Best Stainless Steel Cookware 2018 – Reviews & Buyer’s Guide
Are you planning to buy a new stainless steel cookware set for your kitchen? If you are, then you’re lucky as I help you find the best stainless steel cookware sets that heat quickly and offer the best value.
Many users prefer stainless steel because it’s durable and easy to maintain. However, buying a new cookware set can be flustering, especially, if you have no idea what features to look for. That’s why I have made it easier for you by reviewing the most popular stainless steel cookware sets in detail.
If you are interested in other kitchen gadgets, refer here: Best Choises
Why Use Stainless Steel?
Stainless steel is good for sauteing, braising, searing, and creating sauces. It’s safe to use in the broiler, oven, and stove. Many professional chefs and households prefer to use stainless steel because it’s durable. Unlike other materials, stainless steel doesn’t rust, stain, or even chip easily. This makes it almost unbreakable and easy to clean.
Another good thing about stainless steel is its great flavor preservation. Unlike aluminum, it doesn’t leach any metallic properties into food. Also, it has no nonstick coating that would come off over time.
The easy maintenance is another desirable thing about this material. You only need to scrub gently or wipe it back into impeccable condition.
However, stainless steel has poor heat conductivity that’s why you need to look for an aluminum or copper core. The price can also be expensive, especially if it’s made with a copper core, but it can be all worth it given its longevity.
Proper Care And Maintenance
To clean stainless steel pots and pans, gently scrub with water and soap. For light stains, you can try boiling a mixture of one part vinegar and three parts water. Next, remove from heat and add several tablespoons of baking soda.
At this point, you’ll probably see the water bubbling. Finally, rinse under running water and wipe with a non-abrasive pad.
For tough stains, try mixing a powdered cleanser, like Bar Keepers Friend Cleanser, with a bit of water. Next, scrub with a non-abrasive pad and add more cleanser if necessary. Keep scrubbing until the stain is removed and rinse well.
For visual reference, watch this video on how to clean a stainless steel cookware.
What To Look For Buying Your Best Stainless Steel Cookware
Aluminum Or Copper Core
Stainless steel is a poor heat conductor. For this reason, you need to look for an aluminum or copper core for faster heating. Copper-based cookware is a better heat conductor than aluminum, but its price may be a bit expensive.
Durable Handles And Lids
The best stainless steel cookware sets should have high-quality handles and lids. For your safety, look for handles and lids that stay cool during use. You should look for knobs if you want to remove the lids quickly.
Many sets are made with ergonomic handles for easy grip. Some even have a lid that can also be used on the skillet and pot. If the cookware says oven safe, check the handles and make sure that it’s made of metal, not plastic.
Also, look for glass lids so you can monitor the food while cooking.
Stainless Steel Grade
Are you familiar with the figures, 18/8, 18/10, and 18/0? They’re the figures that pertain to the chromium and nickel contents of the steel. If you want the most durable stainless steel cookware, choose 18/10, which means 18% chromium and 10% nickel.
Chromium is the metal that will protect your steel from stains and rust. The more chrome, the shinier your cookware appears. The larger the numbers, the more resistant it is from corrosion.
The Number Of Pieces On The Set
The number of pieces may vary from set to another. You will want to purchase a set that comprises of the pots and pans that you often use.
A basic set may include two covered skillets <8” or 10” and 10” or 12”>, a covered saucepan, and a covered stock pot. An 8-10 piece set is perfect if you cook for a small family.
If you love to cook, then you’ll need more pieces, preferably 14-17 pieces. In boxed sets, a lid is counted as a piece and it might suit more than one piece of cookware. Some sets may also include accessories, like a steamer, measuring spoons, or spatula.
If you can find a set that offers a great number of pieces, the better as you can get more than you pay for. Just make sure that the pieces are what you really need. It might not be a smart choice if you use only a few.
Warranty Or Money-Back Guarantee
A warranty can cover any defects within a specified period. The longer the warranty, the better as you can set your mind at peace for a very long time. In some cases, a quality cookware offers a lifetime warranty. Some may even provide a money-back guarantee if you’re not satisfied with the quality.
Top 5 Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets
T-fal C836SC Ultimate Cookware Set
The T-fal C836SC Utimate is a 12-piece set which includes the following: two fry pans <8” and 10.25”>), a 12-inch fry pan with lid, three saucepans with cover <1, 2, and 3-quart>, a 5-quart stew pot with cover, and a steamer.
The base is layered with copper to improve heat conductivity and eliminate hot spots. The lid is made of glass to allow you to monitor your cooking progress.
The cookware set is dishwashers-safe and oven-safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. The handles are riveted for durability and ergonomically designed for comfort. I love that the interior of the cookware has measuring marks for convenience in cooking.
- Can be used on all cooktops including induction
- Made of durable and comfortable handles
- The glass lids allow easy viewing while cooking
- Dishwasher-safe and oven-safe to a maximum of 500 degrees Fahrenheit
- The copper-based bottom is thick and efficient
- Supports a lifetime limited warranty
- The cookware is made of high-grade 18/10 stainless steel
- Sadly, the handles become burning hot when cooking
- Stains easily after frying
- A bit flimsy and lightweight
Cooks Standard 10-Piece Cookware Set
The Cooks Standard 10-Piece is made with an aluminum core between two layers of 18/10 stainless steel. Not only does the copper integrated on the bottom but the whole body as well.
This set includes two covered saucepans <1.5-quart and 3-quart>, a 4-quart saute pan with cover, an 8-quart stockpot with cover, and a universal size steamer insert for saucepans.
The solid stainless steel riveted handles are safe to hold even when cooking because they stay cooler with air-flow technology. The stainless-steel lids trap in moisture and heat which speeds up the cooking process.
This cookware set is suitable for induction, oven-safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, and dishwasher-safe.
- Backed by a lifetime limited warranty
- Dishwasher-safe for ease of cleaning
- Oven-safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit
- Heats fast and evenly with the integrated aluminum core
- Suitable for all cooktops including induction
- Sturdy and well made with 18/10 stainless steel
- The handles are comfortable and cool
- Due to the very thin stainless steel plating, the cookware discolor and pit quickly
- The handles are too long for compact storage
- It would have been better if the lids are made of glass
Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro Cookware Set
The Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro is a 12-piece cookware set which consists of two covered saucepans <1.5- and 3-quart>, two open skillets <8” and 10”>, one 3.5-quart saute pan with lid, one 8-quart stockpot with lid, and a steamer insert with lid.
This cookware set is compatible with all cooking surfaces including induction. The pots and pans are dishwasher-safe and can be placed in the oven up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
I love its cover which is designed with a drip-free pouring trim and tightly seals in the moisture of food. The tri-ply construction includes a pure aluminum core for better heat retention.
You can ensure durability from the cookware’s stay-cool handles because they’re riveted well.
- Supports a lifetime limited warranty
- The cookware is made of a polished 18/10 stainless steel
- The handles are durable and comfortable
- Dishwasher-safe and oven-safe up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit
- Integrated with an aluminum core for maximum heat retention
- The cover is designed with a nice drip-free pouring rim
- Suits all cooking surfaces including induction
- The finish on the interior seems to come off after several uses
- The edges of the cookware can cut your hand because they’re sharp
- Scratches and warps easily
Lagostina Q555SD Axia Tri-Ply Cookware Set
The Lagostina Q5555SD Axia Tri-Ply is a 13-piece set premium stainless steel cookware set which includes three skillets <8”, 10”, and 12”>, three saucepans with lid <1, 2, and 3-qaurt>, 3-quart deep saute pan with cover, and 6-quart stockpot with lid.
An aluminum core is built between two stainless steel layers to achieve optimal heat distribution throughout the whole pan.
The cooking surface is made of 18/10 stainless steel to preserve the original flavor of food. I love the handles because they’re comfortable and remain cool while cooking. You can bet on its quality as the manufacturer offers a lifetime warranty.
- Can be used to all cooking units including induction
- Offers a lifetime warranty
- The stay-cool handles are durable
- Made of tri-ply material with aluminum as the base
- Heats fast and evenly
- The cookware is made of 18/10 stainless steel
- Dishwasher-safe for convenient cleaning
- It would have been perfect if the lids are made of glass
- The handles are a bit narrow making it difficult to lift without a potholder
- The pots and pans easily warp after heavy use
Chef’s Star Professional Cookware Set
The Chef’s Star contains 17 pieces of the following: two frying pans <8” and 10”>, two covered saucepans <1.6-quart and 2.5-quart>, one 4.2-quart covered casserole pan, one 8.6-quart covered stock pot, one 5.5-quart covered saute pan with helper, boiler basket, steamer basket, spoons, slotted spatula, and 2-prong fork.
All of these pieces are dishwasher-safe, freezer-safe, and oven-safe up to 550 degrees Fahrenheit.
What I love about this cookware set are its ergonomic handles which have anti-slip stain finish. The cookware is built to last with its 18/8 commercial grade stainless steel integrated with an aluminum core.
If you have any issues about the product, you can get them covered under its lifetime limited warranty.
- Supports a lifetime limited warranty
- Suitable for all cooking surfaces including induction stoves
- Freezer-safe for storage, dishwasher-safe for cleaning, and oven-safe up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit
- Offers a wide variety of accessories, pots, and pans
- Bonded with aluminum for quick heating and even heat distribution
- Built with ergonomic anti-slip handles
- The lids are made glass for easy viewing
- The pots and pans stain quickly
- The food burns and sticks easily
- It would have been perfect if the construction is made of 18/10, not 18/8 stainless steel
My Best Stainless Steel Cookware
Out from the 5 best stainless steel cookware sets reviewed, my pick is the T-fal C836SC because it has the best features.
First off, this cookware set is bonded with a copper core which is a better heat conductor than aluminum.
The construction is made of 18/10 stainless steel and the lids are made of glass for easy viewing. Also, it offers a nice design of durable handles and a lifetime limited warranty.
Did you enjoy reading this article? I know how difficult it is to find the best stainless steel cookware if you don’t know what to look for. Remember to look for an aluminum or copper base, a warranty, and 18/10 stainless steel construction.
If you have any questions or experiences on buying a stainless steel cookware set, leave them in the comment section. Please share this article if you like it.