This basic griddle has a generously sized nonstick cooking surface to make plenty of pancakes for all.
About the Black and Decker Family Sized Electric Griddle
With a cooking surface of roughly 210 square inches, the Black and Decker Family Sized Electric Griddle (Model GD2011B) has a roomy cooking surface, enough to cook 8 pancakes, 12 strips of bacon, or perhaps even a few fried eggs on one side, plus some sausages on the other.
The nonstick-coated aluminum cooking surface is set in a plastic frame that elevates it a few inches over the countertop. It has a slight gutter along the edge that channels grease into a small hole, emptying into a removable drip tray that slides into the plastic frame. The thermostat probe is removable and locks in place with a lever that flips and clicks into place, then releases with the push of a button.
The thermostat can set the temperature from 150˚F to 400˚F, with the lowest setting working well as a warming tray for a buffet. A signal light comes on when the unit is heating and turns off when it’s at temperature.
The Black and Decker Griddle to the Test
Electric griddles are notoriously for heating unevenly. And it’s no surprise, in most –this one included – the heating element is simply a hot coil that runs along the underside of the cooking surface so that the area directly above the coil is hotter than parts of the cooking surface that are further away.
This Black and Decker grill is no exception, I found that there was a difference of 40 degrees or more when I used an infrared thermometer to check various areas of the cooking surface.
However, this discrepancy surprisingly didn’t seem to make much difference when I was actually using the griddle. Pancakes, for instance, still cooked evenly and quickly.
The griddle heats very quickly, probably as quickly as a skillet on a burner would. The griddle reached the cooking temperature at less than 3 minutes. This is a nice time-saving feature when trying to get breakfast on the table in a hurry (Everyday French Toast, anyone?).
I did find, however, that when I set the griddle for a cooking temperature of 350˚F or more, it ran quite hot: by more than 50 degrees. This was remedied by turning the thermostat down, but unless you have an infrared thermometer that can check the surface temperature, you might be unaware.
The griddle is touted on the company’s website as being dishwasher safe, but instructions in the manual tell the user to hand wash the griddle in hot, soapy water. Likely the only dishwasher safe part is the plastic drip tray. But the nonstick surface keeps most foods from sticking, and the griddle is pleasantly easy to hand-wash, especially since the temperature probe removes for safe cleaning.
Speaking of the temperature probe, it has a locking feature that takes a moment to figure out. A metal latch flips down and locks the probe into the base; to remove, a press of a button releases the latch. I’ve never had an issue with a probe unplugging from a griddle or other cooking appliance, but I guess it’s a nice feature if others have had this issue.
The cord measures about 27 inches, purposefully short to avoid it catching and possibly knocking the griddle off the work surface. Most kitchens have readily accessible outlets near their counters, but if you find the short cord isn’t convenient you could simply use an extension cord (as suggested in the manual).
At under $30 from most retailers, the Black and Decker Family-Sized Electric Griddle gives a reasonably decent performance for the price.
- Good size for families
- Nonstick surface is very slick
- Easy to clean (hand wash)
- Runs hot and uneven
- Not dishwasher safe as promised on company website
- Cooking surface measures 19.75 inches by 10.25 inches
- Nonstick cooking surface
- Cool-touch plastic sides
- Drip tray
- Temperature control from 150˚F to 400˚F
- 2-year limited warranty