The most typical way for food to heat on the stove is conduction. The heat from the stove burner makes the molecules in the pan begin to move, transferring the heat to the pan or pot. The heat in the pan then transfers to the food in the pan through thanks to the movement of the molecules.
There are other forms of heating, but they are less common for stovetop cooking. Convection circulates heat through the item being cooked and is most commonly found in professional kitchens. Convection ovens are the most common type of convection appliance. Radiation can also be used as a form of heat, but is rarely used in cooking due to health risks.