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Digital probe thermometer for deep frying...

flfoodie2 Jun 19, 2010 03:51 PM

Looking for a good probe thermometer that will attach to the side of a Le Creuset Dutch Oven for deep frying--do not want the candy thermometer type.

Thanks for suggestions!

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    mateo21 RE: flfoodie2 Jun 19, 2010 04:14 PM

    I think what you are looking for is often billed as a candy thermometer... just digital. Deep-frying and candy making have a decent amount of overlap of the temperature ranges (as opposed to say a meat thermometer which is much lower), and so I'd simply look for a deep-fry/ candy thermometer with a clip.


    Something like that should work well, although that particular model doesn't appear to have great reviews, I've used it with good success in the past -- but all thermometers in my house have been put aside (save the infrared) when the Thermapen arrived!

    1. c oliver RE: flfoodie2 Jun 19, 2010 04:47 PM

      I assume you're talking about something that measures the heat of the oil and not what you're cooking? I recently bought an infrared thermometer which is just the cat's meow:


      3 Replies
      1. re: c oliver
        alanbarnes RE: c oliver Jun 19, 2010 06:01 PM

        +1. I haven't used a probe thermometer to measure oil temp since buying an infrared. Make sure it has sufficient temperature range, though; the one linked above maxes out at 428F. That's enough for the vast majority of applications, but you might want one that has a little more high-end capacity.

        1. re: alanbarnes
          c oliver RE: alanbarnes Jun 19, 2010 06:18 PM

          Thanks,alan. I was hoping you'd chime in since you first told me about this. I opted for a lesser price than you but still....

          1. re: alanbarnes
            JustyBear RE: alanbarnes Mar 2, 2012 07:17 AM

            I have an IR thermometer, and they're really fun to use, but note that you might not be able to get accurate results. It takes surface temperatures, and they're generally calibrated to take the temperature off of a black surface that isn't shiny.

            If you try to take the temperature off of a stainless steel pan, it will be several degrees lower than it actually is. Now don't get me wrong, oil has fantastic emissivity, it being organic and all, but you can only take the temperature of the surface. Initially this is okay, but cooking and frying is all about controlling the heat precisely. Once you add food, the temperature will drop. You want to measure the surface temperature? Well, it's bubbling now, and steam is being produced. You might measure the evaporation, causing you to believe it is much cooler than it really is. You want consistent temperature readings so you can have consistent cooking results.

            In reality, the best thing to use would probably be an actual probe type thermometer. This will give you an accurate reading of the overall temperature, and will record any drops or rises in pressure. You can use something like the standard candy thermometer with mercury or some other liquid as the measuring medium, which you aren't interested in.

            Since you're looking digital, you can go for the probe thermometer method if you prefer, but here is another one that is meant to be used more as a candy/fry thermometer: http://www.amazon.com/Maverick-CT-03-...

            It also has a shield to protect the face from steam so you can continually look at it.

        2. f
          flfoodie2 RE: flfoodie2 Jun 20, 2010 07:22 AM

          Thanks for the ideas...I didn't know about infrared for the oil so will have to read up on them. Now boyfriend tells me he also wants one for use while grilling--Polder seems to get mixed reviews--what are your suggestions for that. Thermapen too pricey for us.

          2 Replies
          1. re: flfoodie2
            alanbarnes RE: flfoodie2 Jun 20, 2010 09:01 AM

            There are a number of factors to consider.

            First, do you want the display right there on the probe, or do you want a wire between them? The wires can tangle, catch on stuff, and generally get in the way, but they allow you to leave the probe in what you're cooking while it's on the grill or in the oven.

            Second, how important is speed? A thermocouple (like the thermapen) gives you an accurate read in a couple of seconds. A thermistor can take up to half a minute. And a bimetal coil - well, just don't buy a thermometer that uses a bimetal coil.

            Third, what temperature range do you need? If you're just checking to see if a chicken is done, something that reads up to 200F is plenty. If you want to check the temperature of oil for deep frying, you're better off with something that goes up to 500F or more. And if you want to monitor the temperature of the fire in a charcoal grill, you're going to need four digits.

            For all-around kitchen duty, you can't go wrong with one of the basic thermocouple-on-a-leash thermometers. I have or have had units by Polder, ThermoWorks, and Taylor, and they seem to be of comparable quality and accuracy. Right now the Taylor's the cheapest on Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Taylor-Digital-...

            Just remember that if water gets in the probe, the thermometer will stop working. But that's easy enough to fix - just submerge the probe in hot (300-350F) oil for ten minutes or so and the water will boil out of the probe.

            1. re: alanbarnes
              flfoodie2 RE: alanbarnes Jun 22, 2010 03:24 PM

              alan--you explain things well--thanks.

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