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The Cuisinart Griddler comes in many different configuration. They all have different features and power setting. It is mulifunctional, easy to use, convenience and comes with all the bell and whistle. You can make panini press or even grill steaks and saute food all at your table. This makes it a perfect utility to cook at a place with no stove. However, most dont realize that at its core, this technology dates back to the early 1900’s. This review will take a closer look at the design and features of Cuisinart Griddler.
Cuisinart Griddler Deluxe vs Elite vs 5 in 1 Quick Summary
|Categories||GR-4N Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler||Cuisinart Griddler Deluxe||Cuisinart Griddler, Elite, Silver|
|Power||1500 watts||1800 watts||1800 watts|
|Dual Temperature Control||No||Yes||Yes|
|Adjustable Top Cover||No||Yes||Yes|
|Non Stick||Hard Anodized Nonstick||3 Layer Hard Anodized Nonstick||3 layer Hard Anodized Nonstick|
|Cooking Surface (Square Inches)||100 closed / 200 open||120 closed / 240 open||120 closed / 240 open|
|Thoughts||A good basic griddler. It has a little bit of a confusing knob that makes it difficult to figure out. But power output is ok and you should be able to cook basic things on it.||This model has a bump in power up to 1800 watts. It has a more adjustable temperature for dual zone cooking temperature. It can reach up to 500 degree which is needed to brown things better.||Like the Deluxe model, it has 1800 watts of power. But this has a digital lcd for the tech geek out there. It also has a dual zone temperature that the base model does not.|
|Reviewed Cookware||GR-4N Cuisinart 5-in-1 Griddler, 13.5″(L) x 11.5″(W) x 7.12″(H), Silver with Silver/Black Dials||Cuisinart GR-150P1 GR-150 Griddler Deluxe, Brushed Stainless||Cuisinart Griddler, Elite, Silver|
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At its core, there is a heating coil connecting to the wall out let. That coil heats up the pan and lets you cook. Everything from electrical waffle irons to toaster uses this basic concept. What manufacturer would do is change some core features such as dials or even a handle. The most recent model will use a digital lcd to make it more modern. In the past, you would just have a basic knob. Their thermostat are usually more rudimentary than what you see today. Its actually quite amazing how manufacturer are able to just repackage the same basic thing and sell it years after year. For example, in the 1950’s sunbeam made a waffle iron that actually had a grill plate attachment that lets you grill. That model was called Sunbeam CG Waffle Iron.
Nevertheless, the griddler uses a concept that is very similar to other waffle irons of the past. The plates are heated by coils and those very same plate can be removed. If you can get a plate that has a waffle shape, then you can even make waffle. However, it seems to be delegated to only grilling and making sandwich. Which isnt bad in itself. (It Seems to Have a Separate Waffle Plate for Sale) The handle sure makes it convenient to mash and flatten food.
Cuisinart Griddler Features
What is unique is the griddler multi temperature feature. You can select which section of the grill to heat up. For only the Bottom, you switch it to the griddle feature and you can select the temperature. For both the top and bottom, select the right portion. However, since there is a limited power rating of 1200 watts. It wont get as hot if you spread the power to the top and bottom. If you intend on searing food, I recommend only using the griddle feature. The top portion of the griddler folds down so you can use both if you need to use both as a cooking surface area.
The plates appear to be aluminum with teflon coating. They should be treated like any nonstick pan. Do not use any hard metal utensils as it might tear the coating. Overtime, it will lose its nonstick properties and you would need to cook it like a aluminum pan. These plates are removable so cleaning is a lot easier. In some of the older waffle iron, the plate are affixed to the machine itself.
Power, Heat and Wattage
The power output or heat is measured by Wattage. Since our sockets in the US can only go up to 1800 watts before hitting a circuit breaker, that is the max you will typically see. In general, the higher the wattage it is, the better. This ensures that your griddle can reach the optimal cooking temperature. In the lower model, the max wattage is only at 1500 watts. Which isnt bad, but the higher deluxe and elite model has a wattage rating of 1800 watts. That alone is enough for me to consider those models.
The reason being is that usually these electrical griddle are iffy with the heat output. They wont get hot enough and they will not brown food properly. You want food to reach a temperature of at least 300 degree Fahrenheit for a maillard reaction to occur. That is when the sugar in the food caramelize and develop flavor compound. If it does not do that, then you might as well have steamed food.
In my experience, this is the major limiting factor of electrical appliance. They almost never seem to be able to compete with a gas stove alternative. However, this is what you sacrifice for ease and convenience.
Which Cuisinart Griddler is the Best?
There seems to have a few different model. I personally would not get a model that has less than 1200 watts. The 1500 watts GR-4n model and above is preferable. The Deluxe and elite has a higher 1800 watts power rating. They are better and come with fancy digital knobs but it also incur more cost. However, I personally believe that extra 300 watts of power is worth it if you really intend to cook in it. Those other feature are not as important as they wont affect cooking as much.
What Can you Cook on a Cuisinart Griddler?
Generally, it is recommended that you cook light items. Things like eggs, vegetables or browning sandwiches are preferable. Waffles are good as well if you get the waffle plate. I personally would avoid cooking steaks and it will not get hot enough. You need a really high temperature to get a good crust on a steak. The last thing you want is to have a wet soggy steak. Which is what you will get with the Cuisinart Griddler. You can cook burgers but dont expect that great of a crust. The grill plate does make a pretty good grill mark though.
The Cuisinart Griddler will develop smoke, but you can reduce it by removing any burnt on carbon. Luckily the nonstick coating will make that an easy task.
Cuisinart Griddler Thoughts
The Cuisinart Griddler is based on a technology that has been around for a long time. Its just a heating coil with a plate. However, this simple combo is incredibly convenient when you do not have a gas stove top. They can cook on the table or get stored in a RV. Perfect for traveling in your fan. The major limiting factor of the lower model will be the power. I recommend the models with the 1800 watts power rating but it can be quite costly.
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I hope you enjoyed this Cuisinart Griddler Review. If you would like to see more, please visit our Pots and Pans Review page.