How to Choose the Best Cooktop for Your Kitchen

Install a separate cooktop for maximum kitchen flexibility


Cooktops - Buying Guide

Cooktops, or stovetops, make a great addition to any kitchen, providing you with a high-quality cooking surface perfect for preparing meals. The most common cooktop types are gas and electric, and some models feature a modular design that can accommodate optional accessories such as grills, griddles, woks and more. This guide will help you select the best gas cooktop or best electric cooktop that meets your kitchen's needs.

Tip: Measure the space that you have available for your cooktop. Know the height, width and depth of the area you want the new model to fit into. If selecting a gas cooktop, you will need a gas hook-up to a natural gas source or an LP source (liquid propane supply tank). You will need an electrical hook-up for both gas and electric cooktops.

Types of Cooktops

Cooktops are available in gas, or electric with electric options ranging from coil to radiant/smoothtop to induction Cooktop widths are generally 30 or 36 inches, though select options are available in other sizes as well. For more flexibility, consider a modular cooktop. 

Electric cooktops are the most common, but gas and electric are both capable of delivering a great cooking experience. But you may find it easier to judge heat by the appearance of the gas flame, and when you turn the knob from high to medium, the pot and the food inside experience the temperature change almost immediately.

Cooktops are available with as many as five or six burners, but you may not have enough space to use them all at once. A modular cooktop design will help add flexibility to your kitchen capabilities as it can work with accessories such as woks, griddles and grills.

Tip: Remember when choosing a new cooktop to measure the height, width and depth of the area you're going to install it in the kitchen to guarantee the fit. When installing a gas cooktop, you must make sure you have both an electric and gas hook-up leading to the installation location.

Gas Cooktop

  • High fuel efficiency
  • Pilotless ignition & quick warm-up times
  • Wide range of heat settings
  • Sealed burners facilitate cleanup

Electric - Induction Cooktop

  • Powered by magnetic field
  • High energy efficiency & fast heat-up
  • Cool surface prevents accidental burns
  • Magnetic cookware required

Electric - Radiant, Coil & Solid Disk Cooktop

  • Variety of heating elements
  • May include expandable elements
  • Radiant and solid disk are easy to clean
  • Indicator lights show when cooktop is hot


Personalize your stovetop by looking for any number of these features, including high-heat burners, electronic controls and space for additional burners.

  • Downdraft Venting: Cooktops that include a built-in downdraft vent eliminate the need for a range hood by drawing smoke, steam and cooking odors down and away from your kitchen for fresh, clean air.
  • Electronic Touchpad Controls: Touch-sensitive controls with digital displays make it easy to select precise cooking temperatures and make operation more intuitive.
  • Wok/Griddle/Grill: Some units accommodate a wok accessory, while others provide space for a griddle or grill.
  • Simmer/High-Heat Burners: Simmer burners handle more delicate foods like savory sauces. High-heat burners provide increased heat that can boil water rapidly or quickly cook other items.
  • Dual Elements and Bridge Elements: Dual elements allow you to select between two differently sized elements (6- and 9-inch) to provide the most efficient heat for the size of cookware you're using. Other cooktops have bridge elements that sit between two of the main burners to accommodate oblong or oversized pots and pans or a griddle.
  • Additional Burners: Most standard cooktops include four burners, but some models include one or two additional burners.
  • Hot Surface Indicator Lights: Available on some electric models, these lights alert you that a surface may still be hot even though it is powered off.