Our Top Pick for 2016: Presto Tilt ‘n Drain Cool-Touch Electric Griddle
Read our full review.
Who doesn’t love a griddle? Just think of all the delicious foods we can prepare with them-pancakes, bacon, steaks, chicken, eggs, sausages-the list is endless. In the world of griddles, however, there are a lot of options, some better than others. We analyzed the various griddles available to determine the gold, silver and bronze options. The criteria for finding griddles that fit the bill were size, heating capability, ease of cleaning and extra features. We went through each one out there and finally came up with the perfect list. Here are the best electric griddles available on the market today.
Table of contents
- #1 Gold Pick (1st Place Winner)
- #2 Silver Pick (2nd Place Runner-Up)
- #3 Bronze Pick (3rd Place)
- #4 Budget Pick (Best Cheap)
Heavy Cast Aluminum Base
2 Reversible Grids
Adjustable Thermostat Control
Premium Nonstick Surface
2 Cooking Areas With Adjustable Heat
Large Surface For Bulk Cooking
3 Cooking Options
Built-in Backstop Ledge
Convenient Warming Drawer
Special Tilt’ndrain Feature
Center Grease Channel
#1 Gold pick (Winner): Presto Tilt ‘n Drain Cool-Touch Electric Griddle
View it on Amazon for $71.08*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.
After hours of pancake pouring, sausage warming and egg flipping, our gold medal pick for the best electric griddle is the Presto 07046 electric griddle. The best things about this non-stick griddle are its size and ease of cleanup- two things that every cook is concerned with. When it comes to size, this one is large. In fact, its manufacturers boast it is much larger than its direct competitors. If you have a large family, or like to host, this is perfect for you. The cooking surface area is 15”x19”. You can easily make a meal starting with a batch of pancakes and then move on to your eggs and bacon. A crowd can easily be served all at once with this electric griddle.
When it comes to ease of cleanup, the Presto has it covered. The heating element is completely detachable. If you have ever used the ones that aren’t, it can be a challenge to avoid submerging the element when trying to clean it. You won’t have that issue with this one—simply detach the element and clean away! It’s a handy device that every cook stuck with cleanup is going to appreciate. When looking for a griddle, be sure that a detachable heating element is part of its virtues. It will save you considerable amounts of time when it comes to cleaning.
Speaking of the heating element, the control master heat control is capable of maintaining a steady heat with one easy turn of the dial. It also easily attaches/detaches by just pushing it into the main griddle or pulling it out. By offering an easily adjusted heat control, you can be sure that different foods are going to be cooked at the right temperatures. By far the easiest way to dry out foods is to have an improper heating element. You won’t have that problem with the Presto due to the excellent heating capabilities it has.
One additional feature that put it over the top into the number one spot was its cool-touch base, front and sides. This is a great feature when it comes to cooking because griddles in particular are tricky. If you’re cooking in a frying pan you always have the handle to use for control. With a hot griddle, you have nothing—once you position it on your countertop or table, it has to stay there until you’re done cooking. The Presto solves that issue by rimming the griddle with heat-resistant plastic. Even at its height of cooking, you can touch the front, sides and base without fear of a burn.
Finally, when it comes to the health factor, the Presto has unique pull-out handles to change the level of the griddle called the tilt ‘n drain feature. For frying meats such as bacon or sausage this is a handy tool because you can tilt the griddle and allow unnecessary grease and fat to drain off to the drip-tray. This is the perfect way to cut out on the fat automatically, without having to tilt the machine yourself, which can be dangerous. This is one of the other top features of the Presto and one of the main reasons why it was selected as our gold pick. Presto’s tilt n’ drain feature is something that has been so successful they are including it on an entire line of their griddles. Once you test it out, you likely are going to see why this innovation alone truly sets their products apart.
The Presto 07046 is a great option if you need a convenient, easy-to-clean, quality electric griddle capable of feeding a large table. In terms of cost, it was moderately priced and overall is a great value for its price. It is our top pick due to its many features and benefits. If you’re looking for an excellent new griddle, this definitely has a lot to offer.
#2 Silver pick (Runner-up): Brentwood TS-840 Electric Griddle
View it on Amazon for $33.92*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.
The silver pick for best electric griddles goes to the Brentwood TS-840. This die-cast aluminum griddle ranks high on our list because of its outstanding quality and performance. As you would expect, it has a sleek look to it with rounded edges, a lip to stop grease and a nonstick surface. The look is defined by the lip around the edges that serves as a drip guard. It makes the design look professional and modern.
Beyond the good-looks though, it has enough functional advantages to be a contender in the search for the best electric griddle. One of its primary advantages is its warming drawer below the cooking surface. How many times have you made one part of your meal, only to have to put it aside and start on another part? Your food gets colder as you rush to finish the meal. With the warming drawer on the TS-840, you won’t have to worry about re-heating anything. As you finish cooking, you can transfer food into the drawer and continue working on the rest of the meal. This unique feature makes it a standout in our list. It helps you to get a full meal on the table at the same time, rather than having to cook piecemeal. Manufacturers at Brentwood most likely included this factor due to its smaller surface area, but that is a positive.
Speaking of surface area….another great feature is its size. Coming in at 14”x5 ¼-inches you won’t have a problem making meals with multiple elements to them. Like the gold pick—the Presto—this one will save you time with its large cooking area and get everyone to the table at the same time. This griddle is good for smaller families or groups- it is perfect for two people who want a compact meal.
Cleaning is easy too with the TS-840. Its non-stick surface is easily wiped clean. There is a drip tray that collects grease, which you can easily remove. When looking for clean-up of griddles remember that a lot of food you put on them is greasy—think sausage, bacon, etc. Because of this, you want to be sure that the manufacturer thought of some way to manage the extra grease to make it easy to clean and convenient to use. The TS-840 has a standard tray that works just fine.
Let’s consider safety next. The TS-840 comes with a ridge around the cooking area to stop grease from spilling over the edge. Its sturdy plastic feet provide a safe cooking surface. Also- the handles are always cool to the touch even when your griddle is on high heat. This is a safety feature that you’ll appreciate once you start cooking with it. The last thing you want is to worry about are burns when trying to make a delicious meal.
The dials on the TS-840 are easy to see and use. There is an adjustable heat control that has an LED indicator. This clearly shows you the temperature and indicates when the machine gets up to the desired heat. It also will let you know when it is on or off. This is an added safety feature that any avid cook is going to love.
Overall, the TS-840 is a great silver pick. The only real drawback is the fact that it is narrow. Cooking of multiple items is possible, but needs to be strategic. As long as you can maneuver around this, it definitely is a solid pick.
#3 Bronze pick (3rd place): Hamilton Beach 3-in-1 Grill/Griddle
View it on Amazon for $31.99*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.
Our bronze pick, coming in third, is brought to you by Hamilton Beach. It’s no wonder they showed up on the list of top griddles. Hamilton Beach is known worldwide for its quality products. The 38546 3-in-1- grill/griddle is an excellent product that has a lot to offer. If you’re looking for a griddle, this definitely is one you should consider.
First of all, it’s a dual-purpose machine with a grill and griddle. The best thing about this one is its two reversible non-stick plates. On one side is the griddle and on the other side is the grill. Because there are two separate sides, you can have a full griddle, full grill or half-griddle and half-grill combination for cooking. This offers a convenient way to use one machine to produce pancakes, steaks, chicken and just about anything else you would create on the grill-top or griddle. Convenience alone was enough to get this griddle to our number three slot.
Also, each side has its own temperature control also so you won’t have a problem with keeping vegetables warm on one side as you sear meat on the other. A lot of issues with dual-purpose griddles is that the heat can affect the other sides. With the Hamilton Beach 38546, you won’t have to worry about that. They did a great job of segregating the plate’s heating elements so that they affect each other as little as possible. The 3-in-1 Grill/Griddle is a fantastic choice in electric griddle because of its flexibility and ability to take on any cooking task you want. Also, the indicator lights on the grill/griddle are easy to adjust and understand.
Secondly, because the two grids are reversible, they are also completely removable and are dishwasher safe. If you’re looking for an easy-to-clean griddle, this is a good one. When the machine cools down, you can easily wash beneath the removed grids. Having a griddle with easy-to-clean capabilities is something you should always consider. You want a good machine that gets the job done, but also saves you time.
This is a grill that also has a high-heating element on each side. In fact, they go up to 425-degrees. That means you can cook anything at a steady rate. Not only will your food be safe to eat, but it will be delicious when you’re done. A quality heating element is a necessity with any electric grill because you will be using it repeatedly over time. Having consistent cooking performance is a key element of quality.
Because it is truly non-stick, you also won’t have to use heavy oils or butter on the grill/griddle. This will help you make healthy food easy and quick. The grease channel leads away excess fat for an even healthier meal option. The tray is removable and dishwasher safe also.
Overall the third place pick, the Hamilton Beach 38546, is a convenient and flexible grill/griddle combo. Its versatility and ease of use are fantastic.
#4 Budget pick (Best cheap): Presto Liddle Griddle
View it on Amazon for $21.24*
*Price typically updated every 24 hours. Current price may be different.
Our budget pick is the option that didn’t make it on the list of top three, but still deserves a mention. We looked for the same things—quality, product, cost and features. Our selection for budget pick is the Presto 07211 Liddle Griddle.
The Liddle Griddle electric griddle is 8 ½-inches by 10 ½ -inches. Its size is good for its average pricing. It’s made of cast aluminum and that means it is excellent at heat conduction and maintains heat throughout the entire cooking area. It also will resist any warping over time. Having cast aluminum is the secret to this griddle. Aluminum is able to even out heat and deliver consistent results every time.
The Liddle Griddle has a detachable heating probe so ease of clean-up is great. Just remove the heating probe and you can completely submerge the unit in water. There is a grease channel to the side of the cooking surface. This is a convenient feature that allows all fat to drain off automatically during heating. It makes for a healthier meal and can easily be cleaned after you’re finished cooking.
The best thing about the Liddle Griddle is its powerful heating element. Don’t let its name fool you—though it’s a play on words as a “liddle” griddle, its heating capability is awesome for the size. It can maintain heat up to 400-degrees consistently, allowing you to cook all of your food evenly and quickly. If you have a lot of things to cook, or are cooking for a bigger crowd, the Liddle Griddle can easily keep up.
One major concern for cooks is safety. The unit is surrounded by plastic so you won’t have to worry about burning your hands if you accidently touch the sides. Plus, the handles are plastic so they also won’t get too hot to handle.
When it comes to storage, the Liddle Griddle is perfect for smaller kitchens or limited storage spaces. Dimension wise, it can be easily stored in a cabinet. Its plastic feet also unscrew for easier and more compact storage if needed. The ease of packing it away is another notable trait. There are a lot of bigger and bulkier appliances out there that don’t do the job half as well.
Overall, the Liddle Griddle is a great budget pick for someone who wants a griddle, but isn’t ready to fork over the higher cost of the top picks. It’s also good for families of one or two. In the end, it is a good gateway griddle and as a basic choice has a lot to offer.
There are a lot of things we took into consideration when formulating our top four picks for electric griddles. Sure, it has to get the job done, but it also has to stand up to some other important factors. We need to assess how well it cleaned up, how effective and consistent the heating element was, its size for cooking, how well it supported health concerns and the extra features manufacturers offered.
If you’re considering buying a griddle, always think of the clean-up it is going to involve. Sure, you can find a great cooking surface, awesome heater and fantastic looking griddle, but what if cleaning it is a mess? Always look at features like this for long-term use.
Remember that you want to get your money’s worth out of all purchases and that includes the griddle you pick. Value means quality, but it also means ease of maintenance. With griddles, look for the ones with completely detachable heating elements. This way when you want to clean it, you can either completely submerge the unit in water for a thorough scrub down, or you can put it in the dishwasher. Either way, you are going to save time and frustration.
Machines with non-detachable heating elements can never be submerged. That means you’ll have to clean out every crack and crevice with your two hands. This can be a task with foods that have grease. You’ll have to carefully clean and maneuver it around to get it as clean as you need. Save yourself the time and get the machines with detachable elements. The convenience alone will make up for the added cost.
Also, think about the grease trap. Some griddles have a grease tray that collects fat throughout the cooking process. When you’re finished you can empty it. Other griddles have built-in channels that collect grease but aren’t removable. Ask yourself how comfortable you are with the two options. Usually a completely detachable tray is dishwasher safe by itself.
With our top four picks we did thorough studies of the clean-up after use. They all stood up and had their own convenient solutions for the owners to work with.
THE HEATING ELEMENT
It can look great and have a great price, but if the griddle you pick doesn’t heat evenly and well, it could mean disaster for your meal times. Make sure to look for griddles that offer a good range of heat and ones that promise steady heat. Older models used to heat up but when they reached the desired high level, they stopped. When they reached a certain low level they’d heat up again. With the constant heating and cooling, it was difficult to get evenly cooked foods. It also took longer amount of time to cook foods, which dried out meats and vegetables considerably. Today’s cooks want consistent results and the only way to get that is to have steady and consistent heating elements that are reliable.
Today’s models aren’t the same. In fact today’s heating elements are capable of maintaining a consistent heat throughout the entire cooking process. Some griddles (see our silver pick) are able to heat at two different temperatures consistently. That’s how good heating elements are these days. When you’re picking a griddle, be sure to read the reviews and note how well they are at maintaining steady heat. By far this is going to affect your meal.
You also want to make sure the heating elements are easy-to-read. In particular, if you’re purchasing the machine as a gift, be sure to consider its user. Is it someone who needs larger controls for ease of adjusting? Do they need brighter lights to see when a temperature is reached? All of our picks had easy-to-read and understand controls so just about anyone can use them. A good manufacturer makes controls just like that. They want their entire customer base to understand how to work their products.
Our top four picks had excellent heating elements to offer great results. In the end, this is what your griddle is supposed to do. If you’re looking for a griddle, or any heating appliance for that matter, think hard about how well the heating element is in terms of consistency and power.
Size is a major consideration when you are purchasing a griddle. Our list included various sizes, but this is something you should always assess. If your household is two people, size isn’t that big of an issue. Most likely you are going to find a great griddle in any one of our picks. They will allow you to make meals in a jiffy because of their size.
On the other hand, if you have to make food for a lot of people, consider the surface area of the griddles you are contemplating. When reading reviews, you want to read about the size of the “cooking surface” and not just the dimensions. Dimensions include the handles, heat-resistant frames and legs. Just because the dimensions are 12-inches by 20-inches doesn’t mean you have that much cooking space. You want to look for “cooking surface” or “cooking surface area” when reading reviews. Think about the space you need to feed your household and decide on size from there.
Regardless of how many people you are cooking for, you must also consider storage of your griddle. How easy is it to store your griddle? Is it bulky and heavy? Is your storage limited? Does it have any added storage convenience features? Even the biggest bacon-lover probably isn’t going to use their griddle every day and sooner or later it will have to be stored. If all of your storage cabinets require a step-ladder to get to, having a heavy griddle unit most likely isn’t going to work. Consider the storage needs your kitchen dictates prior to purchasing a griddle. This way you’ll know exactly what you can and can’t work with.
Also, see if you can find griddles with added features like places to store the cord and/or heating element on the griddle. Anyone who has had a griddle knows how easily it can be separated from its cord. Some griddles have removable parts that cut down on required storage space even more. Think about what your specific needs are and decide accordingly.
Today’s educated consumer wants healthy foods and convenient ways to prepare them. Having a griddle is a great option for cooking foods, but it also can come with fat. For our griddles, we looked at ways the appliance is able to mitigate fat. Does it have a drip tray? How does it lead fat away from food so it isn’t absorbed, but rather drained away? How easily is that drip tray cleaned and maintained?
Of course, the health of the food put on a griddle mainly comes from a good choice. Still, a good griddle can help you to have delicious food that is still healthy with a few key features.
There are definitely the “extras” you should look for in a griddle. Here are some of the best ones to consider when deciding on a purchase:
• Heat-resistant safety guards
• Built-in splash guards
• Removable splash guards for easy cleaning
• Solid base/solid legs
• Can the griddle rest on any surface?
You likely won’t get all of the extras, but that shouldn’t keep you from trying. The four top picks noted all had various extras that made them the best value for their cost. Think of what extras are most important to you and your needs so you can make the wisest griddle decision possible.
Conclusion (Wrapping it up)
Having a good griddle is going to give you a lot of added meal options. This is why picking the best griddle possible is important. Not only will it help you produce healthy, quick and delicious meals, but it also will bring out the natural cook in you to try new recipes conveniently and easily.
Discussion and comments
We want to know what you think. Do you own any of the products we discussed? Which did you buy and how did it work out for you?
Do you know of an even better product?
- Review of The Presto 07046 Tilt n Drain BigGriddle Cool Touch Model, ElectricGriddleReviews.net.
- Tilt ‘n Drain 285sq. in. Griddle. Homedepot.com.
- Electric Griddle; Non-stick Black (TS-840). Brendwoodus.com.
- Brentwood TS-840 Electric Griddle. Overstock.com.
- 3-in-1 Grill/Griddle (38546). HamiltonBeach.com.
- Hamilton Beach Brands Inc. 38546 3-in-One Grill/Griddle. Kmart.com.