Cookware, Reviews

The Best Electric Griddle – Consumer Reports for 2021

Electric griddles make cooking for a crowd much easier. More cooking area means more food can be cooked at the same time. Classically used to make pancakes, french toast and eggs, electric griddles can be used to make just about any cuisine that can be cooked in a frying pan. That means burgers, chicken, grilled cheese, vegetables and even falafel cakes can be made on an electric griddle.

One advantage of using an electric griddle is the additional cooking surface in the kitchen. This literally allows more cooks to work in the kitchen without investing in an additional stove. If multiple frying pans are frequently being used to cook for one meal, it may be time to upgrade to an electric griddle.

A few of the features to look for when finding the right electric griddle are cooking surface size, storability, grease drainage, cleanability and temperature variance. For many, features like the cooking surface size and storability depend on individual needs, preferences and kitchen space. While some griddles have features that are advantages to some but disadvantages to others, there are a few features that are common across all great electric griddles. These features are grease drainage, being easy to clean and minimal temperature variance across the surface of the griddle.

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As far as griddle size is concerned, each cook has different needs. Compact kitchens require a griddle that is easy to store. Some cooks do not mind storing bulky griddles because they need the largest possible cooking area to make enough food to feed everyone.

Grease drainage separates good griddles from great griddles. The best electric griddles have effective grease drainage systems that allow for easy cleaning. Not as desirable are the griddles that allow food to sit in their own grease. Some griddles fall in between, where the cook can determine how much grease goes into a grease trap.

How easy an electric griddle is to clean is almost as important as how it cooks food. After all, if it is difficult to clean, how often will it be used? Features to look for here are griddles which have cooking surfaces that separate from electric components for easy washing. The griddle’s surface material and non-stick coating directly affect how easy a griddle is to clean.

Here are the eight best griddles on Amazon. Each cook has different priorities, so there are some here that work splendidly in compact spaces, and some that decidedly do not. This list is ordered from most budget-friendly to most luxurious.


Elite Gourmet


The Elite Gourmet electric griddle offers a compact size with the dependability of a more expensive griddle. While this griddle will not win any design contests, it does exactly what a griddle should do: prepare food evenly. It is also small and light enough to be easily moved indoors or outdoors as the need arises. The power cord could be a little longer, but that issue is easily resolved with an extension cord. After the griddle is plugged in and a temperature is selected, the Elite Gourmet heats up quickly. It cooks food evenly and well. However, cooking food at high temperatures for long periods of time can cause the cooking surface to warp over time. Grease management is another issue — this griddle includes only a pour spout instead of a grease tray. Pouring grease can be dangerous. Cleaning this griddle is easy and only takes a few paper towels. The quick clean-up is a tribute to how well the non-stick treatment works. No non-stick surface is perfect and it is always a good idea to add at least a little oil. The Elite Gourmet includes a warming tray which is a feature seen in more expensive griddles. This warming tray is plastic and does require some patience and maneuvering to use. Because of its size, dependability, cleanability and price, the Elite Gourmet electric griddle is an affordable electric griddle.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 153 square inches
Weight: 4.34 pounds
Cooking Temperature Range: Warm to 425 degrees
Grease Management: Grease spout
Cleanability: Sponge clean


BELLA


Once a cook becomes accustomed to the BELLA griddle’s quirks, it is a fantastic cooking companion. With 210 square inches of cooking area, it is large enough to accommodate plenty of food. The first issue is a short power cord. Depending on the kitchen, that can be a problem. If it is too short for the desired position in the kitchen, it can be used with an extension cord. After the griddle is plugged in and the temperature is adjusted to the desired level, the BELLA griddle heats up quickly. Giving it a full 10-15 minutes before beginning to cook minimizes the amount of hot spots on the griddle surface. Cooking at temperatures lower than 400 degrees will help this griddle last longer as well. If waiting for this griddle to preheat and cooking at lower temperatures are not options, it is fully capable of cooking food at high temperatures right away. Made from a titanium-enforced copper and ceramic nonstick material, the cooking surface is a beautiful copper color. This copper color supplies a gentler, lighter heat to food. If someone is not used to cooking on copper, it can be very easy to come to the conclusion that food is not getting done because it is not getting dark. Using this griddle at high heat for long periods of time will result in unsightly coil burn as well as the griddle wearing out faster. At first, the non-stick surface is so slick that it requires two spatulas. As time goes on, it is a good idea to add some sort of oil when cooking, or food will stick. No surface is non-stick forever, and the BELLA electric griddle is no exception. Grease drains through a channel to a grease tray. Because the tray is on the small side, it can overflow easily. To clean this griddle, the thermostat detaches and the griddle is easily cleaned with a sponge. Overall, the BELLA griddle does exactly what it needs to do: cook food. Like a new friend, it takes the cook and the griddle some time to get acquainted for the cook to learn all about this griddle’s eccentricities.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 210 square inches
Weight: 3.88 pounds
Cooking Temperature Range: Warm to 400 degrees
Grease Management: Grease channel, drip tray
Cleanability: Sponge clean


Caynel


When trying to find the best electric griddle that is budget friendly as well as being small enough for compact kitchens, the Caynel electric griddle is a great option. With 160 square inches of cooking area, it is large enough for cooking about 4 large pancakes at a time and small enough to store. If cooking for a large group of people, however, the Caynel griddle is not large enough. The cooking surface is made of cast aluminum with a non-stick coating that includes copper. This griddle’s non-stick coating keeps food from sticking, which makes cleaning up easy. The grease tray is sufficient for a small meal, but will overflow if two packs of bacon are cooked on the griddle without emptying the tray in between. While some electric griddles trap food as well as grease in the grease channels, the Caynel is designed to have as much flat cooking surface as possible to avoid this. Before beginning to cook, it is necessary to give this griddle several minutes to warm up. Once properly warm, the hot spots are not very pronounced. The temperature gauge is responsive and the griddle cooks food evenly. Usually, a wet cloth is all that is needed to clean this griddle. To make cleanup even easier, however, the Caynel electric griddle is dishwasher safe. Even though it is very lightweight, this griddle feels sturdy and ready for action.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 160 square inches
Weight: 4.44 pounds
Cooking Temperature Range: Warm, 200-460 degrees
Grease Management: Grease channel, drip tray
Cleanability: Dishwasher safe


Black + Decker


With 200 square inches of cooking space, the Black + Decker griddle is able to feed a crowd. This electric griddle also features a warming tray, although it is only large enough for a few pieces of bacon or some sausage. The warming tray is not designed to be large enough for a standard-sized pancake which is a deal-breaker for some cooks. The Black + Decker electric griddle also features a robust temperature control knob that clicks into place. After the griddle has been washed a few times the contrasting white paint comes off, making it difficult to read the temperature knob. On the cooking surface, the proprietary non-stick coating is effective at preventing food from cooking. This griddle heats up quickly and cooks relatively evenly. It does have a few hot spots or cold spots, depending on the unit. The temperature variance for the Black + Decker is manageable with the same amount of attention as a traditional frying pan. While food is cooking, grease drains through a channel into a grease tray. The grease trap is not large enough to handle the grease that drains from a large griddle. If switching this grease trap mid-bacon-fry is a deal breaker, this electric griddle is not a good choice. Cleaning the griddle is easy because the nonstick surface prevents food from sticking. However, there are electrical components that cannot be submerged. This Black + Decker electric griddle offers a dependable electric griddle with a few extras.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 200 square inches
Weight: 4.96 pounds
Cooking Temperature Range: Warm to 400 degrees
Grease Management: Grease channel, drip tray
Cleanability: Not submersible


Dash


With five color options, this cheerful griddle is a wonderful way to upgrade a kitchen. Plenty of food can be prepared on the 187 inch cooking area. At a hefty seven pounds, it is easier to let this griddle live on the counter than to frequently take out and put away in a cabinet. It heats up quickly, but waiting a few minutes before beginning to cook minimizes temperature variation. The Dash griddle cooks food well and evenly. Grease drains through a channel into a tray that holds about 1/2 cup of grease. Cooking lots of bacon requires changing the grease trap before it is finished cooking. Cleaning is where the Dash griddle starts having some problems. A small 3/8 inch gap between the cooking surface and the edge of the griddle attracts food debris. Because the cooking plate is screwed into the griddle, the only easy way to clean this crevice is with a toothbrush or a cotton swab. The main portion of the cooking surface is very easy to clean with a wet, soapy cloth. For cooks who are willing to commit to an intense cleaning process after every use, the Dash electric griddle is a colorful kitchen update.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 187 square inches
Weight: 7 pounds
Cooking Temperature Range: 200-400 degrees
Grease Management: Grease channel, drip tray
Cleanability: Sponge clean, toothbrush or cotton swab required for the crevice


Presto


Feeding a large group of people is easy with the Presto’s whopping 253 square inches of cooking area. The cooking plate snaps away from the frame, making this griddle easier to store. It will fit in standard, 18 inch cabinets. Heating the Presto griddle up takes a few minutes, but is worth the wait. Instead of having hot spots and cool spots, it provides a hot cooking surface with a few hotter spots. If the cook keeps food moving around, these hotter spots will not be an issue. A textured non-stick surface differentiates this griddle as well. The texture increases the surface area, which means more heat transfers from the griddle to the food. Beyond the textured finish, the non-stick coating itself prevents food sticking. When the griddle is cared for properly, the nonstick coating lasts a long time. Using metal utensils and storing items on the non-stick surface are ways to shorten the lifespan of that non-stick surface. The Presto electric griddle does not use a grease channel to drain excess grease. Instead, the cook must either tilt the griddle or push the grease for it to fall through a hole into the drip tray. The drip tray is able to contain the grease from one pound of bacon — barely. This design allows the cook to decide exactly how much oil is being used to cook the food. Cleaning is very easy due to the effective non-stick coating. The cooking plate is submersible, so this electric griddle is dishwasher safe. However, in the interest of preserving the non-stick coating as long as possible, washing by hand is recommended. With a sleek design, the Presto grill will fit in any home decor scheme. However, the griddle plate is exposed with no guard, so the cook must take care not to touch the edges. For kitchens filled with small children, this may not be the best electric griddle because of this design. However, if the kitchen can be arranged to avoid the burn hazard, the Presto electric griddle is a powerful tool.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 253 square inches
Weight: 6.5 pounds
Cooking Temperature: Warm to 400 degrees
Grease Management: Grease tray
Cleanability: Immersible


Hamilton Beach


For a more versatile griddle experience, the Hamilton Beach electric griddle offers lots of options. Two separate cooking plates offer dual temperature zones. In addition, each plate is two-sided with one side offering a smooth griddle finish and the other side offering a ridged grill finish. The two plates snap in and out easily. Because there are two smaller zones, this griddle is not the best to make large amounts of pancakes. However, it is very well suited to cooking smaller amounts of different kinds of food. Heating takes a few minutes. Once this griddle is heated, it cooks food evenly with no hotspots. Grease management can be problematic, however. Both plates are marginally sloped to drain grease into a central drip pan. However, if these plates are not firmly in place or there is an excessive amount of grease, the grease can wick over to the heating coils. It is possible to modify this griddle to prevent this, but not everyone is comfortable modifying a kitchen appliance. The grease tray on this griddle is actually large enough to handle larger amounts of grease — if it can get there. Not as non-stick as other options, this griddle requires lots of oil to be used when cooking non-bacon foods. Cleaning is easy, as the plates can be snapped out and placed in the dishwasher. Two small cooking plates fit in the dishwasher a great deal easier than one large cooking plate. After several cleanings, the white paint on the knobs wears off, making it difficult to determine the temperature on the knobs. For kitchens where variety and versatility are prioritized over food quantity, the Hamilton Beach electric griddle offers some fantastic features on top of a dependable griddle.

Quick Stats
Cooking Surface: 180 square inches
Weight: 9 pounds
Cooking Temperature: Warm to 425 degrees
Grease Management: Grease channel, drip tray
Cleanability: Dishwasher safe


Costzon


For very large families or entertaining, the Costzon electric grill is a truly unique experience. At 35 inches long and 9 inches wide, this griddle is long enough for everyone to be a cook. However, it is about half as narrow as a standard griddle, which can be disconcerting for a cook used to a standard sized griddle. Six wooden spatulas and two egg rings are included, which are nice additions given this griddle’s price point. It takes about 10 minutes to fully heat up, although the end closer to the plug heats to a significantly hotter temperature than the end further away from the cord. Of course, the cooler end further from the cord could be used to keep food warm, or as a dual temperature zone. Except for that temperature inequality, this electric griddle cooks food evenly. Because the surface is flat, grease can only be drained if it is pushed to the drip tray hole. This allows the cook(s) to have fuller control over exactly how much oil is used to cook their food. The nonstick coating is very effective and no extra oil is needed to prevent food sticking. Because of its 35 inch length, this griddle is bulky to get into the sink to clean. However, because the non-stick coating is so effective, not much scrubbing is involved. Storing this griddle is difficult because of its unorthodox shape. This griddle is an ideal choice for cooks who have ample kitchen space and who frequently need to feed lots of people.

Quick Stats:
Cooking Surface: 315 square inches
Weight: 6.6 pounds
Cooking Temperature: Warm to 450 degrees
Grease Management: Drip tray
Cleanability: Immersible


Conclusion

Electric griddles provide additional cooking area and offer the ability to cook large amounts of food quickly. Just as every kitchen has different needs, each griddle offers different features. Cooking surface, grease management and cleanability are the three most important features in determining how much a chef enjoys cooking with a griddle.

Cooking for larger groups of people means a bigger cooking surface is desired. Foods like pancakes need a bigger cooking surface. However, smaller cooking surfaces are often easier to clean and store.

Bigger grease trays would improve every electric griddle. The smaller the grease tray, the more often it needs to be emptied. Moving a grease tray is a mess waiting to happen. Some griddles use gravity to help drain excess grease, while others let the cook control how much grease is on the griddle surface. Which design is better? That is determined by personal preference.

All griddles need to be cleaned after each use. How well each non-stick surface prevents food sticking to the griddle determines how easy a griddle is to clean. Some griddles allow the cooking plate to be easily removed from the rest of the griddle, making for a much easier cleanup experience. Bigger griddles are more cumbersome to clean. Even if larger grill plates are dishwasher safe, they take up so much room that it is often easier to hand-wash them. Of course, some cooks prefer to hand-wash kitchen appliances regardless of size.

Each of the griddles in this list has advantages and disadvantages. Determining which are most important is the biggest step in figuring out which is the best electric griddle. Learning the griddles quirks and where hot spots and cold spots are is a matter of practice. Electric griddles offer a delicious way to gain that practice.