What sets this wok (and the entire Breville line) apart from other electric woks apart is the recessed butterfly heating element located around the wok base. While the wok doesn't quite live up to the manufacturer's claim that it "performs just like a traditional iron wok on a gas range," it does provide a more even heat distribution than many other electric woks on the market. Still, serious stir-fryers will probably not be satisfied with its performance.
A greater concern for the casual Chinese cook is the possibility of scratches appearing in the non-stick coating.
Pros and Cons
- Superior performance compared to many other electric woks
- Sturdy design
- Non-stick surface makes for easy cleaning
- Detailed instruction booklet includes cooking tips and recipes
- Wok and detachable base are dishwasher safe
- Expensive compared to other electric woks
- Non-stick surface can scratch
- Doesn’t quite live up to the hype
- 1500 Watt Butterfly High Wall element
- Removable temperature control probe with 14 temperature settings plus a high sear (425 F.) setting for stir-frying
- 4-layer Quantanium non-stick cooking surface
- Quick release removable wok base
- Two looped side helper handles
- "Cook n Look" tempered glass lid, dome-shaped, with steam vent
- Comes with plastic spatula and instruction/recipe booklet
Despite a rather high price tag, the Breville Electric Wok is one of the most popular electric woks on the market.
Users love the wok's high heat capability and evenness of heat distribution. Its sturdy design, easy cleaning non-stick surface, and convenient quick release detachable base also get high ratings. So does the accompanying booklet: along with detailed instructions on operating the wok, there are loads of cooking aids, including tips on stir-frying, a glossary of Asian ingredients, and a temperature chart for cooking various types of food.
Plus, of course, recipes, from Stir-fry Prawns with Snow Peas to Nasi Goreng (Indonesia's take on fried rice),and an Indian eggplant curry.
Attention to detail shows in the wok's easy to grip side handles, and a cord that is deliberately short for safety reasons, with a finger hole in the power plug for easy and safe removal. Both the wok body and the removable base are dishwasher safe.
However, despite the manufacturer's claim that even metal spoons and spatulas are safe, several users have reported problems with the non-stick coating. (Guide note: despite carefully following instructions, limiting the amount of oil and using the plastic spatula provided, I noticed minor scratches on the non-stick surface after only a few uses. However, so far these haven't affected the wok's performance). This is the one possible flaw I found in an otherwise excellent product.
The Bottom Line
Compared to other electric woks, the Breville Electric Wok has a lot going for it. For those who prefer the convenience of an electric wok, I would give this product a thumbs up, with the caveat to be on the alert for issues with the nonstick coating, and to contact Breville if needed.