The 10 best kettles for 2021

07 January 2021

best kettles

In times of crisis, a kettle is the appliance we turn to the most. Like a good friend, it’s always there in the corner of the kitchen, ready to provide warmth and comfort within moments. And any new parent will tell you that the value of a good, warm cup of tea cannot be overstated. We reveal the best kettles to buy this year.

There’s a kettle for every taste and wallet out there, from traditional stove-top pots that whistle pleasingly when it’s time for tea, to the latest, sleekest smart kettles that have switched themselves on before you’ve even decided you want a brew.

Whatever your cup of tea (or coffee), we’ve done the work for you to find the kettles that are hitting the hot spot and those that left us a bit off the boil. So pop the kettle on and we’ll give you a run-down of the 10 best kettles to buy in 2021.

1. Best overall kettle: Bosch Styline Cordless Kettle

“We have this Bosch one. The most expensive kettle I’ve ever bought, but I love it. Quick, relatively quiet, a range of temperatures (I like this for making coffee and hot water bottles!) and, best of all, a keep-warm function.”

1. Best overall kettle: Bosch Styline Cordless Kettle

Bosch’s Styline is a real king among kettles. At £59, it’s by no means cheap but if you’ll value the extras that come with this and the carefully thought-through design, it’s worth every penny.

The sturdy stainless steel and plastic cordless jug sits on a square base unit, which has four settings for different temperatures (100, 90, 80 and 70 degrees) and there’s also a keep-warm function so you don’t have to reboil. The kettle beeps when you turn it on and to let you know when it’s boiled too, just in case you forget.

A really fast boil means you’re never hanging around waiting for your cuppa and we were impressed to see that not only does it have a decent capacity of 1.5 litres, but also that the minimum fill is only 280ml so you can boil enough for just one cup without wasting water or energy.

The only aspect that doesn't get rave reviews is the inbuilt limescale filter, which looks a bit gappy and may let flakes of limescale seep through. But, inside, the heating element is covered, making it much easier to clean than most.

In terms of safety, the design is spot on. Double-walled housing means the outside of the kettle couldn’t burn you if you were to touch it and the cord can be coiled up inside the base securely, making it a great choice for homes with curious toddlers. The anti-slip grip makes it easy to hold and we love the push-button lid – no wrestling at the sink to open this one. It also has an anti-boil-dry function that means you can’t burn it out and explode it – always a bonus.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.5L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: Yes
  • Matching toaster: Yes
  • Warranty: Two years

2. Best budget kettle: Russell Hobbs Textures Plastic Kettle

“I have a Russell Hobbs that is 10 years old and still going strong.”

2. Best budget kettle: Russell Hobbs Textures Plastic Kettle

This isn’t the cheapest kettle you can buy, but it's very affordable and, for the price, you’re getting a kettle that’s pretty close in spec to some that cost far more.

Russell Hobbs is always a reliable port of call for kettles and the plastic Textures model (available in black or white) shouldn’t disappoint. Its maximum capacity is an impressive 1.7 litres and minimum just 250ml. You just need to open the lid to fill to the one-cup level.

It boils really quickly and can boil one cup in under a minute. It’s also very quiet, so if you’re up with the lark then you won’t be waking anyone else with your morning brew.

Integrated cord storage keeps everything tidy and safe, and it’s very easy to use. Not only is it lightweight (and ideal if you have weak wrists), it also sits on a 360-degree base, which is handy if you’re left-handed or live with a leftie as you can swivel the kettle to wherever you want it to sit.

Reviews suggest the removable filter isn’t the best ever but, overall, you’re getting a lot of great features from a reliable brand. We’d expect this kettle to keep you in cuppas for a long time to come.

Key specs

  • Capacity 1.7L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: No
  • Matching toaster: Yes
  • Warranty: Two years

3. Best luxury kettle: Kitchenaid Artisan Kettle

“I’ve got a Kitchenaid kettle. I bought the red one as I wanted colours in the kitchen. You can set it to different temperatures if you don’t want boiling hot water. It’s the best I’ve ever had.”

3. Best luxury kettle: Kitchenaid Artisan Kettle

We’ve all coveted a Kitchenaid gadget at some point. If you want a bit of the iconic Kitchenaid style (in a range of colours) in your kitchen but can’t quite stretch to the stand mixer, the Artisan Kettle might fill a hole on your work surface and in your heart.

Its retro style is attractive and, while it has the looks of an old-fashioned stove-top, it’s got all the gear going on too.

The multiple temperature settings let you heat water from anywhere from 50 degrees up to 100 in 10-degree increments, and it also has a temperature gauge so you can see how hot the water is at any time, even when not on its base.

The kettle is double-walled so it’s never hot to the touch, which is a boon in a kitchen with children about, and its safety credentials are good all round. It’s got cord storage, a 360-degree, non-slip base and a soft-touch handle that won’t slip in your hands.

The limescale filter is top-quality, so it’s a good choice if you live in a hard water area, and it’s capable of boiling any amount from one cup to 1.5 litres.

At 2.5kg, it’s a little heavier than some, but that’s the only potential downside we can see.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.5L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: Yes
  • Matching toaster: Yes
  • Warranty: Three years

4. Best quiet kettle: Russell Hobbs Luna Copper Accents Quiet Boil Kettle

“I second the Russell Hobbs one. It's really, really quiet to boil!”

4. Best quiet kettle: Russell Hobbs Luna Copper Accents Quiet Boil Kettle

We are big fans of products that do exactly what they say on the tin and the Luna Quiet Boil Kettle really does boil quietly. It’s impressively speedy too, boiling enough water for a mug of tea in 45 seconds using its Rapid Boil fill level.

The copper trim is really lovely, but the stainless-steel kettle is also available in ‘Midnight,’ a dark grey, if that’s more your, ahem, cup of tea. You can also buy matching coffee makers and toasters in both colours.

The ‘luna’ aspect refers to the light-up water window which glows gently while the water’s heating up. It has a generous maximum capacity, as well as a useful one-cup feature to save energy, and there’s also a non-boil-dry feature that kicks in if you accidentally switch it on when empty.

The removable filter is very easy to clean and does an impressive job of keeping the kettle limescale-free – it’s a good choice if you have hard water. We also like its clever spout design which prevents drips and dribbles.

Most of all though, if you have an open-plan kitchen and don’t want to drown out the after-dinner chat, or a home with the bedrooms perilously close to the kitchen, you’ll be very grateful for this quiet-as-a-mouse kettle.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.7L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: No
  • Matching toaster: Yes
  • Warranty: Two years (plus an extra year if you register online)

5. Best one-cup kettle: Breville HotCup Hot Water Dispenser

“We have a Breville HotCup for single cups of tea, and a kettle on the hob for bigger brewing jobs. The HotCup does take up space, but is easier than a hot water tap if you're just making a single cup of tea. You just push a button and then come back in a couple of minutes to a brew (and the water is freshly boiled).”

5. Best one-cup kettle: Breville HotCup Hot Water Dispenser

Not strictly a kettle, but this hot water dispenser is a great alternative to a kettle for anyone who has trouble lifting heavy items, or if you're usually only wanting one cup rather than a round of teas or coffees. It’s also significantly cheaper than a built-in boiling water tap which would set you back a few hundred pounds.

The tank holds enough for five to seven cups of tea if you do want to make several and it delivers a cup very speedily (in less than a minute). It takes up slightly more space on the work surface than a standard kettle, but looks very sleek and unobtrusive.

It would go particularly well in a modern kitchen with its blue light-up feature when in boiling mode, and a permanent limescale filter means it’s suitable for hard-water areas.

The only thing to be aware of is that some reviews suggest it doesn’t always boil water to 100 degrees. This may not matter too much if you don’t need water to be at boiling point for tea or coffee, but if you’re fastidious about your cuppa, it’s worth opting for a more traditional kettle.

Otherwise, it’s a great option for making a quick tea, hot chocolate or even a mug of super-fast noodles.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.5L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: No
  • Matching toaster: No
  • Warranty: One year

6. Best hob kettle: Le Creuset Traditional Kettle

“I have a Le Creuset Traditional – a creamy colour (meringue) – and I love it. It does take a while to boil, but that's part of its charm for me. I'm not working so it's just a nice symbolic gesture to myself that I'm not in a hurry in the mornings.”

6. Best hob kettle: Le Creuset Traditional Kettle

If you like a proper cup of tea from a proper old-fashioned kettle, this stove-top model from Le Creuset ticks all the boxes. It has traditional good looks and a charming whistle which lets you know when your water has boiled.

It’s made from enamelled steel and has a lovely wide base that sits robustly on your hob or Aga, while an ergonomic handle makes pouring easier. It does take a little while to boil, but not nearly as long as you’d think thanks to its wide induction base – and anyway, that’s part and parcel of a stove-top kettle.

The kettle is available in Le Creuset’s usual wide range of colours so you can match it to your other cookware and it provides a cheerful pop of colour on your hob.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 2.1L
  • Integrated filter: No
  • Multiple temperatures: No
  • Matching toaster: No
  • Warranty: Five years

7. Best kettle for hard water: Russell Hobbs Purity Glass Brita Kettle

“The ones with the Brita filters are great. We have the Russell Hobbs one. Remember to fill it back up after making your drink as it takes a while to filter the water through. No scale though and the filters last at least three times as long as the timer reckons. We have very hard water. I was having to descale my old kettle weekly before.”

7. Best kettle for hard water: Russell Hobbs Purity Glass Brita Kettle

Hard water can eventually make your cup of tea taste a bit like pond water so if you live in an area with hard water, you’ll want to choose a kettle that counteracts that.

This glass kettle by Russell Hobbs comes with a Brita water filter built in to reduce both limescale and chlorine, and also absorb any copper or lead that may occur in your water. An alert will let you know when the cartridge needs replacing. If you prefer to use filtered water in your kettle, this will take some of the faff out of your daily cuppa.

You fill the kettle at the top and a blue light glows through the glass, getting brighter as it boils, which is a nice touch. The kettle is relatively quiet when boiling too.

We like the cord storage, which makes it safe for a family kitchen, and a concealed element, meaning it’s that little bit easier to clean. The filter does make it heavy to lift, which is worth being aware of, and you can’t boil very small amounts either. Some reviews say that the spout can be a bit drippy too.

Otherwise, if the flavour of your hot drinks is important to you or you know you live in a hard water area, this is a great buy that will transform your brew.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.5L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: No
  • Matching toaster: No
  • Warranty: Two years (plus an extra year if you register)

8. Best variable temperature kettle: Sage Smart Kettle

“We have this hideously expensive one in red (DP bought it). I love it though.”

8. Best variable temperature kettle: Sage Smart Kettle

For those who take their tea (and coffee) to another level, this model by Sage offers something a bit fancy.

It has five different settings from 80 to 100 degrees at five-degree increments, specifically for black, green, white or Oolong tea, and French press coffee. It has a generous maximum capacity for when you’re brewing up for a crowd as well as a 20-minute keep-warm function so you don’t have to reboil if you don’t make it to the kettle immediately.

Cord storage and a 360-degree rotational base mean it’s easy to use anywhere on your work surface, and it includes useful safety features such as auto shut-off and boil-dry protection.

In brushed stainless steel, it looks incredibly smart in any kitchen, and the ergonomic handle and soft-open lid make it feel lovely to use too. It’s at the expensive end of the scale, but for those who like top gadgetry in their kitchen and a truly posh cuppa, it’s a good buy.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.7L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: Yes
  • Matching toaster: Yes
  • Warranty: Three years

Price: £99.99

Buy now from Lakeland

9. Best smart kettle: Smarter iKettle

9. Best smart kettle: Smarter iKettle

If there’s one thing the internet should be able to do, it’s surely to make us a cuppa. And now that’s possible. The Smarter iKettle can be linked up to your wifi and then controlled via an iOS or Android app. It also works with Alexa, Google Assistant and Nest.

As well as being able to boil the kettle from afar to be ready for you as soon as you walk through the door, you can also choose the temperature of your water and use the keep-warm feature if you’re not there immediately.

Parents of formula-fed babies will particularly like the formula feature which boils while you’re in bed and then notifies you when the water is the right temperature for the baby bottle. This makes getting up in the night to feed a baby much less time-consuming. There’s even a wake-up mode so your kettle comes on automatically before you’re out of bed in the morning.

The capacity is generous, but this is a heavy kettle, even when not full. While all the bells and whistles are impressive, reviews have expressed worries that, in theory, you could boil this kettle dry while not in the house.

Parents would definitely want to be sure that there was no way it could be switched on remotely when a child was messing around with it, or boil dry when you’re not there. If you’re happy that it would work for you though, it definitely has the capability to make life that little bit easier.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.8L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: No
  • Multiple temperatures: Yes
  • Matching toaster: No
  • Warranty: One year

Price: £82.50

Buy now from CEF

10. Best fast-boiling kettle: Kenwood Mesmerine Jug Kettle

“We have a Kenwood. Really like it.”

10. Best fast-boiling kettle: Kenwood Mesmerine Jug Kettle

Handsome and quick off the blocks, you say? We’re sold. This fetching kettle with textured jug in six lovely colours would be a centrepiece in any kitchen. All the reviews agree that it's also impressively speedy at reaching a boil, getting a litre of water bubbling in two and a half minutes in testing, and one cup in under a minute.

The filter works really well to reduce limescale and the slightly ‘tilted’ design makes it very easy to handle and pour. The textured surface looks stunning, but also stays cool to the touch even when the water inside is boiling. But it’s worth knowing that the lid doesn’t stay cool and can also be tricky to take off.

In terms of safety features, this kettle has cord storage, boil-dry protection and a light to indicate when it’s in use – all very helpful. The only criticism is that it's on the noisy side, but not excessively so. And you never know, if someone elsewhere in the house hears the kettle on they might be moved to come and pour your tea for you.

Key specs

  • Capacity: 1.6L
  • Wattage: 3,000
  • Integrated filter: Yes
  • Multiple temperatures: No
  • Matching toaster: Yes
  • Warranty: Three years through Currys

How do I choose a kettle?

Size

First, decide where your kettle is going to live in your kitchen as size will dictate your product choice.

Capacity

You also need to think about its capacity. If there are only one or two tea or coffee drinkers in your household, this won’t be so important. But if you regularly get a whole pot on, you’ll want to go for a decent capacity to avoid having to boil the kettle twice.

Shape

Consider what sort of shape you want to go for. Most kettles are either a jug style, with the handle at the side, or a dome style with the handle going over the top. Some people find one easier to use than the other.

Weight

It’s also worth thinking about the weight of the kettle when full. Most of us have no problem lifting a full kettle, but if you’re older or suffer with arthritis or carpal tunnel, for example, lifting a heavy kettle can be really difficult and you'll want to go for a lightweight or smaller one.

Speed

Look for a kettle with a wattage of 3,000 watts or above as the higher the wattage, the quicker your kettle will boil. Just be aware that the faster the kettle, the more energy you'll use and the noisier it'll be – particularly important if you're an early riser.

Design

Aesthetics will play a part. Kettles come in a range of styles and colours so you should be able to find a kettle to complement your kitchen, whether you want something that'll fit in with the existing scheme or make a bit of a statement.

Noise

Also think about noise when choosing the right kettle. The higher the wattage, the noisier the kettle, although this isn't the case for the Russell Hobbs Luna Copper Accents Quiet Boil Kettle, which we think is the best quiet kettle to buy. Quiet kettles should also have been awarded a Quiet Mark.

What features should I look for in a kettle?

There’s a lot more to kettles these days than just boiling water for your brew. You may or may not want bells and whistles (particularly not the whistles, in this case), but there’s no harm in knowing what’s out there – you may well spot a feature that will be really helpful to you.

Filters

If you’re in a hard-water area, look for a kettle with built-in filters that will soften hard water.

Water level indicator

These are helpful for checking the maximum, as well as the minimum, capacity. You'll want to be able to boil enough water in one go, but you might also want to only boil enough for one cup, which is kinder to the environment.

Variable temperature

Kettles that offer multiple temperatures for water are useful if you use it for coffee and some teas such as Oolong, which are both best made at a slightly lower temperature. Warm water can also be used to heat a baby bottle or pouch. Some of these kettles also have a keep-warm feature.

Boil-dry protection

Many kettles now come with safety features such as boil-dry protection, which means the kettle won't turn on if there’s not enough water in it.

Grips

If you have young children in the house, it’s also worth checking that the kettle you choose has good grips on the handle so it’s less likely to slip in your grasp.

Safety

You might also want to go for a kettle with plastic rather than stainless steel casing so that the body of the kettle never gets too hot. An auto shut-off feature will also stop a boil if the kettle is lifted from its base.

Energy efficiency

One-cup or eco-friendly kettles are better for the environment and will use much less energy than standard kettles. An auto shut-off feature will also help to save energy.

Smart features

Finally, the fanciest of kettles out there now have smart features, meaning you can switch on your kettle from your app or keep it warm so your cup of tea is only seconds away when you walk in the door.

These are pretty impressive, but always consider whether it’s safe to use one of these in your home. If you have a child or a pet who might be fascinated by a kettle that switches on as if by magic, a smart kettle may not be the best choice.

How much should I spend on a kettle?

A kettle is one purchase where it doesn’t always pay to spend more. We’ve seen kettles that are perfectly reliable for less than a tenner – our budget choice, the Russell Hobbs Textures Plastic Kettle, is just £15 and really impressed us.

Aesthetics push the price up too, with the more high-end products that use premium materials coming in at over £100.

Overall, £50 should be able to buy you a really decent kettle with a few fancy features that will make brewing a lot more pleasurable.

Verdict: what's the best kettle for 2021?

The kettle we think is the best in show is the Bosch Styline Cordless Kettle for its brilliant safety features and added extras that make it a real pleasure to use.

We also like the Kenwood Mesmerine Jug Kettle which, although pricey, will deliver a cup of tea or coffee in under a minute. Music to our ears.

Which brand of kettle is best?

Russell Hobbs is a leading kettle brand that has landed three models in our top 10 list, which we think says a lot about their reliability. They also offer a kettle to suit every budget.

Breville kettles also come highly recommended and, while none of them made our final cut, we also heard lots of good things about De’Longhi during our research process.

It’s also worth checking out some of the premium kitchen brands that are better known for other appliances but are now breaking into the kettle market, such as Sage and Kitchenaid.

How we chose our recommendations

First things first, we put our kettle on for a brew to see how long an average working kettle took to make a cuppa – and because we just think more clearly with a mug of tea in our hands.

As always, we looked at what Mumsnetters on our Housekeeping forum were recommending – and, more importantly, what they were not recommending. Some brands that have done very well in reviews elsewhere have not impressed Mumsnetters, with several saying they’ve given up on Dualit kettles, which once graced the worktop of kitchen gadget fans up and down the country.

Having drawn up a list of the kettles that featured most in Mumsnetters’ recommendations, we then looked at other reviews sites and read consumer reviews to see which of those recommendations were confirmed elsewhere.

We checked the specs and features of all the kettles and compared them with others on the market to see which offered the best value for money. We also looked at safety features to ensure we could recommend them all for a family home.

Finally, we consulted the reports on both Which? and the Good Housekeeping Institute who have spend weeks and months putting kettles through their paces. We compared their findings with what we were reading in reviews and knocked out any candidates that weren’t quite up to scratch.

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