10 Best Panini Presses | April 2017
- a light indicates when food is ready
- cord wraps for easy storage
- lock-down lid means no manual pressing
|Rating||3.7 / 5.0|
- smooth floating hinges
- corrugated cook plates
- tends to require a fairly hard press
|Rating||3.6 / 5.0|
- prepares 2 mickey sandwiches at a time
- indicator light also mickey-shaped
- lightweight and easy to move
|Rating||4.1 / 5.0|
- evenly cooks both sides
- dual heating zones
- also grills meats perfectly
|Rating||4.1 / 5.0|
- 10" x 8" nonstick cook surfaces
- readiness indicator light
- grill pans are not removable
|Rating||4.2 / 5.0|
- affordably priced given high quality
- power indicator light
- eligible for a 30 day return policy
|Rating||3.9 / 5.0|
- cool touch handle never gets hot
- built-in safety lock system
- features an adjustable thermostat
|Rating||3.8 / 5.0|
- reliable even with heavy use
- comes in gift box style packaging
- sleek seasoned cooking surface
|Rating||4.7 / 5.0|
- pfoa and ptfe free
- adjustable feet for stability
- two drip cups to catch excess liquids
|Rating||4.7 / 5.0|
- strong 1500 watt heating element
- dishwasher safe grill plates
- well reviewed by users
|Rating||4.8 / 5.0|
What Should I Look For In A Panini Press?
Unless you want to stand over your sandwich in a pan pressing it to death or rest a nasty brick on top, you will want a panini press.
Seriously, that's how it was done without one, and who has bricks just laying around? Well, Martha Stewart does.
You will have to choose between grill ridges or flat. Both have their pros and cons, but many people want to see grill marks on their panini. This holds true if you end up using the press to grill meats.
Removable plates also work wonders for cleanup. Some might be dishwasher safe. Health conscious folks might want to go ceramic because it lacks toxins, but beware, it can crack easily. Non-stick surfaces may entice, but that surface can also erode. In either case, brushing the bread with oil will suffice.
A press should not be flimsy. Remember, you're applying pressure to it. This means the handle and any temperature knobs should be firm as well. Without pressure, you will not have a panini, just a hot sandwich you could have cooked on the stove. That's no fun and a waste of money.
Press Your Panini Luck
You know you want one of these. They're safe, easy to use, and create a masterpiece of a sandwich that will make you feel like a pro.
It may be a little time consuming to stand and wait for it to grill, meaning choosing one with a larger surface is optimal especially if you can fit two or three sandwiches on at the same time. Its also important for the press to have both plates heated for even grilling and a quicker cooking time.
Count on keeping the larger one on your counter just like you would a giant mixer that won't fit anywhere else. Smaller ones can stow away in a cabinet. You have to find what is more convenient for you.
Given that you need to spread the bread with oil or butter anyway, picking a non-stick surface may not be too important.
A press with ridges will churn out restaurant-quality paninis while saving money and giving yourself a chance to get creative from the comfort of your own home.
A Brief, Pressing History of the Panini
Only recently in America have the terms "panini" and "panini press" been used. There's no difference between them and a grilled sandwich.
The name is just derived from the Italian word for bread, which is "pan". So there: everything Italian does sound better.
A light bulb will go off in your head when you hear who invented the first press. No, not some old Italian man with calloused and burned hands from pressing a brick onto his sandwich.
It was none other than some unknown inventor you've never heard of, Thomas Edison.
It was named a very non-Italian "sandwich grill", but the make-up is nearly identical today. Two plates heat up and grill the sandwich on both sides at the same time. For some reason it did not become popular and disappeared by the 1930's like Amelia Earhart.
The first modern rendition hit the market in 1974 when Breville released a "sandwich maker". It was popular all over the place, especially in Australia; so much so that grilled sandwiches are called "Brevilles" today. What an exciting life those Australians have.