Cooking 101: Which Pan is Right for You?

Picking the right pan can be a daunting experience – particularly when trying to navigate through the latest craze in pan surfacing. Whether you own Teflon, Ceramic, Granite, Diamond, Stainless Steel, or Cast Iron pans, all of them can ultimately do the job if you know what to expect. Here a some great tips to keep in mind when selecting your pan:

Non-Stick Pans (Teflon, Ceramic, Granite, Diamond)

  • Should be your go-to when cooking sticky foods such as eggs, cheese, and glazed veggies
  • Only use plastic or wooden utensils (metal utensils can damage the non-stick coating)
  • Best for low-to-medium heat. Most non-stick pans do not perform well under high heat
  • Easy to clean, widely available, and most commonly used in the kitchen

Stainless Steel Pans

  • Excellent for browning, searing, and making pan sauces
  • Acidic substances such as citrus or wine will not damage the surface
  • Can create a non-stick surface by preheating the pan at high heat, adding a few drops of oil and allow the oil to smoke before turning down the heat and adding the food to be cooked
  • Easy to clean and often dishwasher friendly

Cast Iron Pans

  • Best option for getting a perfect sear and cooking at high temperatures
  • Can easily move from the stove to the oven for finishing the dish
  • Requires proper seasoning. Seasoning does not mean adding flavor – it means properly treating the pan to create a protective coding that helps with cooking and keeping the pan in good shape for generations. Here is a great blog on cast iron 101

The following video also provides some great tips for helping you pick the perfect pan to elevate your dish. Happy cooking!

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