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Best Stainless Steel Cookware

Whether you’re a novice or an expert cook, one thing is for certain. You’ll need the right type of cookware and other kitchen essentials to be able to prepare a variety of palatable and delectable dishes. From pots and pans to flatware, it’s very important to stock your kitchen right. Even if you’re just going to prepare eggs or you’re planning a homemade feast for Thanksgiving or a special occasion, having the best stainless steel cookware handy can lend wonders to your cooking.

There are different types of cookware sets available in the market from aluminum to copper, stainless steel and cast iron. Because of its sleek, modern appearance and durability, stainless steel clearly rules the cookware category. If you’re looking to buy the best cookware set, going stainless steel is definitely a smart move. There are plenty of good brands that offer stainless steel cookware you can choose from. If you’re a little confused which one to buy, we’re to help.

Best Stainless Steel Cookware – Comparison Table

To find the best cookware sets, we’ve looked at different brands of cookware in the market. From Rachael Ray cookware to Swiss Diamond cookware, Calphalon Simply Nonstick, Cuisineart, T-fal and many others, we found the following brands below to be the best of the best in terms of quality, performance and value.

Product NamePiecesStyleWarranty
T-fal C836SC Ultimate Stainless Steel 12-Pc Cookware Set12Stainless Steel CopperLifetime Limited Warranty
Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel 12-Piece Cookware Set12Multiclad Stainless SteelLifetime Limited Warranty
Cook N Home 12-Piece Stainless Steel Set12Mirror Polished Stainless Steel1 Year Manufacturer Warranty
Cooks Standard Multi-Ply Clad Stainless-Steel 10-Piece Cookware Set10Multi-Ply Clad Stainless SteelLifetime Limited Warranty
Duxtop Whole-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Premium 10-Pc Cookware Set10Whole-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless SteelLifetime Limited Warranty
Calphalon Classic Stainless Steel 10-Pc Cookware Set10Brushed Stainless SteelFull 10 Year Warranty
All-Clad 401488R Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Bonded Cookware Set10Tri-Ply Bonded Stainless SteelLifetime Limited Warranty

Still confused which of the best cookware sets to buy? Keep reading for a more detailed review of each cookware brand. We’ve included pros and cons to make it even easier for you to choose the best pots and pans to buy and meet your needs.

1

T-fal C836SC Ultimate Stainless Steel 12-Pc Cookware Set – Best Quality Cookware Set

When it comes to cookware and other kitchen essentials, one brand that always makes it to the top 10 cookware brands is T-fal. From non-stick to cast iron and stainless steel cookware sets, T-fal has offered the market some of the best kitchenware products you can buy today. One of the brand’s current bestsellers is this T-fal C836SC Ultimate Stainless Steel 12-Pc Cookware Set. If you’re looking for an alternative to non-stick pans and pots, this set is exactly what you need. You’ll get 12 pieces of high quality, stainless steel cookware with copper bottom that are designed for longer lasting use.

Though more expensive than other cookware sets, you’ll definitely get your money’s worth in the long run. The cookware pieces aren’t just made of durable stainless steel but it’s designed with versatility in mind too. With magnetic base, you can practically use it on any stovetop.

PROS
  • Durable stainless steel construction
  • Long lasting durability and performance
  • Copper bottom for even heat distribution
  • Versatile, modern and sleek design
  • Dishwasher-safe
CONS
  • Expensive
  • Handle gets too hot when cooking
  • Not non-stick
2

Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel Cookware Set – Professional Chef-Recommended Cookware Set

If you’re a veteran cook and you wanted to upgrade your cookware set, look no further than the Cuisinart MCP-12N Multiclad Pro Stainless Steel 12-Piece Cookware Set. Though more expensive than the T-fal cookware set, this offering from Cuisineart is worth a second look for a number of reasons. With its elegant and contemporary multiclad style, the cookware set will look fabulous in any modern kitchen. But more than the sleek style, what you’ll love about this set is the multiclad stainless steel construction designed for performance, quality and even heat distribution.

To date, the Cuisineart MCP-12N Cookware set has attracted over 1,200 best cookware sets reviews on Amazon. Many consumers including professional chefs are swearing by this cookware set. Unlike the T-fal cookware set with handles that get too hot, Cuisineart offers cookware pieces with exclusive cool grip handles that stay cook while cooking.

PROS
  • Contemporary and elegant design
  • Triple-ply construction for maximum heat retention
  • Polished surface prevents discoloration or food reactions
  • Exclusive cook grip handles
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Recommended by professional chefs
CONS
  • Expensive
3

Cook N Home 12-Piece Stainless Steel Set – Best Budget-Friendly Buy

Unfortunately, not everyone can afford to spend a few hundred dollars on a Cuisineart Stainless Steel Cookware Set. If that’s the case, don’t worry. We have here a budget-friendly option you can check out. The Cook N Home 12-Piece Stainless Steel Set is incredibly affordable with a price tag of under $100 for a 12-piece set. If you’re an amateur cook and you just want to test the waters, this is the best cookware for gas stoves and other stovetops you can start with. All cookware pieces are made of mirror polished stainless steel for a sleek, stylish look with aluminum disc inside to promote even heating.

All in all, this Cook N Home 12-Piece Stainless Steel Set should do the job. Just don’t expect for the quality and performance to be close to what other high-end cookware sets can offer. It’s certainly not designed for longer lasting use either.

PROS
  • Budget-friendly cookware set
  • Thick bottoms for its price
  • Easy to clean
  • Suitable for any stovetop
CONS
  • Prone to rusting
  • Not the best quality
4

Cooks Standard Multi-Ply Clad Stainless-Steel 10-Piece Cookware Set – Best First-Timers Cookware Set

If you’re setting your brand new kitchen for the first time and you’re looking for a starter cookware set, the Cooks Standard Multi-Ply Clad Stainless-Steel 10-Piece Cookware Set includes the essentials that you’ll need for everyday use. Whether you’re cooking eggs, prepping pancakes, boiling pasta or steaming veggies, the set includes 2 skillets, 2 saucepans, a stockpot and a universal steamer insert to meet your cooking needs.

All 10 pieces included in the cookware set are made of durable and premium 18/10 grade stainless steel material. The cookware feature a three-layer metal construction with stainless steel interior and exterior and alloy aluminum core. Basically, what you’ll get are incredibly high quality pots and pans designed for even heat distribution and optimum cooking performance. Even better, you also get a limited lifetime stainless steel cookware warranty for this set.

PROS
  • Durable multi-clad ply construction
  • Air flow technology to keep handles cool
  • Oven-safe up to 500 degrees F
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Sleek, modern style
CONS
  • Not the best thermal conductivity
  • Not non-stick
5

Duxtop Whole-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Premium Cookware Set – Best Induction Ready Cookware Set

If you’re looking for a cookware set that will make you want to cook, this Duxtop Whole-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Premium 10-Pc Cookware Set may just be what you need. While other cookware sets also feature a three-layer bonded construction, what sets the Duxtop cookware set apart from the competition is the whole clad structure to prevent hot spots. What the design does is ensure even heat distribution not just on the bottom of the pots and pans but as well as on all sides. Cooking is made easier and more fun when you have this set handy at home.

Even if you’ll have to spend a little more than $100 for a cookware set, you’ll know your investment will go a long way this Duxtop Whole-Clad Tri-Ply Stainless Steel Premium 10-Pc Cookware Set. Just ask other consumers who have been happily satisfied with this cookware set. If you read many of the best cookware reviews for this product, you’ll see how the cookware set continues to meet and even exceed expectations.

PROS
  • Durable tri-ply construction
  • Exclusive whole clad bonding technology
  • Ensures even heat distribution
  • Eliminates hotspot problems
  • Oven-safe, freezer-safe and dishwasher-safe
CONS
  • Not non-stick
  • Prone to stains
6

Calphalon Classic Stainless Steel 10-Pc Cookware Set – Versatile Cookware Set

In addition to the Calphalon simply nonstick 10-piece set, the brand also offers the Calphalon Classic Stainless Steel 10-Pc Cookware Set if you’re looking for versatile and durable stainless steel cookware pieces. At a glance, this cookware set is a quick hit. It features a versatile contemporary style that will look good in any kitchen. But more than the look, what really makes this set an excellent choice is the durable construction, fast-heating aluminum bases and stay cool handles. In other words, this cookware set is perfect for the ultimate cooking experience especially for amateur cooks.

Whether for searing, frying, boiling and simply cooking fried eggs, this Calphalon Stainless Steel Cookware set will get the job done every time. Included in this set are 2 different-sized fry pans, 2 different-sized sauce pans, a sauté pan and a stock pot. All items are covered by Calphalon’s full 10 year-warranty. They’re also dishwasher-safe for quick and easy clean-up. Like with other stainless steel cookware pieces, the one downside that may turn you off from this product is the sticky surfaces. It can get sticky at times especially when you don’t use enough oil or butter.

PROS
  • Durable and versatile construction
  • Guarantees consistent performance
  • With stay-cool stainless steel handles
  • Oven-safe, broiler-safe and dishwasher-safe
CONS
  • Not easy to clean when food sticks to the pan
  • Not non-stick
7

All-Clad 401488R Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Bonded Cookware Set – Best High-End Cookware Set

When it comes to stainless steel cookware sets that are made in USA, All-Clad is one brand you can definitely trust. If you’re especially a serious cook who wants the best cookware set for everyday use, All-Clad offers the ultimate cooking experience with their ultra-durable, high performance All-Clad 401488R Stainless Steel Tri-Ply Bonded Cookware Set.

Two of the common problems many cooks complain about when using stainless steel cookware are hot spots and uneven heat distribution. All-Clad aims to resolve that problem with the three-ply bonded construction which features stainless steel, aluminum then another stainless steel layer. This guarantees that heat is always evenly distributed no matter what you’re cooking. Another advantage is the stick resistant cooking surface. While other stainless steel cookware are not non-stick, this All-Clad cookware set is created to be stick resistant for easy cooking and clean-up. There’s just one downside. All these you get to enjoy at a cost. This cookware set is the most expensive set we have on list.

PROS
  • Three-ply bonded construction for even heat distribution
  • Stick resistant cooking surface
  • Suitable with all stove tops
  • Dishwasher-safe for easy clean-up
  • Oven and broiler-safe up to 600 degrees F
CONS
  • Expensive

Best Stainless Steel Cookware - Buyer's Guide

When it comes to the best cookware sets 2017, it’s not as easy as buying the most sleek-looking set or the most budget-friendly brand. Whether you’re looking for the best surgical steel cookware, best nonstick cookware set or just the best ceramic frying pan, there are important factors to consider.

If you’re particularly looking for the best pots and pans to buy that are made of stainless steel, this buyer’s guide is for you. From surgical steel titanium cookware to 304 surgical stainless steel and t304 surgical stainless steel cookware, we’ll help you wade through your options effectively.

Types of Stainless Steel Cookware

Just like there are different types of ceramic non-stick pans or best non stick skillet, there are also different types of stainless steel cookware. This type of cookware is often categorized according to the type or grade of stainless steel material used. Here are the different types of stainless steel grades available:

200 series

The less expensive stainless steel sets are usually made of 200 series. Though cheaper, the 200 series is not as excellent in terms of quality or corrosion resistant as other types of stainless steel. It’s also not well recommended for cooking.

300 series

Many of the best pots and pans 2017 are usually made of 300 series stainless steel. When you’re comparing the best cookware brands, you’ll often see the following labels – 18/0, 18/8 and 18/10. This type of stainless steel grades belong to the 300 series category. Of the three grades, the 18/10 is the most expensive because of superior quality, shiny look and excellent rust resistance.

316 graded

Cookware sets made of 316 graded stainless steel are also known as surgical stainless steel cookware. This type of stainless steel is more durable and higher quality than the other options. But it’s also the most expensive.

400 series

Finally we have the 400 series. This type of graded cookware is nickel-free hence no chemical reactivity with food whatsoever. The 400 series is also less expensive than the other categories. But on the downside, this type is more prone to rusting.

Advantages of Stainless Steel Cookware

Compared to other types of cookware such as the best nonstick cookware or aluminum cookware, stainless steel may just be the best cookware material there is because it’s non-reactive. You can practically cook any kind of food when you’re using stainless steel pans or pots. In fact, majority of chefs prefer to use stainless steel cookware most of the time.

American made stainless steel cookware, in particular, are durable, heavy and dishwasher-safe. But more importantly, this type of cookware is risk-free to your health. Rather than buying the best non stick pan that may contain Teflon, you’re better off buying a health-risk stainless steel pan instead. This way you wouldn’t have to worry about harmful chemicals leeching to your food.

But it’s not all advantages with best stainless steel cookware. There are a few downsides with this type of cookware. Heat transfer, for one, is poor which consequently affect the cooking process. To solve this problem, you’ll want to look for better quality stainless steel cookware sets. Though more expensive, you’ll usually get a lifetime stainless steel cookware parts warranty for the price.

Choosing the Best Stainless Steel Cookware

Some of the most popular stainless steel cookware brands include West Bend stainless steel cookware, Waterless stainless steel cookware, Calphalon, All-Clad and let’s not forget T-fal and Cuisineart. All these brands of cookware are great but how are you supposed to pick which one is best? You can narrow down your choices by considering the following key factors:

Stainless steel grade

In most cases, you can never go wrong when you stick with the 300 series. It’s just a choice between 18/0, 18/8 and 18/10 graded cookware. The best choice will depend on how much you can afford. If money isn’t a factor and your goal is to buy the most durable cookware, we recommend getting the surgical stainless steel cookware.

Construction

Naturally, you’ll want a cookware set that’s designed for long lasting durability. Make sure the handles and other parts are sturdy and the bottoms are thick. All clad construction are usually best.

Layers

Because stainless steel in itself is not the best heat conductor, you’ll want to choose cookware that have layers. Look for best pans and pots with layers of copper or aluminum to improve heat conductivity.

Set pieces

Not all cookware set are created equal. Some sets include 10 pieces, others include more. If you know you’re not going to cook much anyway, better stick with the essential pieces such as saucepans, skillets, stockpot and Dutch oven.

Conclusion


Unlike with other kitchen essentials, buying the best cookware set takes extra time and consideration. It will also require you to invest more money if you want cookware for long lasting use. In terms of the best durability, we’ll recommend buying a surgical steel titanium cookware. But if you’re looking for the perfect balance of quality and value, all you need to do is pick from the brands we’ve included in our shortlist of the best cookware sets 2017 above.