Non-Stick vs Stainless Steel vs Cast Iron Pans?

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dragnlaw

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Hi runscott! Welcome to DC.
Must admit, I'm a wee bit jealous of yours (and everybodies) carbon steel pans. Would love to have some, maybe one day.

derek, you are going to have to be more specific. You say you might 'ruin' your pots if you cook something other than what you normally do in them. Ruined how? In what way would they be ruined?

... gets extremely greasy and the bottom of it looks disgusting. These pots were always cheap aluminum pots and always were no good after few months.
All greasy pans look disgusting before scrubbing up. And "no good" in exactly what way?

So even if i use it where the pasta and broccoli touch the bottom of that cheap stainless steel pot with water to cook... it still safe?
Safe from what?

But if i had a stainless steel pan... well even if i damage it somehow... How would you damage it?
 

runscott

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Hi runscott! Welcome to DC.
Must admit, I'm a wee bit jealous of yours (and everybodies) carbon steel pans. Would love to have some, maybe one day.

You can dive in with a Matfer 12" for around $60. I watched several 'Cook Culture' videos on seasoning and did exactly what they (Jed) said to do. But the fun part was getting excited, messing up, re-doing, until I was finally cooking food correctly in it. Also picked up a 10" crepe pan, which I will be attempting to fry my first egg in today.

My girlfriend is sticking with (or not) Teflon-coated, for reasons I completely agree with - mainly, she eats and then just leaves stuff lying around. I've only recently started allowing her to touch my cast iron, but when she's done I take care of things.

Get a carbon steel pan and treat that one pan like a hobby you're really into.
 

runscott

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Just noticed you are from Canada - 'Cook Culture' is in Canada, so you can order a tin of his beeswax seasoning or watch his video on how to make your own - I have four pipe tobacco tins full of my own stuff.
 

derek700

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Would you say its worth paying double or triple the amount for a stainless steel pan vs a nonstick pan if you only plan to use it for few months? My concern is the safety of it.



Now something else came to my mind which i did not think about. Also bought a new aroma rice cooker few months ago. Use it to cook rice. Apparently i noticed now that the pot that comes with rice cooker is nonstick teflon... is that correct? So would this be any concern? Majority of rice cookers do have teflon pot right? Never had i ever considered looking at what the rice cooker pot is made of ever... but it always is teflon right? Was looking at the cooking pots and pans and just noticed the rice cooker is teflon. Does a rice cooker always have temperature way below the number where the coating isn't an issue?



So since im already using teflon product as in my rice cooker, does it make sense to pay less for a cooking pan and get nonstick instead of stainless steel? Wanted to get the pan to be stainless steel and all my pots and pans to be stainless steel... only to find out the last rice cooker i bought not long ago contains teflon. Did see some pots in rice cooker to be stainless steel but those are very expensive right?



Also for cooking utensils, is wood the best for alll of them... whether nonstick, stainless steel or cast iron? is buying stainless steel utensils, well it can only be used on stainless steel and cast iron right? But what about plastic or silicone? Can you use that on stainless steel or cast iron?
 
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runscott

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Would you say its worth paying double or triple the amount for a stainless steel pan vs a nonstick pan if you only plan to use it for few months? My concern is the safety of it.

When our favorite Teflon skillet wore out I decided to abandon teflon; however, I wasn't sure which direction to go, so I bought a cheap teflon skillet at Safeway, planning to only use it for a few months. So I see nothing wrong with doing that, as long as you use those 'few months' to come up with a long-range plan.
 

dragnlaw

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derek, I think everyone has pretty much given you their opinions. Nobody can make up your mind for you, that's your job! :)

Take a sheet of paper - divide it down the middle - title the two columns Pro and Con and start listing.

Then rule out the ones you cannot abide by and after that it is your choice twixt the devil and the deep blue sea.:ohmy: :ROFLMAO::ROFLMAO:
 

dcSaute

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it's a lot hyperbole and subjective opinion, and marketing flim-flam.



"paying double or triple the amount for a stainless steel pan vs a nonstick pan if you "only plan to use it for few months?"


why would one pay a lot of money for a stainless pan one intends to use for a few months?
that is the first terra-giga failure in logic.

a stainless pan lasts multiple life times.

a Teflon pan, not so much.


some people have become convinced that the mere presence of a Telfon pan in the kitchen means instant death. this is simply not true.


Teflon remains the absolute undisputed KING of non-stick in terms of performance.

a Teflon pan, nor any other non-stick to-date, does not live/work forever.
I buy, I use inexpensive Teflon pans - especially good for certain tasks.
eventually they become not-non-stick. they get tossed.
their life-span is, in my kitchen, used 4-5-times/week,,, in the 2-3 year range.



if one is unable to control one's kitchen behavior, problem arise.
over heated aluminum pans warp
over heated Teflon pans out gas pans go 'all stick'
over heated cast iron pans flake off the seasoning and also warp.
over heated black iron pans flake off their seasoning and also warp.


bottom line: if the cook does not know how to handle the tools, find a different cook - because virtually nothing is idiot proof.
 

GotGarlic

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it's a lot hyperbole and subjective opinion, and marketing flim-flam.



"paying double or triple the amount for a stainless steel pan vs a nonstick pan if you "only plan to use it for few months?"


why would one pay a lot of money for a stainless pan one intends to use for a few months?
that is the first terra-giga failure in logic.

a stainless pan lasts multiple life times.

a Teflon pan, not so much.


some people have become convinced that the mere presence of a Telfon pan in the kitchen means instant death. this is simply not true.


Teflon remains the absolute undisputed KING of non-stick in terms of performance.

a Teflon pan, nor any other non-stick to-date, does not live/work forever.
I buy, I use inexpensive Teflon pans - especially good for certain tasks.
eventually they become not-non-stick. they get tossed.
their life-span is, in my kitchen, used 4-5-times/week,,, in the 2-3 year range.



if one is unable to control one's kitchen behavior, problem arise.
over heated aluminum pans warp
over heated Teflon pans out gas pans go 'all stick'
over heated cast iron pans flake off the seasoning and also warp.
over heated black iron pans flake off their seasoning and also warp.


bottom line: if the cook does not know how to handle the tools, find a different cook - because virtually nothing is idiot proof.
+1
The voice of reason.
 

derek700

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What utensil would you recommend me get for a stainless steel pot that i use for cooking pasta and broccoli? Need to get a big spoon to scoop the food up. Do have an old silicone spatula and spoon. Could i use those? Are those not good to be used together with stainless steel pot? Always go with a stainless steel spoon then?



The issue though is back then when i used my scratched nonstick pan to make steak and eggs few times, i always used that silicone spatula and flip over the steak and eggs... while the nonstick pan was already scratched. Should i toss that old silicone spatula away? Could i gotten teflon into it and its stuck there and can't be removed?



Also i mentioned the reason why my nonstick pan got scratched was because after a while, i literally cut the steak on the nonstick pan after i was done cooking. Would use a knife and fork and cut it similar to how you cut your steak on a plate but literally did it right on the nonstick pan. No clue you weren't suppose to do that. Also had used those stainless steel scrubs on it to clean it and had no idea you weren't to... so that is another reason why the nonstick pan got scratched. But the stainless steel knife and fork is still safe to use right? Could teflon get on it? Even if it did... it had to right? Well nothing gets on stainless steel knife or fork after you wash it off with those stainless steel scrubbers? The size of the stainless steel knife and fork is like the ones you use in a restaurant to eat steak etc.
 
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derek700

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Read an article where they actually suggest you use wooden or silicone spoon and spatula with stainless steel pots and pans. Do most people agree with this? it said using metal utensils whether your fork or spoon or spatula could cause bit of damage to the stainless steel. So it could be scratched?



Then what is the purpose of a metal spoon or spatula then? Lately after i cook pasta and broccoli on my stainless steel pot, i literally just shake and circle the pot around a bit before pouring everything including the water in my bowl before i eat. Had several times when pasta or spaghetti get stuck to the bottom of the pot so shaking a bit around helps. But if you use your metal fork or say a metal spoon to pick up the pasta or spaghetti stuck to a pot, could it scratch it? That is my concern with the stainless steel pot that i use for making pasta and broccoli etc.



Should i just buy a new silicone or wooden spoon for this or go with a stainless steel big spoon? Again had zero clue about all these things until i ready about teflon. Never did i even look or care how a pot is made of or whatnot as long as it was big enough etc.
 

GotGarlic

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You can use stainless steel, silicone or wood utensils with your stainless steel pots; some scratches with use is normal and nothing to worry about. Teflon will not stick to, or penetrate, stainless steel.
 

Vinylhanger

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Just try a few different utensils.

You can get one of each for a few bucks each. It's really not worth the brainpower to fret about it.
 

jamacson

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I like stainless steel because it heats up faster and more evenly than cast iron. It will give you more precise control over the temperature.
 

summer57

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Vancouver
Properly seasoned carbon steel is my preferred pan for eggs or for anything non-stick. Well, for pretty much everything. Eggs will just slide off. Practically indestructible, too.
 

summer57

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Also... carbon steel is more conductive than either stainless or cast iron so, it heats up more quickly and evenly, with few hot spots. It will handle super high temperatures. That's why restaurant kitchens use carbon steel pans.
 

Badjak

Senior Cook
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Dec 24, 2010
Messages
140
I got 1 non stick pan and that one is for fried eggs & omelettes.
Rest is a mixture. Stainless, carbon steel, cast iron, enamelled cast iron, aluminium
They all work. All slightly different but all work well. Most are fairly cheap (except for my le creuset whistling kettle, but that one only cooks water).
They all take some care in cleaning and maintenance.
The one thing to remember is to use a bit more fat to cook in them as compared with non-stick.
So get what you think looks nice and usable and like a good deal and keep cooking.
 
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