Dine & Cusine

How to Choose and Buy Cookware

Did you know that the average American spends about 37 minutes preparing meals every day? That’s significantly less time than past generations, thanks to advances in cooking tools, such as pots and pans that heat up faster without sticking or cook more evenly. 

Do you want to buy cookware that makes preparing meals more manageable? If so, we invite you to keep reading as we share a guide to choosing a long-lasting set of pots and pans you’ll love!

Determine Which Types of Cookware You Want

Before you start shopping, it’s a good idea to make a list of cookware you want. Most people purchase cookware in a set since it includes essentials, such as: 

  • Stockpots
  • Saucepans
  • Frying and saute pans
  • Lids in various sizes

However, you may also want special types of cookware, such as a wok or a grill pan. 

Pick a Material

Everyone seems to have a preferred cookware material, but your choice depends on your tastes and budget. Here are some of the best cookware materials:

  • Aluminum: tough, easy to clean, and scratch-resistant
  • Cast iron: great for slow cooking food 
  • Copper: delicate but last a lifetime 
  • Stainless Steel: long-lasting but food tends to stick

Some people love cooking in cast iron because it’s versatile and can even be used on a campfire. But, others like copper pans because they heat more evenly.

Choose a Coating

Most new cookware has a coating to protect it from scratches or keep food from sticking to it. 

Aluminum, cast iron, and similar materials usually have an enamel coating that acts as a layer of protection and keeps hot oil from spitting. However, this material can sometimes chip. And if the enamel is too thin, food will stick to the pan.

Thus, many people prefer non-stick pans. These have a special coating perfect for frying foods or making sauces. This coating also reduces the amount of oil needed to cook, so it could end up helping you live a healthier lifestyle and lose weight.

Select a Size and Weight

Another important factor to consider is the size of your cookware. If you have a large family, this is especially important. So, before you purchase your cookware, check the capacity to determine how much liquid or solids it holds. 

Evaluate Additional Features

Before making your final selection, you’ll want to check for any additional features that you desire:

  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Oven-safe
  • Pouring lips
  • Holes in handles for hanging
  • Well-fitting lids
  • Handles that stay cool

Keep in mind that although you may wash all your dishes by hand now, your pots and pans should last for years. So, getting a dishwasher-safe set will give you the option if you end up buying one later.