Why Electric Griddles Might Not be Worth the Investment

Summary: 

Electric griddles are convenient and versatile but may not be worth it for everyone.

  • Pros: Quick meals, large cooktop for feeding a crowd, easy-to-clean.
  • Cons: Not ideal for searing, uneven heating possible, not as durable as some grills, indoor use only.

Electric griddles are great for pancakes, grilled cheese, and other breakfast foods.

If you sear steaks or crave outdoor grilling, consider a gas griddle instead. Gas griddles provide higher heat and more even cooking but require a gas hookup or propane tank.


Electric griddles seem like a magical kitchen cure-all.

Need to whip up a stack of fluffy pancakes for the kids? Check. Craving melty grilled cheese for a quick lunch? Done.

They’re fast, and versatile, and promise restaurant-quality results right on your countertop. But you still may be wondering “Are electric grills worth it?”

While they offer undeniable convenience, there are some factors to consider to ensure they align with your cooking needs.

Let’s take a closer look at electric griddles to see if they truly are the perfect fit for your kitchen.

Disadvantages of Electric Griddles

Electric griddles are fantastic for quick meals, but they do have some limitations.

Temperature Limits: How Hot Do Electric Griddles Get?

Electric griddles typically max out at around 400°F (204°C). This is great for pancakes and grilled cheese but not ideal for searing food like steaks. That perfect caramelized crust and smoky flavor associated with high-heat cooking might be hard to achieve.

The lower heat may also affect flavor development, as the Maillard reaction thrives at higher temperatures.

Heating Consistency

Uneven heating is a potential issue with some electric griddles. This can lead to hot spots that burn your food and cooler areas where things cook slowly.

While some models have improved heating elements, it’s worth researching reviews. This way, you can see if consistent heat distribution is a common concern.

Durability: How Long Do Electric Griddles Last?

Electric griddles, especially those at lower price points, may not be as durable as some outdoor griddle options. The heating elements can be prone to failure over time, and overall construction might not be as heavy-duty.

In terms of lifespan, electric griddles can last around five years with proper care. However, some higher-end models with better-built heating elements may reach 20 years or more.

Indoor Only

Electric griddles are typically confined to indoor kitchens. This can limit their versatility, especially for those who enjoy grilling outdoors. If you want the ambiance of outdoor cooking, an electric griddle might not be the perfect fit.

Are Electric Griddles Safe?

Electric griddles are generally safe appliances when used properly, but it’s always wise to be aware of potential hazards.

Electrical Safety

Like any electrical appliance, there’s a risk of shock if not used correctly. Make sure your griddle’s cord is in good condition, with no fraying or damage. Avoid using it near water sources and always unplug it when not in use or before cleaning.

Hot Surface Burns

Electric griddles get hot, and so can the surrounding surfaces! Be mindful of where you place the griddle to avoid accidental contact with the hot surface. Use pot holders or oven mitts when handling the griddle, and keep an eye on curious little hands in the kitchen.

Griddle Power: What Can You Cook Up?

Electric griddles may not be high-heat sear masters, but they shine in terms of versatility. Their large, flat surface makes them perfect for whipping up a variety of dishes.

Breakfast Champion

Pancakes, French toast, bacon, sausage – electric griddles are breakfast champions. You can cook a whole family feast in one go, with plenty of space to keep everything warm. No more waiting in line at the stove for perfect pancakes!

Beyond the Basics

These appliances can handle so much more than just pancakes. Here are some delicious possibilities:

  • Quesadillas
  • Hashbrowns
  • Veggie burgers
  • Grilled sandwiches
  • Fish tacos
  • And more

If you want to add dishes like seared steaks or grilled vegetables to that list, a grill or gas griddle would be ideal. They reach higher temperatures to make those recipes pop.

Electric vs. Gas Griddles

You might be wondering how electric griddles stack up against their gas-powered counterparts. Here’s a quick breakdown to help you decide.

Gas Griddles: The Heat is On

Gas griddles are fueled by propane or natural gas. They crank up the heat quickly, allowing you to achieve the coveted sear and deep caramelization. This makes them ideal for steaks, burgers, fajitas, and anything else that needs a crispy, flavorful exterior.

Plus, gas griddles tend to offer more even heat distribution due to the burner design.

While gas griddles have impressive heating capabilities, they also come with some drawbacks.

For starters, they require a gas hookup or propane tank, which may limit their portability. You’ll also need to factor in the cost of purchasing and refilling the fuel source.

So, is an electric griddle better than a gas griddle?

There’s no simple answer! It truly depends on your cooking style and priorities. If high heat and fast preheating are essential, a gas griddle might be the winner. If only convenience and easy clean-up are your top concerns, then an electric griddle could be a perfect fit.

Finding the Perfect Griddle for You

Overall, electric griddles offer a convenient and versatile way to cook a variety of dishes. They’re perfect for quick weeknight meals, and their large surface makes them ideal for feeding a crowd.

However, if you want to add restaurant-quality searing and the joy of outdoor cooking, a gas griddle might be a better fit. The best option depends on your cooking style and priorities.

Explore our collection of outdoor griddles and discover a world of delicious grilling possibilities.

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