Sometimes, you just need one more burner to cook dinner. Or, you’re living in a hotel room and are tired of the microwaved fast food. If you find yourself living without enough cooking space, turn to an electric skillet to start making meals.
That’s a real lifesaver!
These countertop appliances reach high temperatures for cooking, are easy to clean, and store neatly in the cupboards when you don’t need them. They are also a great way to prepare food in advance of a party and warm it at the venue.
We put together a list of skillets with excellent features and prices to help you find the best electric skillet for your needs.
There’s a flat plate for grilling, a deep dish for sauces and soups, and even a steaming plate. It even comes with some recipes to get you started.
This is a pricy investment, but well worth it for those who cook primarily with one of these appliances.
Multiple cooking surfaces. This skillet comes with two cooking pans. One is a deep pan for sauces and soups, and the other is a flat plate pan for grilling and frying. There is also an adjustable height steaming plate
The entire base is a heating element, similar to a crockpot. It will heat your food through evenly and keep it warm even when turned off
The skillet features an easy sliding thermostat. It can keep food warm or heat it up to 480 degrees F
The durable cooking surface is Titanium-ceramic nonstick-coated
A tempered glass lid allows you to see what's going on inside without losing any heat from the skillet
It's large and a little bulky. You might not want to use it on a small kitchen counter
The glass lid doesn't appear to be included in the warranty. If it breaks, you'll have to pay to replace it
Of course, it’s also helpful in the kitchen with sautéing, stewing, and grilling foods. Those who like the Zojirushi brand, but can’t afford the premium models, may like this multi-functional model. It also comes with useful recipes.
This is a large electric skillet with deep sides. It's great for hot pot meals and deep frying
The adjustable temperature setting allows you to keep food warm or cook at high temperatures up to 430 degrees F
Its unique design allows the skillet to cook evenly and keep food warm better. It is designed like a crockpot, with a cooking base and removable pan
Some feel that the electric skillet is too bulky for use in a small kitchen
It may not offer exact temperature control for those who like to prepare delicate foods
The Zojirushi has multiple components that require storage when not in use
Pick up the Nesco ES-12 Extra Deep Electric Skillet to do your cooking in. Measuring 12″ in diameter, this black skillet doesn’t take up a lot of room on the counter. But, it’s deep enough to do some serious cooking in.
A well-made product for those who just want a separate dish for deep frying or cooking meals in.
This petite skillet fits neatly into small kitchen spaces. It's a great option when traveling
It's deep enough at 4" to prepare some fried foods
The glass lid allows you to keep an eye on what's cooking inside
The pan is made from die-cast aluminum. It's also non-stick to prevent sticking and burning of foods
The high-walled design and small cooking surface may make it a little awkward to use when pan-frying foods
It is a bit too small for preparing large meals. However, you'll have a great time cooking for two!
Start your day right with breakfast cooked in this 1500-watt Cuisinart CSK-150 electric skillet. Its oval shape fits neatly on the countertop, while still providing enough surface area for sausage, eggs, and even hash browns.
This skillet allows you to adjust the temperature and claims to get high enough for frying chicken. It comes with a glass lid and a recipe book to give you some ideas.[/wpsm_box]
There may be a few issues with maintaining an even, constant heat, but the Cuisinart warranty helps ease concerns.
Sturdy skillet weighs about 4 lbs. and provides plenty of room for cooking a complete meal
Its glass lid allows you to keep an eye on the food while it is covered
This product is made by a known brand, Cuisinart, and comes with their 3-year warranty
Wide side handles allow you to safely carry the food to the table or move the skillet
It comes with a black, non-stick coating inside the skillet. You'll have an easier time keeping it clean
The skillet can be used with a standard wall outlet
Some people report that the skillet doesn't maintain its temperature, nor does it get up to the claimed 420-degree F. mark
Some also find that it cooks unevenly. There tend to be a couple of cold spots in the skillet
You won't be able to use metal utensils when cooking with this skillet. The metal will scratch its non-stick coating
If you return it to Cuisinart, you may be asked to cover the shipping and handling. Review the warranty information when you receive this product for a better idea of what is required
When you have a limited amount of space or just want an extra skillet for cooking with the Electric Skillet By Culina is a good option. It is made of high-grade stainless steel and offers more exact temperature settings than some other similar skillets. A great solution for sautés, stir-fries, and pan frying healthy foods.
The high-quality non-stick coating in this pan is safe and PTFE/PFOA-free
It comes with a domed tempered glass lid that allows you to keep an eye on what you're cooking
The entire unit is UL-Approved
It's a very strong and durable metal pan made from 18/10 stainless steel
The riveted metal handles are cool to the touch, and the thermoplastic feet keep it from burning your countertops
An encapsulated aluminum base helps evenly distribute heat across the pan cooking surface
Small enough at 12" round to fit on a tiny counter space. Just make sure you don't crowd the heating element and follow all of the manufacturer's instructions when using it
It comes with a Culina 100% satisfaction guarantee
The skillet does take about 15 minutes to heat up. Some may find this increased heating time frustrating
Some report that the non-stick coating starts peeling sooner than expected
The sides of the skillet are a little low. You may not want to try deep frying anything in it
Make enough to feed a small army with this Oster CKSTSKFM-1216 12-Inch by 16-Inch Electric Skillet. It has a large non-stick cooking area that chefs can take advantage of when preparing dishes for events. We’ve looked at the one in black, but they do offer another version in red.
You probably won’t want to cook anything at a very high temperature in this one though.
Nice design and large enough for use on a buffet table
The skillet features knockdown side handles, to minimize the amount of space it takes up
You can pop the skillet into the dishwasher to clean up after cooking
The glass lid allows you to see what's inside the dish without having to remove it
The sides aren't deep enough for deep frying. However, it is useful for cooking saucy meals and casseroles
Some report that they've received defective skillets that break down after a few months. This may have been an old issue that Oster has fixed with newer model skillets
Give yourself the gift of an extra skillet to rely on when preparing meals. This Black & Decker 12-Inch Electric Skillet is small enough to use in the tiniest kitchen but big enough to cook for about two people. It features a quick release probe to help when breaking it down. A cool-touch base and handles keep your hands from burning.
You’ll be able to find room in any kitchen for this modestly sized electric skillet.
The non-stick cooking surface ensures your food won't burn or stick
It has a variable temperature control and allows you to simmer foods
The steam vent in the lid helps prevent spill overs when boiling and allows excess heat to escape
It's a sleek, modern design that fits in neatly on your kitchen countertop
The 12" cooking surface may be a little small for cooking family meals
The sides aren't deep enough for deep frying, but you can cook saucy foods in it
Some report that the skillet shuts off and doesn't maintain an even cooking temperature while heating food
The adjustable thermostat includes a temperature probe to ensure that it always remains at the appropriate temp
Made with durable, high-grade 18/10 stainless steel. Many customers like that it's not lined with Teflon, which can peel over time
The glass lid allows you to keep an eye on your food while cooking
Riveted handles make it safer when transporting the dish with hot food
It's a smaller electric skillet. You won't be able to prepare big meals in it
You can't place this in the dishwasher. However, you can wash it briefly underwater. Just don't leave the skillet immersed in water for a long time. You may also want to avoid using steel wool in the water as pieces can break off the wool and clog up the vents on the skillet
Some reported that the skillet wears out and breaks sooner than expected
If you are shopping for your very first electric skillet and have no idea what you want, check out a few of our must-have features.
All Types Of Electric Skillets
When you start shopping for your very own electric skillet, you’ll find that there are a few different types available on the market.
These include stainless steel, nonstick coating, and multifunction skillets. Of course, the hard part is picking the one that best fits your needs.
Stainless Steel Skillets
These electric skillets are made from high-grade stainless steel, usually 18/10 steel. They are cut or cast in one piece with handles riveted on the sides. If you need a skillet that is durable, long-lasting, and dislike nonstick coatings, this may be your best electric skillet.
Nonstick Coating Skillets
This is an extremely popular type of electric skillet. There are both Teflon coated skillets and skillets coated with a nonstick ceramic. Teflon is a brand name and refers to a type of petroleum based coating that is very thin.
Be aware that metal utensils can scratch the nonstick coating and cause it to peel. Ceramic nonstick coatings are newer, and a little bit thicker. They provide some of the benefits of a ceramic pot, while also being environmentally friendly.
These are the pricier skillets on the market, because they can do a lot of different things. Multifunctional skillets may have exact thermostat settings, and may come with a variety of pans and cooking surfaces. These are great for those who want to do more with an electric skillet. However, you’ll have multiple components to store when not in use.
All Sizes Of Electric Skillets
It’s not hard to see. Electric skillets come in a wide range of sizes, and the industry really isn’t standardized. So, when you start shopping, you’ll want to keep a ruler or measuring tape at hand. It also helps to measure the space on your kitchen counter where you plan on keeping the skillet. This way you know exactly how much room you have available for your new appliance.
A small-sized electric skillet usually runs about 12″ in diameter. This is large enough to fry up a small meal for two or prepare side dishes to keep warm on a buffet or at the table.
A medium-sized skillet is at least 14″ along one side. These skillets provide more room for cooking meals, but they do take up more space.
A large electric skillet would be 15+” on one side. These skillets are ideal for use on buffets and at events. A drawback is they can be heavy and take up a lot of countertop space.
These appliances also come with different depths, which makes ordering one a little tricky. If you like frying chicken, you’ll want skillet with a nice tall side to hold your oil and keep it from spilling over. Thankfully, there are skillets that have deep walls. Just make sure to look for one with a minimum of 3″ depth for deep frying and making soup.
Electric Skillet With Lid
It’s absolutely essential that you get an electric skillet with a lid. All sorts of things can drop into food while it’s cooking. This can include anything from hair or to just other foods and spices you may be working within the kitchen.
Most modern skillets come with tempered glass lids that have a metal rim. Tempered glass is resistant to changes in temperature, while still allowing you to see inside the skillet. This is much more convenient and makes it easier to keep your food from burning.
When you purchase a professional quality electric skillet or a larger one for say, a buffet, you may find it comes with a metal lid. These are designed to help keep heat in, even after you turn the skillet off.
Electric Skillet Ceramic
In recent years, manufacturers have started producing electric skillets with ceramic-based nonstick lining. This ceramic coating is eco-friendlier compared to previous types.
Some also consider it healthier as it doesn’t contain certain chemicals, such as petroleum, polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), or perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). The fumes emitted from these chemicals when they reach very high temperatures may cause some people to develop flu-like symptoms. Also, PTFE is a potential carcinogen.
One model of skillet that we haven’t placed in our list is the Elite Cuisine electric skillet. We just had to mention this cute appliance that is perfect for travel trailers and dorm rooms. It measures just 7″ in diameter, so it won’t take up a lot of space on your counters.
The Elite Cuisine comes with a glass lid to protect your food and keep it warm. On the downside, it only has one handle, which is technically a part of the adjustable thermostat. This can make handling your food after cooking a little hazardous.
On the plus side, it’s also extremely affordable for those who have very tight budgets. The Elite Cuisine is usually found for under $20.
GE Electric Skillet
If you’re looking for brand name product that isn’t on our list, you may want to consider a GE electric skillet. General Electric is a well-known company that has been around for over 100 years. They are specialists in producing electronics and appliances, large and small.
One of their models of the electric skillet is the General Electric GE Digital Skillet. This sleek rectangular skillet has a very contemporary design. It measures about 12″ x 15″ and has a nice depth for cooking saucy foods. The tempered glass lid features a vent hole which allows excess steam to escape while also protecting your food.
Many people like that it is dishwasher-safe and fully submersible. The unique cool touch handles allow you to keep the skillet off your countertop and carry it with ease too.
Electric Skillet Stainless Steel
As mentioned previously, a stainless steel electric skillet is a very durable choice. This material is resistant to corrosion, mold and mildew, and stains. It can even provide a non-stick surface with the appropriate seasoning before you first start using it.
You can season a stainless-steel skillet by washing the pan, and then applying a layer of oil to the cooking surface. Make sure to select oil with a high smoke point, such as peanut oil.
Next, turn the skillet on and set the temperature to about 350 degrees F or until it starts to smoke. As soon as this happens, turn off the skillet and allow it to cool down. After it is cool enough to touch, use a clean paper towel to wipe away any excess oil.
Once you have seasoned a skillet, you should avoid using soap when cleaning it. Oil, salt, or hot water and a sturdy sponge should be enough to remove any food particles after cooking.
If you find that food still sticks to your stainless-steel skillet, try preheating the pan before you put anything in it. Preheating allows the entire surface to warm and prevents hot and cold spots that may cause sticking.
Nearly all skillets claim to have an adjustable thermostat, but only a few allow you to adjust the temperature by degrees. These are usually high-quality brands that offer a greater deal of control over the cooking temperature.
Tempered Glass Lid
A tempered glass lid is a must-have when cooking. It helps keep your food protected, and allows you to watch out for any boilover or burning without having to remove the lid. Tempered glass has been treated so that it is also more resistant to extreme temperature changes. It’s not quite shatterproof, but it’s very strong.
Skillets that allow you to cook a variety of different foods are much more useful in the kitchen. Look for one that says it’s multifunction. It will likely have a few attachments or even pans that you can use when preparing different foods.
Tips On Using Your Electric Skillet
Always follow the manufacturer’s directions when using your new appliance.
It’s amazing how many people will be careless with an electric skillet. They may leave it on for extended periods of time, not properly clean it, or even crowd it with a bunch of other items in the kitchen. This is just asking for a fire to start.
To help prevent any problems with your skillet, we’ve put together a few basic tips to keep in mind.
Mind the dishwasher safety:
Only wash your skillet in the dishwasher if it says dishwasher-safe.
Water immersible means that your skillet pan can be placed in dishwater when cleaning. You’ll still need to remove the electric components.
Always season a stainless-steel skillet before using it.
Fill out the manufacturer’s warranty card and send it in, if your skillet comes with a warranty. This makes it easier to file a claim with the company later.
Electric Skillet Recipes
Cooking with an electric skillet can be a little bit different from cooking on the stove top. Skillets typically don’t reach the same temperature as an oven. Not all brands will maintain an even heating temperature the way a stovetop does.
Usually, new skillets will come with a small booklet of recipes to sample. If you have never used an electric skillet before, give a few of these recipes a try. They will help illustrate what the differences are when cooking with a skillet versus an oven. You’ll also have a chance to get better acquainted with your skillet before you decide to start experimenting with meals.
Skillets are available in a variety of styles and price ranges. This makes it more likely that your first purchase won’t be an exact match to your needs. Plus, it’s hard to pick out a skillet from just pictures and customer reviews. Thankfully, many brands offer a customer guarantee or warranty. A few of these brands are even listed in our top 10 skillets.
If you are making a pricy investment in your new electric skillet, we strongly suggest looking for one from a company that offers a money-back guarantee.
This way you have a much better chance of getting your investment returned, or at least getting a replacement if you are sent a defective product.