Best For Home: Mueller Premium 1500W Electric Kettle

Why buy an appliance to boil water? Isn’t it faster to boil water in a microwave?

Electric kettles are great to quickly heat up water to a boiling temperature—often faster than a microwave. (That’s because kettles are 1500 watts, while microwaves are often half that power rating).

And, of course, some folks don’t have access to a microwave (some college dorms ban the use of microwaves).

The average time to heat up 1.7 liters of water in an electric kettle is 4-6 minutes (depending on the initial temperature of the water).

Kettles are great for quickly making soup, French press coffee and (of course) tea.

Another advantage for kettles: many can heat up to 1.8 liters of hot water at a time . . . more than a microwave can handle.

Kettles are quieter than a microwave, which is great if you live in a dorm . . . or want to make your own hot drinks at your office desk (without having to go to the break room and use the communal microwave—and have to visit with everyone).

After testing out an electric kettle model here at our office (and surveying our readers for their favorites), here are a few caveats to think about when buying an electric kettle:

  1. Kettles are to heat up water—and no other liquid. They are just designed for H2O.
  2. You must be careful in cleaning a kettle. Why? The electric element is often built-in into the pot . . . so you can’t submerge the kettle in soapy water, for example. Kettles must be cleaned in a certain way (see the manual for details).
  3. All kettles get hot—even the glass ones! Be careful when handling.

Ok, now that the formalities are out of the way, let’s go over our top picks for electric kettles.

For the best electric kettle for home use, we recommend Mueller’s Premium 1500 watt kettle—it combines the best performance with value.

What We Liked

• Easy to use.

• FAST!

• Good capacity at 1.7 liters.

• LED light indicates it is on.

• Auto shut-off within 30 seconds of boiling.

• Safety feature turns off unit if it is accidentally turned on, yet has no water.

• BPA free.

• Glass kettle + stainless steel.

What Needs Work

• Despite the European-sounding name and flag logo, this kettle is made in China. To be honest, nearly all electric kettles are made in China and there’s nothing wrong with that. But don’t think because this brand has “Austria” in its name, that it’s actually made in Europe!

• Durability could be better. We see some reports that the kettle stopped working after several months.

• Somewhat louder than other kettles. If you prefer a quieter kettle, we’d suggest our next pick (Best For Office).

Best For Office: Mueller Ultra Kettle

When you use a kettle in an office setting, quietness is important. On that front, we’d recommend Mueller’s Ultra Kettle.

We tried out several kettle-style boilers before deciding Mueller’s is the best of the bunch. In our tests, it heated water from room temperature to boiling in about 5 minutes. And best of all, there is an auto shut-off so you don’t have to worry about over-boiling.

What We Liked

 Quickly boils water.

• Affordable.

• Quiet—great for offices.

• Boil-dry safety feature.

• Anti-slip grip handle.

• Thick glass and sturdy base.

• Auto shut-off when boiling.

What Needs Work

• Could be easier to clean. 

Best For College Dorm: AmazonBasics Stainless Steel Portable Fast Electric Hot Water Kettle

For college dorms, we looked for two features: smaller capacity (college students are often just heating water for ramen or tea for one) and a longer cord (for some reason, dorm rooms never have convenient outlets).

AmazonBasics’ Stainless Steel electric kettle hit all the right notes—at a price that is easy on the wallet.

What We Liked

• More compact size = easier to store.

• Long 30″ cord. Earlier versions of this kettle had a shorter cord. And some other brand kettles we tested had even shorter (2 foot) cords. Some dorm rooms have just one or two outlets, so this longer cord is helpful!

• Stainless steel = less chance of breaking. And in a dorm room, that’s important! This kettle is stainless steel with a small plastic window to see the water level. That’s more ideal for dorm rooms than kettles made of glass, in our opinion.

• Affordable.

• Easy to fill.

• Holds 1 liter of water. That’s smaller than other kettles, but should work well for a single person.

• Removable filter for cleaning.

• Auto shut-off.

• BPA free.

• Base lets you coil up extra cord if you don’t need it.

What Needs Work

• Can rust after long-term use. Well, that’s the downside to a mostly all-metal kettle! But we still would recommend it for overall durability.

• Not everyone likes the small plastic water window.

• Louder than other models, in our opinion.

Best For Camping/RV’s: COSORI Electric (BPA Free) Boiler Hot Water & Tea Heater Glass Kettle

We think COSORI’s electric kettle is best for camping or RV’s. Instead of  boiling water on a propane stove, this kettle is quick and efficient.

What We Liked

• Sturdy.

• Quickly heats water.

• Auto shut off.

• 3-7 minutes to boil water.

• 1.7 liter capacity.

• BPA-free.

• LED light helps use at night (camping!).

• Filter is attached to the lid—some folks like this better than when the filter is on the spout. It is easier to clean.

What Needs Work

• Pricey.

Why Trust Us

We’ve been rating and reviewing products for the home and families since 1994. We do extensive research, evaluating products with an eye toward quality, ease of use and affordability. When we purchase a product for hands-on testing, we do so with our own money.

Here’s another key point: we don’t take money from the brands we review. No free samples, no sponsors, no “partnerships.” Our work is 100% reader-supported!