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Stainless Steel Cookware

How To Buying Guide: Stainless Steel Clad Cookware

by Helen
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How To Buy High Quality Stainless Steel Cookware

Why I use Clad Cookware – It's no secret that at Bambam's Coop – my house, I love cooking with the best stainless steel cookware, cast iron, and nonstick nontoxic stainless steel. But I'm going to be honest: cast iron — it's not always the first pan I reach for when I'm cooking at home, and I'm just as often pulling out a stainless steel saucepan as my cast iron skillet.

But wait a minute; I am not just cooking in thin, filmy stainless steel, and I donated all those pots and pans several years ago. No, I've invested in high-quality stainless steel cookware or was gifted, and I'm here to tell you that it is usually worth it.  Some people are intimidated by cooking with stainless steel cookware, but I have written an article that may help you get started or give you some good pointers.

RELATEDWhich Is Best Stainless Steel or Non Stick Cookware

360 Cookware

Guide To Buying Stainless Steel Cookware

Shopping for Stainless Steel Cookware can be stressful regardless of where you are in your culinary journey. With many vendors, price points, styles, and kitchen set stainless steel to research and choose from, it's challenging to find a balance between quality, cost, and performance—chiefly when shopping online.

We have all been there, and I sympathize. To make your research and selection process less stressful, I have included a checklist of things you can look for and consider when shopping around. As an owner of high-quality stainless-clad cookware, I know a thing or two about what makes a good investment when buying quality pots and pans. We'll get into more detail, but consider construction materials, craftsmanship, durability, and longevity when shopping for Stainless Steel Cookware.

Best Stainless Steel Cookware

What is High Grade Stainless Steel?

High-quality Stainless Steel Cookware begins with only high-grade raw materials.  However, multiple grades of Stainless Steel are used for manufacturing Cookware, ranging from the lowest grade, 18/0 Stainless Steel, to 18/10 Stainless Steel, the highest.

These numbers represent the percentages of nickel and chromium, respectively, and relate to each grade's rust and corrosion resistance.  As the percentage of chromium increases, the material's strength and durability also increase.

Since 18/10 is unrivaled in its ability to maintain its polish and ward off rust and corrosion, it's the clear choice for professionals and home cooks.  It's also why high-quality cookware manufacturers, reputable companies like MadeIn – 18/10 stainless steel, 360 Cookware – T-304 Surgical Grade Stainless Steel 18/8, Sardel Cookware – 18/10 stainless steel, and AmeriCraft Cookware use high-grade stainless steel to construct all of their Stainless Clad Cookware and Flatware.  Tramontina 3 Ply Cookware Sets are more affordable, yet it is highly rated with an average of 4.5 Out Of 5 Stars – 1198 Global Reviewers On Amazon.

Does it Have a Premium Construction?

My favorite stainless steel cookware class is “fully-clad” or full clad stainless steel cookware.  But what is cladding?  Stainless Steel has a poor conductor of heat, which is very important when cooking.  To mitigate this issue, clad Cookware – i.e., layer multiple sheets of different metals to utilize the best features of each.

Clad means two things: 

  • First, the Cookware is not entirely made of stainless steel; instead, it uses at least three layers, the middle of which is most often aluminum.  
  • Second, these layers, which are “clad” together, will reach from the bottom of the pot or skillet up to the rim.  These pieces of Cookware generally have an even thickness all the way around.  The Cookware may have a rounded lip, or there may not, but the most crucial part is the layers and their reach.

Some companies use a 3-ply method, but 5-ply Cookware results from five layers of four different metals.  At the same time, an aluminum core provides the necessary heat conductivity, while the stainless steel exterior creates a smooth, durable, sleek, toxin-free cooking surface. 

The 2 extra layers of metal aid for Cookware that heats faster retain temperatures better and are more durable against warping and denting.  Typically, it tends to be slightly heavier and more costly, but it pays off when you cook your favorite meals.

Anything I plan to cook over low heat and simmer will turn out best cooked in such a vessel; the increased insulation from the multiple layers helps your delicious dinner maintain an even temperature.

2.3 Quart Slow Cooker Set - $329.00

Want to perfectly melt chocolate? Always have warm, scrumptious cheese dips? Have a fondue party for the family? Our 2. 3 Quart Stainless Steel Gourmet Cooker brings fun and versatility to your kitchen. It’s just the right size for sauces and dips whether you’re entertaining a crowd or creating an intimate dinner for two. Experience all the benefits of our 2. 3 Quart Casserole pan where you can use our Vapor® Cooking Method to create healthier, more flavorful dishes without the need for unhealthy fats or oils. You’ll appreciate its stainless steel construction which provides even heating and quicker cook times. Simply move it onto the Slo-Cooker base, and you have yourself a countertop slow-cooker and warmer. Product Features For Stock Pot Only:Ergonomic Handles Oven Safe Up To 500 Degrees Induction Capable Cladded Metal .110 Gauge T-304 Surgical Grade Stainless Steel Handcrafted in the U. S.A The heating surface is made of a steel plate that is black anodized and surrounded by a phenolic case. The steel plate is NOT a cooking surface but a heating element for the cookware items. This Set Includes: 2. 3 Quart casserole pan w/ Cover, Slow Cooker Base, Use & Care Guide and Certificate of Authenticity.

Clad Stainless Steel

Make Sure it Can Hold High Temperatures.

Stainless Steel kitchenware is prized for its versatility and ability to withstand and hold high temperatures.  Because of its chemical stability, it can handle extreme temperature changes.

Some quality stainless-clad cookware like MadeIn is oven-safe up to 800F, so you can safely sear, simmer, braise, and even grill with it.

The 5-ply construction is more reliable than other options regarding heat retention, heating, and temperature control precision.

Is Cookware Induction Compatible

While gas, electric, and radiant heat stovetops rely on thermal conduction, which is the most dominant among home cooks, induction stovetops, which depend on electromagnetism, are gaining some popularity.  They are said to be more efficient, safer, and easier to clean, but the downside is that you can only use Cookware with a compatible ferromagnetic base.  In more uncomplicated terms, non-magnetic metals such as Copper and aluminum won't work with an induction cooktop.

Fortunately, many premium options like Stainless Clad, Non Stick, and Carbon Steel Cookware are all induction compatible.  So, if you have an induction cooktop, you'll need to buy Cookware that will work on your stovetop.  If you choose incompatible Cookware, it will not be able to communicate with the electromagnetic field in your cooktop and will not heat.  Properly caring for your non-stick skillets or Cookware will last long, and the coating will not begin to peel or crack.  For example, never clean your non stick or stainless steel cookware in the dishwasher.

Look for Lifelong Quality Clad Stainless Steel Cookware Set

Even though it may not seem like it, Premium Cookware is an investment in your cooking and eating, so it must last to be worth the cost. Stainless Clad Cookware is used in professional kitchens, partially because chefs are drawn to how the 5-ply construction guarantees that it will last longer and hold up better in and out in restaurant kitchens.

So the next time you reach for products, from a Butter Warmer to a Stock Pot, know it was crafted to look and function flawlessly for years to come. With some basic but essential routine maintenance (instead of washing a little more than hand washing with soap and warm water, use a Stainless Steel Cleaner and water), your Stainless Clad Cookware will surely last a lifetime.

Ready to Shop For Some Stainless Steel Clad Cookware?

With each piece of Cookware design, be sure the primary goal is to create a durable restaurant-quality piece that will serve you the home cook just like the chef. Stainless Clad Collections remain one of the most outstanding achievements, offering endless flexibility for how and where you use and what you use it for to feed your family. Hopefully, this post has helped clarify essential characteristics you should look for the next time you shop for new Stainless Cookware—and, with any luck, inspired you to join the countless home cooks (and counting) who have tried and love their stainless steel kitchenware.


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