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Brewing a cup of tea or can give you a nice pick-me-up, or settle you down at the end of a long day. While some people gravitate towards new countertop electric tea kettles, a stovetop kettle is still a great addition to any kitchen both for function and aesthetic.
Many people (myself included) usually leave their tea kettle out on their stovetops. That’s why they come in all kinds of shapes, sizes, colors, and materials, so they look good on display. Read below to figure out how to find the best stovetop kettle for your unique kitchen!
First, let’s address the elephant in the room, tea kettles aren’t all that exciting (I’m not entirely certain they’re even a little exciting). But the moments you share with your friends over a cup of tea are, making the tool you use to brew that tea a little more important than you would initially think. So let’s talk a little bit about what should be taken into consideration when finding the right kettle for you.
When considering which stovetop kettle to buy, size will be one of the most important factors. If you plan on making tea for the whole family or using it to entertain with friends often, you’ll want to get a larger capacity kettle.
Another very important factor is the whistle. You’ll want one that is loud enough for you to hear it, especially if you don’t plan on staying in the kitchen while its brewing.
However, you’ll also want to consider the noise level it will make. If you or someone in your house is sensitive to loud noise levels, some of the whistles that come with stove top kettles can be piercing. Try to find that balance between an alert and a siren.
You’ll want a spout that will give you maximum control and won’t leak as you’re pouring your tea. Also, a spout that has a lever or opening mechanism away from the spout (such as on the handle) will help you to not get steam burns when you open the spout to pour.
Cast iron is a great material for similar reasons – they last for a very long time and hold a great amount of heat very easily. They can be prone to rust, so make sure to dry these thoroughly.
Copper kettles also conduct heat very well. Ceramic kettles hold heat and maintain temperatures for long periods of time, and aren’t as prone to rusting as cast iron.
Glass kettles are very aesthetically pleasing, but they should be warmed up gradually as they tend to break easily.
Heat Safe Handle
One of the most important safety factors to consider is a heat-safe handle. Make sure your kettle has this feature so that if you accidentally forget to grab it with an oven mitt, you won’t get burned.
The Larger The Lid, The Better
Stovetop kettles with larger lids are great for a few reasons. They’re a great alternative for refilling (especially if you get a kettle with a small spout), and they’re much easier to clean, with greater access to the inside.
Circulon Teakettles Sunrise Whistling Teakettle
This kettle comes in different colors to match your decor. It has a heat-safe handle mentioned above, a large water capacity, and comes at an affordable price. The squeeze and pour spout mechanism also provides additional safety, measures preventing those uncomfortable steam burns, releasing the lever closes the spout completely.
T-fal C76220 Stainless Steel Coffee and Tea Kettle, 3-Quart
Mr. Coffee Flintshire Stainless Steel Whistling Tea Kettle
This kettle is also stainless steel, but it has a more reasonable price tag than most other stainless steel models. With a heat-safe handle and a one-touch pour spout, it is the most economic pick of the three choices listed here. The whistling feature on the Flintshire isn’t very loud at all (could be good or bad depending on your outlook).
Willow & Everett Teakettle
Premium quality stainless steel is impossible to beat (its sturdy, shiny, and extraordinarily durable). The Willow & Everett is made of surgical stainless steel, and for (added) measure has a mirror finished polish on the exterior that you will proudly display whenever the opportunity arises. Simply put, this isn’t a kettle you put back in the cabinet when you’re done using it.
Thankfully, its pleasing aesthetics isn’t all it has going for it. Everything you are looking for in a tea kettle is present in this gorgeous pot from the squeeze and pour spout, to the included infuser strainer for brewing loose tea leaves. You’ll also enjoy the longevity you get from the pot, do to the high-quality material it is constructed from.
But, if we are being picky, the whistle on the kettle is a little noisier than it needs to be. Plus, the nature of having multiple layers of premium stainless steel means this is going to have more weight to it than most kettles (I view this as a good thing).
Teabox Bevel Tea Kettle
Chic and modern in design, the Teabox kettle is as much a piece of art as it is a tea kettle. Don’t let it’s all metal frame fool you though, sure it looks like the stainless steel grip will burn the prints right off your fingertips, but its heat-resistant design keeps it cool to the touch regardless of how hot the rest of the kettle gets.
Unfortunately, even the most beautiful of items have blemishes on them. The most glaring weakness of this piece is its capacity, only capable of holding under 34 ounces of water means you’ll just be serving a couple of people with this at a time. Also, it could benefit from a whistling feature to take the guesswork out of heating your water/tea.
Since when has All-Clad ever made a sub-par kitchen product? Never! So when I first saw that All-Clad made a tea kettle; I knew one thing, “I gotta have it.” Of course, with an All-Clad branded product, comes an All-Clad branded price. That said, as with everything made from this company, you are getting the best possible quality material, giving you a lifespan longer than you could ever ask for in a teapot (backed by a limited lifetime warranty no less).
Le Creuset Enamel-on-Steel Demi
Are you looking for a splash of color to liven up your kitchen? If so Enamel may be the best route to take and nobody does enamel cookware better than Le Creuset. It comes in a wide assortment of colors (my favorite of which is the Caribbean color). The enamel is brushed onto steel so the kettle still distributes heat very well and is capable of withstanding very high temperatures.
This pot has enamel coating both on the exterior and interior of the kettle. I understand some people may be wary of the enamel ruining the taste of the tea, but I assure you, this is not the case with this product. Thanks to the wonderful engineers at Le Creuset, your drink will retain all of its natural flavors without taking on other impurities.
The whistling feature on this kettle could stand a re-work for sure. It is sporadic at best and when it does whistle it is not nearly loud enough to be heard even from relatively close distances (although it isn’t a deal breaker it is a nuisance at the very least).
It should also be acknowledged that the kettle is only holding around five cups of water, way too small for a tea kettle that commands the price Le Creuset products do.
Cast Iron Tea Kettle
Cast iron may not be as glamorous looking as stainless steel, enamel, or copper cookware, but it is every bit as effective. Although, if you can find one with an interesting design pattern it can be quite appealing to the eye, and the Japanese kettle fits this description to the “T”.
Embroidered with imagery of dragons, it brings the feel of having an ancient artifact in your home making this a perfect centerpiece. Of course, by now I’m sure it isn’t necessary to remind you that cast iron is among the best heat conductors you’ll find, so you won’t be worrying about your tea getting cold anytime soon.
My top choice
For me, this was a tough decision. I typically love every All-Clad product I can get my hands on (their tea kettle is no different), but I also thoroughly love the Teabox Bevel stainless steel kettle.
Because tea kettles are all so similar and work about the same, the decision came down to which I thought looked the best. For me, that is the Teabox Bevel. Its mirror finish and the domed shape make for a unique design that I just can’t say no to.
If you’ve made it to the end of this (well.. first I’d like to commend you, tea kettles will never be confused as an especially interesting topic) then it’s clear you are determined to find a kettle that won’t just brew your favorite hot beverage, but one that will last several years and provide pleasing aesthetics while doing it.
Sure tea kettles are simple tools for making (allegedly) simple drinks, but often the simplest things we have in our homes become our most cherished items.
We all want to leave behind a legacy – find a good kettle, and it’s likely to become somewhat of an heirloom staying in your family for generations – and isn’t that what leaving a legacy is all about?