Potatoes Burning Bottom of Pot - Induction

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Assistant Cook
Mar 6, 2016
I am new to induction and I keep burning potatoes at the bottom of the pot. With gas, just boil the water, throw the potatoes in and let it go no problem. With induction, the potatoes seem to stay at the bottom and form a burnt layer. I am wondering if gas focuses the heat on the bottom more causing the boiling water to roll more and push the potatoes around? Induction, they just seem to stay at the bottom. Boiling potatoes in a pot should be pretty simple, so I wonder what the heck I'm doing wrong! I've read about having thicker steel for induction. I'm not sure the thickness of the stainless steel pot I'm using, but it seems pretty decent in quality. Its a paderno 5 qt sauce pot.

Note that I use a powerboost function to get the water boiling quickly, then turn off this function when putting the potatoes in. I then keep it at high (1-9, using 9) to keep it boiling. Similarly with gas, I would keep the gas cranked up unless I need to reduce to prevent boil over.
I don’t use induction but I do use these old fashioned cast aluminum trivets in the bottom of my Revere pots when I’m concerned about scorching.


Any similar round cooling rack or trivet should prevent the potatoes from touching the bottom of the pot.
buzz, try starting you potatoes off inside the cold water. Root vegies are started in cold water and brought up to a boil, above ground vegies (green beans, etc) you boil the water first and then toss in the vegies.

Also once boiling turn down the heat to a low/medium boil. I've burnt many things on the devil's induction burner. Give me gas any day, but that being said I have no choice at the moment - devil's induction it is.

The potatoes should heat up with the water in order to cook properly. I have no idea if this is the answer you need but it's all I can think of - and I think it will make a difference.
Also the temperature of boiling water does not change between a fast boil or a slow boil. Water boils at 212 F (100 C) fast or slow.

If it's to move them around it is really not necessary but perhaps you have too many in the pot for them to even lift away a little bit? Those inductions get much hotter than you can possible imagine. Perhaps try with a bigger pot or fewer potatoes.
thanks for the replies! I am pretty sure I have been starting them in cold water, so that may not be my issue. Turning down the temp though and maintaining a boil is a good idea. I'll try that next.

Your comment about induction making the bottom hotter. I guess I hadn't thought of that. So the flame from the gas is pretty hot, but can only heat the metal up so much with the water on the other side. Sounds like induction can get it hotter, so that makes some good sense to crank it down after boiling. I would have thought that the gas was more likely to overheat it because of the heat focusing on a smaller area of the pot.

Instead of keeping it at a constant high (9), try adjusting the heat settings based on the pot's thickness and the intensity needed for boiling. Experiment with slightly lower settings to maintain a steady boil without scorching.
There is a learning curve! I think you've got good input above. There are some things that I cook that I have to do 3 temperatures. I start at 6.5 for 10 minutes (or so)...when it gets to a boil, I'll change to 4.5 and then when it is really boiling, I turn it down to 4 for the balance of the time. No more sticking on the bottom. (The above it for a 5-quart cast iron Dutch oven full of doggie chow.)
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