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What Is a Stock Pot?

George Steckel|Aug 04, 2021

A stock pot is one of the most essential pieces of cookware to have in your kitchen. And while it may not get used every day, it is critical to have one that performs at its highest capability all the time. A stock pot comes in various sizes, but its shape is unmistakable: a circular pot with two helper handles on the side. The smallest size you usually find for a stock pot is around 6 quarts, and the largest size can be anywhere up to 120 quarts, although you would only find these in restaurants. Whether you’re making soup, chili, stock, boiling pasta, or preparing a seafood boil, it is crucial to have a stock pot that can retain its heat, heat evenly, and develop perfectly cooked food.

The Ideal Stock Pot Construction

When it comes to cookware, you want pots and pans that can heat evenly, respond to changes in heat, and feature a consistent construction throughout the entire pan. One of the best construction for pots and pans is 5-ply stainless clad.


stainless clad cookware

features five different layers of metal. The outer two are most commonly stainless steel, which allows for safe cooking and induction cooktop capabilities. The inner three are aluminum and alloys, which are perfect for heat conductivity and allowing this piece of

induction compatible cookware

to get hot. 

What Are Uses for a Stock Pot?

A stock pot is perfect for large volume cooking. If you ever need to boil anything or make a large batch of soup, bone broth, or chili, then a large stock pot is your best friend. Its large volume and consistent 5-ply construction throughout the walls allow whatever you’re cooking to cook evenly and consistently - making it a great soup pot.

What is the Difference Between a Stock Pot and a Dutch Oven?

The difference between a stock pot and a dutch oven is that a dutch oven has curved sides, while a stock pot has straight sides. Stock pots are also larger than most dutch ovens. The curved sides of a dutch oven allow for easy reducing of liquids and stirring.

What can I use Instead of a Stock Pot?

A stock pot is definitely one of the most

essential pots and pans

to have. Functionally speaking, there isn’t much that can replace what a stock pot can do because of its sheer ability to hold a lot of volume. The only substitutions for a stock pot would be if you’re not using a lot of liquid, don’t need the large pot size, and can make your meal in a sauce pot, saute pan, slow cooker, pressure cooker, dutch oven, or saucier. 

Another thing to consider when choosing what pot to use is how much food you’ll be cooking. For example, you can definitely make risotto in a stock pot, but if you’re only serving risotto for two people, then a stock pot would not be the right choice.

The Bottom Line

When it comes to what type of pot to use or you are debating between using a

saucepan vs pot

, choose a stock pot for your largest kitchen tasks. It can hold the most liquid and ingredients, and performs exceptionally well for what it needs to do. When looking for what stock pot is best, choose one with a 5-ply stainless clad construction throughout the entire pot and start with at least 8 quarts. This will allow you to make anything from stocks and chili to boiling pasta and making seafood boils.

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