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Saucier vs. Saucepan: What's the Difference?

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We’re breaking down the key differences below.

By Sasha Weilbaker
Aug 10, 2023
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Whether you’re a casual cook or self-proclaimed expert, it’s easy to confuse sauciers and saucepans. Both tools are kitchen staples and key for concocting everyday favorites. But the truth is, sauciers and saucepans have slightly different shapes that give each an advantage while preparing certain dishes.

The difference? Sauciers feature a curved bottom that gently slopes upward, creating cornerless sides that prevent ingredients from getting stuck in the sides. Meanwhile the bottom of a saucepan is completely flat with straight, perpendicular walls. Here's what else to know.

What’s the Difference Between Sauciers and Saucepans?

saucier

With its curved bottom, the saucier is the perfect tool for whisking and stirring ingredients. It has more cooking surface area to efficiently reduce sauces, broths, and stocks. Like saucepans, they come in a range of sizes, from around 2 to 5 QT capacities.

Saucepans are also incredibly versatile, with its Its straight sides and high walls best used for heating liquids (like soup or stock), cooking grains (like oatmeal or rice), simmering, or reheating dishes like confit.

Both saucepans and sauciers come in a variety of materials, from Copper and Stainless Sauciers to Enameled Cast Iron and Non Stick Saucepans.

What Is a Saucier Used For?

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  • Stainless Clad Saucier
  • 3 QT
  • $159

While there’s an unlimited amount of dishes you can make using a saucier, two in particular are tailor-made for the tool.

The first is risotto—because of a saucier’s curved walls, grains don’t get stuck to the bottom. Risotto also benefits from constant stirring, and sauciers are designed to make stirring easy by ensuring nothing gets trapped in the corners.

A saucier is also the perfect tool for finishing pasta in its sauce. Because of a saucier’s curved bottom, you can toss the pasta in with your sauce, evenly incorporating all the ingredients and distributing the sauce throughout your noodles.

Additionally, many use sauciers to make stovetop jams, make ahead gravy, and even dessert sauces like chocolate ganache and caramel.

What Is a Saucepan Used For?

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  • Stainless Clad Saucepan
  • 4 QT
  • $159

Saucepans are an incredibly versatile tool to have in the kitchen. Their high sides prevent liquids from bubbling over the edges, while the flat bottoms increase direct heat contact and minimize cooking time.

As the name implies, saucepans are essential for sauces like black bean garlic sauce. They’re also great for pasta dishes, rice pudding, and even whipping up some quick pickles. Saucepans are also the perfect tool for heating up your leftovers for the next day.

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While both saucepans and sauciers are great to have around the kitchen, we recommend turning to sauciers for dishes that require reducing liquids, and saucepans for simmering grains and brothy meals.

Now that you can tell the difference between the two tools, check out our collection of our oven safe, chef-loved Sauciers and Saucepans—sure to make a difference in the preparation of your next sauce, stew, or noodle dish.

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