The best electric skillets you can buy

Business Insider | Jul 18, 2019, 07.35PM IST
  • The best electric skillets have even heat distribution, can cook a variety of dishes, and clean up effortlessly.
  • The Presto 16-inch Electric Foldaway Skillet has all of these characteristics. Plus, its parts nest within each other for compact storage, and it can handle large meals.

I was first introduced to the electric skillet as a teen in my dad's bachelor pad. He'd use it to cook up the finest Hamburger Helper cuisine while some sports game on the TV held our focus. You may be wondering, why would someone use an electric skillet instead of a burner on their stove? There are several reasons why this versatile appliance continues to find its way into homes. Electric skillets are excellent for use in the following situations:

  • RVs, tiny houses, and other living arrangements with limited kitchen space
  • Keep food warm during a potluck or other event (serving a similar role as a chafing dish)
  • Cooking side dishes on Thanksgiving or for other big meals when stove space is at a premium
  • Cooler cooking when the summer temps make using the oven or stove unbearable
  • Motel rooms, dorm rooms, or anyplace that has little to no kitchen access
  • People who just prefer even heating surfaces with a precise temperature gauge

Electric skillets are mainly designed for pan-frying and sautéing, but they also brown meat nicely, deep fry, and serve as a griddle for your morning favorites. Many manufacturers offer electric skillet accessories that allow you to steam or grill.

What to look for in an electric skillet

Most electric frying pans, as they are also commonly known, have the same basic design: a circular or rectangular pan, a tempered glass lid, and a power cord that comes unattached easily when yanked so you don't have a Three Stooges-style mishap when you accidentally trip over it. The heat settings generally range from around 175 degrees Fahrenheit to at least 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Aluminum is the most common material used in electric skillets and they're usually covered by a non-stick coating of Teflon. You typically don't want to use metal utensils on your pan because it can wear away the nonstick coating, which is a common problem with this appliance in the long term.

There are few game-changing unique features that set a skillet apart from another. So, when shopping for the best option for your needs, you should focus on size and performance. Many models suffer from uneven heating. Others do not maintain a consistent temperature over time. Others still do not live up to their "nonstick" credentials. Therefore, you need to do your research before you buy.

In our search for the best electric skillets, we looked closely at hundreds of expert and buyer ratings and reviews. In the end, we chose the five electric skillets in our guide based on how easy they are to clean, how versatile they are, and their track record of performance.

Here are the best electric skillets you can buy:

Updated on 07/18/2019 by Les Shu: Updated prices, links, and formatting.

Read on to check out our top picks.

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Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Insider Picks team. We highlight products and services you might find interesting. If you buy them, we get a small share of the revenue from the sale from our commerce partners. We frequently receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product is featured or recommended. We operate independently from our advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback. Email us at insiderpicks@businessinsider.com.

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