- Food and Cooking
Every Home Cook Needs An Electric Skillet
Stop And Think Before You Buy That Electric Skillet!
Electric skillets are something no kitchen should ever be without.
But there are so many on the market!
How does your everyday home schooled cook know which one to buy?
This Hub is all about giving you a few considerations that may help you with your dilemma.
What To Consider When Buying An Electric Skillet
Sizes and shapes of electric skillets
Will you be using your skillet on your counter? Will you also be storing it on your counter or putting it away in a cabinet? How much spare counter space does your kitchen have? Do you've cabinets? If it's anything like my counter space, you've probably forgotten just exactly what it is that your counter top is made of because you haven't actually seen it in such a long time. This very fact can help you decide what the size and shape of your skillet should be. Remember too that you have to clean that big 16 incher! Will it be awkward to do so at your little sink? Maybe the 12 inch model would be a better bet. Got cats? Make sure they can't jump up to sample that tasty HOT skillet meal. Meow!
Price and usage
Prices are all over the place with these things. Try considering this for starters: how often do you plan on using your skillet? What exactly do you plan on making in it? Can you get by with a $20 model or should you go higher quality and settle on a $100 model? Money is tight these days but if you're going to cook the heck out of your skillet, you want one that is going to last a long time and is versatile. Also a price factor is what it's made of. A good stainless steel electric skillet will likely last longer than a cheap brand. Inner coatings will make a difference in many ways as well.
Spend now to save later
You've already looked at how often you'll use your skillet and what types of dishes you'll create in it. Take that into consideration when you decide what to spend. As mentioned, quality usually costs money. Do you want to buy a really nice skillet now, use the living daylights out of it for all sorts of meals and snacks or do you want to run out to the store for another crumby cheap model that lets you down in the middle of entertaining? Also previously mentioned is versatility. Extra added features make some electric skillets more fully utilitarian than others.
So what do you make in your skillet?
Common favorites include, but are in no way limited to, the following:
Hot sandwiches (i.e. grilled cheese), pancakes, all things breakfast, Swedish meatballs, pot roast, all things fried (i.e. chicken, pork chops, chicken-fried steak), bacon, baked potatoes, caramelize sugar, noodle dishes, casseroles, fried rice, stir-fry, stew and even chili.
In many instances, I think you can figure out that an electric skillet actually is the kitchen! People on a tight budget who can't yet afford a nice stove, college students with limited space, temporary living quarters, it can also be an extra kitchen when your current stove top and oven just aren't enough. The holidays are a perfect example. So much food, so little cooking space!
So What's The Best Electric Skillet? - What do the electric skillet reviews say?
Picking the best electric skillet is almost impossible because of the number of things to consider. Where one person may need a smaller skillet, his or her neighbor might need a bigger one. The the best electric skillet for each of them will be different.
But if you had to pick just one and were basing it on the reviews, you'd have to go with the Presto 06852 16 inch skillet with the glass cover.
For starters this one has more reviews than almost every other on Amazon, meaning it's selling a lot and a lot of people really like it.
Then when you consider the ratings, it averages over 4 stars, with about 70% of users giving it the full 5 stars. We think that's pretty good.
The most common complaint we found was that some people felt the non-stick coating came off too soon. But that's a small minority of the reviewers and their low ratings did little to bring down the overall rating of what many feel is an outstanding product.
Rival Electric Skillet
We're going to talk about this smaller entry from Rival because it seems to be getting really good reviews.
In fact, this 11 inch skillet has an average rating of 4 stars on Amazon. Compare that to Rival's larger offering which averages less than 2 stars with over 100 reviews and you can see why we'll focus in on this one.
What we like best about this skillet is the size. If you don't have to cook for a large family, the 11 inches is more than enough space. And it's small enough to easily put away when not in use. No longer will you have to worry about where to store your skillet. Surely you can find the space for something this small, and you won't have to leave it out to clutter up your counter top.
If there's one chief complaint it's that some people feel that it doesn't cook evenly throughout the surface. But with an overall 4 star rating, again we're talking about a minority of users.
Cuisinart Electric Skillet Reviews
Cuisinart electric skillet reviews are generally positive and the CSK-150 is among their most popular skillets.
Cuisinart of course is a trusted brand, and this model, while oval, is a full 15 inches long and 12 inches wide. Not the biggest on the market, but most people don't want or need something much larger.
It has a non-stick surface (most do), runs at 1500 watts and heats up to 450 degrees. Again everything there is more than sufficient for almost any cooking.
The thing about the Cuisinart is that it tends to be a little more expensive than most other brands. Does that mean it's better? A lot of people think so since it averages 4 stars on Amazon.
Stainless Steel Electric Skillet Reviews
Precise Heat 16-Inch Rectangular
If you're looking for a stainless steel electric skillet this offering from Precise Heat is getting really good reviews and certainly worth looking into.
It's a full 16 inches of rectangular surgical stainless steel.
It does cost a little more (not an extravagant amount) but the people who buy it really seem to like it. It gets an average review of over 4 stars on Amazon.
Remember that stainless steel is not the same as non-stick. It's a fact that some of the reviewers failed to keep in mind when purchasing. Other than that, the chief complaint was non-even heating on the cooking surface. But once again that complaint came from a small minority of the users.
In fact, this is one of the very few skillets with a significant number of reviews that did not receive any with just one star.
Non Stick Electric Skillet
CucinaPro 1654 Stainless Steel Electric Skillet
As we mentioned earlier, most electric skillets these days come with a non-stick surface. However if you're looking for a high end skillet that's made out of stainless steel and still comes with a non-stick surface, then this model from CucinaPro should be near the top of your list of appliances to examine.
Warning, this one is expensive, but everyone who buys it seems to love it.
It only has 5 reviews on Amazon at this writing, but every single one of them gives it a full 5 out of 5 stars.
As much as I looked for someone to say something bad about it, I simply could not find it. It heats evenly, lasts, and cleans up easily. What more can you ask for from your skillet, except perhaps a lower price.
West Bend Electric Skillet
West Bend 72212 Electric Extra-Deep
Truthfully, West Bend electric skillets don't get the kind of glowing reviews across the board like some of the other brands we've mentioned.
This little 12 inch model however does OK for itself. It averages 3 stars on Amazon but there's enough complaints that we would recommend you proceed with caution.
The chief complaint is that, in spite of what the temperature gauge says, it simply does not get hot enough.
If you're looking for a small electric skillet, you'd probably do better with the 11 inch Rival we mentioned earlier, or the Oester we'll talk about next. However this one is less expensive if you are on a really tight budget. There are also quite a few 5 star reviews that make this worth considering.