Are you looking to refresh your cookware? With so many cookware brands available, how do you choose the best one?
We have created a guide of the top cookware brands based on features and customer ratings. Whether you're looking for the top enameled cast iron, or you prefer stainless steel cookware, you're sure to find what you're looking for on this list. You will also find a guide below to help you determine what features are most important to you when choosing the best cookware brand for your household.
Our Top Cookware Picks
- Best Overall: All-Clad
- Best Splurge: Le Creuset
- Best Value: Misen
- Best Stainless Steel Brands: Calphalon
Your Definitive Guide to the Best Cookware Brands
Here are a few of the best cookware brands:
Misen is one of the newest brands in the cookware industry, but that doesn't mean that they're not worth considering. There are a few reasons why we like Misen. For one, they use a direct-to-consumer approach, which means you can get high-quality cookware, without the commercial aluminum cookware prices.
Misen has a lot of stainless cookware to choose from. Their nonstick pan is one of their most popular products with its nonstick surface.
They also have enameled cast iron cookware that offers even distribution and long-lasting heat. Even the complete cookware set is affordable and is made of high-quality materials, designed to last. Misen also topped the listed for best pots and pans for a gas stove
Misen also sells a wide range of cooking products, including an all-inclusive cookware set and stainless steel lids that fit most of their pots and pans.
- Designed with professional-grade materials but made for home chefs
- Most products are oven-safe, up to 500-degrees Fahrenheit
- All stainless steel and nonstick products are dishwasher-safe for easy cleanup
- Many products include silicone handles that are oven-safe up to 900-degrees for oven-to-table
- Newer brand, so it will take time to measure durability
- Most products don't come with a warranty, but Misen does offer a 60-day return policy
The Milo brand is one of the trendiest cookware brands in the industry. They are best known for their inventory of stylish cast irons. Milo is also a newer company, getting its start in cookware in 2018. They recently raised funds through a Kickstarter to release their current cookware items in new, fun colors, like Dijon.
- Fun designs that can be used to decorate your kitchen
- Slightly cheaper than other brands in the cookware industry
- The Dutch oven has a larger-than-average cooking surface
- The universal lid offers nice versatility
- Newer brand that still needs to be tested
- The enameled Dutch oven doesn't require seasoning but also isn't nonstick
T-Fal earned its popularity as one of the first cookware brands to offer Teflon products. Teflon was one of the first nonstick products in the market. Soon after, other options followed, but T-Fal has adjusted as needed to offer additional inventory. Today, they offer fully-clad cookware that heats evenly with conductive materials.
Their products are easy to find come in a variety of sizes. T-Fal cookware is also affordable, making it a common brand in most households.
- One of the most affordable nonstick coating brands
- The nonstick coating makes pots and frying pans easy to clean
- The Teflon material makes the cookware extremely lightweight
- Requires very minimal storage space
- Concerns over safety when Teflon materials are burned
- Nonstick can peel after frequent use
Lodge produces a large inventory of cookware, but their brand is best known for having one of the best cast iron cookware sets. It is oven-save and broiler-safe making it a useful household accessory.
While Lodge cookware may be slightly slower to heat than other brands of pots and pans, once it does heat, it maintains an even heat distribution. Their products also offer a high level of durability and functionality that often comes at a higher price tag.
Lodge was also the first American cookware company to use Disamatic, which is a Danish molding machine. This product allowed them to create top-selling nonstick cookware.
However, the Lodge cast iron continues to be one of the most popular Lodge items.
- Offers a total of five cast-iron collections, including the popular Lodge cast iron
- Most cookware items are broiler-safe, increasing your cooking options
- Most products are oven-safe up to 600-degrees Fahrenheit
- Includes induction-compatible cookware items
- Can be slower to heat, which can take longer when cooking certain dishes
- Cookware is heavier, making it more difficult to flip foods
5- Rachael Ray
The Rachael Ray brand can attribute a lot of its initial popularity to its celebrity endorsement. The brand was first released in the early-2000s and has become one of the best cookware brands today.
Customers often rave about the affordability and ease of use of Rachael Ray products. They also tend to be stylish and offer even heat cooking.
- Most cookware products are dishwasher safe
- Most items can easily be cleaned by hand
- Cookware comes in a lot of different color options
- Affordable cost
- Less durable with some customers complaining of scratches after a few uses
- Feels a little more flimsy than other options
Scanpan is one of our favorite cookware sets when it comes to non-stick cookware. The brand has been producing quality cookware since the 1950s. They use high-quality aluminum materials that are also 100% recycled.
Scanpan offers a scratch-resistant coating on its products that are also warp-free. With a wide range of colors and shapes to choose from, you can easily fill your kitchen with the best cast iron pans.
- They offer a total of eight non-stick collections
- All cookware is designed with five layers of titanium-infused ceramic materials
- Oven-safe up to 500-degree Fahrenheit
- Pricier than other nonstick cookware
- Cookware can be slightly heavier than other options
7- Made In America
Made In America is one of the newer brands on our list of the best cookware brands. But, with their exceptional design and affordable price tag, they are worth checking out. One of our favorite things about the Made in America brand is that they have a variety of nonstick pans available for all levels of cooking.
Just a few of their top products include the fully-clad stainless steel cookware and the fully-clad, five-ply non-stick cookware that comes with a tri-layer of PFOA-free coating.
Made in America also carries other items, like cooking utensils and full cookware sets. The fact that they are a newer company also means they tend to lead when it comes to innovative cookware. The brand is commonly used in Michelin-star restaurants, but they have recently made their way into household kitchens.
- They offer a direct-to-consumer model which can make them cheaper
- They offer a total of four cookware options in different materials, including stainless clad, copper, nonstick, and carbon steel
- Products are oven-safe up to 500-degrees (nonstick), 800-degrees (stainless clad), and 1,200-degrees (carbon steel)
- Newer company with a focus on modern designs
- Newly founded, which means we don't yet know much about durability
- Limited warranties on many of their products
All-Clad is a Pennsylvania-based company that produces some of the best stainless steel cookware in the market. The company has been around since 1967, giving them plenty of time to perfect their product and make it on many best nonstick cookware and stainless steel lists.
If you prefer non-stick cookware, All-Clad has two options. But their most popular stainless steel pans are the D3, D5, and Copper Core collections.
- They offer a total of three stainless steel collections
- Their products are fully clad, making them durable
- They have products that are oven-save up to 600-degrees Fahrenheit
- Most products are broiler-safe
- Products tend to be on the pricier side
- Can be some learning curve when it comes to cooking with stainless steel
9- Le Creuset
Le Creuset makes some of the top-rated enameled cast iron cookware sets. The company has been around since 1925, making its way into many households. Most people recall first learning about the Le Creuset brand with their original red and orange Dutch oven cookware.
The brand was later expanded to include a variety of other colors, and many households today, still have this product.
The Le Creuset brand is often a chef-favorite and is used in a lot of professional kitchens. This can lead to a higher price tag, but the durability often makes it worth it.
Le Creuset cookware is sure to provide you with exceptional cooking capabilities but at a price. It will heat evenly, and more importantly, the Le Creuset brand will be one of the longest-lasting cookware sets you own.
- Over 20 cookware color options to choose
- Oven-safe up to 500-degrees Fahrenheit
- Broiler-safe, up to 500-degrees Fahrenheit
- One of the most expensive cookware brands in the cookware industry
- Heats slowly, which can lead to longer cook times
Mauviel is less known than other more popular brands, like Le Creuset. However, if you prefer high-quality copper cookware, then Mauviel is worth consideration. Founded in 1830, the Mauviel brand has had ample time to earn the trust of its customers with good frying pans and pots. While a lot of other cookware brands focus on innovation and modern trends, Mauveil stays dedicated to its traditional design. The cast-iron skillet and grill pans are some of their best products.
The design of the Mauviel cookware products is done through polishers and fitters, a process that has long been automated in other companies. This gives you a cookware product that is unlike any of the other brands, focusing on attention to detail and overall durability.
- Offers a total of five copper cookware collections
- All pots and pans are made with either 100 percent copper or fully clad stainless steel
- Oven-safe up to 450-degrees in tinned products, and 680-degrees in stainless steel
- Some cookware products are broiler-safe
- Offers exceptional heat control for a consistent cooking process
- Uses a high thermal conductivity, meaning it heats up very fast
- Chefs who prefer a modern design may not like the antiqued look
- One of the most expensive cookware brands available
- It may require an induction disc for induction cooking
- Copper cookware may not be as durable as stainless steel
Calphalon is another cookware company that has been around for a long time but continues to release new products. They have a wide range of traditional cookware products, including stainless steel products, nonstick surface items, cast iron cookware, and ceramic cookware sets. If you prefer cooking with the best ceramic cookware, Calpahlon also has a whole ceramic inventory available.
- A legacy brand that a lot of customers have come to trust
- Some of the most affordable nonstick cookware sets available
- Diverse products that accommodate most styles, including hard-anodized aluminum cookware
- Durable products that are designed to last
- Products don't always include the latest features
- Warranties may be limited due to the low cost
If you want tradition, stick with Le Creuse. If you want innovation, then try Misen. If you want something in the middle, you have a lot of good options available.
Other Cookware Brands to Consider
In addition to this list of best cookware brands, other cookware companies that you might consider include:
- Staub: Staub cookware is a luxury nonstick cookware option. They are often compared to Le Creuset but come at a lower price tag with fewer color or design choices.
- Caraway: Caraway cookware focuses on good quality cookware that is also safe. Their most popular product is the ceramic-coated PTFE-free grill pans.
- Cuisinart: Cuisinart is a widely-known household name. They first got their reputation from high-quality blenders but quickly moved to make some of the best cookware products.
- Lagostina: Lagostina is a good choice for stainless steel or copper products. They perfectly combine design with functionality.
Choosing the best brand for your cooking style can feel overwhelming. Read on to learn about other important features.
Set or Per Pan?
You can buy individual pots and pans to build your collection, or you can buy a full set. If you're trying to replace a cast iron or one of your all-clad cookware items, you might buy just one piece.
However, if you're trying to stock your kitchen with a high-quality cookware brand, then you will usually get the most for your money by going with a set.
Cookware sets also give you a uniform look in your kitchen. A stainless steel cookware set that matches will not only provide you with consistency when cooking but also look nice.
A lot of brands, including Le Creuset, sell full sets with all the pots and pans you need for traditional cooking. Even Cuisinart cookware has sets that can offer you a good deal.
Cookware Buying Guide
As you choose from the best cookware brands, you can use this cookware buying guide to further narrow down your options:
Cookware comes in a wide range of coatings. Here are a few coatings to consider:
Cast iron cookware is divided into two types: enameled and raw seasoned. Cast iron products are great at withholding high temperatures, and providing chefs with a slow and even cooking process. They are very durable, often lasting for many years. Cast iron cookware can complete a wide range of cooking tasks, including:
Some cast-iron cookware needs to be seasoned. They also tend to be heavier and larger than other types of cookware.
Cast iron doesn't conduct heat as well as other products, like copper. Instead, it heats slowly. Once it fully heats, it does hold heat fairly well. This makes your cast iron skillet perfect for cooking thick steaks or searing. A cast iron is also good for items that need to be slowly cooked or seasoned.
A few good cookware brands for cast iron is Le Creuset or Staub. The Lodge cast iron is also a good cast iron option.
Nonstick has become more popular over the last few years as household chefs got tired of their foods sticking to their cookware. The first nonstick material was made in 1938 and was referred to as Teflon.
Teflon is still used today but is not the only nonstick material. Household chefs enjoy nonstick cookware because they are easy to clean. They don't require as much cooking oil and are lightweight. This makes them a versatile option. Nonstick pans are a good option for cooking delicate foods, such as fish or eggs.
The biggest downside to stainless steel cookware is that most items aren't compatible with induction cooktops. Instead, you need special magnetic cookware for induction stoves.
Many people have also come to worry about the safety of Teflon and how it reacts once it's burned off the pots and pans. A healthier alternative, ceramic nonstick pans, have become another option.
A few of the top brands for a nonstick cookware set are T-Fal and Rachael Ray.
Copper cookware tends to be pricier than other options, leaving many to wonder, “is it worth it?” Copper is a material that has been around for a long time. It is best known for its ability to conduct heat, making it an obvious choice for cookware products.
If you think about how products cook, copper is on the opposite end of the spectrum when compared to a cast-iron skillet.
Where cast iron slowly heats things, copper heats faster and more evenly. But, this also means that it loses heat much faster.
This makes copper cookware a good option for fish and other seafood. It may also be a good option for melting chocolate dishes or cheeses.
If you're looking for the best copper cookware brand, we'd recommend Mauviel or the Made In America brand.
Stainless steel has become one of the most popular kitchen materials, not only when it comes to cookware, but even kitchen appliances. This is because stainless steel is one of the most durable products. It's made by removing hot spots on top of aluminum copper cookware.
One of the biggest advantages of stainless steel is that it doesn't require seasoning and still has the ability to offer even heat distribution. Stainless steel is a good choice for versatility in cooking. It allows you to saute or pan fry.
Stainless steel is also dishwasher and oven-safe. However, it may be harder to hand wash and can be pricier than other cookware brand options.
A few top stainless steel brands to consider include All-Clad and Calphalon.
Ceramic, despite its name, is not actually made out of ceramic. Instead, it is made of a sol-gel coating that effortlessly blends with the cookware, which is then coated with ceramic. Many people refer to ceramic cookware as a ceramic nonstick coating. People will often choose a ceramic cookware set for benefits like the nonstick coating and ease of cleaning.
The downside of ceramic is that it lacks safety studies. Ceramic cookware does use a gel to coat its dishes which hasn't been fully studied yet. It also doesn't distribute heat as well as other options.
If you're looking for the best ceramic cookware, we would recommend checking out the Made in America brand.
Hard-anodized cookware refers to a design process in which the aluminum has undergone a thorough process to make it more durable. The product forms a hard layer over the materials, giving them a high-strength layer. While anodized aluminum refers to the way that cookware is made, it isn't actually its own material category.
Because most of these products are also nonstick, they often fall into the category of a nonstick cookware set.
This material is durable and heat conductive. It is easy to store as you don't have to worry about scratching the pan's surface. The downside of this material is that its design focuses on functionality rather than design.
These pots and pans are also more prone to stains, which can be a problem if you prefer to show off your cast iron.
Carbon steel conducts heat very well, heating your dishes quickly. It does a good job at retaining heat too, but not as well as stainless steel. Carbon steel is a durable material which also means it lasts. It is sometimes compared to cast iron but does tend to be a little lighter. You may choose carbon steel if you better want control over your cooking temperatures.
Carbon steel cookware is ideal for grilling, charring, or making crispier foods.
A few options for carbon steel cookware include T-Fal or Rachael Ray.
Certain cookware accessories will pair well with whichever cookware brand you choose. Here are a few accessories to consider adding:
Many cookware sets come with lids. However, if you need replacement ones, you want to ensure that you choose the right size. A universal fit usually means that it can fit multiple cookware items.
You also want a good pair of kitchen knives to prepare your food with. A lot of the top brands also have good kitchen knife sets. You can also choose from many of the same materials including metal utensils.
You will also need good kitchen tools to help with the preparation of your meals including spatulas, spoons, whisks, or measuring cups. These items also come in a lot of different materials with a few of the most popular being wooden or plastic. You might also choose to match your kitchen tools to your cookware materials.
There are a few features you may consider when choosing the right cookware:
Most, but not all, cookware sets are dishwasher safe. If you want all-clad cookware that is dishwasher-safe, make sure you check its features before buying.
Most of the best stainless steel cookware products are dishwasher safe, but it is best to always check before buying.
Conductor refers to how well your cookware transfers heat. Some materials are better at transferring heat, including copper and aluminum.
Heavy gauge refers to how durable and versatile cookware products are. You want pots and pans that are made with quality, heavy-gauge materials that will last.
Induction may or may not be important to you depending on your cooktop type. If you have an induction cooktop, you may need special cookware that accommodates it.
A cookware warranty may or may not be important to you. Some brands do offer warranties on their products. Others may have a more limited warranty but may allow you to return the product within a certain period. Look into the warranty or return policy when choosing the right brands for you, giving you more options to change your cookware if wanted.
You may find other features that you enjoy, including easy storage capabilities or even soft-touch handles. Consider what features are most important to you when choosing the best cookware brand.
The Different Parts of a Pan
It can be beneficial to know the different parts of a pan when choosing the best cookware. A pan includes the following parts:
- Handle: Handles are usually metal or silicone coated. You want a comfortable handle that blocks heat, reducing your chances of getting burned.
- Rivets: Rivets are how your cookware is held together. Most cookware brands use screws, but you might find other materials.
- Body: The body is one of the most important parts of the pan. It is what you should match to your cooking type. It includes things like cast iron, dutch ovens, enameled cast iron cookware, or even a stainless steel cookware set.
- Rim: A rim refers to the lip on the side of the pan. Choosing the right rim can make it easier to pour sauces or toss ingredients.
- Cookware surface: The surface is where you cook. This may include certain materials like nonstick or cast iron.
- Core: The core of the pan is conductive, including aluminum or copper. A lot of cookware has multiple layers, like the cast iron core, which makes them more conductive.
- Sides: The sides help to keep the ingredients in the pan. Decide how large, or small, of sides you want in your cookware.
- Base: The base is the bottom of the pan. If you have an induction cooktop, for example, you want cookware that is flat.
Compare each of your cookware options by evaluating each of the different parts. Determine which features are most important to you when choosing the perfectly designed cookware.
Shopping Tips for Buying Cookware
These shopping tips can help you choose the right cookware:
- Feel it: Once you get your product, pick it up and test how heavy and comfortable it is to use. This might not seem as important at the time, but it will be when you're cooking large dishes.
- Consider your cabinet space: You also want to consider your cabinet space when choosing the right cookware. You need cookware that can fit in your current space.
- Think about the types of foods that you cook most: Thinking about the types of foods and meals that you cook most can also help you choose the right products.
- Match your cookware to your cooktop: Choosing the best cookware for your cooktop will give you the best results. For example, if you have a smooth top range, you want a flat bottomed pan.
Use these tips to narrow down your options. Choosing the best cookware requires consideration of your cooking style and preferences.
Which Cookware Brand is Right For You?
How do you choose the best cookware brand for you? We recommend considering the following things:
- Price: Setting a budget before cookware shopping can be a good start. Consider what types of cookware you need, and the level of quality you want. Keep in mind, cheaper is not always better. A cheaper enameled cast iron cookware set may save you a few dollars now, but if you have to replace it sooner, it could end up costing you more.
- Materials: Choosing the type of cookware materials that you prefer is another important consideration. Each cookware material has its own list of pros and cons.
- Performance: Considering the performance, or features, of each type, can also help you narrow down your options. Some products offer better heat distribution, whereas others are easier to clean. Think about the features that are most important to you, and choose a material based on your specific cooking style.
- Size: Another important consideration to consider is size. Pans are measured by the overall diameter, not the actual cooking surface. For this reason, a lot of home chefs prefer to have two 12-inch pans, each with a different surface size. The most common sizes include 8, 10, and 12-inch pans.
- Shape: You may also want to consider shape. Cookware comes in different shapes and you want products that fit your cooktop and dishes.
Regardless of your cooking style and preferences, there are a lot of cookware brands to choose from today. Narrow down your options by considering the different materials and brands of cookware.