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May 18, 2013 06:52 PM

portable induction cooktop with 10° gradations and as low as 110°?

I'm looking for a portable, single-top, induction plate. My partner is a chocolatier, so we're looking for something that can hold at low temperatures without cycling, and I'm a chef, so we're looking for the fast, high heat.

-- I'd like something that can hold at 90°F - or even 110°F - without cycling.
-- 10° specificity (many seem to be 30°, but at low temps that's a huge jump)


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  1. Hi, enh:

    Good luck. There may be a pro unit out there with actual 10° increments, but the consensus here is that with the home units--especially the hotplates--the temperature settings are a cruel joke.

    If you use the search function, there are many threads here with posts about specific makes and models. If I recall correctly, some Hounds have had great luck working with with chocolate at the lowest settings on some. As for high temp work, none are short on power. The big gripe seems to be that in a 1-10 setting range, 6-10 are too high for much besides speed-boiling water, which leaves you with a 6-speed bike (i.e., no fine adjustments 'twixt 1 and 2, 2 and 3, and so on).

    Good luck.


    1 Reply
    1. re: kaleokahu

      yeah, searching has gotten me a lot of cross-offs but no rule-ins, hence the post. Thanks.

    2. Keep in mind that the temperature sensor is under the glass top, where as what you want to control is the temperature in the food next to the pan bottom. Since induction heats the pan, not an element under the pan, this distinction is important.

      1. If you need it to run on 120V (which makes it much more portable in residential and non-professional settings), the Cooktek 1800-watt Apogee unit should be able to handle the high and low temperature cooking you need.

        Here it's described as going from 80F to 500F in temp control mode (no info on whether it cycles at lowest settings):

        5 Replies
        1. re: ellabee

          Hi, ellabee:

          These look like nice units (and priced accordingly). But they do cycle--according to the website:

          "When you set the LED display on your cooktop to a particular temperature, the microprocessor monitors it 120 times per second (that's a lot) and cycles itself on and off to maintain the desired temperature."

          I think cycling is in the nature of the beast.


          1. re: kaleokahu

            Probably right that cycling is unavoidable.

            But the Cooktek Apogee's cycling seems to be much more precise than the crude cycling of the low-end portable induction units on power levels 1 & 2. Which I'd hope and expect, given the ten-times-greater price.

            The Cooktek unit's cost approaches that of built-in induction cooktops, but would make sense for someone who does any offsite catering, or who is stuck with an impossibly small cooktop, or (as in the OP's case) wants to make it easier for two serious cooks in a household to operate at the same time.

            Portable induction doesn't seem to have much on offer in the U.S. market between $100 and $800-$1000.

            1. re: ellabee

              Hi, ellabee: "...the Cooktek Apogee's cycling seems to be much more precise than the crude cycling of the low-end portable induction units on power levels 1 & 2."

              I'll take your word for that if you've used the CookTek. It stands to reason that the CT unit, with 100 discrete power settings, would have a microprocessor that would cycle the coil more precisely. At 10x the price of the home units, we should also hope that the CT has more accurate, precise, discerning, and stable *temperature* sensor(s), venting and circuitry. I'd also like to see if 10x the price gets you a noticeably different coil.

              If this CT unit is within the OP's budget (and household wiring), it would be a good choice.


            2. re: kaleokahu

              I imagine that cycling 120 times per second is permissible ;) I was just hoping to avoid 120 times per hour.

            3. re: ellabee

              Like their stock pot:
              "Rated at 7000 or 8000 watts (depending on model), the MSP can boil a gallon of water (3.75 liters) in just 150 seconds."

              In another thread someone was worried that their new stockpot was taking 15 minutes to boil a gallon of water.

            4. One consideration might be a Eurodib double induction cooktop.

              Our youngest son works in California, and purchased this unit online in the US for under $ 200. two years ago. He uses it for chocolate frequently, and as I recall there is a timer setting for low temperatures ( Bain marie ), among other features.

              Originally, it was used sitting on top of his granite counter. After speaking with distributor in Canada, he found it could either sit on, or in his counter as a built-in. In 2011, aided by a skil saw with a diamond blade and some plastic tenting, we assisted him cutting a rectangle into his countertop, and then wiring it to a sub counter GFIC outlet. Total cost was $ 53.78 USD.

              Since then we have posted him a few new pots and pans that are induction compliant. He now has the choice of using gas, or induction ( I wish we did ) to cook. The unit looks good, and performs very well considering the low investment.

              1. Thanks, all, for fantastic suggestions. I shall commence coveting and, sadly, penny-pinching ;)