Best Stainless Steel Cookware Sets 2017: Top 5+ Recommended and Reviews

Behind every successful cook stands a high-quality cookware.

I got my first cookware set from my aunt, as a wedding gift. You can assume how many years it had been serving me. But, I was emotionally tied to these cooking pots, and to be fair they served me right, so I didn’t want to give them up.

Now, the time has come for the brand new stainless cookware set. However, I didn’t want to rush this huge decision, so I tried a few before definitely buying one.

What Is A Stainless Steel Cookware Set?

Let’s start with basics. Stainless steel (also known as inox steel, or inox) is type of corrosion, rusting, heat and staining resistant metal product. It is carbon and iron alloy, most commonly used for making bars, sheets, cookware, surgical instruments, hardware, industrial equipment and so on.

This type of steel, per se, is a poor conductor of heat which is the reason why, when it comes to cookware, it is combined with aluminum or copper. There is no need for panic, these elements won’t contaminate your food, because they are contained in underlying layers of pots and pans sets, and have no contact with your cooking.

Still, you should be cautious about the scratches and damages on the interior layer of your cookware, and replace it if you notice them because this might lead to aluminum and copper leaching into the food.

Stainless steel is used in the kitchen so much because it is non-reactive (you can practically cook anything in it), durable – lasts for many years, it’s pretty hard to damage and it’s the healthiest option available.

Before you buy your set and end up disappointed, let’s clear something up. Twelve piece set doesn’t mean twelve pots and pans with their lids (like Red Copper Pan set), it means, for example, eight pots and pans and four lids. So, the number of pieces is the sum of lids, pans, and pots.

How To Choose An Ideal Stainless Steel Cookware Set For Yourself?

If you are switching from another type of cookware to stainless steel, there are some information you need to know.

For starters, stainless steel doesn’t necessarily mean non-stick. Non-stick cookware sets are coated with Teflon, which is known for producing unhealthy fumes. I personally had situations when little bits of Teflon came off from the pan and stuck to our food, which is not a very pleasant experience.

Some stainless steel pans require using non-stick spray or some additional oil, on the other hand, some of them do not tolerate this kind of sprays, oils or grease, so you have to know what are you looking for.

I recommend you to bring a little refrigerator magnet in your pocket before going to the store. The magnet will help you determine if the stainless steel set you are interested in has too much nickel. The magnet will stick to the bottom of the safe pots. Nickel is not very healthy, and some people, as my older son, can have allergic reactions, so it is better to stay away from it.

Look for the aluminum base, for faster heating, as I stated before. Also, don’t forget that the quality of the metal is not enough, you want high-quality handles and lids too. Handles and lids should not heat up nor warp!

Before going to shopping I recommend you watch this video for more useful information:

What Is The Best Way To Use A Stainless Steel Cookware Set?

If this is your first time using stainless steel sets, please be careful. I strongly recommend you read the instruction manual.

It is usually recommended not to put your pots in a dishwasher, to store them hanging, not stock them, or if you are stocking them, to put a piece of paper between them to prevent damage.

Stainless steel pans may need seasoning in order to stay non-sticky. Seasoning basically includes washing the pan, coating it with oil, heating it, cooling it and cleaning. It is a rather simple procedure with a significant effect on your pans efficiency.

There is a solution to every problem with your sets if you treat them right!

Here is a video example on how to clean your stainless steel pots:


Best Stainless Cookware Set Reviews 2017

I’ve browsed through some of the most popular and best-selling sets on the market right now and decided to review them in detail. Here are my picks, all dissected and compared:

1. Cook’n’Home 12-Piece Stainless Steel Set – Great for Beginners

Image Credit: Amazon.com

Cook’n’Home stainless steel set has an aluminum disc between its layers and is advertised as compatible with any cooking source (electric and gas, glass and ceramic).

The price is low, which is good if you are buying your first set and you are not quite ready to invest more money.

I noticed it doesn’t burn easily which is useful, especially if you are not very experienced cook.

Glass lids, as well as complete cookware, are light for handling, which can be practical if you are buying this set for your children who are students, or your elderly parents. Its weight is probably related to its small size, which can be an advantage if you are cooking for one and disadvantage if you are feeding your whole family or group of friends.

It’s not very easy to enjoy the cooking if your hands are burned. This is a big disadvantage of this set, its handles are not ergonomic and they are loose, so your food might end up on a floor.

If you don’t like using additional oil, frying pan situation might make a problem because it gets a little sticky without it.

Things I liked​

  • Light glass lids, complete cookware is light overall.
  • Easy to clean.
  • Good quality for less money.
  • They don’t burn easily.

Things I didn’t like​

  • Frying pan sticks if you are not using oil.
  • Pretty small in size.
  • They will burn if you start the cooking with maximum temperature.
  • Bottoms are not as thick as I expected.
  • Watch out for hot and loose handles.
  • If not immediately dried after cleaning, water leaves stains.

2. Cuisinart Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel 12-Piece Set – Big and Shiny, Needs Maintenance

Image Credit: Amazon.com

Cuisinart pots and pans have the Triple-ply instruction which should ensure good heat retention and distribution. They work on induction and any other type of cooktops.

In comparison to the previous set, this one includes pretty large cookware, which is a necessity if you are cooking for a big family, as I am. I liked that they are little heavier because from my experience heavier means more durable and higher quality.

If you are not very patient cook, you might like the fact that Cuisinart cookware reacts well event if you put them on high temperatures immediately.

On the other hand, if you expect your cooking set to stay shiny and beautiful for a long time without any special care, this one might be a little disappointment, because it requires polishing and it is not very easy to clean. For me, this is a relevant con considering amount of money spent on this product.

Things I liked​

  • It’s pretty large, good for big families.
  • Beautiful and simple design.
  • Heavier than others I’ve tried.
  • Multiclad really evens the heating, there are no hot and cold spots.
  • Reacts well at high temperatures.
  • Makes complicated dishes easy cook, even if you are not experienced.
  • Has a nice drip free pouring solution.

Things I didn’t like​

  • Staining and signs of discoloration after the first use.
  • Not easy to clean.
  • Needs polishing in order to stay shiny.
  • A little expensive, if not bought on sale.

3. T-fal Ultimate Stainless Steel Copper-Bottom 13-Piece Set – Handy But Slippery When Stirring

Image Credit: Amazon.com

T-fal stainless steel cookware set has a copper bottom for faster heating. In comparison to other sets, this one has one additional piece.

The first thing I really liked was how ergonomically designed it is! For starters, they have silicon handles, so no more burning your hands. Also, there is a heat indicator on the bottom, which turns red when it’s heated, which can come in handy if you are never sure if the temperature is right.

On the other hand, I’ve noticed that this heat indicator appears only on high temperatures, otherwise it is barely visible, so you shouldn’t rely solemnly on that. After the first use, the copper on the bottom started to peel off, so I would be worried about the speed of the heating and potential hot and cold spots if it peels off completely.

Hold your pots and pans while you are stirring, because they seem to be very slippery. This might be a problem, in combination whit shallowness of a large pan, so you might end up making a huge mess in your kitchen.

Things I liked​

  • 13 pieces.
  • Comfortable silicon handles.
  • Doesn’t stick at all, no need for non-stick spray nor oil.
  • They have a non-sticking exterior, too, which makes them easier to wash.
  • Dishwasher safe.
  • Heats up fast and evenly!
  • They seem durable, for now.
  • Pans do not warp.

Things I didn’t like​

  • Heat indicator shows only in high temperatures.
  • A large pan is shallow.
  • Hold them while stirring, because they are very slippery.
  • Copper burns and peels off immediately.
  • You’ll need additional large pots and pans if you plan on cooking for many people.

4. Heim Concept Induction Ready Stainless Steel 12-Piece Set – Great Temperature Retention, Easy To Clean

Image Credit: Amazon.com

Heim Concept’s induction stainless steel cookware set is another set compatible with all sorts of cooking surfaces. As you can see, it is in the same price range as Cook’n’Home set so it is very affordable.

Every piece of this pot and pan set has its own lid with little vents for steam release, so you don’t have to worry about them rattling while you’re making lunch. On the other hand, these lids don’t fit perfectly, so they might be tricky to use.

I had a little accident, burning my beans in one of the pots. Well, it happens to the best of us, doesn’t it? However, cleaning was very easy, even after that nasty burn, but I wouldn’t recommend putting them in your dishwasher.

Again, this set has metal handles, and mainly two small handles rather than one long. From my perspective, this is a huge disadvantage, because if you want to move your pots around, you’ll have to use two hands and potholders or oven mitts, if you don’t want to get burned.

Things I liked​

  • Easy to clean, even if you burn your food in them.
  • Holds temperature for long period of time which saves electricity.
  • Every pan and pot have its own lid.
  • Lids have little vents for steam release.
  • Relatively non-stick.
  • Very affordable, fine quality.

Things I didn’t like​

  • Metal handles, which means extremely hot handles.
  • Two small handles, rather than one long.
  • Caps on rivets have a tendency to explode.
  • Lids do not fit perfectly.

5. Calphalon Classic Stainless Steel 10-Piece Set – Practical, Efficient, and Oven-Safe

Image Credit: Amazon.com

Calphalon stainless steel cookware set has the aluminum base and comes with only ten pieces. There is a ten-year warranty, which is a safe option if you are planning on using this set for a long time.

Its handles may not be silicon, but they are long and they do not heat up, even when you are cooking at very high temperatures, so it might make it easier for you to lift up full and heavy pots and pans.

This Calphalon set has a lot of practical features, such as engraved measures for precision and pouring spouts and straining glass lids, for easier liquid draining, which is why I liked it so much in a first place.

I didn’t like that you have to use specific products if you want to clean it properly. For example, when I was preparing bacon for my hubby, I had to use the oven cleaner to tidy up things afterward. Also, while you are cleaning and storing Calphalon pots and pans you have to be very careful because they scratch and stain easily.

Things I liked​

  • Pouring spouts and straining glass lids, which make draining hot liquids easier.
  • Engraved measurements on the inside, in ounces and cups.
  • It’s oven safe, so you can bake things in it.
  • Handles stay cold, even on high heat.
  • Calphalon warranty for 10 years.

Things I didn’t like​

  • Proper cleaning is only possible while using a cleaning product of recommended brand.
  • Bacon grease impossible to clean, if not using oven cleaner.
  • Discoloration appears after few uses, it scratches easily.
  • Relatively thin bottom.
  • 10 pieces.

The Stainless Steel Cookware Set I Recommend

After careful consideration of stainless steel cookware sets, I decided to buy myself the Calphalon set! I was deciding between this one and T-fal’s set, but Calphalon warranty and its practical features won me over.

As I have my old stainless steel cookware set which is not a complete waste yet, this 10-piece is enough for me. The lid and handle design had a big role in my decision because I wanted something comfortable for everyday use. The aluminum base was an important factor because of the fast heating.

The weight of the pots and pans was just right, along with the induction compatibility.

The main reason I didn’t go with the T-fal is its peeling copper problem. This was my major concern, and I was not ready to risk it.

I think that whichever set you choose, it will serve you right if you take a good care of it so don’t be reckless and watch for your pans!

Barbara Whitney
 

For the last 20 years, I’ve been cooking, preparing, researching, and gathering recipes, tools, and knowledge about food and the way we prepare it. Raising two lively boys and spoiling one great husband later, it’s safe to say that I’ve optimized my kitchen to deliver the best possible meal, no matter the occasion.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 0 comments

Leave a Reply: