The hob is undoubtedly one of the most used appliances in the kitchen. For this reason it is essential to choose the right model. Among the various evaluation criteria, the most important concerns the type of supply. Obviously, it is not the only one: the size and number of burners or cooking zones must also be considered. As for the first aspect, you have to evaluate the space you have available on the kitchen countertop. Normally the depth is standard (51 cm), while the width can vary from 30 to 90 cm, depending on the number of integrated cooking points. The choice, in this case, depends on your habits. In fact, if you cook a lot and you usually prepare several dishes at a time, 4 burners may not be enough for you.

With this little permission, I want to talk to you about the differences in terms of operation and power supply. Electric hob, induction hob and gas hob – these are the three options you can choose from. Do you know what are the strengths and weaknesses of each solution? Read this guide and you will find out how to choose the right hob for your kitchen.


There are different types of hobs on the market. We will shortly highlight the advantages and disadvantages for each, while the main aspects to be taken into consideration before purchasing are:

  • the dimensions connected to the space available in the kitchen. We talk about a standard width of 30-35 cm for a small top, a width of 60 cm for a medium model and a width of 70-90 cm for a large model;
  • the number of fires is generally proportional to the size of the family and corresponds to one’s habits and needs. In fact, it ranges from a minimum of a single fire up to 9 fires. The standard number is 4;
  • the type of operation, ie gas, electric, glass ceramic, induction or mixed;
  • design and functions, here are elements such as color, material and style. The hob must best adapt to the taste of your kitchen. It is also advisable to take a look at what are the additional functions such as the timer, the acoustic signal and the display indicating consumption.


As is well known, gas is an ecological and economic source of energy, therefore it is not surprising that the gas hob is the most widespread in Italy. Other points in favor are a precise regulation of the flame and heat, and the possibility of using any type of cookware. On the other hand, the disadvantages include low energy efficiency, due to greater heat dispersion. In the gas hob, heating takes place via an open flame which from the burner hits the pot, but at the same time also the surrounding environment.

Those who opt for a plan of this kind need a gas connection, an operation, which we remember, is only carried out by a specialized technician. For safety, gas hobs must be equipped with a safety valve, which blocks the gas supply as soon as the burner flame goes out. In fact, it can happen that a liquid present in the pot overflows going to hit the flame, extinguishing it; through this safety device the gas stops flowing out.

Gas hobs are distinguished not only by the number of burners, but also by the type: auxiliary, rapid, triple crown, wok. Each designed to be used with pots and pans of different sizes and shapes. The surface where the burners rest is often in stainless steel, but there are also colored models such as black, gray, oatmeal or cream. The gas on glass hobs are sought after, where the burners are positioned on a surface in tempered glass or glass ceramic, a resistant and scratch-resistant material. The whole gives an elegant touch, suitable for kitchens with a sophisticated and modern taste. Last but not least, these tops are also very easy to clean.


More recently released are the induction hobs, which exploit the electromagnetic principle to generate heat, used to cook dishes. Compared to traditional gas models, induction models are energy efficient. Particular coils, placed below the surface of the hob (often in glass ceramic), generate a magnetic field which converts into heat. In turn, the heat passes directly from the cooking area to the bottom of the pot, so there is minimal heat loss. This aspect also affects cooking times, which are consequently shortened.

Only the area under the pot heats up and therefore its contents, the area around the pot remains cold without the risk of burns. If you accidentally drop any food residues, they won’t burn, making cleaning even faster and more convenient. All induction hobs are equipped with a pan presence sensor. In fact, the cooking zone switches on only if it is placed above a pot, thus avoiding accidental switching on. Another safety device is the key lock. In other words, by pressing a special button, the control panel is locked in order to prevent accidental starting, for example by a child.

A feather in the cap of induction hobs are the flexible cooking zones. In fact, it is possible to combine two cooking zones together so that even the most bulky or unusual pans such as oval fish pans can be placed. The latest generation induction models consist of a single large flexible cooking area that corresponds to the air of the hob surface itself. The entire surface is therefore usable, the pots can be placed anywhere on the hob. The advantage in terms of comfort is considerable.


Induction hobs often include the booster function, which increases the power level of that specific cooking zone, reducing its heating times. The required temperature is thus reached in a very short time. Other functions present are: the timer, the keep warm function and the Stop and Go button. The latter is also called the pause button, because it pauses the cooking settings for a short period of time.

This function can be very useful for example when you have to do without running the risk of burning the dishes. Cooking is then suspended and then, when desired, restarted. Finally, in the more sophisticated induction hobs, the memory function also appears, which saves the cooking settings, times and power levels, to be reused later.

Given their electromagnetic functioning, induction hobs require a specific induction cookware, that is made with a ferrous material. This therefore involves an additional expense for those who decide to switch from a classic gas hob to an induction one. It has been argued that the induction hob with its magnetic field can be harmful to people with pacemakers or other electromagnetic prostheses. These subjects must therefore consult a doctor before use.


Less popular and common are electric hobs with circular cast iron plates and combined hobs. In fact, these combine one or more gas burners with one more induction zones. This model offers greater flexibility in terms of types of cooking. For example, to bring the water to a boil in a short time, the induction zone will be used, and in the meantime you can cook a stew on the gas burner.

Another niche product is the traditional Japanese Teppan Yaki hob: a full flat electric plate in stainless steel. The various foods such as vegetables, fish and meat must be placed directly on the entire surface or only on one half. The result is healthy cooking, free of oil or other seasonings. In addition, this hob can also act as a practical food warmer. If, on the other hand, you are a barbecue lover, the choice can fall on a built-in barbecue hob with lava stone, easy to clean and practical.


If you found the article interesting, leave a comment with your considerations about it.

Finally, if you need advice on choosing the right hob for your needs, send an email to valeriadesign@casaomnia.it!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *