The 5 Best Variable Temperature Kettles

If you're a coffee or tea connoisseur, you already know that different varieties require specific water temperatures to optimize flavor. Green tea, for example, is sometimes thought of as bitter but that's often because it's steeped incorrectly. If capturing your hot beverage's subtle flavors is important to you, you'll want the best variable temperature kettles.

When shopping, first look at temperature range. According to The Spruce Eats, teas and coffees taste best at the following temps:

  • Green tea: 150 to 180 degrees
  • Oolong tea: 190 to 200 degrees
  • Black teas: 200 to 212 degrees (except for some more delicate blends, like first-flush Darjeelings, which do best at 180 to 190 degrees)
  • Coffee: 195 to 205 degrees

In addition to temperature range, consider these other factors that make a good variable temperature kettle:

  1. Fast heating: The higher the wattage the better, so look for something with at least 1,000 watts or more.
  2. Long heat retention: Once your water is hot, it's helpful if the kettle can keep it warm for at least 30 to 60 minutes so you can keep refilling your cup.
  3. High-quality material: Stainless steel and glass are best (although plastic can be a good budget choice). Stainless steel is exceptionally durable, although it can sometimes transfer a metallic taste. Glass is best at preserving taste but is susceptible to shattering.
  4. Easy pouring: A well-designed pour spout and smooth, ergonomic handle make the kettle easier to use and prevents spilling.
  5. Other features: Things like automatic shutoff functions, easy-read LCD temperature displays, and water filters are great bonus features.

Given these considerations, check out the best variable temperature kettles below.

1. The Best Overall

Capacity: 1.7 liters

Temperature settings: 160, 175, 185, 190, 200, and 212 degrees Fahrenheit

What's great about it: This popular stainless steel variable temperature kettle boasts 4,400 reviews on Amazon and is equipped with a fast, 1,500-watt heating unit that boils water rapidly and keeps it warm for up to 30 minutes. With a chic, urban design, this kettle has six different heat settings and a backlit window that allows you to check the water level. On top of that, it showcases an automatic shutoff function, boil-dry protection, and a removable water filter.

2. The Runner-Up

Capacity: 1 liter

Temperature settings: Push-button increments from 140 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit

What's great about it: What's unique about this variable temperature kettle is that instead of pre-set temperatures, it has a real-time temperature display to raise and lower water temperature in 1-degree increments, so you can perfectly customize your cup. Adjustable from 140 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit, the stainless steel kettle has a user-friendly button-based interface. Although this kettle's 1,000 watts of heating power is a bit lower than the previous selection, fans say it still heats up quickly. Plus, once warm, it keeps water hot for up to 60 minutes. "It is lightning fast to heat up water and extremely accurate," wrote one reviewer. "The pour spout has helped my pour over technique. It is also stylish looking and came with a spill guard."

3. The Best Budget Option

Capacity: 1.7 liters

Temperature settings: Green, white, oolong, and black (or boil)

What's great about it: Although this option only has temperature settings designed specifically for tea, this affordable variable temperature kettle is nevertheless a great choice for folks on a budget. Made of BPA-free plastic, the kettle features two ample-sized windows to gauge water-level and an automatic shutoff function for safety. With a 1,500-watt heating element, reviewers say it heats water faster than stovetop kettles and the no-spill pour really works. Overall, it's a solid alternative at half the price of other models.

4. The Best Glass Kettle

Capacity: 1.7 liters

Temperature settings: 104, 122, 160, 175, 195 degrees Fahrenheit

What's great about it: With five temperature settings and an auto-shutoff function, this glass variable temperature kettle is both safe and versatile. The glass material not only looks sleek, but also prevents any tastes or odors from transferring to your beverage. The 1,500-watt heating element boils water quickly and can keep warm for up to 12 hours. On top of all that, it has an ergonomic handle and easy-pour spout.

5. The Most Stylish

Capacity: 1 liter

Temperature settings: Dial from 135 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit

What's great about it: Not only is this 1,200-watt stylish variable temperature tea kettle impressively well-built, but it's also made for true coffee and tea aficionados; its interior features high-end, polished stainless steel with food-grade silicone gaskets. Similar to the "Runner-Up" pick, the temperature for this one is customizable in 1-degree increments, however, it's controlled with a dial rather than a button. The high-quality pour spout showcases a fluted tip, while the counterbalanced handle works to shift weight back to your hand for an easy pour. This kettle also keeps water hot for up to an hour. Plus, you can track progress with "set" and "real" temperature displays and a stopwatch for optimal brew timing.

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