Cookware Buying Guide

Take it from a person who has just finished moving not a few blocks but a few nations actually, that your kitchen can be the most expensive thing for your budget. The cookware, the groceries and the other teeny weeny things you prefer in your fridge can actually leave your wallet with a hole if you don’t know how to cut the expenses. So, HERE I AM, THIS IS ME, with all the knowledge not passed on from generations but by personal experiences, which will help you all a lot in buying the cookware. Be it a whole set or a few additions to your kitchen or any replacement in the same.

Don’t go ONLY after the BIG NAMES:

Good Quality Cookware SetIt is my personal experience that the big names are not always the best ones. The chefs’ endorsements MAY NOT always endorse the BEST Cookware. In fact, when I moved out of my parents’ house and started living on my own, most of my kitchenware consisted of the “BEST BRANDS”. But years of cooking and a lot of experimenting made me realize that all that glitters is SO NOT gold.

Check the Cooktop and the Pieces you Require:

Don’t buy the cookware which is incompatible with your cooktop or which will be a bit small or a bit large. This will save you money and gas and electricity (Induction). I mean, what is the use of buying a size 8 skillet if you can be served well with the size 5. Excess size will not only take excess time in cooking but will also take excess gas or electricity to heat up.

Online Shopping – Not SO GOOD

Take it from the person who has had a fair share of experiences. Buying cookware online can be problematic as till you don’t lift the cookware up and check its weight, strength and handles, grip etc., there will always be a factor of the doubt to your purchase. Physical shopping and testing of the cookware is necessary as it will offer you a better inspection and comparison of different items.

Be Informed

pre-seasoned cookwareYou need to understand the terms such as clad cookware, non-stick, pre-seasoned, hard-coat anodized or just anodized. The understanding will make your purchase more efficient and targeted to your needs. The pre-seasoned term means that the cookware already has a wax coat to prevent the rusting. Such cookware can be used right away after purchasing. Hard Coat Anodization will mean that the almost pure soft aluminum has been made into a hard one. The term CLAD ULTRA will mean that two metals have been used in the cookware. It is done to increase the heat conduction properties or to give strength. Those who are still confused or who have further questions can read FOODISTA’s cookware buying guide. Foodista is a great resource. It examines consumer reviews posted on reliable sites, analyzes them and recommends the best products.

non stick cookwareNon-Stick Cookware will be the one with the PVC Coating and are easy to clean and toss the things. I mean, if your cooking involves a lot of spreads and batters, they are the best kinds. Flipping an omelette, making pancakes and stir fries etc. will be a child’s play if you have these little buddies in your kitchen.

Uncoated cookware will be tough and heavy duty and will be good if you indulge in a lot of browning. They will be, however, consuming a lot of elbow grease and thus should be purchased after a good speculation.

cast iron cookwareCast iron, another mostly used cookware should be purchased if you want to keep the food warm for a long time. The cast iron cookware is a must if you are a fan of making traditional dishes as cornbread.

The other things to be considered while purchasing the cookware are the materials of the lids, which can be metal or glass or a combination of the both. The glass lids can sure give you a view of our food while it is being cooked without having to pick up the lid, they will require proper handling.

Infused cookware is the one in which the material with which the cookware is being coated is infused in the PORES of the COOKWARE to make it abrasion resistant. The coating is more durable and the cookware will keep on serving you better and longer.

Other things which are generally ignored while making the purchase are the handles and the safety measures. It is very important that the handles are checked for both the durability and the heat resistant areas.

Now let us come to some of the brands I have used and can actually talk about.

The king of the market is the ALL CLAD – the upscale stores and the select outlets, high prices and stainless steel and copper cookware are its specialties. It even has a distinct line for the chef Emeril called as Emerilware.

Anolon and Circulon both offer non-stick cookware with most of the Circulon being non-stick on both the inside and outside. Both lie in the UPPER MID PRICE RANGE.

Calphalon is the next one. The mid to high range brand which has added the most number of pieces to my kitchen. The brand provides multiclad, hard anodized, non-stick and stainless steel cookware. So, there is a lot of varieties.

Cuisinart is another one of the mid-price range brands with a lot of variety in the cookware.

The other brands which can be considered while making the purchase are the Faberware, Tramontina and Wearever.

So, here it is. Having gained a lot of information on the cookware, what are you waiting for? Jump in your sneakers or the posh boots and hit the stores.

Happy shopping.