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Fun with Fondue is our monthly newsletter filled with fondue tips and ideas.

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How to Light
Your Fondue Burner

fondue gel fuel

To have a great fondue experience, you need to know how to light your fondue burner safely. First and foremost, you need to make sure that you are using the right type of fondue pot and the right type of fondue fuel.

If you are unsure, click on the links and you will find clear descriptions of what you are looking for.

Learn more about Fondue Gel Fuel


Lighting the Alcohol or Gel Burner

Your hot oil fondue, broth-based fondue and cheese fondue require high heat to keep the liquid warm enough to cook your pieces of meat or keep your cheese liquefied. Alcohol fondue fuel and/or gel fuel fondue can be used in a fondue burner for these types of fondue.

While liquid alcohol is a dangerous fuel because it is so easy to spill, it is also simple and cheap to use. However, you can't purchase it online because it is highly flammable and can't be shipped. Gel fondue fuel is often a good alternative. There are safety measures to follow:

  • Never fill the alcohol burner while it is still hot and never overfill it.
fondue burner

The best way to proceed is to take the burner away from the fondue pot to a safe work area like the kitchen counter. If you are refilling the burner, wait for the burner to cool off. Then carefully pour the liquid into the bottom of the burner.

Your burner should have holes or some kind of mesh with an absorbing pad inside. As soon as you see the level of liquid approaching the holes or mesh, stop.

If you spilled any fuel around or on the burner, wipe it off. Bring the refilled burner (unlit) back to the table and place it underneath your fondue pot. If you spilled any alcohol on your way to the table, especially near the pot, wipe it off.

Make sure that all flammable material is far from the burner (i.e., napkins, paper, etc.). Open the air holes to the maximum opening and carefully bring a lit match to the holes.

Once your burner is lit, discard the used match. Adjust the openings to the desired temperature.


fondue burner

If you are using gel fondue fuel or have a gel burner like the Safety Fondue Burner by Trudeau or the Swissmar Dual Function Burner that requires gel fuel canisters (or alcohol fuel as it is a dual function burner) the instructions on how to light your fondue burner are similar to the alcohol burner except for a few major differences.

The fondue burners that are compatible with gel fuel have a removable bottom half.

The part that would normally contain the fuel (with a mesh surface or surface with holes) can be removed.

fondue gel refill

A gel cartridge can be inserted into the metal casing and the top of the fondue burner with the opening for air can be placed on top of this bottom part.

If you are not using a gel cartridge, you must still remove the bottom portion (with the surface with holes or mesh) and pour the gel directly into the bottom of the fondue burner. Return the top and light as per the alcohol burner instructions. The advantage of using gel fuel is that you don't have to wait until the burner has cooled off.

When you are done eating, simply put the cover on the burner and it will smother the fire.


sterno fondue fuel

If you have misplaced the burner for your fondue pot, you may be able to use a "sterno" type of burner for your hot oil, broth or cheese fondue.

A sterno is fuel in a container such as this Cooking Fuel - Gel.

Simply place it under your fondue pot and light it.


Lighting the Candlelit Fondue

unscented candlesYour chocolate fondue, caramel fondue and dessert fondue only require a small unscented tealight. Simply make sure to prepare your fondue on the stove pot using a double boiler or two pots (small pot in a larger one containing water).

When your dessert fondue is ready, you transfer it to your small fondue pot. Your fondue pot only has to keep it warm and liquefied so that your guests can dip their pieces of fruit, cake or other dippers into it.

This is why the fondue burners for these pots are unscented tealights. Light the candle with a lighter or match.


More About Fondue Burner and Fondue Fuel

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