A Guide To Nonstick Cookware Sets

Stainless Steel Frying Pan resting on a countertop with a large wooden cutting board in the background

A Guide To Nonstick Cookware Sets

Best Nonstick Cookware Sets: 

Table of Contents:

  1. What Makes Cookware Nonstick
  2. Benefits Of Nonstick Cookware
  3. What To Look For In A Nonstick Cookware Set
  4. Different Types Of Nonstick Cookware
  5. Recommended Nonstick Cookware Sets
  6. Frequently Asked Questions

      Did you know what Nonstick cookware once had the reputation for being poorly made, flaky- as the nonstick coating would flake off into the food, and be crafted using unsafe chemicals? 

      But in recent years, just like all other kitchen essentials, cookware has come a long way. 

      Today, many high-grade cutlery brands like Dalstrong have mastered the art of crafting durable non stick pots and pans that cook food evenly and complete your kitchen with all its carefully designed, highly functional pieces. 

      Whether you are looking for a set to fit your kitchen or update your pots and pans collection, always keep in mind that the best nonstick cookware set delivers the ease of nonstick with the functionality you would expect from any high-quality cookware. So if you’re a chef, an occasional cook, or a professional chef, we have the perfect nonstick cookware set for all your kitchen needs. 

      Before we get into the details of the sets, let’s take a look at what makes Nonstick cookware the preferred choice for every kitchen. 

      1. What Makes Cookware Nonstick

      Silver cookware set with frying pan pot and skillet on a brown wooden surfaceAvalon Series 6 Piece Cookware Set

      Nonstick cookware is a surface-engineered kitchen took made of Teflon. The original Teflon was invented back in April of 1938 by accident when Dr. Roy J. Plunkett and his assistant Jack Rebok were working on alternative refrigerant gases. 

      They were storing the gases that they were experimenting with in small cylinders, where they were frozen and compressed. One such gas, tetrafluoroethylene, didn’t merge with the cylinder after being frozen. Instead, it was discovered that the freezing and compression had turned the gas into a white, solidified liquid. This was later named Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE). 

      Over time, they discovered that the newfound substance they accidentally created is the most slippery substance discovered by mankind yet. They also learned that it was extremely valuable, especially when coupled with its non-corrosive, chemically stable properties at an extremely high melting point. 

      So, how does Teflon make its way into the culinary world?

      Teflon was introduced into the culinary world in the middle of the century by a French Engineer, Marc Grégoire. Marc had been using the substance to detangle his fishing tackles. His wife noticed Teflon’s slick properties and encourage him to try applying it to their cooking pans. 

      With time, Marc began t notice the incredible difference it made in her cooking and began selling millions of nonstick pots every year under the brand name Tefal. 

      Today, health-conscious individuals often go for nonstick pans over stainless steel while cooking as these pans consume less oil. The nonstick coating also prevents food from sticking to the surface. Read on to know more about the benefits of using nonstick cookware for your day-to-day cooking needs. 

      2. Benefits Of Nonstick Cookware

      Stainless Steel Frying Pan resting on a countertop with a large wooden cutting board in the background

      Uses less oil

      Nonstick cookware requires a minimum amount of oil or butter while cooking a meal compared to uncoated stainless steel cookware. With fat-reduced, excess calories are eliminated for better health.

        Despite fat being a critical body requirement, consume only what’s needed to get the right energies for a positive impact on your body. Preparing nutrient-rich foods in lots of oil diminishes their nutrient benefits.

        Therefore, nonstick pans come in to reduce or eliminate cooking oil or fat from your low-calorie meals and cooking process.

        Easy to clean

        Nonstick cookware is comparatively easier to use and was since the slick coated surface prevents food from sticking to the pan. This facilitates the washing process afterward, saving us a lot of time and energy. Designed for ease of cleaning, you can quickly clean the interior and exterior of your cookware.

        A soft sponge with hot soapy water does the trick when you need to scrub the interior and exterior of the pans. The best nonstick pans are dishwasher-safe for fast and easy cleaning. 

        High resistance

        Another great advantage of using a nonstick pan is that it is highly resistant to acidic reactions such as wines, tomatoes, lemons, etc. whereas stainless steel can react. 

        Useful cooking tool

        The nonstick element of the pans makes them a great cooking tool and they are greatly useful for cooking food items that require mild temperatures and are commonly known to stick to the pan such as egg omelets, pancakes, etc. Another important feature of nonstick cookware is that it does not require a pre-heating process before adding ingredients. 

        Durable and affordable

        Available at various prices, non stick cookware is less expensive compared to stainless steel cookware. They are made from all kinds of metals such as aluminum and stainless steel. Quality materials and the nonstick coating guarantee high performance and enhanced durability. 

          Simple to use

          Nonstick pans are good for use with fried or breaded food items that could otherwise break apart in the pan. They are easier to handle for inexperienced cooks or those who may be distracted while cooking by phone calls, work, or children. 

          3. What To Look For In A Nonstick Cookware Set

          Dalstrong Avalon Series Skillet Frying Pan and Lid Resting Against A White Kitchen Tiled Wall On A Grey Granite Counter

          There is a wide range of nonstick pots and pans available for you to pick from in the market and this can get pretty confusing, especially if you’re new to this. Let us take a deeper look into the nitty-gritty that you must keep in mind before investing nonstick cookware set for your kitchen.

          Material

          Nonstick pans can be made out of many types of base materials which will help determine how well your pan conducts, maintains, and responds to heat. The lightest and most popular of these is aluminum which conducts heat well and can be used on a variety of cooktops.

          Stainless steel is another popular choice- these pans tend to be heavier, with more substantial thickness making them less susceptible to dings and dents.

          Copper is also another great option, as this metal has superior heat conductivity and is extremely responsive to changes in heat. As for the interior of the nonstick pans, there are different materials used to coat this like polytetrafluoroethylene, ceramic, and hard-anodized aluminum.

          Weight and Size

          You want a mid-weight cookware set. Lightweight ones are too flimsy and heat too quickly, so make sure the pots and pans have some heft. Heavy-weight cookware allows you to get a good sear but may be difficult to lift.

          For easy, efficient storage, I would recommend sets that nest neatly within each other to save space. However, I recommend you line the pans and pots with towels to prevent scratching. Check out our article on organizing pots and pans.  

          Number of Pieces in the Set

          Depending on your cooking style and family size, the number of pieces you need will vary. The most utilized nonstick pan will likely be a skillet, so be sure to choose a set that has at least one.

          Another essential pan to have is a stockpot. It is great for cooking rice or thicker sauces and stews. They are also super easy to clean up. Don’t forget that while more pieces will give you more versatility, they will also require more space to store. 

          Heating Capacity

          Nonstick cookware is generally safe for low and medium temperatures, though some of the more modern versions can stand higher heat. Traditional PTFE coatings are generally approved for use up to about 400 degrees Fahrenheit, whereas ceramic coatings can typically withstand higher temperatures.

          Hard-anodized cookware can fall somewhere between 400-500 degrees Fahrenheit. If you often start foods on the stove and finish them in the oven, make sure to check what temperatures the cookware can withstand, so you won’t have to transfer the food from one pan to the other to finish your cooking. 

          Cooktop Compatibility

          Most nonstick cookware works just fine on gas, electric, and halogen cooktops, however, you must always check the manufacturer’s instructions to be sure. The most common material used to make nonstick cookware is aluminum, which is not induction-friendly on its own.

          If you have an induction cooktop, look for cookware that has a stainless steel base that specifies it is compatible to use for such stoves. 

          Dishwasher and over-safety

          Dishwasher-safe cookware saves you time and energy since all you have to do is pop it into the dishwasher instead of scrubbing it. Always keep in mind that while hard-anodized metal will stand up to multiple washes, other coatings can fade faster with repeated washing.

          Oven safety is useful for a range of dishes since it allows you to move your cookware from the stovetop to the oven to finish cooking or keep warm. 

          Price

          Nonstick cookware is available at a wide variety of price points, the least expensive of which are lightweight aluminum pans with a PTFE or ceramic coating. Since medium and heavyweight pans require more material to construct, they will naturally be a little more expensive.

          Keep in mind that nonstick cookware generally wears out quicker than stainless steel, copper, or enameled cast iron pieces and will need to be replaced at some point.

          Warranty

          Many manufacturers offer some type of limited warranty against defects in material, construction, or workmanship. This warranty typically will not cover damage from thermal shock, improper use, nonstick deterioration, damage from sharp utensils, or damage caused by abrasive cleaners and scouring pads.

          Be sure to double-check the warranty provided by the vendor to ensure it is to your satisfaction. 

          Maintenance

          There are some universal rules for nonstick cookware that will help you prolong its life. 

          1. Always use the pans within the recommended heat range, as some nonstick coatings do not work well at higher temperatures.
          2. Ghee, butter, and oil are recommended for cooking, but nonstick sprays will leave a sticky buildup that can be difficult to remove and will affect the pan’s nonstick properties. 
          3. Protect your cookware’s finish by avoiding sharp or metal cooking utensils, which can cause scratches and gouges that can lead to eventual chipping or flaking.
          4. Should you notice that the coating on your nonstick is beginning to crack, it is time to replace it.
          5. Since the nonstick surface lets food debris come off easily, washing your pots and pans with a non-abrasive scrubber and mild dish soap is the most simple and effective method to clean them.  

          Accessories

          Some cookware sets will also come with extras, like nonstick-friendly spatulas, spoons, and other non-cookware items. If you’re already well-stocked in the cooks’ tool department, look for a set that includes cookware only.

          Handles

          How cookware feels in your hand is important. You want to feel comfortable and have control when cooking. Some have silicone-wrapped handles which generally stay cooler. The touch and feel more comfortable in the hand than metal handles.

          Tip: For easy maneuvering, look for helper handles- an extra handle on the opposite side of the main one. This is beneficial for lifting the pot/pan and creating extra balance. 

          4. Different Types Of Nonstick Cookware

          Dalstrong Oberon Series Frying Pan & Skillet on a dark grey granite kitchen countertop

          12" ETERNA Non Stick Frying Pan & Skillet - The Oberon Series

          Nonstick cookware is one of the most convenient types of cookware to use. When cooking, you don’t have to use extra butter or oil, and it cleans up in a matter of seconds. However, with so many different types of nonstick cookware out there, it’s difficult to know which is the best or the safest.

          There are some interesting differences among the different types of nonstick coatings. So whether you’re looking for ceramic, PTFE-coated, or an alternative like carbon steel or cast iron, let me help you pick by taking you through the pros and cons of each and understanding what separates them to find out which is the safest and best nonstick cookware option. 

          Traditional Nonstick

          Polytetrafluoroethylene or PTFE or Teflon coated is what serves as the coating for traditional nonstick cookware. Pans made with PTFE are easy to clean but the coatings do wear away as you use them. Manufacturers had also started using PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid in the traditional nonstick coatings. There was also news about PFOAs and their ability to dizzy birds and other pets when heated too high made the news in the last decade. But since 2015, regulations mandate that all cookware sold in the US and Canada is PFOA-free, meaning that it is no longer a major component in manufacturing nonstick cookware.  

          Ceramic

          Ceramic nonstick cookware is coated in a material that is derived from silica, one of the components of beach sand. This is applied (dipped or sprayed), to coat the interior surface of the pan, and then it is cured by high-firing an oven.

          While most PTFE coatings need at least three coatings, ceramic coatings can require as little as just one layer, reducing the time and energy required to manufacture these types of pans. The drawback of ceramic is that it is more brittle than traditional nonstick coatings, making it more susceptible to developing surface cracks and losing the nonstick property faster.

          Carbon Steel

          While carbon steel isn’t naturally nonstick, it can become nonstick pretty easily. Carbon steel cookware is composed of iron and carbon, two perfectly safe metals to use when cooking.

          Carbon steel needs to be seasoned before you use it for cooking and while it may take a while for a carbon steel pan to become entirely nonstick, it works flawlessly once it does. Since carbon steel can get extremely hot, you can sear a steak, char veggies, and even fry eggs with no worry on this kind of pan.

          Cast Iron

          Cast iron cookware is very similar to Carbon Steel cookware. However, its surface is not as slick as that of a nonstick carbon steel surface. It also doesn’t have a coating and the seasoning is built up over time by cooking with the pan. But since carbon steel is lighter and responds to heat in a much more efficient way, it is better than cast iron. Carbon steel and cast iron are alternatives to nonstick cookware, however, if you’re looking for a proper nonstick cooking surface, ceramic or Teflon coated cookware are far superior options.

          Hard-Anodized Aluminum

          While PTFE and ceramic coatings are coated onto other metals to make a nonstick layer, hard-anodized aluminum has a nonstick surface that is “baked in”. It is made by electrochemically hardening soft aluminum to make it stronger than stainless steel and an oxidized top layer that is also nonstick and tougher than traditional nonstick coating.

          Hard-anodized aluminum stands up well to high heat, resists scratches, and doesn’t react with acidic foods, and because the nonstick surface is part of the actual pan, it is not prone to chipping or flaking.  

          5. Recommended Nonstick Cookware Sets

          Cookware is vital to anyone who needs to cook. But when you start buying your essentials like a stockpot, saucepan, and lid, skillet, sauté pan all separately, the cost can add up. In such moments, you may want to consider a cookware set to save you money. 

          When shopping for cookware, you have a wide range of options. As you do your research, you will also notice how different materials give the pots and pans unique and distinctive characteristics.

          For example, a stainless steel cookware set is low-maintenance, versatile, and durable. Copper cookware offers excellent heat distribution. Cast iron pots are sturdy and great to use as fry pans. Aluminum cookware works for griddles and larger pots.

          A nonstick cookware set is popular because it makes cleaning a breeze. A quality brand is always a good investment, and here at Dalstrong, we offer you just that! Let’s take a look at some elite cookware sets that perform well, are long-lasting, and look fantastic when displayed on your stove or countertop. 

          1. 6 Piece Cookware Set | Oberon Series

          6 Piece Cookware Set | Oberon Series

          Dalstrong’s premium Oberon Series includes 3-ply aluminum-core cookware that is designed to help you create magic in the kitchen. This set consists of high-performing, medium-weight, and ultra-functional cookware that is built to last a lifetime. 

          The 3-ply aluminum cladding cookware is made to provide impeccable conductivity to quickly heat up and evenly cook a full range of culinary delights, from thick proteins to delicate omelets. Unlike other aluminum cookware, the cladding technology of this series is designed to fuse additional thick layers of non-reactive stainless steel that excels at browning and braising foods. It also prolongs the life of the pan, making it extremely durable.  

          Pros:

          • This cookware set can last generations.
          • This set is the perfect combination of versatility, luxury, and performance.
          • It is made with non-toxic, non-hypoallergenic materials that are PFOA-free.
          • The cookware set is freezer, dishwasher, and refrigerator safe. 
          • The cookware is also compatible with all stovetops and is optimized for induction. 
          • The set comes with Dalstrong’s lifetime warranty on defects. 

           

          Cons:

          • The stainless steel handles of the set can get hot when being used. Caution must be exercised when coming in contact with the handles. 
          • If you have a big family or are someone who hosts big groups of people often, you might want to check out a bigger set that includes more essential cookware pieces. 

          2. 6-Piece Cookware Set | Avalon Series

          6-Piece Cookware Set Silver | Avalon Series

          This new premium, 5-ply series introduced by Dalstrong is the epitome of stunning design and high-performance, functional cookware that is built to last a lifetime. 

          The 5-ply copper forged foundation layer of this cookware set has changed the face of the culinary space, not only is this set luxurious in appearance but is also highly efficient. Boasting unrivaled conductivity to quickly heat and evenly cook a full range of culinary delights, this professional cookware allows for precise searing, browning, sautéing, deep-frying, quick boiling, sauces, jams, and even baking. 

          The premium steel used in the cookware of this series has superior heat conductivity, control, and responsiveness. The premium aluminum also provides enhanced heat retention and works towards preserving the nutritional qualities, taste, and color of foods. 

          Pros: 

          • Highly versatile cookware set that is compatible with all stovetops and is fully optimized for induction. 
          • It is freezer, refrigerator, and dishwasher safe. 
          • The set comes with a coating made of non-toxic and non-hypoallergenic materials. 
          • The exterior is mirror polished with a brush-finished bottom that provides enhanced grip on smooth-top electric ranges, induction cooktops, and gas stoves.
          • Dalstrong’s lifetime warranty on defects is included.  

          Cons: 

          • The price of this set can seem quite steep to some customers.
          • You may want to go for a bigger cookware set if you have a large family. 

          3. 12 Piece Cookware Set Oberon Series

          12 Piece Cookware Set | Oberon Series

            This stunning 3-ply aluminum cladding cookware set is known for its superior conductivity qualities that help heat up the food and ensure that everything in the vessel is cooked evenly. From thick proteins to delicate omelets, this aluminum cookware can take up any challenge and complete it successfully. 

            Not only is this set extremely durable, but also features 12 essential cookware pieces that your kitchen requires. This set is also perfect to prepare dishes that need to transition between the stove to the oven to finish cooking. 

            Pros:

            • 12 piece set that is perfect to cook big quantities for large families or parties. 
            • They are compatible to be used on induction, electric, and gas stoves. 
            • Each piece comes with a perfectly angled handle that ensures a comfortable and secure hold while cooking. 

            Cons:

            • For a single person or a smaller family, this set might be too big. In such cases, you would want to check out our smaller 6-piece sets or look at individual cookware items that fit your needs.

            4. 12-Piece Cookware Set Silver | Avalon Series

            12-Piece Cookware Set Silver | Avalon Series

              Here is another killer range of high-performing, functional cookware that will complete your kitchen. The material used to design this set does not only boasts unrivaled conductivity to heat food quickly but is also stunning to look at.

              From deep-frying to baking, this set can take on any challenge and come out victorious by ensuring that everything in the cookware is cooked evenly. 

              Pros:

              • This 12 piece set is perfect for a large family or those who host parties and get-togethers often. 
              • The painstakingly precise craftsmanship of this set makes it a head-turner in the kitchen. 
              • It helps preserve the nutritional qualities, taste, and color of foods. 
              • The coating is PFOA and PTFE-free making them completely safe to use. 

              Cons: 

              • The set is priced highly. This might not be preferred by some people. 
              • For a smaller family, I would recommend going for a smaller cookware set. 

              You might want to refer to the best nonstick pans blog post to find more recommendations that would suit your needs.  

              6. Frequently Asked Questions about Nonstick Cookware

              Stainless steel cookware on a dark kitchen counter with an oven in the backgroundAvalon Series 6 Piece Cookware Set

              How long should a nonstick pan last?

              Typically, nonstick pans last between one and five years. Nonstick pans coated with Teflon generally last at least three years and ceramic-coated non stick pans last an average of two years. 

                How do you maintain non stick pans?

                With the right cleaning and care, you can prevent your nonstick cookware sets from flaking and emitting harmful chemicals. 

                  Avoid overheating. Although most nonstick cookware sets can handle cooking temperatures of up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, you should stick to preheating with low-to-medium heat. For those pans that are oven-safe, avoid leaving them in the oven for too long.

                    Vent the room. When using extremely high heat, prevent fumes from harming the environment and irritating your lungs by switching on your exhaust fan or cracking a window.

                    Avoid metal utensils that can scratch the nonstick coating. Luckily, Dalstrong's sets are designed with scratch-resistant surfaces. 

                    Hand-wash the utensils with mild dish soap and a gentle sponge. Several nonstick cookware sets are dishwasher safe, however, to extend their durability, try and hand-wash them. 

                      Can you use soap on non stick pans?

                      Yes, you can. Hand-wash your nonstick pan after each use with mild soap and water. Harsh dishwasher detergents and scorching-hot water can cause the pan’s nonstick coating to deteriorate. Instead, use warm water and a brush or sponge to gently scrub your pan. 

                      Should you grease non stick pans?

                      Yes, a small amount of greasing is required. To properly grease your nonstick pan, rub a small amount of butter or oil directly onto the pan before putting it on the heat. You don’t need a lot of fat here as you are using a nonstick pan.

                      Depending on the size of the pan, one tablespoon or so should do. But you do still want a little bit of grease and want that grease to be effective.  

                        Do stainless steel utensils scratch non stick pans?

                        Yes, it does. You should never use metal against a nonstick pan since it will scratch the surface and may also cause the coating to come off the pan onto your food. Keep in mind to skip the metal whisk, metal spatula, or sharp metal tongs when you’re cooking with a non stick pan.

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                        Written by Himani Vaid

                        Toronto-based food nerd turned food storyteller, Himani is a connoisseur of all things delish. Currently, busy thinking about what to eat next.