Stainless Steel Cookware


  • Long lasting beauty
  • Easy to clean
  • Excellent cooking surface
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Non reactive to either alkaline or acidic foods
  • Scratch and dent resistant

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Where to Buy:

The beauty and effectiveness of stainless steel cookware is its good looks, durability (it doesn’t dent or rust) and its non reactive qualities.

Stainless steel cookware should be labeled 18/10. This number refers to the percentage of chromium and nickel in the alloy and it ensures that your cookware will never rust.

Good stainless steel is usually built around a heat conducting metal  to help produce even heat distribution. In this type of construction, manufacturers use stainless steel with another metal such as aluminum or copper and bond them together to create a metal surface that is ideal for cooking.

The encased aluminum or copper comes in two types: “fully clad” and “disk bottom” . Fully clad is when the conductive material extends up to the sides of the pan. Disk bottom ususally consists of a piece of conductive material welded to the bottom of the pan. (show photo)  Many experts say that the core that runs up the sides of the pan is better, however America’s Test Kitchen testers vouch that it is the thickness of the core that is most important.

When buying a stainless steel cookware, look for pans that are heavy enough to retain heat, but not so much that it becomes a chore to use them.
Comfortable handles that both stay cool when cooking but can also be placed safely under the broiler are a must.

The two most common metal combinations for stainless steel is aluminum core or copper core. Copper core is the choice of many chefs but it can be heavy.  Aluminum core is very good and because of its light weight easier to handle.  Stainless steel with a copper core cannot be used on induction cooktops.

What we like:

  • Everlasting beauty
  • Will not corrode or stain
  • Non reactive material (food tastes like it should)
  • Compatible with gas, electric, ceramic stovetops;  safe in oven and broiler
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Best when clad onto other metals such as copper or aluminum

What we don’t like:

  • Inexpensive cookware made entirely of thin-gauge stainless steel is prone to hot spots and warping over high heat.

Recommended:

BEST: All Clad Stainless Steel Cookware

  • 3-ply bonded stainless steel construction
  • Easy to clean 18/10 stainless steel interior
  • Solid cast stainless steel handles
  • Lifetime warranty

This is la creme de la creme of cookware. A bit pricey but that is the only complaint we hear from all cooks. It is definitely something to wish for if you don’t already own one.

Where to buy:

Cookware.com
Cooking.com

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VERY GOOD: Cuisinart Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel Cookware Set

  • Fully clad 18/10 stainless cooking surface with aluminum core
  • Cool Grip Handle – solid stainless steel, riveted
  • Drip-free pouring rim
  • Limited Lifetime Warranty

A less expensive alternative to All Clad. This cookware has been voted five stars by hundreds of satisfied customers.

Where to buy:

Coookware.com
Amazon.com

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3 Comments

  1. Posted December 25, 2010 at 7:24 PM | Permalink

    Dear bestcookwarefinds.com

    I am looking to buy Stainless Steel cookware. I am glad I came to your website for info, but I do have some questions. You say that stainless steel with a copper core can’t be used in induction cooktops. However, when I looked at Costco 13-piece stainless Steel cookware which has a copper core, the website says that it can be used in induction heating so I am somewhat confused. Can you also please comment on the importance of domed lids? Allclad looks like it’s dome-shaped whereas Cuisinart Pro looks flat from the pictures? I would also appreciate very much your inputs on Costco SS cookware as well.

    Thanks,

    Howard Vo

  2. Alice,
    Posted December 26, 2010 at 6:05 PM | Permalink

    Howard, thank you for the comment. For the most part, copper core stainless steel cookware has not been compatible with induction type stoves.
    However new technology is now including another layer of metal that will make it work. If the cookware at Cotsco says that it is induction heat safe, it probably is. One way to test if your cookware is induction compatible, is placing a magnet up to the exterior. If the magnet sticks, your pan is induction ready.

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    Dome lids are usually good for the only reason that there is more room for the steam coming from the food to do its job. The steam rises, it condenses on the inside of the dome, then it falls back into the food, helping it baste itself.
    I personally do not think they are so good, so I would not place too much importance on whether the lid is domed or not.
    I personally prefer stainless steel lids while other cooks like glass lids so they can see the food.
    Since the steam creates a certain “fog” inside the cooking vessel, I don’t see the advantage of a glass dome. Needless to say they are fragile and I tend to worry about them more than a metal lid.

    All Clad lids are more “curved” than Cuisinart Pro but they are not necessarily “domed”. The most important job of the lid is to not to let steam escape too easily. It needs a tight fit and these two brands do a good job in doing so.

  3. Posted August 13, 2011 at 11:04 AM | Permalink

    i do most of my cooking with Stainless Steel as well.

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