Fondue might be hundreds of years old, but it is here to stay. What began as an exquisite French and Swiss delicacy is now a mainstay of American cuisine.
If you’re going to capture the magic of melted cheese or molten chocolate at home, you need the right fondue pot.
We looked at the capacity, style, accessories, and overall function of many different sets. We’ve researched and reviewed the best fondue pots, in our opinion, to find the top 5, to help you make the best purchase decision.
Our Favorite Sets And Pots For Fondue
1. Cuisinart Electric Fondue Maker
This fondue maker comes with the fondue pot itself (base and bowl), a temperature probe, and eight fondue forks with different colored ends and their own fork rack. This makes for a complete fondue set.
The temperature controls are removable and can be programmed to a variety of temperatures to suit the food being heated.
The problem here is that the heat isn’t measured in degrees, but instead on a scale of 1 to 8, with 8 being the hottest. The manual states that a 7 is roughly 350℉. With some practice, the correct setting can be found, but an actual degree reading would be more helpful.
The set is BPA-free. The nonstick coating inside the three-quart fondue bowl is made from a Teflon-based material for easy clean-up. You won’t waste time or money cleaning burnt cheese from this machine.
The exterior is brushed stainless steel for a classic look that won’t show every fingerprint or spill. The entire pot and base can be immersed into soapy water for gentle handwashing.
The set has an electrical cord that is quite short – about 23 inches. If you plan to set the pot in the middle of a table for a get-together, you will need an extension cord.
2. Wilton Chocolate Pro Chocolate Fountain
If you want to indulge in dessert fondue only, this is the fondue maker for you! The Wilton Chocolate Pro Chocolate Fountain is 16 inches high and features three different levels of cascading chocolate. It’s an appropriate size for serving about 8-10 people.
The sturdy base can both warm and circulate the chocolate. It can hold up to four pounds of chocolate. The feet on the base are adjustable to keep the fountain level, and a built-in level ensures that the chocolate flows freely.
The entire unit disassembles into separate pieces. The middle tube and three canopies can be removed and taken apart to clean. The bottom bowl of the heating unit is not immersible and must be wiped out by hand.
This fondue maker won’t accommodate just any chocolate. It will only work with specialty fondue chocolate or regular chocolate that has had oil added to create a more fluid consistency.
The spiral in the middle of the center tube is what circulates the chosen food. If the food is too thin, it won’t go up; if it’s too thick, it will overwork the engine and break the unit. For that reason, this machine is best left for chocolate only.
3. Nostalgia 6-Cup Electric Fondue Pot
The six-cup size of this electric fondue maker is ideal for small get-togethers. However, be aware that while it might be advertised as six cups in capacity, it safely only holds about four cups of liquid. This is one of the smaller fondue pots on the list and isn’t ideal for those who want to feed more than four to six people.
This set includes only six fondue forks. The fondue forks have six different colored dots on the ends to help keep mix-ups from happening. The forks have to stay cool handles.
The temperature control dial can be adjusted from low to high. The dial has blue backlighting, so you’ll know when the unit is on and heating. But the big problem with this unit is that it’s unclear what the exact temperatures are. It also doesn’t get as hot as other fondue pots.
The stainless steel exterior has stay-cool plastic handles to prevent burns while mixing and preparing. The interior bowl can hold up to three pounds of chocolate or other food.
The fondue pot itself and the top ring easily come off for cleaning. The interior is stainless steel and does not have a nonstick coating, which is inconvenient if the food burns.
4. Boska Holland Tealight Fondue Set
This fondue set is a unique piece that’s perfect for just a couple of people. Advertised at 14 ounces, this small fondue pot can really hold up to one pound of cheese or chocolate.
And when you are melting that cheese or chocolate? Just pop the ceramic pot into the microwave. Then, you can place the pot over the tea light-heated base to keep it melts. This candle heat means that you don’t have to worry about cords, outlets, or other heat sources. This makes it ideal for small apartment living.
The simple and electricity-free design of this set is European in nature. This simplicity makes it easy to clean and store. The pot is dishwasher safe.
One inconvenient aspect is that the pot must be soaked in water before each use. Otherwise, the candle’s direct heat will overheat the stoneware fondue pot and cause it to crack.
That direct heat will also cause the cheese or chocolate to burn if not stirred regularly.
The best thing about this fondue pot set is that it comes with everything you need to get started: the ceramic pot, a wooden base, the tea light holder, one tea light, and four wooden handled fondue forks.
5. Swissmar Cast Iron Cheese Fondue Set
This Swissmar fondue set has a gorgeous design with several pieces. There is the enameled cast iron fondue pot, a black wrought iron stand, a Swissmar fondue heating element, and six large, three-pronged fondue forks with dark wooden handles.
The pot itself has a two-quart capacity. It’s enameled both inside and out and can be used in any heat source, whether the included burner or your oven burner.
The cast iron conducts heat well and works at both lower temperatures, appropriate for chocolate and cheese, and higher temperatures, which are best for meats or tempura.
The fondue burner is removable. It runs on Swissmar gel burner packs, which are a kind of lighter fluid. You will have to continually purchase replacement gel packs or a container of some sort of flammable fluid to power the burner. The fondue heater does fit nicely into the wrought iron stand.
This type of heating works well for keeping the food warm, but it doesn’t work as well for melting, as it takes a very long time. This set works best when the fondue is created in the pot on a stove (it’s gas, electric, and induction friendly) and kept going in the stand.
Why Buy A Fondue Set?
Maybe you’ve experienced fondue at a ritzy restaurant, or maybe you’ve had it at a friend’s house. Maybe you’ve never had it at all! In any case, many of us love this gooey treat.
Fondue is easy to make at home.
You can melt different types of cheeses in which to dunk vegetables and bread; you can heat broth in which to lightly simmer tender cuts of meat; you can melt chocolate to cascade down all kinds of sweet treats – you can even heat oil to fry things!
All of this is done as a fun, individual DIY where each guest heats and eats and their own pace using a specially designed fork.
The key to amazing fondue is keeping it warm while not letting it reach the boiling point. That’s where a fondue maker comes in handy. It gently warms the cheese, chocolate, or broth to the correct temperature and keeps it there. All you must do then is stir, dip, and enjoy.
Beyond fondue, many fondue makers make excellent food warmers for parties and other gatherings. They can keep sauces and dips perfectly warmed for the duration of the event.
What features should you look for in a fondue pot? Many fondue makers have a nonstick interior; this is a key aspect to look for when shopping. Also, look for a set that comes with its own forks so that you know the forks will fit all the way down inside the pot.
Finally, consider how you can wash the fondue maker. Units that can’t be submerged are very inconvenient to clean!
Making fondue at home is just plain fun! There are endless and delicious options available to you when you have your own fondue pot.
When it comes to the best fondue pots, I have two favorites.
The Cuisinart Electric Fondue Maker is wonderful. It’s a quality set that is always reliable. It has color-coded forks, a nonstick pot, and a large capacity.
The wide temperature range and accurate temperature probe mean that anything from milk chocolate to vegetable tempura will come out right every time.
However, if you want fondue for just yourself and a couple of others, the Boska Holland Tealight Fondue Set might do the trick. It can travel easily, doesn’t require a stove, and stores and cleans easily. Perfect for anyone who lives in a small space with fewer mouths to feed.