If you’re an avid cook but also the kind of person who likes to stay on the go, then it might be worth your time investing in a high-quality portable induction cooktop. Whether you’re camping for the summer or staying temporarily in a trailer while you renovate your own dream home, being able to ensure that you have a safe, effective heat source to make your dinner on can make all the difference to your comfort and how much you enjoy your experience.
We find, however, that not everyone around us knows just how great portable cooktops can be, nor how readily available and semi-affordable they can be. That’s why we’ve been gathering the links for the best portable cooktops we could find all across the Internet, in hopes that a good comparison of their features will help make your decision about which option is best for you easier.
What is a portable induction cooktop burner?
Funnily enough, it’s actually precisely what it sounds like; it’s a portable version of the burners you’d find on your regular cooktop at home! It’s intended for safe use when you’re on the road camping, living in temporary accommodations that don’t have a stove, or in need of additional cooking space that you don’t have at home. Do you remember back in the day when college dorms would tell students that they couldn’t have hot plates in their rooms? Think of these as a modernized, safer, and updated version of those hot plates.
What kinds of portable induction cooktop burners are there?
There are actually many different kinds of portable induction cooktops, but most of them have a pretty standardized set of features nowadays. They have smooth surface heating tops, rather than more dangerous and old-fashioned coils. Most of them are temperature adjustable and battery-powered, making them diverse but also completely portable in case you don’t have access to a power source. Finally, you might purchase a single burner version or a double.
What is the best portable induction cooktop?
If you feel like you could use some guidance in figuring out which option is best for your needs, check out this pros and cons style list of the ten best portable induction cooktop burners we came across in our search.
This affordable singular portable burner is designed for especially easy portability and easy adjustment. Amazon Basics kept their controls very simple and basic but effective with the intention of making the burner friendly even for beginners who aren’t super experienced cooks.
This cooktop is also very light so that it’s easy to carry with you, but it has safety features to prevent it from turning on and heating up when it shouldn’t.
The primary drawback of this design is its size. Of course, the fact that it’s very small is fantastic for portability, but keep in mind that the portions you can make at once are limited if you’re trying to cook on the go for more than just yourself.View price on Amazon
- Extremely portable size
- Adjustable temperature with good range and strong heat power
- Small diameter causes larger portions to take longer to heating through
Have you actually had portable cooktops before that you weren’t very happy with because you didn’t find they got hot enough for effective cooking? Well, we think you’d have a different opinion of this model from Duxtop, thanks to its wattage hitting the perfect point between good heat levels and keeping things safe.
This burner is also slightly larger than the one you saw above without being cumbersome but still features all the same adjustment capabilities and safety precautions.
Perhaps because of its slightly increased size, this burner is closer to the pricier end of the scale compared to the one you saw above. Additionally, a humming sound has been reported by previous buyers during the time that the burner takes to heat up.View price on Amazon
- Quick and strong heating power
- Good safety features to prevent accidental turn on and overheating
- Wider heated surface diameter for standard size pots and pans
- Larger size and stronger power means an increased price
- Noisier than other models
If you’re looking for a cooktop with similar power behind its functions like the one above but you prefer an even more travel-friendly design, then this model from Max Burton might be just the kind of thing you’re looking for.
Their design is just as adjustable and has just as strong a temperature range, but this burner has the added bonus feature of “one-touch” buttons for actions like boil and simmer, making it extra convenient.
If you’re planning to use this burner very frequently, be aware that some previous buyers reviewed the temperature display screen as being the first thing to go. It became scrambled and hard to read after several months of constant useView price on Amazon
- Easy adjustability, good heat range, and convenient one-touch settings
- Easy to clean top surface and light, portable design
- Safety features that shit the burner off in case of short circuit or overheating
- Potential for a scrambled display screen with heavy or very frequent use
Do you have a larger budget, and you’re willing to invest more money in the piece so long as the quality matches? Well, if you’re also looking for a model that’s extra simple to use, then we think you’ll appreciate this streamlined, efficient, and beginner-friendly portable burner offered by Tasty by Cuisinart.
The coolest part (besides its bright look) is that this burner is specifically designed to connect to your phone, letting you control its settings from there rather than hampering buttons on the cooktop itself.
Because this burner is powered by a smartphone, it’s naturally only an option for people who own one and feel confident learning how to use it in combination with other new devices. If your phone suddenly stops working, your ability to use most of the features the burner offers will be much more limited, although it will still turn on and heat your food.View price on Amazon
- Good temperature range and cooking power
- Sleek, aesthetically pleasing design
- Easy-to-clean surfaces
- Smartphone compatible
- Higher price
- Involves an assumption of other technology
- Slight learning curve
As you might have gleaned from the “Control Freak” part of its name, this particular burner from Breville Polyscience puts you way more in control and in a much more detailed way than the average portable induction cooktop.
Rather than reducing the number of controls and giving you things like one-touch features, the goal of this burner is to give you as much control as a regular cooking experience, but on a smaller scale and on the go. This accounts for the detailed LED screen and range of buttons.
Although it’s great to have more control, particularly if you’re an avid cook and a foodie, the increased number of controls on this design means it also, like the one above, comes with a bit of a learning curve. Additionally, the screen that helps you navigate the settings is wonderfully detailed and well-lit but also very small, which some people might find difficult in terms of visibility.View price on Amazon
- Wider temperate range
- More custom settings
- Two-fan cooling system for safety
- Easy to clean
- Much larger learning curve in terms of controls
- Very small display screen
- Much more expensive
Are you still on the hunt for a portable induction burner that’s much more straightforward, safer to have around your kids, and much closer to your slightly more modest budget range? Then you’ll appreciate the fact that Sunavo offers all three of those things in one place.
This smooth-faced burner is easy to adjust and clean, cooks with a very evenly distributed heat, and heats up quickly so you can get started sooner.
Keep in mind that this burner actually only works to its best performance ability with certain kinds of cookware. It works best when used with cookware made from iron, cast iron, enameled iron, and steel.View price on Amazon
- Easy to clean
- Easy to control
- Heats quickly
- Only works with some very specific types of cookware
Are you still feeling quite intent on getting a portable induction cooktop, but you only really plan on moving it between home and your cottage, rather than camping with it, so you don’t need it to be quite as small as some of the things you’ve seen so far? Then we think you’ll appreciate this convenient but slightly less primitive design from Wiland that’s great for using in addition to your stove for, say, making extra sides.
This particular burner is made to work with a wider range of cookware kinds. It also has a bigger temperature range, an extra easy-to-clean surface, and a system of safety features that work to keep it safe around your family.
Although this burner does work with more types of cookware than some induction cooktop pieces, there are still limitations to this. The manual suggests doing a “magnet test” on the bottom of your pot or pan to see if it’s compatible.View price on Amazon
- Easy to clean
- Quick heating and good temperature range
- Versatile size with convenient handles for moving
- Safety features to protect against power surge and overheating
- Slightly pricy
- Still works with only particular kinds of magnetic induction cookware (though more types than some other burners)
Did we hit the nail on the head when we started talking about the idea of using a portable induction burner as a supplementary tool to your home stove, but you like to cook so many things at once that you almost considered buying two portable burners? Instead, check out this portable double induction cooktop from Duxtop that gives you two extra burners instead.
This smooth, touchpad burner is easy to control and clean and heats quickly and effectively to keep up with your fully powered stove.
Besides needing specific cookware requirements like most induction burners, some previous buyers also found this double burner slightly cramped. Although it has two points of heat and will fit two pans at once, you’ll get better results and a safer fit if you’re using cookware that’s on the smaller side, which can limit your portions.View price on Amazon
- Easy to clean
- Good temperate range and easy touch-based controls for adjustments
- Cooling fan system and auto-stop features for protection against overheating
- Lets you heat two different dishes at once or dishes at two different temperatures on either side.
- Requires magnetic induction cookware specifically in order to heat all the way through
- Slightly smaller than two regular full-sized stove burners
If you’re still feeling intent on getting yourself a double burner style portable induction cooktop, but you’d like a slightly bigger design than what you saw above, then perhaps this model from Nutritop is more along the lines of what you’re looking for.
This smoothly ceramic topped double cooktop is easy to clean and simple to control, even though it gives you a wider range of options and adjustability. It also includes child safety locks, so little fingers that are curious about buttons can’t make things hotter or turn it on unbeknownst to you when it’s off. Each side is adjustable in its own right.
It’s worth noting that because the buttons for controlling each side of the burner are touch-based, they are extremely sensitive. Some people find this an adjustment while they’re still figuring the cooktop out, saying that the sensitivity makes things a little tricky to control at first.View price on Amazon
- Easy to clean
- Easy to adjust and separately customizable on each side
- Effective child locking and safety systems
- Quick heating and reasonable width despite the portable size
- Very sensitive control buttons take some getting used to and make initial control learning tricky
This next double cooktop from Evergreen is the widest yet, giving you the most space to work with so far. Even so, it’s so light and ergonomically organized for streamlined use that it’s still very portable and convenient to move around.
This piece is programmed with 15 different commonly used temperature levels, making swapping your settings simple like a preset but still with a good range for decent cooking. It also features several safety systems, like child locks and dual fans, to prevent overheating.
It’s worth noting that a few previous buyers found this cooktop to heat up a little more slowly compared to some other models, including other double burners. This makes very high heat tasks like boiling water take a little longer than usual.View price on Amazon
- Easy to clean
- Easy to adjust thanks to pre-sets, but with good heat range
- Safety features like child locking buttons and cooling fans to prevent overheating
- Impressive width for a portable cooktop
- Heats slowly, causing longer cook ties for high-temperature tasks
Learning how to use your portable induction cooktop
For the most part, modern portable cooktops come with full instructions and even visual diagrams. Of course, it benefits the company in the form of good reviews if their manual totally handles the process of helping you learn how to use your new appliance. If you still feel like you need a little more help, however, there are some good standard video tutorials for learning more about using portable induction cooktops online.
Who should use a portable induction cooktop?
In reality, anyone who loves to cook can benefit from an additional burner! Most people use the portable kind of travel to and from the summer cabin or taking on camping trips, but there are also plenty of people who use their smaller burners as supplementary cooking space around the holidays that require lots of cooking. This lets them make more dishes at once, even if they run out of space on their actual stove.
Do you know another foodie who has been thinking about investing in their very own portable induction cooktop but feels like they could use a little help in choosing the best one? Share this post with them, so they have all kinds of options to consider.