If you plan to buy a wok for your electric stove, you should know that the options are limited. All woks are not great for use on an electric stove. So, if you want to know what kind of wok is best for an electric stove, read till the end.
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What Kind Of Wok Should You Choose For An Electric Stove?
Keep the following things in mind to choose the best wok for electric stove.
1. Round vs. flat-bottom woks
While choosing a wok, looking for the right shape for your electric stove is very important. For even heat distribution, I like the flat base woks more. Round woks are great for stirring foods. But, I don’t prefer the round woks because only their rounded bottom comes in contact with the electric stoves, and thus the heat is limited in the bottom only.
Most chefs recommend only the flat bottom woks for a glass top electric stove. As round-bottomed woks need rings to sit stably, they take longer to get heated on a glass-top electric stove.
If I say about the electric coil stoves, again, flat bottom woks are best for them. Though you can use round bottom woks with rings, they are likely to wobble a lot over those electric coils.
But, both the flat and round bottom stoves have some pros and cons. So, have a look before choosing the shape of your wok.
(a) Advantages of a flat bottom wok
- The flat bottom of these woks makes direct contact with the glass-ceramic or electric coil burner of the stove. Thus, more surface area and the sides get the heat and distribute that evenly to the food.
- For their stable bottom, they don’t wobble while cooking which is great for the inexperienced cook.
- You won’t even need a wok ring for a flat bottom wok.
(b) Disadvantages of a flat bottom wok
- While flat bottom woks are great for cooking vegetables or steamed dishes, they are not good for stirring-fry food. Because the flat bottom sitting directly on the coil gets much hotter than the sides.
- You need to keep tossing the food quickly on a flat bottom wok; otherwise, it will burn easily or get unevenly cooked. Foods get stuck easily on the surface of a flat base, making cleaning a hassle.
(a) Advantages of a round bottom wok
- The rounded bottom woks absorb the heat faster
- They are great for stir-frying.
(b) Disadvantages of a round bottom wok
- Round bottom woks are very wobbly and without a wok ring, you cannot manage it to keep stable on the stove.
- On the electric stoves, the round bottom takes the heat but cannot distribute it evenly to the pot’s sides.
These are the most common materials for a wok for an electric stove.
(a) Carbon steel woks
Carbon steel woks are the most popular and affordable choice for an electric stove. Carbon steel wok is best for an electric stove as it conducts heat better from an electric stove in comparison to cast iron or other materials. It can also absorb the heat faster.
However, it is not very durable and requires seasoning more often compared to the other materials. The interior of these woks can blacken and rust if they are not seasoned and dried well.
(b) Aluminum or stainless steel woks
Aluminum or stainless steel woks cost less care and maintenance. They also require very minimal seasoning after use. When it comes to even heat distribution, aluminum woks are best for offering evenly cooked stir and deep-fries.
However, aluminum woks take time to heat up and require continuous heat to get those tasty fries.
On the other hand, stainless steel woks heat up quickly and don’t affect the taste if there is any interruption in the heating. However, they are not efficient in distributing the heat evenly like the aluminum woks.
I’ll recommend the stainless steel woks that come with aluminum bottoms so that you get both the advantages.
(c) Non-stick wok
The aluminum or carbon steel woks with non-stick coating are another great option for cooking tasty foods with less oil or fat. But, make sure you use wooden utensils with them.
These works are great to retain the temperature while cooking. They can withstand higher temperatures when you do a stir-fry. When it comes to sear the meats, they’re not efficient as the carbon steel woks. But they give you a satisfying result.
They’re not much heavy, and some of them also come with riveted handles making it easy to carry them on the dining table. And as we all know, nothing can beat the non-stick woks when it comes to cleaning and maintaining.
(d) Cast iron wok
A flat-bottomed cast-iron wok also can be the right choice for your electric stove.
Cast iron woks retain the heat for longer. If you season the cast iron wok properly, it is even easier to clean than the stainless steel woks. They’re durable. You might find one in your home that your mom got as her wedding gift!
They’re not as expensive as the high-quality stainless steel woks. However, they’re quite heavy and takes longer to heat up.
(e) Wok that comes with handles
The most convenient wok for electric stoveis that comes with ring handles. The rings are great for giving more stability when cooking and for carrying to the dining table when you’re done.
Are Larger Woks Better For An Electric Stove?
Not actually. But, the bigger the diameter will be, the more food it can cook well due to its ability to absorb and disperse more heat.
10-14 inches are the most popular sizes for the wok for electric stove. You can choose between 12-14inches wok for a family of four. If you’re a family of two, still you should get a 12-inch wok.
Larger woks than 14″ in diameter will obstruct you from using the other burners at a time. Moreover, they don’t fit well on the stove.If you want to go for a small size, I’ll recommend you to choose at least 6 inches.
People Also Ask: FAQ’s
(a) Is carbon steel wok safe?
Answer: Yes. Carbon steel is a safe material to use in cooking. Carbon steel wok doesn’t have any toxic substance like Teflon.
(b) How should I clean my wok?
(c) Why does food stick to my stainless steel wok?
Answer: Stainless steel wok has pores in it which shrinks in heat. When the pores shrink, they catch the food particles. That’s why you can see food stick to the pan surface. However, you can avoid food sticking by seasoning it before cooking.
(d) Can I use metal tools in my work?
Answer: Metal utensils are perfect for stainless steel woks but they’re not compatible with non-stick coating carbon steel or aluminum woks. Wooden or silicone tools are always recommended to use with them.
So, as you now know what kind of wok is best for an electric stove, you can get one for your kitchen for enjoying those tasty stir-fries or perfectly seared steaks. As a wok for electric stove, I will always recommend the flat-bottomed woks for the newbie cooks. For the material, you can choose carbon steel or stainless steel with an aluminum bottom.
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