Gas vs Electric vs Induction Stove: Which one should you buy?

Gas cooktops have inarguably been the preferred method of cooking for a long time. However, with the advent of induction stoves and electric cooktops, you might step into a realm of confusion in deciding the most suitable one for your modular kitchen.

To resolve this dilemma, we curated this article to help our readers figure out which kitchen cooktop to choose. 

We provided an overview and notable differences of each type so that you can compare your options and make the best decision for your kitchen.

Let us take a closer look at each option below.

Different Types of Cooktops and their Pros vs Cons:

Gas vs Electric Vs Induction

There is no separate establishment that out of all the fancy types, only the Gas, Electric and Induction are mainstream. Let us start with Gas stoves

Induction Cooktop

Induction cooking is one of the steadily growing kitchen trends across the world. The reason for the increasing popularity is the superior cooking technology that helped induction cooktop gain a foothold in the market. 

How Does An Induction Cooktop Work?

Let us try to understand the working mechanism of the Induction Cooktop. It basically uses electromagnetism to generate heat and cook food. Unlike traditional cooktops that contain a burner, an induction stove has metal coils present beneath the surface that creates a magnetic field whenever you turn the power on. 

When you place a pan or any vessel on top of that magnetic field, it heats the pan while allowing the surroundings of the cooktop to stay cooler. This is one of the greatest advantages of induction cooktops that no other cooktops can claim about.  

Induction stoves have many automatic features embedded in them, making them safe, reliable, and efficient. The automatic shut-down feature of the cooktop enables it to turn off automatically the moment you lift any vessel from the stove. 

Let us discuss some of the advantages and disadvantages of an induction stove.

Pros

  • Induction stoves and cooktops are more energy-efficient when compared to electric or gas stoves.
  • In induction technology, there is no loss of heat in the transferring process.
  • Induction stoves and cooktops offer precise temperature control. Induction stoves and cooktops heat faster than their electric and gas counterparts.
  • Induction stoves offer a safer way to cook than electric or gas stoves. 
  • They do not emit gas into the air, and they won’t catch objects, like dishcloths, on fire.
  • Induction stoves and cooktops maintain a cool cooking surface.

Cons

  • Induction stoves and cooktops are more expensive in comparison with electric and gas cooktops.
  • They work only with power. In case of a power interruption, you cannot cook your food on them. 
  • You cannot use all kinds of utensils on them. They are ideal only for magnetic cooking vessels.

Electric Stove

Electric Stoves are the most common type of cooktops that are quite popular. They are basically of two types – coil cooktops and smooth ceramic top cooktops. 

How Does An Electric Stove Work?

The key functionality of an electric stove is to produce heat without a flame. It contains electrical coils that help in heating the cooktop surface, thereby cooking the food. 

Electric Coil Cooktops: As the name says, electric coil cooktops have coils on the surface of the cooktop surface, which are more vulnerable to spills. However, these are durable and compatible with any type of pans.

Smooth Ceramic Electric Cooktops: Smooth ceramic electric cooktops, like coil cooktops, have radiant elements beneath the ceramic surface. This gives this cooktop a smooth, sleek, and even cooking surface, further making it easy to clean. 

The metal coils of the smooth ceramic electric cooktops offer a centralized heat for the utensils when cooking. These coils glow once they become hot and use infrared energy to transfer the same heat to the utensils through the glass or ceramic.

The infrared energy facilitates even transmission of energy to the pan or vessel placed on the burner. It allows heat transfer between the cooktop to the utensil, and then to the food inside. This is how your food gets cooked on an electric stove. 

Even after you turn off the burner you are using, the device remains hot for a while. The appliance takes some time to cool down, giving you residual heat for a certain period. Most manufacturers, these days, offer electric cooktops that come with indicator lights. This feature tells the user once the burner cools down.

Let us discuss some of the advantages and disadvantages of an electric stove.

Pros

  • An electric stove is safer than a gas stove as there is no fear of inflammation.
  • It has high energy efficiency when compared to traditional gas stoves and helps you save energy costs.
  • They transfer relatively release less heat to the surroundings than a typical gas stove. 

Cons

  • An electric stove may take a longer time to heat than a gas stove.
  • There are chances of burning your hands when using this device. 
  • They are not compatible with all kinds of vessels, except for those with a flat bottom. 
  • They run only on electricity, and a power outage might hamper the cooking.

Gas Stoves

Gas Stoves are the most preferred option in many homes. Unlike an induction and electric cooktop, a gas stove uses a flame to heat the food. They offer instant heat and exceptional temperature control than an electric stove. You can easily adjust the flame to low or high, depending on your requirement. 

How Does A Gas Stove Work?

As mentioned in the above paragraph, a gas stove uses a flame to cook the food. Moreover, they offer you a great amount of control over the heat, allowing distribution across the vessels. 

A gas stove can be an expensive affair as the gas used may be costly. It may further shoot up depending on the demand and availability. 

Pros

  • A gas stove has a wide range of availability.
  • Modern gas cooktops come with multiple burners that make cooking easier than ever.
  • They do not rely on electricity, and hence power cuts will not affect your cooking. 
  • A gas cooktop is the most preferable and ideal for the Indian cooking style.
  • They are compatible with almost all types of utensils.
  • You can use utensils of any size on the gas stove, and there are no restrictions as such.

Cons

  • Gas leakage is dangerous as it may cause explosions. This may lead to severe burns and, sometimes, even death. 
  • A gas stove can eventually heat the kitchen atmosphere and the surroundings. 
  • You should not switch on your ceiling fan or keep the windows open when using a gas stove.
  • A gas stove can produce high amounts of CO2 in the air.

Gas vs. Electric vs. Induction Stove

FeaturesInduction CooktopElectric StoveGas Stove
Energy EfficiencyVery high – 84%High – 74%Low – 40%
Speed of CookingVery fast30% slower than induction50% slower than induction
Type of CookwareCompatible with cast-iron and stainless-steelCompatible with all kinds of cookwareCompatible with all kinds of cookware
ComfortabilityHighly comfortableLess comfortableLess comfortable
SafetyProvides maximum safetyLess safeLess safe
CleaningEasy to cleanEasy to cleanRequires more effort
Space RequirementRequires less spaceRequires less spaceRequires more space
Running CostComparatively less than a gas stoveVery LessHigher than electric and induction stoves
PriceLesser than electric and gas stovesComparatively less than a gas stoveHigher than electric and induction stoves

1. Energy Efficiency

Comparing the energy efficiencies of various stoves

The prominent factor to consider when choosing between an induction, or electric, or gas cooktop is energy efficiency. An induction stove is the most energy-efficient of all three. 

An induction cooktop supplies direct energy to the pan or vessel through the magnetic field. Here it uses 84 percent of the electricity for cooking.

On the other hand, an electric stove uses only 74 percent of the total electricity consumption to cook the food. They will offer consistent heat transfer, though.

Unlike the above, a gas cooktop converts the energy consumed into heat and then directs it to the cooking pan or pot. Here, it utilizes only 40 percent of the energy for cooking, making it less efficient than the rest.

Verdict: An Induction cooktop stays ahead in the race of energy efficiency, becoming the most favourable option.

2. Speed of Cooking

When it comes to speed, induction cooktops help you cook food faster than an electric and gas stove. It helps you boil water twice faster than when doing it on an electric cooktop. 

While an electric cooktop takes a 30 percent slow time than induction, a gas stove is 50% slower.

Verdict: Induction cooktops are the fastest when cooking food.

3. Type of Cookware

The only downside to an induction cooktop is that it is not compatible with all types of cookware like aluminum, copper, glass, and ceramic. It can only heat metals like cast iron and stainless steel because of their magnetic bottoms that can effectively transfer heat. 

Moreover, the cooking utensils should have a flat bottom that will allow them to make full contact with the cooktop surface. 

Unlike an induction cooktop, the electric and gas devices are compatible with almost all kinds of cookware.

Verdict: Since electric and gas cooktops work with all types of cookware, they seem to have an upper hand over induction, which requires induction-friendly cookware only.

4. Comfort level

As discussed earlier, an induction stove does not use heat to produce heat. Hence, it offers the highest degree of comfort to the users while cooking. Also, it keeps the kitchen and the surroundings of the cooktop cool. 

Whereas, in electric and gas cooktops, the devices can get hot and even heat the environment. Moreover, the appliance will retain the heat for a while even after you turn it off. Hence, they are less comfortable when compared to induction. 

When using a gas stove, you should not switch on a ceiling fan. Make sure there is proper ventilation and you use an exhaust fan or chimney to remove the fumes, as they produce CO2.

Verdict: An induction cooktop stands as the winner for offering a great level of comfort to the users when cooking.

5. Safety for Cooking

Let us talk about safety. An induction offers maximum safety as it does not generate a flame. Hence, no fire or burning hazards while cooking. However, the only thing you need to be careful about is not to touch the device immediately after cooking. 

In an electric cooktop, the surface gets heated up, which will take an undetermined amount of time to cool down. As a result, there may be chances of burning the hands accidentally.

When using a gas stove, there are chances of burns. Improper handling of the appliance or gas leaks from the gas pipe, regulator, or cylinder can result in explosions. 

Verdict: When it comes to safety, the Induction cooktop is the definite winner and highly recommended over electric and gas stoves.

6. Cleaning the Cooktops

Because of its smooth glass-ceramic surface, an induction cooktop is easy to clean and maintain. All you need to do is just wipe off the surface with a damp cloth and then a dry cloth.

The same applies to an electric cooktop with a smooth glass-ceramic surface. However, make sure you allow the appliance to cool down before you start cleaning it.

When cleaning a gas stove, you require more effort as it has many components like burners and grates. For that, you will have to remove the parts of the stove and then clean each segment separately. This can be a little time-consuming process. Moreover, before you do any of this, you should wait for the stove to cool down.

Smooth tops from both induction and electric cooktops are susceptible to damage from scratches. Hence, it is necessary to be careful when using them. Make sure you do not drag them and protect them from scratches caused by utensils. 

Verdict: Both induction and electric cooktops dominate gas stoves here because of their easy-to-clean feature.

7. Space Requirement

Induction and electric cooktops have a single component, and hence they do not occupy more space for installation. Moreover, they are compact in size and lightweight, too. All you need is an electric outlet to plug in the appliance.

Contrary to the above, a gas stove has multiple components like a gas cylinder, gas pipes, burners, regulator, etc. Hence, it requires more space for installation. Besides that, it is huge in size and weight. 

Verdict: Yet again, induction and electric cooktops have an edge here because of their compact size and design.

8. Capital Cost

Comparing the Costs of the stoves

Cost is one of the key parameters that we often look for. Comparatively, an electric stove costs you less, which is about Rs. 900-1700. An induction stove is a little expensive than its electric counterpart. The price range will be around Rs. 1500 to 3000. However, it is lesser than a gas stove.

We all know that a gas stove contains several components in comparison to an induction stove. In addition to that, it comes in various models and features like multiple burners, cooktops, auto-ignition, etc. Thus, the price varies for each model and may also increase if you opt for a premium version. A basic two-burner stove will cost you around Rs. 2000-4000, which is significantly higher than both induction and electric cooktops.

Verdict: An electric stove stands as the clear winner in the price segment.

9. Running Costs

The running cost is yet another crucial factor to consider when analyzing the efficiency of induction, electric, and a gas stove. To help you better understand this, we will demonstrate an example below that shows how much it will cost to boil 1 litre of water. 

10. Induction Stove

Let us start with an induction stove. Say, you want to boil 10 litres of water on your appliance at 25 degrees with the power set to about 1000 watts. Do you know how much electricity your device will consume? Approximately 1.042 kWh. Let us suppose the per-unit rate is Rs. 5. Then the cost would be around Rs 5.21.

Calculation

Let us do some simple calculation here:

Water Volume = 10 L

Electricity Consumption= 1.042 kWh 

Electricity Unit Rate= Rs 5/ kWh

Overall Cost = 1.042 KWH x Rs 5/ kWh = Rs 5.21

11. Electric Stove

Let us talk about the electric stove. Say, you want to boil 10 litres of water on your appliance at 25 degrees with the power set to about 1000 watts. Do you know how much electricity your device will consume? Approximately 1.182 kWh. Let us suppose the per-unit rate is Rs. 5. Then the cost would be around Rs 5.91.

Calculation

Let us do some simple calculation here:

Water Volume = 10 L

Electricity Consumption= 1.182 kWh 

Electricity Unit Rate = Rs 5/ kWh

Overall Cost = 1.182 KWH x Rs 5/ kWh = Rs 5.91

12 .Gas Stove

Let us now discuss the gas stove. On average, the cost of an LPG cylinder today is around Rs. 850. Let us calculate the overall cost below. 

Calculation

Water Volume = 10 L

LPG consumption= 0.012 kWh

Cost of LPG = Rs 850

Overall Gas Consumption Cost = 0.012 x 850 = Rs. 10.2

Verdict: As seen, an induction stove is not only energy efficient but also helps to incur less running costs. However, a gas stove also incurs lower running costs. But with the increasing LPG prices, that would not be a preferable option.

What are the Energy Sources for Gas, Electric, and Induction Cooktops?

For Gas – The energy sources available for a gas stove are LPG and PNG. These are primary sources as they are available in the environment, and you can use them directly in their natural form. 

For Electric & Induction Cooktops – Electricity and induction ranges use Electricity GRID or Solar Energy as cooking energy source. These, however, are a secondary source of energy as they require coal and the sun’s light and heat for generating electricity. 

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Do induction cooktops use more electricity?

Ans: No. Induction stoves need to use electricity to manipulate the magnetic property of steel and thus directly heating the cooking vessel. This makes them energy efficient and also uses less electricity than a simple electric stove.

2. Is cooking with an induction cooker/stove bad for your health?

Ans: It is true that an induction cooktop uses electromagnetic current thus it is ideal that you use magnetic cookware. There is also the fact that due to the induction nature of the cooktops, they MAY emit low-frequency radiation that is much like at the microwave frequency.
This might bring up the question of how harmful electromagnetic fields and radiation-emitting cooktops are but in reality, an induction cooktop is completely safe to use.

3. Are electric stoves dangerous?

Ans: An electric stove is as safe as you will handle it; much like a gas stove. Electric stoves come with flat surfaces that make placing utensils on them easy. This is completely safe compared to the fire hazardous gas stoves. However, one needs to be careful while handling electricity.

4. Do electric stoves use a lot of electricity?

Ans: Generally, electric stoves can use up to 2000 to about 5000 watts of energy averaging to about 3000 watts. On average, it should not cost you more than 15 rupees per hour of usage or lesser depending on the efficiency of the stove you choose.

Wrapping it up:

To sum up, induction or electric or gas cooktops have their own merits and demerits. When choosing the best option for your kitchen, it is all dependent on personal choice and preferences. I hope this article gave you ample information that one needs to make an informed decision. 

If you find this article helpful, please let us know in the comments section below. Should you need more information on the cooktops, do let us know that as well. We would be more than happy to help you with all you need. 

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