What is the difference between Infrared and Induction cookers?

Electric cookers, including induction cooktops, are one such invention and are the new trend for cooking food safely, quickly, and without fire, unlike conventional stoves. You can use a variety of cookware with these electric cookers, making them versatile cooking equipment options for modern kitchens.

There are two types of electric cookers: induction and infrared cooker. Both cookers save time, conserve energy, and are safer than using naked fire for cooking. They also have smooth and flat surfaces for your cookware. Moreover, you do not need to clean coils and grills, unlike cleaning conventional stoves once in a while. 

The major difference between the two is that induction cookers use radiation for cooking food, while infrared cookers do not. However, which one is better for you? You can decide based on the information below: 

What is an Induction Cooker?

An induction cooker has a coiled copper wire installed inside its ceramic plate. The electromagnetic field currents produce heat below the glass surface where they are located and transfer it to the cookware that supports magnetic induction. The electromagnetic induction heats the copper wire then consequently the cooker surface and the food. 

The process of heating induction cookware is fast; however, the heat remains concentrated at the bottom of the cooking utensil. If one is not careful, it has the disadvantage of burning food, especially while stir-frying. Nevertheless, the cooker ensures safety by not turning on if you do not use the appropriate cooking vessel and automatically turning off once you remove the cookware from the surface. 

Another major limitation of the induction cooker is that you can use only specific types of cookware on it. These include ferromagnetic materials such as cast iron or stainless steel. However, induction cookers are more efficient in conserving energy than infrared cookers.

Typically, conventional cookers heat pans and other cookware, either by a burner or fire. Induction cookers do not require heating from another source. It directly transfers heat to the cookware and, thus, the food. This is the reason why food warms up faster in this cooker than in any other cooker. Also, as there is no flame, so it is practically safer in preventing burns and is fit for use in households with children. This type of cooker is commonly seen on shows, and chefs and professionals use it. Moreover, it looks aesthetically pleasing in the kitchen, and you can effortlessly clean it.

What is an Infrared Cooker?

Infrared cookers have a halogen bulb in the metal dish, and the coils surrounding the bulb uniformly heat up to eventually warm up the cookware. The infrared light bulb produces heat when the molecules start vibrating. It is suited for use in cramped areas, while camping, in vans and small kitchens etc. 

The infrared cooker uses electricity to power the halogen lamps and resistor coils inside it which in turn produce heat. This heat warms up the stove and the cookware on it. Due to the halogen lamps and coils, the cooker emits a red light when you power it on. The process of food heating up is slower than the induction cooker, but when it finally does, the heat is evenly distributed in the cooking vessel. Therefore, the food is also evenly cooked in it.

When using infrared cookers, you do not have any restrictions in using the cookware. You can use any cookware on an infrared cooker, for example, aluminium, steel, ceramic cookware etc. All types of cooking pots and pans are suitable, unlike induction cookers. Infrared cookers are utilized in baking food too. 

Key differences to summarize:

  • Induction cookers are more efficient in using electricity than infrared cookers.
  • Induction cookers heat up faster than infrared cookers, but the latter heats food evenly. 
  • Because induction cookers warm up fast, but the heat is concentrated at the bottom mainly so the chances of getting burnt food are high. There is no such issue in infrared cookers. 
  • You can only use stainless steel or iron cookware in induction cookers, while you can use any cookware to heat an infrared cooker.
  • Induction cookers are safer because they automatically switch off once you remove the cookware.
  • Induction cookers are less durable than infrared cookers. The latter is longer lasting. 
  • It is more effortless to clean induction cookers than to clean infrared cookers. 
  • Induction cookers emit radiation to warm up the stove, while infrared cookers have no radiation. Long exposure to induction cookers can be harmful to health. 

Therefore, both have their pros and cons. Although both cookers use electricity to operate, there are some stark differences between them, as mentioned above. You can decide the best-suited cookware according to your preference. For instance, if your preference is saving time and energy conservation, then an induction cooker should be your choice, but if your preference is durability and safety, then an infrared cooker should be your choice.

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