Are you looking for a countertop burner? If you are looking for something that is cheap and portable you’ve probably already come across the Elite Cuisine ESB-301BF Maxi-Matic 1000 Watt Single Buffet Burner Electric Hot Plate.
We’re going to have a look at this electric burner and give you a list of pros and cons so that you can use this information to help in making your decision to buy. Use the link if you want to read a full review of this Elite Maxi-Matic.
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Elite Cuisine ESB-301BF Overview
The Elite Cuisine ESB-301BF is a small electric burner with a cast iron hotplate. This electric burner doesn’t have a large footprint and can be used in the smallest of kitchens. The base of the unit is cool to the touch and has rubber feet to keep it stable on the worktop. The hotplate is easy to use just plug it in and you turn the knob to the level of heat you want. There is an indicator light on the front of the unit so that you tell whether it’s heating or not as it will cycle on and off to keep the temperature steady once it has reached it.
With a cast iron hotplate it makes it a simple task to keep it clean, you only need a damp cloth to wipe over the plate and the body of the unit once it has cooled down.
The size of the burner makes it easy to carry around if you are travelling as it is only a few pounds in weight and can be used anywhere you have access to electric. You will need to have cookware with a 6 inch base or less so that the heat plate can heat it up effectively, but you have the variable control to heat up a pan of soup or fry a plate of bacon and eggs. Check out the pros and cons below:
Portable and Durable
The Elite Cuisine electric burner is only 8.25 x 8.25 x 3.25 in size which makes it easily portable and small enough to store in a kitchen drawer if you don’t want to use it often but keep it on hand when you need an extra burner. The hotplate is made from cast iron so it can stand up to being moved around as it has very little that can break on it. This makes this electric burner a great choice for using in a camper van or a small college dorm room where there is little space for cooking facilities.
1000 watts of power for faster cooking
When you have a small electric burner you need to have enough wattage to allow it to get hot enough to boil water. You are limited on the wattage that you can use with a cooker that is 110v and that plugs into a normal electrical outlet. On the professional burners like the Cadco PCR-1S you have 1500w so it makes sense to have as high wattage as possible if you want to do all types of cooking. The Elite Cuisine ESB-301BF has a smaller plate so 1000w gives it a quick heating ability but it can just as easily simmer if that is what you need.
Can use any cookware
The main benefit of using an electric hotplate that isn’t induction is that you aren’t limited by the cookware that you can use. If you only have magnetic based pans then that is ok as these work too. When you’re using a portable countertop burner for camping or if you’re a student you don’t want to have to go out a spend money on special pans, you just want to use old pans that are useful but don’t look as nice in the kitchen. If you want to use cast iron or non stick pans they work fine too.
Hard to tell how hot
One of the things that customers don’t like about this hotplate is the control knob on the front. The knob is only marked with low/medium/high markings which makes it difficult to tell how hot it is. It’s difficult unless you use the 3 actual setting of low/medium/high to know exactly which levels you’ve chosen previously so you can cook consistently every time. If they had numbered the knob it would be easier to know that you are at an exact level each time you use it.
Some customers have reported quality problems with their Elite Cuisine burner, some had problems with it stopping working after a few months of use, some had problems after a couple of uses and some just had problems straight out of the box. It makes sense to buy from places like Amazon.com where you get a month to return it if you have any damage or it’s just not what you expected.
Small heating surface
The hot plate size on this electric burner is only 6 inches in diameter which means that unless you use smaller pans you will get an overhang on the plate. This won’t stop you from heating up a larger pan but the food might not end up heating evenly and might be a bit less stable than a pan that actually fits the plate. Some people have found this to be a bit limiting.
If you’re looking for a budget electric countertop burner then the Elite Cuisine ESB-301BF fit’s that bill. If you’re cooking for a large family and need to use larger pans then this might not be suitable but for a spare burner or to take away with you on holiday as a cooking option or to heat up something for a student it will probably do very well.