Do you have a new induction hob? Or, are you planning on buying one? More importantly, did you know that not all kitchen cookware will work on an induction hob? This kitchen appliance uses a non-traditional type of magnetic heat to cook food and improve user experience, too. So, what saucepans work on induction hobs? Without giving too much away, any pan that has a magnetic base will do.
This article gives in-depth information on what types of pans work best on an induction hob, what pans won’t work at all, and some other helpful tips, as wells as a quick and easy test you can try on any piece of cookware in your kitchen.
What Is Induction Cooking?
Unlike gas or electric hobs that utilise an exposed flame or electric element, induction cooking works by using magnetic coils beneath a ceramic glass surface to heat and cook food. An induction ring creates a magnetic field that transfers energy (or heat) to your cookware to execute the induction cooking process.
This improved functionality significantly enhances the user experience and also conserves energy.
Benefits of Using an Induction Hob
Aside from sounding and looking sleek and impressive, induction hobs also come with a lot of benefits compared to electric or gas hobs.
Induction hobs are more efficient compared to other hobs. They have an even heat distribution that uses 90% of the energy they produce, unlike other hob types that let a significant amount of heat escape around the pans and pots. This also allows you to control the temperature of the induction plate more easily and efficiently.
The ability to use more power means induction hobs can achieve a much higher temperature and can cook foods faster. For example, water boils on an induction surface about 50% faster than on electric or gas hobs.
Pots, pans, and the cooking surface on an induction hob stay fairly cool even while in use, which improves safety overall.
Induction hobs have a smooth, easy-to-clean cooking surface. And since the top doesn’t get hot, accidental spills and messes won’t bake on to the heat source like with other cooking methods.
Induction Compatible Saucepans and Pots
Now that we know a bit about the induction method and why it is so effective when it comes to cooking, let’s discuss what pans will work on an induction hob and what will not.
First, any pan you use must have a flat bottom and be magnetic.
Pans That Work:
- Cast iron pans work excellently on an induction hob – thanks to their magnetic abilities and their heavy-duty weight.
- Enamelled cast iron pans also make a great option on an induction hob. Plus, some people find them easier to clean than traditional ones.
- Stainless steel pans will work on an induction hob as well. Additionally, steel pans with either a copper or aluminium core will conduct magnetic heat even better than pans that are made entirely of stainless steel.
- And of course, any types of cookware that are specifically labelled induction cookware will also work. Regardless of what the main structure is made out of, induction pans have a base with a magnet that allows them to transfer heat.
Pans That Don’t Work:
- Glass or pyrex pans
While these materials can be found in some induction kitchenware – especially copper and aluminium, they must contain other materials that create a magnetic base for them to work on an induction hob.
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How to Test Your Saucepans for Compatibility
How do you know if a pan can be used on an induction hob? Sometimes it can be hard to determine whether a pot or pan is induction compatible, especially if they have a coating of some sort or are made with stainless steel and another metal. If you have a new induction hob and want to find out if your existing cookware can be used on your new appliance, there is a quick and easy way to find out. Simply try to stick a kitchen magnet to the bottom of the pan in question. If it’s the right kind of metal, it will stick. If the magnet doesn’t stick, the pan cannot be used on an induction hob.
What happens if you use a normal pan on an induction hob? If you’ll remember, induction cooking uses magnetic energy to heat food. Therefore, it won’t work unless your pan is magnetic, too.
What if My Pan Is Not Compatible?
In the instance that your cookware is not induction compatible, you may be able to use an adapter plate to remedy the problem. An adapter plate goes under the base of the pan on the hob surface to transfer the magnetic energy.
Adapter plates are fairly inexpensive and can help prevent you from having to buy a whole new set of pans and pots. Unless of course, you want a new set of cookware to go with your new appliance.
Induction Pot and Pan Pro Tips
Here are just a few pro tips to help you get the best user experience from your cookware and your induction hob.
- Pots and pans with a heavy lid are beneficial on an induction surface because they can prevent wobbling and ensure an even transfer of energy.
- Always try to match the base of your pan with an even or close to even sized induction coil. This creates a stronger magnetic field and helps the food cook faster. If this is not possible, choose a cooking zone that is smaller than the base of the pan and not the other way around.
- When looking for new cookware that is induction friendly, seek out products that use terms like “induction cooktop cookware” or “induction-ready” to achieve the best, most efficient results possible.
So, what saucepans work on induction hobs? Cast iron pans, enamelled cast iron pans, stainless steel pans, induction cookware, and any other type of pan that has a magnetic base. You now have all of the tools and information needed to determine whether or not your pots and pans will work on your induction hob. Now the question is, will you need to buy adapter plates or new cookware?