How to Shop for Stainless Steel Cookware Like a Professional

A buyer’s guide to selecting the perfect Stainless Clad Cookware for you and your kitchen.

By Rachel Robey
Jul 20, 2022
Share This

No matter where you are in your culinary journey, shopping for Stainless Steel Cookware is stressful. With seemingly infinite vendors, price points, styles, and sets to research and choose from, it’s difficult to find a balance between quality, cost, and performance—especially when shopping online.

We’ve been there, and we sympathize. So, to make your research and selection process easier, we’ve put together a checklist of things to look for and to consider when shopping around. As purveyors of award-winning professional-quality Stainless Clad Cookware, we know a thing or two about what makes a good investment. We’ll get into more detail on this, but when shopping for Stainless Steel Cookware, home cooks should take careful note of construction materials, craftsmanship, durability, and longevity.

1. Look for High-Grade Stainless Steel

High quality Stainless Steel Cookware begins with high-grade raw materials. Yet there are multiple grades of Stainless Steel used for manufacturing Cookware, ranging from 18/0 Stainless Steel, the lowest grade, to 18/10 Stainless Steel, the highest.

The numbers represent the percentages of nickel and chromium respectively, and correlate to the rust and corrosion-resistance of each grade. As you increase the percentage of chromium, the material’s strength and durability increases as well.

Because 18/10 is unrivaled in its ability to hold its polish and ward off rust and corrosion, it’s the obvious choice for professionals and home cooks. It’s also why we use it to construct all our Stainless Clad Cookware and Flatware.

2. Does it Have a Premium Construction?

Stainless Steel by itself  is a poor conductor of heat, something that’s rather important when cooking. To mitigate this issue, we clad our Cookware, (i.e. layer multiple sheets of different metals) to borrow the best features of each.

Other companies use a 3-ply method, but our 5-ply Cookware is the result of five layers of four different metals. An aluminum core provides important heat conductivity, while the stainless steel exterior creates a smooth, durable, and toxin free cooking surface.

The 2 extra layers of metal make for Cookware that heats faster, retains temperatures better, and is overall more durable against warping and denting. It tends to be slightly heavier and more costly, but pays off at dinner time.

3. Make Sure it Can Hold High Temperatures

Stainless Steel is prized for its versatility in the kitchen and its ability to withstand and hold high temperatures. Because it’s chemically stable, it can handle extreme changes in temperature.

Our Stainless Clad Cookware is oven safe up to 800F, so you can safely sear, simmer, braise, and even grill with it. Because of its 5-ply construction, it’s more reliable than other options when it comes to heat retention, even heating, and precision of temperature control.

4. Check if It's Induction Compatible

While gas, electric, and radiant heat stovetops relying on thermal conduction are the most prevalent among home cooks, induction stovetops, which rely on electromagnetism, are gaining in popularity. They’re touted as more efficient, safer, and easier to clean, but the downside is that only Cookware with a ferromagnetic base is compatible. In simpler terms, non-magnetic metals like Copper and aluminum won’t work with an induction cooktop.

Fortunately, premium options like our Stainless Clad, Non Stick, and Carbon Steel Cookware are all induction compatible. So if you have an induction cooktop, be mindful that you’ll need to source Cookware that will work for you. If you choose incompatible Cookware, it won’t be able to communicate with the electromagnetic field in your cooktop and will not heat.

5. Look for Lifelong Quality

Premium Cookware is an investment in your cooking and eating, so it needs to last to be worth the expense. Our Stainless Clad Cookware is what first earned us a spot in professional kitchens, partially because chefs were drawn to the way the 5-ply construction guaranteed that it would last longer and hold up better to use  in and out in restaurant kitchens.

Each of our products, from our Butter Warmer to our Stock Pot, was crafted to look and function perfectly for years to come. With basic routine maintenance (which isn’t much more than hand washing with soap or our Stainless Steel Cleaner and water), our Stainless Clad Cookware will last a lifetime.

Ready to Shop?

With each piece of Cookware that we design, our primary goal is to create a durable restaurant-quality piece that will serve home cooks just like it serves our chef partners. Our Stainless Clad Collection remains one of our greatest achievements, offering endless flexibility for how and where it’s used and what it’s used for. Hopefully, this post helped clarify the essential characteristics you should look for when shopping for new Stainless Cookware—and, with any luck, encouraged you to join the over 16,000 other home cooks (and counting) who’ve tried and loved ours.