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The Ultimate Guide to Stainless Steel Cookware

With so many different types of cookware on the market, stainless steel stands out for its durability, safety, and good looks. When you’re investing in new cookware for your home kitchen, stainless steel is the obvious choice!

What is stainless steel?

360 Cookware stainless steel is made up of three layers of metal bonded together to create a superior cooking experience. The inner layer is composed of surgical stainless steel with 18% chromium and 8% nickel. This is the surface on which you’ll be cooking your food. The sealed middle layer is aluminum for optimum heat conduction, and the outer layer is again stainless steel, making it perfect for use on induction cooktops.

Is stainless steel cookware good for you?

One of the great advantages of stainless steel cookware is its safety. Unlike many brands on the market today, you can use your stainless steel pots and pans without worrying about any chemicals being released into your food.

Does stainless steel use toxic chemicals?

Stainless steel cookware does not use toxic chemicals in its manufacture or materials. There’s no danger of exposure to “forever chemicals” such as PFAS, PFOS, PFOA, or PFTE, making them the safest type of cookware on the market.

Is it okay if stainless steel pans get scratched?

Good quality stainless steel cookware is a lifetime investment, as you can easily expect many decades of use from your pots and pans. However, as with anything that gets used regularly, you can expect a little wear and tear over the years. The good news is that because stainless steel cookware has no coating, scratches in the surface will not impact its performance or safety.

Do professional chefs use stainless steel cookware?

Look no further than a restaurant kitchen to see why stainless steel is the best choice for your own home cooking. Professional chefs prefer stainless steel over other materials because of its durability and versatility. A good quality stainless steel pan can go from the cooktop to the oven, and will perform well when used over the high heat that is necessary for preparing many foods.

Can you use stainless steel on gas stoves? Induction? Electric?

Stainless steel cookware can be used on all gas and electric stoves, but not all stainless steel pots and pans will work on an induction cooktop. Cookware with an aluminum pad on the bottom or too high a nickel content is not magnetic. Look for brands such as 360 Cookware, which has a stainless steel base that is induction-compatible.

Taking care of your stainless steel

Good quality stainless steel pans can last for decades, but you do need to take care of them properly.

Always use the lowest appropriate temperature when cooking with stainless steel. That will decrease the possibility of food burning onto the pan.

When you do have to remove some burnt-on food, start with soaking it in soap and water to loosen it as much as possible before proceeding. For really stubborn bits, fill the pot with a mixture of baking soda and water and bring it briefly to a boil. That will often lift off any remaining residue.

If you have to scrub your stainless steel pots, go for the least abrasive options. Barkeeper’s Friend is an excellent cleaner for stainless steel that will not scratch the surface and keep it looking its best. Avoid using steel wool or scrub pads, as they can abrade the finish.

After cleaning, wipe your stainless steel cookware dry with a soft cloth to prevent water spots from forming.

Stainless steel is also dishwasher safe, so don’t hesitate to put your pots and pans in the dishwasher when that’s convenient for you!

Are stainless steel pans non-stick?

It’s important to know how to use stainless steel pans properly to prevent sticking, as they do not have a non-stick coating. However, once you’ve got the hang of it, you shouldn’t have any issues with food sticking to your stainless steel pans.

The key is to always add cold fat to a hot pan. Don’t rush the process of heating your pan; it may seem like a long time, but 3 to 5 minutes over medium heat is actually the best way to pre-heat your pan. You’ll know when it’s ready when a few drops of water bead up and bounce around the pan. Then, add the oil or fat, and wait until it starts to shimmer before adding your ingredients.

Cooking tips with stainless steel

Don’t take your ingredients straight from the refrigerator to your pan. It’s always best to let meats, eggs, and vegetables sit on the counter for 15 to 20 minutes before adding them to your heated and oiled pan. If they’re too cold, that will drop the temperature in the pan that you’ve gone to so much trouble to prepare.

When frying meats and vegetables, pat them dry before cooking. The less moisture there is, the less chance of things sticking. However, don’t try to pry the meat off before it’s cooked enough to release naturally, at which time it will have formed a delicious crust.

Learn more cooking tips with our guide 

Best utensils to use for stainless steel cookware

Some cooks swear by using steel utensils with their stainless steel cookware, but they will leave small scratches over time. You can avoid this by using wooden or heat-resistant silicone utensils.

Does Stainless Steel Warp?

One of the most important things to remember is to always let your pan cool down before soaking it in tap water. A hot pan that is plunged into cool water can get permanently warped.

Stainless steel cookware is long-lasting and virtually indestructible and will give you great results in the kitchen. Investing in stainless steel pots and pans guarantees you years of healthy, delicious meals! 

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