The best tea kettles

  • The best tea kettles are easy to fill and pour, quickly bring water to a boil, and can be washed without much effort.
  • With its variable water temperature settings, durable design, and good price, the Krups Savoy Adjustable Temperature Kettle is our best electric kettle.
  • The OXO Good Grips Classic Tea Kettle is our top pick of the stovetop models. It features drip-free pouring, a large capacity, and a nice loud whistle to let you know it's tea time.

There's nothing like a hot cup of tea, but boiling water and safely pouring it into a mug or teacup is a difficult task without a proper kettle. For a long time, I would microwave mugs of water until it was reasonably hot, but it was never truly hot enough to properly steep tea, and I was tired of drinking weak early gray. I invested in an electric kettle, and it's made boiling water quicker and easier, so I can relax with my tea sooner.

There are two main categories that tea kettles fall into - electric or stovetop. Each style has its own merits, and the type you choose often comes down to personal preference. An electric kettle tends to act as a permanent countertop fixture, as it's more of a small appliance than a stovetop kettle. Stovetop kettles are classic, smaller, and, of course, analog. We've included the best of both in our guide.

An argument for electric kettles

For real tea fanatics, it can be difficult to get just the right temperature water for your brew and nuking H2O in the microwave is simply out of the question. That's where electric kettles come in. They boil water faster than a watched pot on your stove, and the best ones even offer adjustable temperature settings to ensure that the water is just right for your delicate tea leaves.Advertisement

You can also use electric kettles to boil water quickly for any cause. No matter your needs, it's good to have a dedicated appliance in your kitchen that boils water quickly. Every self-respecting British person has a kettle at home, and the fact that most Americans don't is totally befuddling. It's time to correct that error, because as one Brit told me, "Stoves take too long, and we don't live in the 1800s anymore."

An argument for stovetop kettles

For me, the hardest part about making tea is remembering that I am making tea. We own both an electric kettle and a stovetop one. The electric kettle does not notify me when the water is ready. Conversely, the whistle of the stovetop kettle demands my attention more intensely than my feral toddler does. You can't forget you are making tea with the best whistling tea kettles.

We focus on the tea making abilities of the top kettles, but really, they can be used to heat water for any purpose: hot chocolate, ramen noodles, soup, oatmeal - you name it.
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What are kettles made of?

Most kettles these days are made of stainless steel, plastic, enamel-on-steel, or some combination of these materials. There are a few glass kettles available, but they receive low marks for performance from both buyers and experts.

Due to research linking bisphenol-A (BPA) and phthalates to cancer, many people are a little squeamish around kettles made out of plastic, especially since heating plastics can cause chemicals to leach into liquids or foods. However, the plastics that have been shown to cause cancer are used to make clear, hard containers or soft, flexible products. Tea kettles don't fit into either of these categories.But, if you are concerned about drinking hot water that has come into contact with plastic, make sure you choose a tea kettle that avoids this problem. Each of the kettles in our guide uses plastic sparingly.Advertisement

Though the name may suggest otherwise, stainless steel tea kettles are susceptible to rusting. The best way to combat this is to regularly wash your kettle and dry it completely. If you do notice rust, fill your kettle with a 1:1 ratio of vinegar and water, boil it for a few minutes, empty it, and then wash your kettle per the manufacturer's specifications. Rusting is less common with enamel-on-steel kettles.

Here are the best tea kettles:

Prices and links are current as of 3/30/2020. We combined our buying guides for the best stovetop kettles and the best electric kettles into one guide, so you can directly compare the two types of kettles.

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The best electric kettle overall

The best electric kettle overall
The Krups Savoy Adjustable Temperature Kettle heats water to the perfect temperature for brewing a variety of teas, it looks gorgeous, and it costs much less than similar kettles.

If you're serious about your tea and you like to drink all different kinds of tea, you need an adjustable temperature kettle. The 1.7 Liter Krups Savoy Adjustable Temperature Kettle has five preset temperature settings to ensure that you never burn your green tea leaves with scalding hot water ever again.

It's remarkably easy to select the temperature setting you need and you can actually watch the water temperature rise on the LCD display that sits on the kettle's base. If you want black or herbal tea, just hit boil and watch the water go up to 212 degrees Fahrenheit within five minutes or less. If you're drinking green, white, or oolong tea, you press the "TEMP" button until you see the right number for your tea on the screen.

Believe it or not, using the right temperature is a big deal. Whenever I make green, white, or oolong tea with this kettle, I always set it to the right temperature instead of just hitting that "BOIL" button. The teas' flavors come out in full force when brewed at the right temperature, and it's so easy to select the right temperature on the Krups kettle. The LCD screen is an excellent addition to this fine kettle's design.

The kettle automatically stops boiling when it hits the temperature you selected or if it runs dry. The kettle will even keep your water warm for a time before automatically shutting off to protect the heating element. You can also press the start/cancel button to turn it off immediately.

The kettle is made out of brushed stainless steel, and it looks absolutely gorgeous in my kitchen. The kettle jug is unattached, so you can pick it up and pour the water over your tea, oatmeal, or cooking pot without worrying about the length of the cord. The cord is concealed in the base and you can have it as short as you need it to be.

There's a big button on the top of the kettle, which pops the lid open when pressed. The handle is big and comfortable for easy handling and pouring. There is a water window as well, so you can check how much is in there. Krups put the anti-scale filter in the spout of the kettle, and you can remove it if need be.

We've been using it daily for nearly two years without any incident, and we'll keep you updated on how it fares, but we are confident that this is indeed the best kettle you can buy.

Pros: Affordable, adjustable temperature settings, clear LED screen, easy to use, attractive metal design

Cons: Some users experienced leaking

The best stovetop kettle overall

The best stovetop kettle overall
If you are looking for a classic kettle that heats quickly, fills easily, and is simple to pour, the OXO Good Grips Classic Tea Kettle is an excellent choice.

The OXO Good Grips Classic Tea Kettle has a traditional shape with its wide-bottom body that narrows to the top and spout that draws from near the bottom of the kettle. More importantly, it has a strong whistle that alerts you when the water is boiling. Once the water boils, you open the spout cover, and the spout offers precise, drip-free pouring.

This kettle is made of high-grade stainless steel that is supposed to be rust-resistant. OXO recommends wiping the kettle down regularly to keep cooking oils from wearing away at the steel. The handle and spout have silicone touch points that resist heat for burn-free use. The handle folds to the side for storage or easy filling. The kettle holds 1.7 quarts, which is a good amount for a big pot of tea.

OXO offers a satisfaction guarantee, so the company will refund or replace your kettle if you are not satisfied for any reason.

We are not alone in ranking the OXO Good Grips kettle at the top of our list. Cook's Illustrated was impressed with its large capacity and easy-to-use design. The reviewers liked that the handle folds out of the way, there's good interior visibility, and it's easy to fill with its broad opening.

Pros: Wide bottom for quick heating, easy to fill and pour, large capacity

Cons: Can rust if not properly cleaned

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The best electric kettle on a budget

The best electric kettle on a budget
The fast-heating Original Secura Stainless Steel Double Wall Electric Water Kettle is about the same price as plastic models, but it's completely BPA-free.

Sometimes you just want a no-frills appliance that works and comes at an affordable price point. The Original Secura Stainless Steel Double Wall Electric Water Kettle fits the bill as a budget-friendly stainless steel electric kettle that boils water quickly.

It may not have fancy features like variable temperature settings or a water gauge, but it does offer a full stainless steel unibody design and 1500 watts of heating power. The kettle turns off automatically so you don't boil a dry pot and damage the heating element.

Secura's kettle is about the same price as cheap plastic ones, but it is completely BPA-free and no plastic touches your water. The stainless steel inner wall is easy to clean after each use, so you can avoid mineral buildup over time. It has a double-wall construction, so the outer layer of plastic stays cool to the touch even as the water boils inside.

Reviewers on Heavy, Best Kitchen Kit, and Best Electric Kettle all recommend the Secura kettle. As long as you don't need variable temperatures for tea or want to see the water level inside, the Secura kettle is a real winner — especially at this price point.

Pros: 100% stainless steel design, keeps water warm, shuts off automatically, two-year warranty, easy to clean

Cons: No water gauge to see how much is inside and no variable temperature settings

The best stovetop kettle on a budget

The best stovetop kettle on a budget
Not only is the Cuisinart Aura Steel Stovetop Tea Kettle inexpensive, it has a large two-quart capacity that is useful for much more than tea making.

The Cuisinart Aura is simply your basic stovetop tea kettle, and sometimes that's all you need. It gets the job done at a great price point, and if it breaks or rusts, it won't break your heart.

The Cuisinart Aura features a two-quart-capacity solid stainless steel body — enough for eight cups of tea. The large capacity is also handy for boiling water for oatmeal, instant noodles, or anything else you need to quickly boil water for. This kettle notifies you that your water is boiling and ready by producing a whistle that increases in intensity. And it's a powerful whistle — sometimes it's a bit too intense, and you'll find yourself running over to the stove to make it stop.

To pour the water, there is a lever on the handle that you push to open the spout cap, ensuring you'll never have to put your fingers near hot steam or boing water to remove a cap. The handle is stationary and made of plastic, and the wide lid allows for easy refilling of the kettle. To top it off, the entire setup is backed by a lifetime limited warranty.

Pros: Limited lifetime warranty, inexpensive, large capacity

Cons: Very loud whistle, can rust without proper cleaning

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The best high-end electric kettle

The best high-end electric kettle
The Smeg '50s Retro-Style Electric Kettle adds style to any kitchen with its fun old school look, and it'll heat your water quickly, too.

Who says that kettles have to be boring and ugly? Smeg's '50s Retro-Style Electric Kettle adds much-needed flair to the boring old kettle with its '50s color palette and fun design aesthetic. You can get it in multiple color options, including cream, blue, green, red, black, chrome, and pink.

The kettle is made of stainless steel that's powder-coated for added durability and protection from mineral buildup. Inside, there's a removable, stainless steel limescale filter that you'll need to clean every now and then to prevent too much of a deposit from building up. If you have hard water, you'll have to clean the filter more often. It also has a water level window so you can check how much water is inside. Plus, Smeg offers a one-year warranty.

Anyone who loves fashionable, well-designed appliances or has a retro-inspired kitchen filled with Smeg appliances will love this kettle. It's also recommended by reviewers on Apartment Therapy and Hughes, though they both point out you're paying a premium for the slick design.

A trusted British friend of mine heartily recommends this kettle, and given how much tea he drinks on a daily basis, his recommendation carries a lot of weight.

Pros: Fun 1950s-inspired design, stainless steel, automatic shut off, removable stainless steel filter, water level indicator, and lots of lovely color options

Cons: You're paying for form more than function

The best high-end stovetop kettle

The best high-end stovetop kettle
If you are looking for a stylish tea kettle that heats quickly and stores easily, you will be hard-pressed to find a better option than the Le Creuset Enamel-on-Steel Zen Teakettle.

The enamel-on-steel body of the Le Creuset Zen Teakettle makes it more resistant to rusting and thus more durable than its counterparts. The kettle holds 1-5/8 quarts of water and has an inverted bowl shape, which helps it heat quickly. The Asian-style, arched handle folds down for storage and filling. And, the lid is wide for easy cleaning and filling.

Though the enamel of the kettle is "chip resistant," Le Creuset warns that repeated banging may damage the exterior enamel. The Zen Teakettle comes in ten colors, including Marseille, cherry, dune, and palm. Plus, each style comes with a limited five-year warranty.

BestReviews ranks this Le Creuset model as the best tea kettle on the market. The reviewer likes that it has a heat-proof handle, loud whistle, and can be used on any type of stovetop. However, they felt the price was a bit steep.

Tea Party Girl appreciated that the shape allows for easy cleaning, that the handle folds down for easy storage, and there are several colors to choose from. Best Electric Kettles reviewed this non-electric kettle and was impressed with the whistle and how simple it is to operate. The reviewer also liked that it could be used with just about any type of stove.

Unlike most of the tea kettles we researched, we did not find any complaints of rusting with this one. However, there were other issues. Several users report that the spout tends to dribble water. There were also a couple cases of reviewers finding that the plastic handle flaked.

Pros: Heat-proof handle folds down, loud whistle, can be used with any stove type, including induction

Cons: Expensive, may dribble

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Check out our other tea-lover guides

Check out our other tea-lover guides
The best tea infusers

Tea is serious business and real aficionados prefer loose leaf tea over the leftover leaves most companies stuff into tea bags. However, if you want to brew tea properly, you are going to need the right equipment. In addition to getting one of the best kettles to bring your water to just the right temperature for the leaves you're using, you'll also want a tea infuser to separate the leaves from your brew once it's ready. These are the best tea infusers.

The best travel mugs

Any decent travel mug will keep your drink hot or cold for a few hours without leaking. Our picks include a great all-around option for commuters, a mug that can keep your coffee hot enough to drink for an entire day, and a more rugged option for weekend play. These are the best travel mugs.

The best teas for every time of the day

Tea is the most popular beverage in the world after water. It's also one of the oldest, and it's the center of a wide range of traditions all around the globe. There's a variety of tea that's perfect for every time of the day from the first cup of the morning to your before-bed relaxation brew. These are the best teas to carry you through your day.