Hot pot cooking is an Asian culinary tradition. It refers to a cooking style that cooks meat and vegetables in boiling stock soup. It’s similar to the Western style of fondue, except that in this method, instead of using oil, melted cheese or chocolate, one uses flavored broth.
The broth is placed in a hot pot on a stove in the center of the table to keep it boiling. An assortment of raw meats and vegetables are then served around the pot. These are to be dropped into the boiling broth and taken out when it’s cooked and eaten with a dipping sauce. Over time, the soup becomes even flavorful because it becomes infused with the flavors of the ingredients.
These days, however, one does not need to go to oriental restaurants in order to experience this style of cooking. There are now a lot of electric hot pots that make it convenient for you to prepare a hot pot meal in your own home. It has become so popular that it started a hot pot cooking trend, for a while.
It’s not hard to see why. The hot pot style of cooking is actually a healthy way of cooking food. You’re not frying the food so that’s less oil to use. And because you’re essentially boiling the ingredients, you’re infusing the broth with the nutrients of everything that you add. This makes it more flavorful as well as very nutritious.
It’s also a convenient way to eat. If you don’t like washing up too many pans and dishes after a meal, a hot pot is the way to go because you can cook and eat with just one big pot.
When you’re using an electric hot pot, the convenience factor becomes two-fold. That’s because, much like with an electric skillet, you won’t need to have a stove burner. Just plug it into an electric outlet whenever you feel like eating a hot pot meal. This will let you cut down on your cooking gas expenses too.
Cooking ends up being more consistent with electric powered pots. They are also easy to clean.
Electric hot pots are also multipurpose appliances. You can use them for cooking rice, noodles, pasta or steaming dumplings. That’s why students living in dormitories find them very handy for cooking a quick meal. Some models even come with accessories that allow you to grill just about anything.
When deciding on a hot pot, don’t be surprised to find that they’re all made overseas. Despite what you may have heard, not all Chinese-made products lack quality. It’s just a matter of looking into the product reviews and the quality and speed of their aftersales service.
Here are my top 5 recommendations for the best electric hot pot.
Table of Contents
- The Best Electric Hot Pots
- 1. Aroma Stainless Steel Hot Pot, Silver, 1500W
- 2. Stariver Electric Hot Pot, 1.8L Electric Cooker, Multi-Functional Mini Pot, 600W
- 3. Sonya Shabu Shabu Hot Pot Electric Mongolian 5L Hot Pot W/DIVIDER ,1500W
- 4. Shabu-shabu & Multi-cooker
- 5. DASH Dash Express Electric Cooker Hot Pot with Temperature Control, 1500W
- Buyers Guide to Picking the Right Electric Hot Pot
The Best Electric Hot Pots
- Aroma Stainless Steel Hot Pot, Silver
- Stariver Electric Hot Pot, 1.8L Electric Cooker, Multi-Functional Mini Pot
- Sonya Shabu Shabu Hot Pot Electric Mongolian Hot Pot W/DIVIDER
- Shabu-shabu & Multi-cooker
- DASH Dash Express Electric Cooker Hot Pot with Temperature Control
1. Aroma Stainless Steel Hot Pot, Silver, 1500W
This electric hot pot is made from food grade stainless steel which allows it to heat up fast and quickly cook your meals. Good for 2-4 people, it’s capable of boiling up around 14 cups of water in 15-18 minutes.
This is a dual pot bowl which means that you can cook two kinds of soup simultaneously, so that you can have two choices of flavorful broth for your hot pot meal.
The front power dial is easy to operate. The temperature of the heating base can be adjusted to the desired level.
The pot is removable for easy cleaning and storage. It is dishwasher friendly and BPA-free.
Accessories include a tempered glass lid with steam vent and cool-touch handles for easy handling.
- The outer portion holds twice as much food as the inner pot
- Easy to clean
- Relatively thin stainless steel build
- Uneven quality of inventory; some customers recieved items that were assembled wrongly or had leaking issues
2. Stariver Electric Hot Pot, 1.8L Electric Cooker, Multi-Functional Mini Pot, 600W
Designed to be a multipurpose cooking appliance, this pot is made from 304 food grade stainless steel which is rust-resistant. It is constructed with a double wall design which minimizes the heat from reaching the exterior build.
This hot pot is best for dormers or for people who need an electric pot to cook noodles, oatmeal, pasta, porridge, or soup. It is also designed with a wide shape so that people can easily reach in to cook their food when used for an oriental hot pot meal.
This pot has a separate heating base. It can also be removed from its base for easy cleaning.
Safety features include an overheating and boil dry protection. This electric hot pot also comes with a keep warm function.
Accessories include a glass lid cover and stay-cool handles to protect your hands from scalding.
- Boils water quickly
- 360 degree rotary power base
- Not for cooking rice because of its boil dry protection function
- No temperature setting ability, so you cannot simmer your food
3. Sonya Shabu Shabu Hot Pot Electric Mongolian 5L Hot Pot W/DIVIDER ,1500W
Shabu shabu is what the Japanese call their version of a hot pot meal but this hot pot can be used for more than just shabu shabu.
Made from stainless steel, this is a double pot that’s good for serving 2-6 people. Its internal divider has been welded expertly so that no leakage occurs between the two pots. This will allow you to enjoy the experience of having two different broth flavors to cook your food with.
It features a removable pot for easy cleaning. It also comes with anti-skid feet to keep the pot even on your table. It is also ETL listed for safety.
- Easy to clean
- Good aftersales service
- General temperature settings (low, med, high)
4. Shabu-shabu & Multi-cooker
This is a stainless steel hot pot that can also grill, simmer or steam a variety of dishes. It’s easy to operate and energy efficient.
It has an adjustable temperature with a pilot light for safety. It also comes with a non-stick griddle, a tempered glass lid, a steam rack, mesh strainer and strainer support. Acessories are all removable for easy cleaning.
- Heating element gets hot quickly and cuts the cooking time down.
- Grilling racks works fine
- Has Proposition 65 label, as the cooking/grill pan is made out of aluminum with a Teflon coating
- No automatic shut off for boil dry protection
5. DASH Dash Express Electric Cooker Hot Pot with Temperature Control, 1500W
This electric hot pot is a compact and portable appliance that can cook rice or noodles, reheat soup or boil water quickly.
It comes with a heat control dial that you can use to set your desired cooking temperature. It has indicator lights to help prevent overcooking as well as cool-touch handles for easy handling. It also has a non-slip feet to keep the pot stable on any even surface.
- One user commented that it’s easy for persons with ADD/ADHD to use
- Boils water quickly
- Made of plastic with a heating element at the bottom
- No auto shut off or boil dry protection
Buyers Guide to Picking the Right Electric Hot Pot
First time users may find it difficult to pick from all the options and features available among the electric hot pots in the market today. Here’s what you should look out for when choosing:
The average size of a hot pot ranges from 1L to 6L. Depending on how large a group you’re cooking for, this size range is more than sufficient enough to boil enough broth to feed them. The bigger ones are usually designed as double flavor pots and come with a separator. This means that you can cook two kinds of broth in the hot pot to give your meal more choice of flavors.
On occasion, you might stumble upon a smaller hot pot. These mini-hot pots are best for college dormers or singles living in tiny rooms. The same is true for mini kettles and small electric skillets. Small hot pots can also be used to boil eggs or noodles for an easy meal.
The best ones are those that are wide but shallow. The opening should be wide so that a lot of people can reach for their food. It should also have a shallow depth so that you can easily see your food amid the broth. A shallow hot pot will also quickly cook your food.
Because it’s a cooking appliance, its glass lid should be tempered and the handles heat-resistant so that you can easily move it around.
Some electric hot pots can be removed from their heating element. This makes them easy to clean.
If you want to do some grilling on the side, you might prefer a hot pot-grill. The best ones are those with the grill designed around the hot pot. Check out whether the grill has enough cooking space for the amount of grilling you want to do. Choose the one that allows you to control the temperature of the pot and grill separately.
Does the appliance come with an Auto Shut Off or Boil Dry protection? Is the heating element securely covered so that it doesn’t warp the table surface? Does it come with rubber feet to minimize sliding? Is the electric cord of sufficient length to prevent accidents?
Hot pots either come in stainless steel or aluminum covered up with food grade plastic. As an industry standard, the Food Grade label is used to describe plastic that does not have BPA, PFOA, or any other toxic chemical that might leach into the food. But if you still have any concerns about the reliability of the label (this being an overseas-produced appliance, after all), stick to stainless steel.
Warranty is a tricky thing when it comes to these products made overseas. Some brands have lousy warranties. Your best hope is reading through the customer feedback and pick one that has the most trustworthy reviews. If you can find a product with a multi-cooker rating, that would be a plus. This means that the appliance has been tested in a lab to confirm that it meets industry quality standards.