How many different ways can you boil water? While a traditional tea kettle may be adequate for most tea drinkers, electric kettles offer several advantages over their stovetop counterparts. Some can be set to specific temperatures to help maximize the flavor of certain tea varieties, while others can be controlled with a smartphone app or set to run automatically on a set schedule. And all, of course, can be used without a stove. Here are some of the best electric kettles on the market, whether your looking for something simple or a high-tech gadget that takes your tea to another level.
The Cuisinart CPK-17 PerfecTemp is everything you need in an electric kettle, especially because the 1.7-liter reservoir can be brought to a boil in just a few minutes. If boiling is a little hotter than you like your tea, the one-touch controls make it easy for you to select one of six pre-set temperatures. This allows you to heat your water to 160 degrees Fahrenheit (71 degrees Celsius) for delicate teas, or 200 degrees (93.3 Celsius) if you’re using a French press. The kettle also has a 30-minute warming feature — so you don’t have to reheat your water when you go for that second cup of tea — and a two-minute “memory,” allowing you to remove the kettle from the base without losing any heat.
The aforementioned Cuisinart kettle may have simple, one-touch controls, but you still have to walk all the way to the kitchen to start heating your water. On the other hand, the aptly titled AppKettle is a device designed for the 21st century and can be controlled remotely via your phone, with the base controls, or with a pre-set schedule. The kettle was also crafted with families in mind. This wireless kettle has a baby bottle setting, for instance, making it easy to heat up formula for a variety of bottle sizes. The accompanying smartphone app also allows for multiple users, so everyone in the family can use the AppKettle to make their own cup of tea.
Xiaomi Electric Kettle ($33+)
Hosting a tea party? This 1.5-liter electric kettle is large enough to make tea for several people without having to continuously boil more water. It’s also safe to use and handle, thanks to anti-scalding double layers, featuring a hollow insulation layer between the inner and outer layers for more effective heat insulation. After water comes to a boil, the kettle shuts off automatically as another safety precaution. The two-stage damping uncap design also prevents hot water from splashing when you pour. When you press the button to open the lid, it automatically opens at a 30-degree angle to prevent hot droplets of water from splashing on you. The Xiaomi Electric Kettle also brings water to the perfect temperature, thanks to temperature control.
Not everyone wants to pay $1,300 for a tea kettle; perhaps that’s why the Hamilton Beach Electric Kettle exists. This kettle doesn’t feature infusion technology or an accompanying mobile app like other devices on our list, but it does boil water and come with a few modern touches. The auto-off feature ensures you never heat the kettle when it isn’t filled, the drip-free spout makes pouring easy, and with a 1,500-watt system, you can be rest assured that it will heat your water faster than the microwave. It’s the perfect solution for those that seek a handsome kettle that can quickly boil water. Nothing more, nothing less.
Australian manufacturer Breville is frequently featured on Digital Trends, namely when talking about our favorite small appliances. The 1.8-liter Breville Variable Temperature Kettle touts five temperature settings, ranging from 175 degrees Fahrenheit (79.4 degrees Celsius) for delicate teas to boiling for sturdy black teas. This appliance can also hold its temperature for up to 20 minutes, so you don’t have to reheat your water just for a second cup of tea. It is on the expensive side when compared to the Cuisinart PerfecTemp — which carries many of the same features for $45 cheaper — but some would argue that the Breville’s larger capacity and elegant design are worth the added price.
The Bonavita Gooseneck Kettle is the smallest kettle on this list, with its one-liter reservoir, but its pint-sized build allows it to outperform the rest of the pack in terms of precision. Instead of pre-set temperature buttons, the Bonativa can be adjusted by 1-degree increments ranging between 140 and 212 degrees Fahrenheit (60 to 100 degrees Celsius). The device also has a real-time temperature display and can hold its temperature for up to an hour. The Bonavita Gooseneck Kettle also has a count-up timer, so you know just how long you’ve been steeping your tea.