The eight best kettles, tried and tested for your morning brew

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Finding the ‘best’ kettle is harder than you may think, given its primary purpose is just to boil water. But a kettle is not just a kettle. Given Brits drink 100 million cups of tea daily (according to the UK Tea and Infusions Association), the look, feel and performance of your kettle is more important than you might first assume. Many now boast fancy features such as temperature variability for different hot drinks or even (largely pointless) smart technology that can be controlled from your phone. 

Broadly speaking, kettles can be divided into two categories: electric and stovetop. Electric kettles heat water with a heating element in the base of the container and are much quicker to boil than stovetop kettles, which you simply place on the hob and wait for the whistle. They take much longer, so my reviews below focus on electric kettles. 

Now energy prices are skyrocketing, efficiency will be a key consideration for anyone shopping for an appliance, whether it’s a kettle, toaster or washer-dryer. Category buyer Amanda Smart is in charge of selecting products for online retailer AO, so has to know the pros and cons of over 180 different kettles. She says: “Kettles with a quick boil functionality use less energy, so that’s the first thing to look out for. Another feature to consider is a kettle that retains the heat and keeps the water warm, so you eliminate the need to boil again and waste unnecessary energy.” 

How I tested the best kettles

I set out to test the best kettles for design, boil speed and energy efficiency. I timed how long each kettle took to boil enough water for four cups of tea, and for one cup. I also noted down how loud each kettle was, how easy it was to pour, and whether it had extra features.

Time for tea: trying out the best kettles in the Telegraph test kitchen

Which is the best kettle? At a glance

Read on for our full reviews

Best kettles

1. Bosch Styline Kettle with Temperature Selector 

£67.96, Amazon

Best overall

We like the energy-saving extras and the temperature variability 

Bosch Styline Kettle: an all-rounder with energy saving tech

You can’t get better for a mid-range kettle. It has an easy temperature selector that guides you in picking the right temperature for coffees, black teas and herbal teas, and it has a keep warm function that maintains the temperature of the water for 30 minutes, saving time and energy by reducing the need to re-boil the kettle. 

It performed outstandingly well in my time test, boiling one cup’s worth of water in 40 seconds and four cups in two minutes and 16 seconds. I love the stylish white and stainless steel design, which has a double-walled construction to retain heat. 

The only downside, and it’s a minor one, is that it’s slightly louder than some of the other models on this list. But for a good-looking, energy efficient kettle with a 40 second boil time, that’s not a dealbreaker. 

Key features: 1.5l capacity, 3000 Watts

Price at

2. Russell Hobbs Honeycomb Kettle 

£25, Argos

Best value kettle

We liked the quick boil time, but it does feel a little plasticky

Russell Hobbs Honeycomb: Cheap and cheerful, but more durable than you think

It’s decent to look at, not too loud, and under £25, so this kettle earned top marks in my test. It took a little over two minutes to boil enough water for four cups of tea (two minutes and 21 seconds, to be precise) and a speedy 51 seconds to boil one cup, just slightly over the 43 seconds advertised on the box. 

It’s extremely lightweight as it’s made of plastic, but I like the look of the honeycomb design and shiny finish. It also has some handy extra features, including ‘rapid boil markings’ that make it easy to see how much water to boil for one, two and three cups to save energy. It comes in four colours and has a three year guarantee. 

Key features: 1.7l capacity, 3000 Watts

Price at

3. Emma Bridgewater + Russell Hobbs polka dot kettle 

£64.99, Amazon

Best looking kettle

We liked the retro shape and cheerful design

Emma Bridgewater Kettle: a charming retro-inspired design

Not all kettles are that nice to look at, which is why this colourful design from Emma Bridgewater is such a joy. It’s an electric kettle with a retro design, a satisfyingly chunky handle and a sturdy cream base. The cheerful polka dots definitely add something extra to a morning brew. 

And, even better, it’s quick and quiet, boiling enough water for one cup of tea in 45 seconds and enough for four cups in one minute and 45 seconds. It pours very well and feels like it’s made from quality, sturdy materials. 

Key features: 1.7l capacity, 3000 Watts

Price at

4. De’Longhi Distinta Kettle

£99.99, Amazon

Quietest kettle 

We liked the smooth finish and comfortable handle, but it’s quite expensive

De’Longhi Distinta: stylish and well-designed

De’Longhi have crafted a stylish and well-made kettle in the Distinta, which is a genuine pleasure to use. On testing, it was very quiet, even towards the end of boiling (although other reviews contest this).  It’s quick, too – it boiled 0.5 litres of water in just over a minute and one litre in just over two, but it doesn’t have cup markings. The matte black is sleek and stylish, but it also comes in a classy brushed stainless steel finish. 

There’s little in the way of fancy extras, but that’s what I like about it: it does everything a kettle needs to do, and does it well. 

Key features: 1.7l capacity, 2000 Watts

Price at

5. John Lewis ANYDAY kettle

£25, John Lewis

Best kettle for students

We liked that it’s inexpensive and durable, although it’s slightly messy to pour

John Lewis ANYDAY: a fuss-free kettle that offers great value for money

Sometimes it’s best to keep it simple, as proven by this fuss-free kettle that’s affordable, durable and smart-looking to boot. It boils fast – one and a half minutes for 0.7 litres (the minimum amount), and enough water for four cups of tea in roughly two minutes. Where it falls short of the Russell Hobbs kettle of a similar price is a slightly messy pour. 

Key features: 1.7l capacity, 2600 Watts

Price at
John Lewis

6. Kenwood Abbey Lux Kettle 


Best kettle for older people

We liked the easy-open lid and the quick boil time

Kenwood Abbey Lux: lightweight and easy to open

AO’s resident kettle expert Amanda Smart recommended this sleek Kenwood model as the best kettle for older people. “Anyone with reduced mobility will want light weight, a thick handle that is easy to grip and a lid that’s easy to open,” she says. 

I found this kettle very easy to operate, as it has one simple button to release the lid, and the empty kettle weighs 600g. I liked the appearance of the sleek silver details, too. It took two minutes and 16 seconds to boil half a kettle’s worth of water (note that this model has litre, rather than cup measurements), and 58 seconds to boil roughly enough for one cup. 

Key features: 1.7 litre capacity, 3000 Watts

Price at

7. Russell Hobbs travel kettle

£14.54, Amazon

Best travel kettle

We liked the handy travel mugs and spoons, but it does take an age to boil

Russell Hobbs travel kettle: small enough to stash in a suitcase

This ultra-portable kettle comes with plastic mugs and spoons nestled inside, which is a nice touch. The capacity is small at 0.85 litres – but for a travel kettle, that’s what you’d expect. The downside is that it’s slow to boil because of its low wattage. 

By my timing, it took three minutes and 23 seconds to boil 0.5 litres of water, and five minutes to boil a full kettle. However, if you can’t go without your cup of Yorkshire Tea while you’re travelling, you could do a lot worse – it’s light, easily portable and virtually silent to operate.

Travel kettles can also be a very good choice for  people who live alone and don’t need to boil four cups at a time. The low wattage makes them cheap to run and the low weight makes them easy to use. And this one costs less than fifteen quid. 

Key features: 0.85l capacity, 1000 Watts

Price at

8. HAY Sowden kettle 

£100, Selfridges

Best for design

We liked the colour options, but it lacks a limescale filter

HAY Sowden: mostly just decorative (but it looks great)

Copenhagen-based HAY is a shining example of Scandi design, and the Sowden kettle is about as good-looking as a kettle can get. The light, matte coloured plastic and stainless steel construction would look lovely in the kitchen of even the most scrupulous interiors enthusiast. 

However, it doesn’t perform quite as well as its competitors. It takes one and a half minutes to boil roughly one cup of water, and over three minutes for four cups. It also lacks detailed markings (it only has ‘one litre’ and ‘max’ measurements) and a limescale filter. 

Key features: 1.5l capacity, 1800 Watts

Price at