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Old 10-26-2013, 08:38 PM   #1
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Non-stick vs ??

I have been using Calphalon Unison Nonstick pans for quite awhile. I cook at least two meals a day and I've found their lifespan to be about two years. It seems wasteful to throw out pans every two years so I have been considering what my options are. I'm hoping to get some recommendations here.

To give a little background I use a flat top electric stove and will most likely continue to do so. I mostly use my three skillets, 6", 8", 10" when cooking family meals. I do occasionally use pots perhaps once a week. I use olive oil when cooking.

I've looked at the Allclad copper/aluminum/steel set (which is quite expensive) but the reviews seem to indicate they are difficult to maintain. Do you have a suggestion for cookware that would last a long time and be reasonably easy to maintain? Thanks.

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Old 10-26-2013, 08:44 PM   #2
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Nothing else will be as ease to clean as non-stick. I have a few non-stick skillets that I use on occasion. I buy cheapo sets from Costco and toss them when they give out.

I like multi-ply stainless for everyday cooking. All-Clad has less expensive alternatives. Their basic stainless steel line is more reasonably priced. Other makers also make reasonably priced lines.

Another option is cast iron. It can be non-stick and is relatively easy to clean. CI is also very heavy.
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Old 10-26-2013, 08:47 PM   #3
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I had considered cast iron but was told I would most likely damage the flat top electric stove due to it's weight.
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Old 10-26-2013, 08:56 PM   #4
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I use cast iron on my glass top stove all of the time, no issues. I wouldn't slide it back and fourth, that would likely scratch it.

I keep a couple of inexpensive non-stick pans for things like eggs and such, but everything else is uncoated stainless. I find the stainless very easy to maintain. I like to do pan sauces and you won't get the fond stuck to the pan needed for flavor with a non-stick pan.

So, in my opinion, all non-stick is disposable, so I don't invest much in the couple pans that I have. My money went into a nice set of clad stainless steel pans.
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Old 10-26-2013, 08:58 PM   #5
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I assume you're referring to a glass top? I use cast iron on my glass top all the time, (including a dutch oven) and as long as you don't scrape it around too much or shake it like a Jiffy Pop, it works just fine.
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Old 10-26-2013, 09:48 PM   #6
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Tramontina pans are the absolute best and are made right here in the USA. (so rare to find nowadays). I've been through countless, nonstick pans that chipped and scratched sometimes after only one use, regardless of the fact that I used nonstick utensils. Tramontina makes ultra high quality pans, they're long lasting, and very reasonably priced. I love them. (They also make stainless steel pans, but I haven't tried them yet).
Amazon.com: Tramontina 3pk Long Life Saute Pan Value Set: Kitchen & Dining

For stainless steel, I use Chefmate. They're very low priced and work well.
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Old 10-27-2013, 10:06 AM   #7
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I use most Allclad SS cosmetic seconds that came at a big discount from Cookware and More.

They are a breeze to clean and look great 15 years later. They'll last forever.

I also have several cast iron skillets that I use a lot and several LC French ovens that also get a lot if use.

I have a glass top stove and they work fine, like others have said.

I don't have much use for nonstick but I do have 2 cheap ones I use for eggs and a larger one that was a gift that I hardly use (fond is your friend :-). I bought an Emerilware (made by Allclad ) nonstick egg pan for 15 at WS outlet about 8 years ago and it's still going strong
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Old 10-27-2013, 10:27 AM   #8
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I use mostly SS and Carbon steel pans. I keep one small egg pan in non-stick.

SS cookware can be very non-stick if it is used properly. Heating the pan to achieve the Leidenfrost effect before adding foods is the trick. Once the pan is this hot, a little oil will float on the surface of the pan and foods won't stick. It is also very important that the pan is properly cleaned after use. Bar Keepers friend contains oxalic acid that removes build up leaving the pan good as new.

Here is another thread about the set I use, Mauviel M'cook. I found it to be of better design, quality, and construction than All-Clad.

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