The Search for the Best Non-Plastic Electric Kettle
Water tainted with a plastic taste from your electric kettle is certainly not something your taste buds appreciate, but ingesting water that tastes of plastic may be more than just bad for the palate. Unless you're using a non-plastic electric kettle, there's a chance that your kettle is leaching endocrine disruptors – such as BPA – into the boiling water. In this article, we take a look at how these endocrine disruptors can affect your health, and provide tips on where you can find a non-plastic electric kettle made of stainless steel or glass. If you scroll down, you'll also find a product comparison table (highlighting the pros and cons of various kettles) to help you make a smart choice in case you're planning on buying a non-plastic electric kettle.
Plastic Contains Chemicals That Mess With Human Hormones
Endocrine disruptors, chemicals that can cause health problems by interfering with the human endocrine (hormone) system, are found in a wide range of plastic products including many electric kettles. Bisphenol A (BPA) is one of the most famous endocrine disruptors, and it is often detected in foods and drinks that have been stored or heated in plastic containers. While the U.S. agencies continue to allow the use of BPA in most plastic products, an increasing number of studies suggest that a significant exposure to BPA may be linked to health problems like polycystic ovary syndrome, infertility, impaired brain development and learning disabilities (in children), prostate cancer, breast cancer, thyroid problems, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and asthma – just to mention a few.
Finding the Winning Non-Plastic Electric Kettles
As a result of these studies, consumers have begun to demand products that are free of BPA and other toxins found in plastic products. As both stainless steel and glass are naturally free of BPA, phthalates, and other similar chemicals, products made of stainless steel and glass are gaining popularity among consumers. Companies selling non-plastic electric kettles, in particular, are seeing their sales increase as shoppers are growing increasingly wary of the potential dangers of hot, boiling water getting in contact with plastic.
However, finding a good non-plastic electric kettle that is as plastic-free as possible is not as easy as it may sound. While there are many kettles with stainless steel liners on the market (and some glass kettles), many of them still contain a lot of plastic parts.
HealWithFood.org embarked on a mission to find the best non-plastic electric kettle on the market. The criteria to determine the winner(s) included:
- Ideally, the kettle would be free of plastic parts. If it did have some plastic parts, they should have minimal contact with hot water
- The kettle should be cordless, and it should have a 360° rotational base (swivel base), allowing you to place the kettle on its base from any angle – an important feature for families with both left and right-handed members!
- It should boast an automatic shut-off feature for extra safety
- You should be able to hide any extra power cord neatly inside the heat element (the base), so the cord is out of the way
- It should have an excellent rating plus excellent customer reviews on Amazon
Based on the above criteria, the non-plastic stainless steel kettles listed below stood out. They all met the above criteria, but they also offered some nice bonus features (described in the "Pros" column in the Comparison table below).
Comparison of Non-Plastic Electric Kettles
|Plastic parts exposed to water||Pros (other than those listed above)||Cons|
Water level meter
DURING POURING: Lid and scale filter receiver
A solid cordless electric kettle with a beautiful, elegant design|
A pleasant, musical ping when the water is done heating (some reviewers complained that the tone too quiet, though)
The spout is wide and well-designed
A weird smell in the new machine (caused by manufacturing residue) but most reviewers reported that the odor would disappear after repeated washings|
The kettle will get very hot on the outside (common with stainless steel kettles), so make sure you keep your fingers on the handle
Quite pricey ($99.99 as per the Breville USA website – prices may vary depending on where you buy this kettle)
None (the interior is completely plastic-free)
DURING POURING: Lid and frame around the lime scale filter
The "Cool Touch" dual-walled construction lowers the temperature of the outside wall, reducing your risk of burning your hand. This construction also insulates the water inside, keeping it hot for longer|
Easy-to-remove lid facilitates cleaning
The metal interior is seamless
Very good value for an affordable price ($49.99 on the manufacturer's site at the writing of this review, but Amazon and other online shops sometimes sell this even at lower prices)
No water level indication window, but then again, this is one of the reasons why this pot has less plastic exposure to hot water than most other stainless steel kettles|
The specs describing this product as having an 8-cup capacity are misleading, as you're supposed to fill the kettle only to the max fill line, and the yield from the max line is 5 cups
No audio indication (bell, whistle) that the kettle has finished boiling
Water level indicator (viewing window)
DURING POURING: Lid and lime scale filter in front of the spout
A lot of reviewers praise the very short time this kettle takes to boil water|
Keep-warm feature to keep the water hot after it has boiled
Some comments on the product releasing an unpleasant odor the first few times, but hasn't got not nearly as many negative comments on this as the Breville stainless steel kettle|
The exterior is not insulated and can therefore get very hot
The opening is somewhat narrow, which makes cleaning it a bit hard
The power cord is rather short, only about 2 feet (though this can also be a plus)
No bell or whistle signaling that the kettle has finished boiling
Very small rubbery ring in the bottom of the water reservoir
DURING POURING: Underside of the lid and lime-scale filter in front of the spout
This high-end kettle made of German Schott glass looks beautiful and modern, and you can watch the water boil|
The rubbery ring in the bottom of the pot is very small, almost unnoticeably, and according to the manufacturer, it is BPA-free
No audio signal indicating that the kettle has finished boiling|
Want to Buy a Plastic-Free Electric Kettle in the UK?
If you live in the UK, you may want to order your electric kettle from Amazon.co.uk rather than Amazon.com. Click here to view non-plastic kettles on Amazon.co.uk.