (I’d like to see an unbiased verification of that 50% number), and it misses another advantage of gas: gas heats pots more evenly by distributing some heat up the sides. Elecric heats only the bottom directly, and sides are heated only through conduction. It also means that less of that heat is wasted: just because it isn’t hitting the bottom of the pot doesn’t mean it isn’t doing useful work. This also only considers pots. Pans usually have greater coverage of tye heating surface, and less heat escapes around the sides. This is relevant especially where high heat matters, such as searing. Finally, there are pots like my wok, which has a base that entirely covers the grill. It has holes, so it breathes, but it captures nearly all of the heat. Woks are particularly bad on conventional ranges, and having an electric range essentially eliminates woks as a viable tool.

As I think more about this, the more disadvantages of electric I see. Sauteing is better on gas. You can manipulate a pan, lift and tilt, and have many more options than simply having or not having applied heat.

I can see having a range with a few induction spots; most dishes don’t need the fine control; boiling water, cooking pasta, and steaming vegetables are all gross operations, but I’d still want at least one gas surface. It’s just better for anything that isn’t boiled food.

LilB0kChoy,

I’m not a scientist. I’m not even a professional chef. I’m an average American homeowner and when we replace our gas range and oven we’ll get an electric oven and an induction range.

Having used gas, electric and induction my experience has been that induction cook tops are the safest and provide the greatest temperature control of them all. The biggest drawback is the requirement of specialized pans but we switched to clad stainless a few years ago to get away from the non-stick chemicals risk.

I’d say this comes down to cost and familiarity. People are used to gas stoves and are likely wary of change. Combine that with the fact that many homes are setup for gas ovens, with no electrical plugs for a switch and you’ve got several costs to change. The new oven itself, getting an appropriate outlet wired in, and for induction, changing pans to something that will work.

The other consideration is that gas continues to work in an electrical outage, however, I’d imagine many ovens are electronically controlled. I know our gas stove will not work without electricity.

sxan,
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

😄 Our oven is electric. It’s the only thing I lament - it takes forever to come up to temp.

I’m in my mid-50’s, and this is our first house that’s had gas, so for me it’s definitely not a case of familiarity. My whole life I’ve had electric, and having a gas range has been a game-changer for me.

That said, I’ve also never seen, and certaily never lived with, an induction range. I do miss the cleaning conveniance of a glass-top - cleaning a gas range is a PITA! And induction has as good immediate temp reduction response as gas, which is a large factor in control. As I mentioned earlier, I’d never willingly go back to conventional electric, but I might opt for induction just for the ease of cleaning. I can live with not being able to properly saute, but giving up the wok would be hard. Still, it’s something to consider.

Two other things: except for our ovens (an odd omission), the rest of our house is gas. Water heaters, fireplace, clothes dryer, heat. None of it works without electricity, although in a pinch I can light the stove with a match. The fireplace can’t be lit - there’s a safety switch that needs current, which could be run with a battery-operated part we don’t have. It’s the most stupid thing about our house - we can’t get any heat in a power outage, despite all the gas. So, of everything, running the stove in a blackout is funnily enough the least of my concerns.

Does your gas not run in an outage, or can you just not start it? If the gas runs, you should be able to light it with a match. OTOH, you can’t run the ventilation fan, and that might put you off running it anyway.

LilB0kChoy,

I mostly meant the oven wouldn’t work in a power outage regardless of gas or electric.

Our gas range works in a power outage but so does our fireplace. The fireplace has a standing pilot so I’m guessing that’s why.

You should be able to “properly saute” on a gas, electric or induction range. Stir frying, which I suspect you meant, is a different story.

bjorney,

Gas stoves lose a majority of those BTUs to the air around your pot.

A 18,000 BTU stove should be equivalent to 5300W of electric heating, alas, my 1500W kettle boils water substantially faster than my gas stove

768,

This here shows where the propaganda appears:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=hX2aZUav-54

Kecessa,

GF was a professional cook for 15 years, still prefers our induction stove to the gas stoves she worked on all this time.

sxan,
@sxan@midwest.social avatar

Yeah, I can believe I could learn to prefer induction. They’re just incredibly rare in residential US homes, which is where I live, and what the article was about.

The only place I’ve encountered an induction stove was in the EU, where - I gather - they’re more common.

silence7,

They’re starting to become more widespread in the US as people understand the health risks that come with gas stoves.

NZV65572,

Induction is great, switch 1 yr ago. Most cookware works, not just cast iron.

Pro tip: if want to know if your pan works with induction, take a magnet and see if it sticks to the pan. If it sticks, it will heat!

aBundleOfFerrets,

Some non-magnetic cookware can still be used on induction heaters

Hyperreality,

Lazy tip: get the induction thing. See which pans still work before buying anything new.

qyron,

Induction only drawback is the need for more expensive cookware.

For me, induction and cast iron is a match made in heaven.

notepass, (edited )

For me pretty much everything but the china special supports induction. The only stuff I have that I can’t use with it is either old (20+ years) or was the cheapest option in the store and it’s generally not too good (a student needs to start somewhere)

qyron,

Aluminum is stupid popular in my country, being cheap, affordable and pretty resistant. Most people resist moving to induction as it will require purchasing new pots and pans.

A stainless steel 25cm frying pan, of good make can cost anywhere from €35 to €70. If not more. I’m keeping on the affordable range, not crazy designer stuff.

The equivalent aluminum can cost between €10 and €20.

RvTV95XBeo,

I mean you can get a good lodge cast iron pan for like $25, so it’s not really even that expensive. Sure the fancy ones are $100-200, but (don’t tell the cast iron fanatics) they’re only marginally better than lodge, and mostly because of things like aesthetics, ergonomics & weight than cooking performance.

qyron,

Cast iron is expensive. Between the material itself and the late hype for this particular type of kitchenware, price are high.

I bought my first cast iron pot for €45. It’s a 4 litre, so not that big.

I recently bought in a promotion a skillet and grill for €40, as a promotion, but each piece should have cost of around €40/piece. Most won’t fork that much.

Right now, I’m thinking about a nice paella or mushroom ragu to really break in the skillet.

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