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You're in the market for a smooth-top stove, but what does that mean? It's a term your contractor or local sales associate used in conversation, but you may not be entirely sure. Don't stress. A "smooth-top" stove is an oven topped with a glass or ceramic surface. Unlike a gas range, it doesn't have cast iron grates covering the flame which prevents food bits from being trapped if they happen to fall out of the pan.
However, despite their ability to thwart hard-to-reach messes, they must be cared for properly as their reflective surfaces can be easily scratched. When prepping a meal, leave your cast iron skillets in the cabinets for the best experience. Start up your stove or cooktop—which can be flushed with your countertops—and wait for the electricity or induction technology to kick in.
The best smooth-top stoves and cooktops to complete your space are below.
When it comes to a smooth-top range, this GE model has a little bit of everything, which is why it's our top pick. Not only does it have a comfortable 30-inch build, it also has four heating elements, a self-cleaning oven, and 5.3 cubic feet of space to bake every dish you please. There's a lower storage drawer, for easily storing a set of sheet pans and pulling them out when it's time to make roasted chicken, green beans, potatoes, or cookies. Dual element baking technology ensures that whatever you slide into this space is cooked evenly and thoroughly as well.
This item comes in five finishes including black, black slate, slate, stainless steel, and white, making it easy to fit into any kitchen with any style. It has a nice mix of control knobs and electronic touch pads that give it a traditional and modern feel, and provide consistent and reliable performance. All of these controls are found on a back panel, along with indicator lights that note which burners are on.
Ultimately, this piece, like many other from the GE brand, won't let you down or exceed your budget. Its functionality and family-friendly features can be bought at an affordable price tag. It's the best option for your kitchen overall.
If you want a reliable, high-performing cooktop, the Whirlpool WCE55US0HB is a quality pick. This model has a 10-inch element with 2,500 Watts of power, as well as an 8-inch element with 1,800 Watts and two smaller ones with 1,200 Watts. Its thoughtful design includes a flexible heat setting for melting chocolate or keeping sauces at the perfect temperature. No matter what temperature you're hoping to reach, it also heats up quickly, making meal prep a total breeze.
In addition, this appliance is easy to clean. The knobs are dishwasher safe, and can be popped off whenever they start to hold some grime. The glass surface is able to be scrubbed without creating any scratches, too. Ultimately the sleek and stylish look will blend with your countertops, and you'll enjoy the indicator light—which reminds cooks if a burner is on. The cooktop is certainly cautious, and also has a hot-surface light that will stay on until a surface is cool enough to touch.
Best Budget Range: Whirlpool WFE550S0HZ 5.3 cu. ft. Electric Range with Self-Cleaning Convection Oven
If you want to purchase a smooth-top stove but still have room in your budget to update other parts of your kitchen, then this Whirlpool model is for you. It offers a total capacity of 5.3 cubic feet, paired with a self-cleaning oven. Like some of the other models on the market, this range also has five heating elements, with two adjustable elements.
Notably, the unit comes in a fingerprint-free, stainless steel finish that'll look very sleek in any kitchen. Additionally, a SteamClean option handles smaller messes, using only a little water and a short cleaning cycle. You can feel confident that all dishes are heated evenly and consistently, thanks to the AccuBake technology. It ensures that no matter what you're cooking or baking, you don't need to make an adjustment to the location of your pan. All in all, this piece isn't jam-packed with a list of amenities, but you’ll spend a little less money and feel like your needs have been met.
Adding a cooktop to your home may be a necessity or a splurge decision. But, either way, you don't need to spend big bucks on the smooth-top cooktop you buy. This induction cooktop from Empava has many features of the higher-end models, but keeps the price tag at bay. You'll need a 24-inch wide space to add its four burners to your space, which are powered by induction technology.
Now, you can't synchronize multiple burners within this model to create a larger cooking space. However, you can make use of nine heat level settings that are both efficient and precise. Each element also has specialty setting like a power boost, so you can speed up your cooking process and fine-tune it to your liking.
This unit can be installed over a wall oven, if you want to save space or amp up an appliance you already own. This feature alone can help save you money and time shopping for an entirely new smooth-top range.
Best Slide-In: Samsung NE58K9560WS 5.8 cu. ft. Slide-In Induction Range with Virtual Flame Technology
Those who are in the market for a slide-in range with a smooth cooking surface should look no further than this appliance from Samsung. It has the appearance and precise heating abilities of a gas range thanks to its control knobs, but is no stranger to stylish, modern kitchens. The model includes four burners with virtual flame technology, which coaches the burners to light up blue when they're in use and hot.
In addition to the control knobs, it also has glass touch controls with a variety of specialty oven settings. Gourmets will appreciate settings such as Slow Cook or Bread Proof, while entertainers will enjoy the built-in warming drawer below the oven. There are three adjustable racks which can be moved around to fit dishes with specific needs, and the window looking into the piece is extra-large so you can peek at your meals with ease.
Now, like other smooth-top appliances, you'll need to be very careful to not chip or scratch this model's surface or black stainless steel finish. This model isn't so budget-friendly, but caring for it properly, by using the self-cleaning settings and soft cookware, will enhance your experience and its lifetime.
If you’re looking for a smooth top electric range with downdraft, the KitchenAid KSEG950ESS is our top pick. This range will be an easy addition to a gourmet kitchen, and will make any cook happy with its suite of features. These features include a cooktop with center ventilation, to draw air down and away from your cooking surface, and four heating elements. This eliminates the need for a hood over your range, so you can install it within a kitchen island, or other countertop configuration where a hood is either not practical or desirable.
In addition, the spacious oven has true convection technology, that uses a bow-tie design for the heating element. A fan keeps air moving so the heat is evenly distributed, as well. For cooks that are new to convection baking, the oven has EasyConvect conversion technology to assist in choosing the right heat setting and cooking time. While this unit is priced with high-end, smooth-top ranges, it's a good pick where downdraft ventilation is preferred and modern features are a priority.
Best with Double Oven: LG Electronics LDE4413ST 7.3 cu. ft. Double Oven Electric Range with ProBake Convection
If you need to feed a crowd, the LG Electronics LDE4413ST can't be beat. This smooth-top range was built for cooking many dishes at once, and makes clean-up simple. The five-element cooktop features two adjustable heating elements, and a warming zone. This is on par with other smooth-top electric ranges in the middle of the price range. The front of the range features knob controls for easy stovetop cooking, while the oven is configured by a glass digital control panel at the rear of the appliance.
Where this appliance differs from most is its ProBake convection oven. It has 7.3 cubic feet of space split between dual ovens. This is plenty of room to cook up a three-course meal or a feast for your next dinner party. Now, it's important to note that only the lower oven has convection cooking. However, cleaning up the oven cavities is easy thanks to a 10-minute EasyClean setting. The setting uses water to dissolve messes and eliminate odors, leaving you with a sparkly space to prep another meal.
If you're in the market for a smooth-top range, the GE JB645RKSS (view at Home Depot) is our top pick, because it's both high-performing and stylish. It has a 30-inch build that can be easily installed in many households, a self-cleaning oven, and a storage drawer for keeping your sheet pans at bay. If you'd prefer to add a smooth-top cooktop to your household, then shop for the Whirlpool WCE55US0HB (view at Best Buy) that has indicator lights to alert you of active burners, and flexible heat settings for precise cooking.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written and updated by Marisa Casciano, who is our large appliance expert for The Spruce. Throughout her career, she's researched the ins and outs of air purifiers, dishwashers, cooktops, and more in the home and lifestyle space. She has ample experience cooking on gas, electric, and smooth-top stoves, to create meals for herself and her fiancé.