Electric Skillets

An electric skillet adds extra space for simultaneous food preparation during holidays and celebrations. Electric pans are easy to clean and convenient to use in tight spaces. They can also travel with you and be used wherever an electrical outlet is available.

What is the purpose of an electric skillet?

An electric skillet is basically a portable non-stick, ceramic, or stainless-steel skillet with an electric power source. They are great for one-pan meals that don't need to cook all day. For instance, if you forgot to put the stew ingredients in your slow cooker, you can toss them in an electric pan and have dinner made in a jiffy. Electric skillets are also great if you own a gas stove and want the heat control and even cooking with an electric appliance or if your stovetop is already in use while you're preparing a large meal.

How do you choose an electric skillet?

Skillets come in a huge variety, and selection options you should consider include the following:

  • Brand When shopping for a skillet, you can consider products from such common household appliance brand names as Oster, Presto, Cuisinart, and Cuisine. There are also some good options from lesser-known brands like Elite, Aroma, Zojirushi, d'Expert, Nesco, Maxi-Matic, and GreenGourmet. There's also the techy heaven brand of Naples.
  • Skillet surface type Do you prefer ceramic, stainless steel, non-stick, DuraCeramic, or anodized? All have their benefits and drawbacks for certain types of food prep.
  • Skillet size Are you cooking for ten people or two? What shape and size of skillet will fit best in your available space and accommodate the types of food you'll be preparing most often?
  • Heat control Does the thermostat on the appliance have a light to indicate when it reaches the desired temperature? Does it easily adjust? What range of temperatures is available? Is there a heat control option to keep food warm once it's fully cooked?
  • Lid type Does it have a glass lid so that you can see the food as it cooks? Does the glass lid seal well on it? If you're using the electric pan to prepare food to take to an event in another location, is there a lock on the lid to prevent spillage?

What is appropriate to cook in an electric skillet?

  • Fried foods Craving donuts in the dorm or want to fry your own chicken breast and French fries? Electric skillets keep temperatures more even than regular stoves, so feel free to fry away.
  • Soups An electric appliance is more versatile than a regular skillet when it comes to simmering your favorite homemade soup.
  • Breakfast foods Whether you want to fry an egg or whip up some pancakes, your electric skillet is great for the job.

How do you clean an electric skillet?

Cleaning your electric skillet is actually quite simple. For non-stick or ceramic skillets, warm, sudsy water can be used on both the skillet pan and the glass lid to remove food residue. Most are dishwasher-safe, as well. Stainless steel skillets can be soaked in hot water to loosen any stuck-on items.

The power cord and cooking element should never be submerged in water, but can be wiped clean when necessary after it's unplugged.