Unlike conventional pots and pans made for gas or electric cooking, cookware for induction is a little bit different. So, how do you find out if your cookware is induction ready?
There are several ways to determine if you’re purchasing the right cookware or if some pieces in your current collection will work on an induction range. Plus, there’s a way to convert certain non-compatible cookware pieces into induction-compatible ones.
How Induction Works
Cooking with induction involves transferring magnetic energy instead of flame or electricity for quick and efficient cooking. It’s a method that boils water faster and cooks with more precise temperature control.
It also greatly reduces the likelihood of users being burned, among other things. In short, it’s revolutionary and is gaining more and more acclaim in many of today’s home kitchens. Still, finding the right cookware pieces to use can be confusing for someone wanting to convert to this ultra-modern cooking style.
The material tells you all you need to know. For cookware to be compatible with induction, it must be composed of magnetic materials; thereby, supporting the magnetic field. This ties into the process by which an induction stove heats cookware.
This tells you that non-magnetic cookware pieces don’t aid in this process. It also won’t allow the heating of the pan’s contents via induction. When cooking with induction, you should keep it to magnetic materials, such as stainless steel, carbon steel, iron, and cast iron. You can also click here for more information on cookware pieces that are induction ready.
To be considered induction ready, magnetic pots and pans should also have flat bases. No matter how magnetic your plan is, if its base isn’t flat, it’ll never work with induction in itself. Science dictates that only flat surfaces allow the conduction of a magnetic field, which, as established, is how induction stoves heat cookware.
3 Ways To Check if Cookware Is Induction Compatible
Replacing your existing cookware collection with a new set that favors induction isn’t going to be cheap. As such, you’ll want to peruse through your current pieces to see which of them can be used with your induction cooktop.
1. Magnet Test
If your cookware piece has a flat base and attracts a magnet, it’ll highly likely be induction compatible. The simple magnet test should keep you from wondering.
Just get a magnet from your refrigerator and see if it sticks to your cookware. The result can be either of the following:
- Magnet clings to the base of the cookware: Cookware is induction compatible.
- Magnet softly grabs the base: Semi-compatible, but won’t always be successful.
- Magnet doesn’t have any pull at all: Cookware won’t heat via induction.
2. Water Test
If, for some reason, you don’t have a magnet lying around the house, use the water test. This is another foolproof method for testing the induction readiness of your cookware.
So, what you do is pour water into any piece of cookware you want to test and place it on the induction stove. Make sure to position it correctly so that it’s within the induction markings.
Switch on induction. If the water starts heating, then you have yourself an induction-ready piece.
3. “Induction Compatible” Sign
These days, most cookware manufacturers mark their products with a sign indicating that they’re compatible with induction. Thus, you’ll know that the gorgeous skillet you bought recently was induction-ready after all.
Also, keep in mind that induction-compatible cookware pieces also work with traditional gas and electric cooking stoves.
Why Go for Induction?
Now, you’re probably a little resentful about having to buy new, induction-ready cookware in favor of your new induction range. Still, remember that induction holds a lot of benefits over electric and gas, including:
- 90 percent of induction-generated heat is used for cooking compared to only 65 percent for an electric range and 55 percent for a gas burner.
- The cooking surface remains cool during the cooking cycle. You don’t get exposed to any heating element as opposed to electric or gas cooking.
- Since the cooking surface does not heat in an induction cooktop, whatever contents overflow or spill from your cookware won’t stick.
Getting Ready To Cook With Induction
All evidence suggests that you transition to the safer and more efficient cooking method that is induction. Not only does it make your kitchen experiences more memorable, but it also generally has a better impact on the environment.
So, even if you do have to replace most of your current cookware pieces with induction-ready pots and pans, don’t worry because it will all be worth it. Then again, if you’re stubborn and insist on being able to use your favorite non-magnetic or non-flat-based pieces with your induction stove, then you’ll want to learn more about pan adapters. But that’s a topic for another day.