Critics' Pick

The Best Electric Kettles for 2021 and Beyond

updated Nov 22, 2020
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Post Image
Credit: Joe Lingeman

Even if you don’t drink tea, you may find yourself wanting an electric tea kettle. You can use one to make oatmeal, instant noodles, hot chocolate, and more. It could even stand in for a microwave if space is tight (see usage ideas in previous sentence). And of course, if you do drink tea, many electric kettles claim to heat water faster than stovetop kettles, which means you can have your drink right now. (Or, more accurately, four minutes from now, but you get the point.)

Which ones can you trust to heat up water in a — quick and accurate — pinch? Who makes the best electric kettle? We looked at the top picks from other well-respected testers including Wirecutter and Cook’s Illustrated and these were the five that bubbled up to the top.

1. Cuisinart CPK-17 PerfecTemp Cordless Electric Kettle

The Best Electric Kettle, According to Wirecutter

This kettle stands out as Wirecutter’s winner — among every single model they’ve tested since 2013. Why? Because it heats up quickly (boils 1 liter in around 4 minutes), accurately holds water at a set temperature, and is easy to use. It has six preset temperatures, a keep-warm feature, and alerts that are helpful and not obnoxious. We really love the backlit water window that shows you how full (or empty) the kettle is at any given moment.

2. OXO BREW Cordless Glass Electric Kettle

The Best Electric Kettle, According to Cook’s Illustrated

The folks at Cook’s Illustrated tested only glass or stainless steel kettles, saying that plastic ones can impart a funky flavor. This large, new-ish kettle from OXO won the best pick, thanks, in part, to how quickly it heats up. (It can boil 1 quart of water — although it can hold nearly 2 liters — in 4 minutes and 59 seconds.) The testers also really liked the slow-open lid (as it helped contain steam and splashes), the removable filter, the wide handle, and the light-up power switch.

3. AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Electric Kettle

The Bestselling Electric Kettle on Amazon

Of course Amazon picks this as an “Amazon’s Choice” item — it’s from the site’s no-frills, private-label brand. But the people agree: It’s earned 4.7 out of 5 stars from more than 25,000 reviewers. The most budget-friendly option on this list, it doesn’t have any of the bells and whistles that the others have. It simply brings water (up to one liter) to a boil and then turns off. But it does so reliably and quickly (around four to five minutes, according to reviewers). If you just need something simple for, say, your desk at work, this is a good bet.

Credit: Amazon

Kitchn’s Thoughts on the Best Electric Kettles

We honestly stand by every one of these picks! Both the Cuisinart kettle and the OXO kettle are great if you need something reliable to use day in and day out. We love the AmazonBasics kettle if you need something to use once in a while and you don’t want to shell out a ton of cash. And not to complicate things, but we’d love to throw out one more suggestion: this beauty from Bella. At $39.99, it’s more expensive than the Amazon option but still cheaper than the others. We love that it’s ceramic, has an automatic shut-off, and that the well-balanced spout makes for easy pouring. And it’s pretty enough to leave out on the counter.

Do you have an electric tea kettle that you love? Tell us about it in the comments below!