Whether you are setting a new kitchen or simply updating, you should always go for the best cookware materials. If you have an induction cooktop, you will need different cookware materials. And if you use a gas cooktop, the requirements will be different.
But how will you know which material is best for cooking? Well, you’ll find all that info here in this article. You’ll find some commonly most used cookware materials and their qualities. You can go through the below list and decide which one is the best.
Table of Contents
Best Cookware Material
Here’s a list of cookware materials: –
1. Stainless Steel
You’ll find stainless steel utensils in almost all kitchens. It is both durable and attractive. You can call stainless steel a mixture of steel, chromium, and nickel. This mixture makes stainless steel anti-corrosive and fit for cooking.
A stainless-steel cookware, which is stamped as “18/10” is highly preferred for use. This ratio states the amount of chromium and nickel added, respectively. Not only for exterior layering, but stainless steel is also fit for interior layering. It’s because stainless steel never reacts with alkaline or acidic foods.
However, stainless steel on its own is a poor conductor of heat. And for this reason, a layer of a highly conductive metal like copper or aluminum is applied. The ones with metal layering are known as stainless steel ‘clad’ pans or pots, which are fit for cooking.
Aluminum is a great conductor of heat. It is affordable, and when metals like copper and magnesium are added, it becomes even more suitable. However, you may think aluminum can react with acidic foods, right? Well, yes, but this problem has been addressed.
Good quality aluminum utensils are clad with stainless steel or lined with a nonstick coating. Anodizing is another good option. This process imparts a grey color to the interior and hardens the surface. You’ll also find some utensils with a nonstick or stainless-steel interior, making them easy to clean and durable.
There is plenty of good quality aluminum cookware available in the market. You can choose from the ones with stainless still lining or nonstick lining. But before you buy, you should make sure that you read the cleaning instructions for that cookware.
3. Anodized Aluminum
Non-anodized or normal aluminum can react with your food, imparting a different color and metallic taste. It’s the reason why anodized aluminum is preferred over aluminum. Anodised aluminum cookware has a layer of aluminum oxide that protects it from corrosion and makes it more durable.
Also, anodized aluminum cookware is less likely to wither off and never react with the food. It’s the reason why people go for anodized aluminum cookware.
4. Cast Iron
Cast iron is not a good conductor of heat. It heats up slowly and takes some time to cool when you turn off the heat. However, this can be used as an advantage. Cast iron is used in grill pans, fry pans, and Dutch ovens. Cast iron cookware is highly durable and resists chipping or curling.
Natural cast iron cookware is prone to corrosion. You need to apply seasoning to protect it from corrosion. The seasoning also provides a nonstick layer, which makes cooking easy. Also, there’s a better industry version in which cookware comes pre-seasoned.
5. Nonstick Surface
Nonstick cookware is popular for two reasons. First, it’s quite easy to clean nonstick cookware. Second, it a healthier way of cooking food. It’s healthy because less to no oil is used for cooking on nonstick surfaces.
One thing you should know about nonstick surfaces is maintenance. If the surface is scratched, it’ll ruin the food. So, whenever you clean the surface, make sure to use non-metallic items like silicon, sponge, or wood.
You should also avoid stacking the nonstick pans one above the other. However, if you have less space, you can place a layer of paper towel between them. So, make sure you take ample care of your nonstick utensils if you want them to last long,
Copper is the best material used for cookware. It’s mainly because of its highest heat conductivity. It heats up quickly and cools down evenly. It’s the reason why copper cookware is loved by chefs all over the world. If you’re looking forward to buying copper cookware, go for the ones that are 1/16 to 1/8 inch thick.
Usually, copper is quite reactive too. It can add color or even a metallic taste to your food. However, there’s a solution. Good quality copper cookware comes with stainless steel or another non-reactive metal lining. If you cannot find stainless steel coated copper cookware, you can find the ones coated with tin.
But tin is not that durable. With use, you may have to get it re-tinned. Or you can also find some cookware with a thick gauge copper. However, if you increase the thickness, the price also increases. So, you can choose accordingly.
7. Carbon Steel
Caron steel is next to aluminum in heat conductivity. It’s inexpensive and highly durable but is only suited as a cookware material for pans. It’s because if not oiled properly, carbon steel will rust. However, if you take enough care and oil it properly, it can deliver a natural nonstick interior.
There’s a downside to using carbon steel with acidic food items. It can react and cause a change in taste. But carbon steel can achieve high temperatures, which other materials cannot. So, you can use it for blackening fish, searing stakes, etc.
Carbon steel is mainly used as a core metal in enameled cookware: roasting pans, lobster pots, and broiling. You can prefer enameled cookware as they are non-reactive, practical, and economical.
8. Clay & Stoneware
Stoneware and clay were pretty popular in the olden times. However, it never means such cookware is obsolete. Clay and stoneware can produce reliable results if you know how to use them. But these days, it’s mostly used for baking dishes and casseroles.
It means clay and stoneware are limited to oven use only. Such cookware is freezer and dishwasher safe. It makes them one of the most reliable cooking materials. Cookware made from clay and stone is available in various colors and shapes. So, you can choose what you like.
What cooking material is best depends on what you need. If you want to blacken fish and want high temperatures, carbon steel will be a great choice. However, if you love nonstick cookware, you may have to choose copper with a nonstick inner lining.
We hope the above information proved to be useful to you. If you were able to find the cookware material you need, please share it with others. Also, keep coming for info similar to this one.