How to boil water on a stove?

In this brief guide we will address the question, “How to boil water on a stove?” as well as other questions pertaining to the subject at hand like the difference between boiling on an electrical stove and gas stove, and the tips for boiling. 

How to boil water on a stove.

Well, it is really simple. Just choose a pan that comes with a lid. Add water and turn it on. Now the question is what should be the temperature and for how long should you maintain this boil. This all depends on what this water is going to do for you – whether you want to add it in a dish, or just cool it down for drinking purposes.

The key to maintaining a boil is to use plenty of water. This way, more time will be needed to heat the water and it will ensure maximum heat provision evenly. If the water is too less, it will boil in less time and the boil will not be maintained – it will heat quickly, and it will dissipate heat quickly. Similarly, if you do not maintain the boil long enough, the water will not be free from all life forms. 

Electric stove

Boiling with an electric stove is easy, because you can set the temperature and maintain it there. In this way, the temperature will not keep on increasing like it does with a gas stove. You can also preheat the stove. While a gas stove is definitely better, electric stoves are more energy efficient.

Gas stove

Things just get a little tricky when it comes to a gas stove, because it is constantly heating the container, and your temperature can be way above the boiling point. To avoid this, you can use a food thermometer and maintain the flame when the temperature is around 212F, which is the boiling point of water.

Boiling Hacks (Tips for boiling)

If you cook regularly, knowing when and how to boil is an essential part of your cooking regime. Boiling is a quick way to clean and disinfect food items. Not to mention that it retains original flavour while also eliminating the harmful microorganisms that may be inhabiting your food product. 

Boiling is a moist-heat cooking method when the temperature of the liquid reaches 212F. The food product is completely submerged in water for even heat distribution. It is an explosive phase change between liquid state and a gas state.

It is one of the safest and most reliable methods for cooking till date, and a lot of health professionals recommend boiling water before using it. Here are some tips that will facilitate you in boiling any food product. 

Use a food thermometer. 

Well, this is the oldest trick in the book. When boiling any particular food product, you need to make sure that the temperature is neither too low nor too high. A quick and effective way to solve this problem is by using a food thermometer. A temperature of 212F is just right for you to boil any food product. But wait! Shouldn’t the temperature be different for different food products? Well, not really.

Since the technique in itself revolves around the use of water, and you are using that heat to boil your food product, it remains pretty much the same for all food items. Of course, there can be minor changes in the temperature range, but 212F is a benchmark. 

Use salt for quick boiling

The reason you should use salt is because salt actually lowers the boiling point of water, which in turns speeds up your boiling process. It does add some salty taste to your dish, and most of the dishes use salt inevitably. So it is not really a problem unless you don’t like salt or have hypertension

Use pots reasonably

Boiling involves cooking in water, therefore you need to know when to use which pot. This actually saves you a lot of time because if you are just boiling an egg in 1 litre of water, you are just using more water than needed. Moreover, it will require more time to reach the boil. 

When boiling, make sure that your pots can be covered – avoid using pans. Using deeper pots actually help to keep the food submerged properly and evenly distribute the heat. Afterall, it is the water that is cooking! 

Other facts about boiling

On top of it being the best way to cook food, boiling actually concentrates the flavour of your food. It also allows you to cook a large amount of food with ease. Although some nutrients leach out in the water that is used in boiling, boiling does not affect the nutritional status of the food product. Just use the water that you boiled in along with the dish and you will not lose any nutrients while cooking! 


In this brief guide we have addressed the question, “How to boil water on a stove?” as well as other questions pertaining to the subject at hand like the difference between boiling on a gas stove and an electric stove, and the tips for boiling.


Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.