How to Choose a Stainless Steel Pan?

How to choose a stainless steel pan for years to come? The first production of steel frying pans began in 1921 in France.

How to Choose a Stainless Steel Pan

Since then, steel utensils have become widespread. It is popular because its appearance harmoniously fits into any kitchen interior. Steel pans are recommended for use in catering establishments. They are suitable for cooking dishes by frying, as well as for heating already prepared food.

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The Harm and Benefits of Stainless Steel Pans

Stainless steel is an environmentally friendly material. Its utensils have both harm and benefit. The significant advantage of stainless steel is that the material has high hygienic properties:

  1. Harmful and toxic elements do not migrate into food, even with solid heating and scratches on the surface.
  2. The material does not affect the taste properties of products and their smell.
  3. The chemical resistance of stainless steel to acids and alkalis prevents it from oxidizing or rusting. Therefore, in such dishes, you can safely cook any dishes.

In addition to being hygienic, stainless steel for the production of utensils has some other advantages:

  • Beautiful appearance
  • Ease of use
  • Versatile. Stainless steel pans are suitable for any heating surface
  • Resistance to temperature extremes
  • Resistance to mechanical damage
  • Unpretentiousness in care
  • Long service life

But stainless steel pans have cons as well. The harm of using a stainless pan comes down to only one factor – it is impossible to cook food in them without lubricating the surface with fat. 

And foods fried in fat are far from the healthiest type of food.

Disadvantages of Stainless Steel Pans

  • Low heat capacity: A steel pan cannot provide the same high surface heating temperature as, for example, cast iron or aluminum. It means it will be problematic to fry the product until crispy.
  • Weak thermal conductivity: Stainless steel cookware heats up slowly.
  • If the operating rules are not followed, defects in the appearance of the product may appear.

How to Choose a Stainless Steel Pan

A frying pan is not a household item that is worth saving on. When buying a cheap frying pan, there is a high probability of getting a low-quality product of dubious origin. Such an acquisition will quickly lose its visual appeal since it has a low quality of polishing. In addition, it may be unsafe for health.

Stamps of steel

The utensils are made of chromium-nickel food steel, a series of grades 300 (grade 304) and 200 (grades 202 and 201).

Steel grade 304 has the highest level of quality. Chromium and nickel in the alloy ensure the material’s resistance to corrosion. The higher the proportion of nickel in the composition, the less susceptible to rust formation steel.

You can determine the content of chromium and nickel by marking. The most common varieties are 18/8 and 18/10. The first figure represents the chromium percentage, and the second number represents the nickel percentage.

In cheap grades of steel 202 and 201, nickel is often replaced with manganese, which does not have the best effect on the consumer properties of the product.

On sale, you can find dishes made of carbon steel. Outwardly, it is similar to cast iron but lighter in weight. Such dishes are not widely used due to the need for careful care. The black oxide film on its surface protects the metal from corrosion, but the coating is easily damaged. Therefore, its integrity directly affects whether carbon steel cookware harms health.

Bottom types and thickness

Stainless steel pans are produced with 2- types of bottom:

  • Single layer
  • Multilayer

Pans without non-stick coating with a simple single-layer bottom are light in weight, but dishes on them often burn.

The multi-layered bottom solves this problem due to the rapid uniform heating of the surface. The multilayer bottom can be triple. In this case, a sheet of aluminum or copper is laid between steel plates.

The encapsulated bottom contains five or more layers, between which carbon steel plates are laid to give strength to the structure. These thick-bottomed stainless steel pans, coated or uncoated, are well suited for gas stoves.

The bottom of a quality steel frying pan should not be thinner than 3 mm, excluding coating, if any.

Types of handles

The handles are made from the same stainless steel as the main body or other alloys, but preferably they have an insulating layer of plastic or wood. Otherwise, intense heating cannot be avoided, as a result of which you can burn yourself.

The two forms of attaching the handle are as follows:

  • Welding
  • Rivets

The second option is more reliable.

Lid, is it needed?

The cover is necessary because it performs the following functions:

  1. It seals the container, keeping the hot air within as you cook. It reduces cooking time.
  2. It prevents grease, water, or gravy splashes from staining the stove.
  3. It is indispensable for extinguishing because it does not allow water to evaporate.
  4. The dish under the lid stays fresh longer and does not get dirty.

Most often, lids are made of glass-ceramic glass. Its main advantages are heat resistance and impact resistance.

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How to Prepare a Steel Pan for the First Use?

Stainless steel frying pan does not require prolonged heating. Before the first use of stainless steel pan, it should be thoroughly washed and then heated over medium heat with the addition of a small amount of vegetable oil. It is drained into the sewer, and the pan is wiped with a napkin or paper towel. After such processing, the products in the pan will practically not burn.

Recommendations for Everyday

For the pan to serve for a long time and at the same time retain its appearance, you need to follow the rules of care and operation of the product:

  1. An uncoated pan will be damaged by direct contact with salt.
  2. If the pan is very hot, stains may appear on the bottom. They are eliminated with vinegar or lemon juice.
  3. Let the dishes cool down before washing.
  4. Do not rub the surface with an abrasive or hard sponge.
  5. After washing, remove the remaining water with a clean, dry towel.
  6. First, the pan slowly heats up to the desired temperature. Then you can pour in the oil.
  7. The cooking temperature should not be too low so that the food does not stick and not too high so that the dish does not burn.

Can It Stainless Steel Pan Go in Dishwasher?

Both the stainless steel pan itself and the glass lid are dishwasher safe. For heavy soiling, it is better to run a soak wash. When the dishwasher is finished, it is better to remove the steel dishes immediately.


A stainless steel frying pan is a simple and unpretentious household item. It does not require any special conditions for storage and care, while at the same time, it allows you to quickly and easily cook various dishes on the stove.