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Bluestar 36" Range, Burner arrangement vs. griddle

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Getting a 36" Bluestar Range, can't decide between 4 burners and a griddle vs. 6 burners. Any suggestions? Is it more versatile with a cast iron griddle? easier to clean? Any help would be appreciated.

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  1. I know we've talked about this before with different ranges. The big question is whether you will use the griddle enough to give up two burners. I have a 30" BS and all four burns are often in use--I use a heavy griddle for pancakes over 2 burners, not ideal but fills the bill for a family of two.

    1. mskleinmd,
      We had the same decision to make on a BS 48". We decided that 8 burners would be more functional than 6 and a griddle. So, we bought a Lodge cast iron reversable grill/ griddle and bring it out when needed. That works for us and for the way we cook. One thing we wish in 20/20 hind sight was to opt for the 60 inch range (and keep only 8 burners) and have dummy spacers inserted between each set of burners to better accommodate really large pots without bumping into the pan next to it. Crowding only happens one or twice a year, but I hear about it each time. I think it would have resulted in 2 full size ovens as well. But it was not thought about at the time. Hopefully someone out there will have a BS range with the setup you are thinking about and can give you the pros and cons. Good luck.

      1. We purchased a 36" BlueStar range for a long awaited kitchen upgrade from a 30" glass top electric range that could only boil water in months with the letter 'z' in them. Couldn't wait for the upgrade to powerful gas cooking and we have not been disappointed in any manner. We test cooked on a BlueStar that had a frenchtop option and seriously considered that option which seemed to offer great temperature flexibility....and we seriously considered the griddle option as my wife makes a fabulous French toast pretty regularly. Despite the appeal of both options, we ended up staying with a basic 6burner configuration because for us the upgrade to squeeze in a 36" unit....and yes for us it was a squeeze, was all about having the added burner capacity for hosting big family or guest dinners having found that 4 burners was just too limiting for 2 simultaneous cook efforts. Based on our first holiday dinner, staying with 6 burners was the right choice for us.

        1. I too was trying to decide which way to go with the Bluestar, and a deal I couldn't pass on the 4 burner griddle/broiler option was what I ended up with. I have been very pleased and I love the griddle set up. One thing nobody mentions is that while you have 4 burners, you can also use the griddle to heat pans on. Perfect for simmering and the like. I'm a professional chef and often cook for large groups at home, and while my ideal set up would have been a 6 burner with the griddle option, this has worked out very well. There is nothing like the control and power you have with the commercial style griddle/broiler. There have been a couple of times that I have been crowded with larger pans. but not enough that I have regretted this set up. Did I mention I REALLY like the griddle/broiler set up?
          Good luck, it is tough trying to wade through all of these options!

          2 Replies
          1. re: mattrapp

            I was surprised at just how hot the BS cooks, even on low. I can understand how the griddle would act as a flame-tamer and give you a nice simmer. If only I had room for a 36".

            1. re: escondido123

              Maybe you need to adjust the low flame on your burners. Mine will go out if you look at them funny when they're turned all the way down. Will do the barest of simmer if the pan isn't too small.

          2. I went with 4 burners and the griddle. 4 burners have been enough for me. The griddle is great when you are in the short order cook mood..

            1 Reply
            1. re: audgaudg

              I think at 36" my first choice would be a 6 burners so I could place a 24x24 griddle over 4 of them (they aren't sealed so I'm told they would still have adequate air flow). If I can get my condo association to approve my HVAC venting plan, I will be purchasing a 48" with 2 burner->24x24griddle->2 burner config. A 24x24 griddle would fit my cooking needs very well and seperating the burners gives me more space for large pan overlap and handles.

            2. We ended up with a 36" Bluestar rangetop with griddle and really love this unit! We are a mix of cultures in the cuisine department, we love to cook very traditional Chinese dishes in our 19" cast iron round bottom wok which the Bluestar cradles beautifully with the grate removed. This baby gets hot with all the prerequisite smoke and pop! We've installed a 36" 1200 CFM Best by Broan hood and it handles all we throw at it and still can hear our music from the in-ceiling speakers in the kitchen. No smells or smoke in the rest of the house. I also love the griddle. It's a different way of cooking and adds versatility to your repertoire. I love cooking steaks, pancakes, hashbrowns and onions on it. Always looking for new things to throw at it. Before I would always go to my Lodge cast iron skillet for these, but the griddle is so much more fun, easy to clean up and spacious. The results are as good if not more consistant than the Lodge. I bought two tools for the griddle, a top quality steel spatula and a ordinary griddle scraper from a restaurant supply store. The very flat and square edges on the spatula really cleanly lifts and flips, while the griddle scraper really is the only thing you'll need to take everything off once you have the griddle seasoned. The griddle doesn't take long to season (though it does take a little more time to heat up because it does so gradually so as not to warp the large surface.) but keep that top generously oiled for the first few weeks! No heavy pan to lift nor to wash.
              Overall, very satisfied with the heat output, simmer and ease of use of the Bluestar. Not as pretty as say a Thermador, but we let the rest of the kitchen d├ęcor speak for that. Oh, one more thing, the steel griddle cover is helpful to set dishes on while you are shoveling food off lip of the wok.
              Highly recommended.