Hot plates were invented about 40 years ago for those who wanted to keep fondue pots hot when they had guests or just wanted to heat up food quickly (this was before the microwave). They have revived as a new generation has discovered how convenient they are if you are travelling, camping or if you are a student who just wants to heat up a can of beans. They also make a useful back-up in case your other cookers fail and you need to do some cooking.
Here are the best hot plates available at the moment:
Cadco Professional Cast-Iron Hot Plate
This is 7 1/8 inches in diameter and can handle 12 quart pots on top of it, and some people have used it to hold heavy stove-top pressure canners as well, as this solid plate can take the weight. It is made of cast-iron which heats up extremely quickly and retains the heat (so be careful after you have finished cooking as it will stay hot for a while). Because it is cast iron, it is also pretty heavy (the frame around the plate is stainless steel). It also has precise heat controls so you can choose the temperature you want.
It’s a 120 volt, 1500 watt hot plate and is made in Germany. It has a 1 year warranty.
Waring Portable Single Burner
This also has a cast-iron plate which is housed in stainless steel, with rubber fet underneath so it doesn’t slip. It measures 10 3/4 inches by 11.5 inches. It has an adjustable thermostat with an indicator that shows when the hot-plate is “ready” i.e. has reached the desired temperature.
This is a 1300 watt hot plate and it comes with a limited 1 year warranty.
Shabbat Hot Plate
If you just want a hot plate to keep the fondue bowl bubbling or cooked dishes warm, this hot plate is perfect.
It’s just 600 watts (110 volts), and is pretty simple, you just plug it in, there arn’t really any temperature controls. This is an extra large model – 17 3/4 inches by 27 1/2 inches, so it can hold several dishes at once. You can also get smaller versions, see below. The large version is 400 watts.
What is the difference between a hot plate and an induction cooktop?
Hot plates operate much like an electric cooker, an electric element heats up a metal plate, the only difference being that the hot plate is just a single burner. Induction stovetops use different technology – they use magnetic waves to heat up the cooking surface.
best hot plates