Non stick cookware is one of the most convenient types of cookware to use. It has the ability to eliminate cooking with butter and oil, cleans up in a matter of seconds, and doesn’t need as high heat when cooking. However, with so many different types of non stick cookware collections on the market, what is the safest non stick cookware option? Fortunately, any non stick cookware set you purchase is safe to use right now, but there are some interesting differences among the different types of pans. So whether you’re looking for ceramic, PTFE-coated, or an alternative like a carbon steel or cast iron skillet, we will go over the pros and cons of each and what separates them to find out which is the safest non stick cookware option.
What are the Best and Safest Non Stick Pans?
The two main types of classic non stick cookware are ceramic coated cookware and PTFE-coated cookware. There is also cast iron cookware and carbon steel cookware, which aren’t naturally non stick, but can achieve non stick tendencies. Let’s dive into all of these pans’ features and figure out which are the best and safest cookware options.
Ceramic cookware is up first. However, you may be shocked to know that there is nothing ceramic about this type of cookware. For something to be ceramic, it must be fired in a kiln to a very high temperature, and ceramic cookware is not fired. Ceramic cookware gets its non stick nature from being sprayed with a grip layer, and then it gets sprayed with Sol-Gel. The pan then gets cured anywhere from 550-600F. Ceramic pans most commonly have an aluminum body as well.
When heated, the Sol-Gel layer releases molecular levels of silicone-oil onto the pan’s surface, making the pan non stick. It is this process that makes many people ask the question: is ceramic cookware safe to use regularly? Over time, the silicone-oil will be depleted from the sol-gel coating, and you’ll be left with a pan that isn’t non stick, which is pretty much just aluminum cookware. While the silicone-oil is entirely safe to consume, it is still a foreign substance and one that is found in home products, such as conditioner and fabric softener.
PTFE-coated cookware is the other main non stick option on the market. PTFE is FDA approved and deemed safe by the U.S. Consumer Safety Commission and provides the best slick surface on the market. Made In chose to create a PTFE-coated cookware set because we make cookware with performance at the forefront. No chef or professional kitchen would ever use ceramic cookware, and Made In’s non stick cookware is used in many restaurants, including 3-Michelin starred Alinea and Le Bernardin. Made In’s coating, similar to ceramic coating, is also cured, however, at a much higher temperature, coming in at upwards of 750-800F. And did you know that the PTFE-coating used is safe to eat? While we don’t recommend incorporating it into your food, it is nice to know that the coating your food is in contact with will not cause one ounce of harm.
Is carbon steel naturally non stick? No. Can it become non stick? Absolutely. Carbon steel cookware is composed of iron and carbon, two perfectly safe metals to use when cooking. Carbon steel needs to be seasoned before you use it for cooking, and while it may take a while for carbon steel to become entirely non stick, it is a magical pan once it does. A carbon steel pan, once it reaches non stick tendencies, has the ability to be a complete workhorse in the kitchen. Since it can get extremely hot, you can sear a steak, char veggies, and even fry eggs with no worry.
Cast iron cookware is similar to carbon steel. However, its surface is unable to reach as slick of a non stick surface as carbon steel. It also doesn’t have a coating, and the seasoning is built up over time by cooking with the pan. But since carbon steel is lighter, responds to heat in a much more efficient way, and has a smoother surface, it is better than cast iron. Yes, carbon steel and cast iron are alternatives to non stick cookware; however, if you’re looking for a proper non stick cooking surface, ceramic cookware and PTFE-coated cookware are the better options.
Are Any Non Stick Pans Safe?
Yes! Both PTFE-coated non stick cookware and ceramic cookware are safe. Like we mentioned above, there are differences in the coatings that some people may prefer.
Ceramic cookware gets sprayed with Sol-Gel, and when the pan is heated, silicone-oil releases to the pan’s surface, giving the pan non stick features.
PTFE-coated cookware gets sprayed with PTFE and then is cured at a high temperature. Once heated, nothing gets released onto the surface. As long as the coating is there and the pan has been cared for properly, it will remain non stick.
What is the Best Non Stick Cookware That is Nontoxic?
The best non stick, nontoxic cookware is PTFE-coated cookware, specifically Made In’s.
Our non stick cookware is made from the same pan construction as our award-winning stainless-clad cookware. We take the same pan and then apply a double coating of PTFE to ensure that your pan is durable and long-lasting. Made In’s non stick cookware is oven-safe up to 500F, heats up evenly, and responds to heat changes exceptionally well.
Unlike cookware with a ceramic coating, our PTFE-coated non stick pans aren’t self-depleting. As long as the PTFE-coating is there, then your non stick pan will perform as if it were brand new. However, it is essential to follow proper care and maintenance. Avoid using metal utensils and stick to silicone spatulas and wooden spoons. Always wash your pan by hand and avoid the dishwasher!
Which Pans are Toxic?
Right now, almost every non stick pan is nontoxic. The idea that they are toxic cookware comes from Teflon pans. Many people call PTFE-coated cookware “Teflon,” but Teflon was the name of a DuPont brand, not a type of non stick coating.
Teflon cookware’s coating was made from PTFE and PFOA, with the latter being toxic. Since Teflon was the first to introduce non stick cookware to the world, it’s evident that there would be some flaws. Nowadays, all PTFE coating is made without PFOA and has been deemed entirely safe by the FDA.
The safest types of non stick cookware are PTFE-coated cookware and ceramic coated cookware. Carbon steel and cast iron are great alternatives, even though they aren’t genuinely non stick. When it comes to choosing between PTFE and ceramic coatings, we strongly suggest going with PTFE. It has much better food-release properties and a longer-lasting cooking surface than ceramic cookware. Made In’s non stick cookware and cookware sets feature this PTFE coating on top of its award-winning 5-ply stainless clad cookware. This also means that your non stick cookware is safe to use on gas, electric, or an induction cooktop. This combination gives you the best non stick cookware on the market, without a doubt. So whether you’re looking for a frying pan, saute pan, or saucepan, Made In has everything you need.
Looking for further information on the differences between Teflon vs ceramic coating or even ceramic vs stainless steel cookware? Check out our blog! Our guides will educate you on what you need to know to make the best decisions regarding your cookware.