I love my new induction cooktop - but not the fact that neither of my 2 stainless stockpots will work! Can anyone recommend a very inexpensive stockpot that will work on induction?
Please define, "inexpensive."
And, please tell us what size you are looking for.
(You'd think I could have fit all that into one post, wouldn't you?)
I confess to not knowing squat about induction, but wouldn't one of those old-school enameled steel stock pots work? The kind you see sold for lobster boils, like this.
It only has to be magnetic, right? I'm guessing there may be a little more to it, though...
Well, at this point dirt cheap would be nice! I would like to still be able to use the pentola and steamer inserts from my old one, so I guess a diameter of about 10" would be good.
joe, as long as it is magnetic, it's fine. I don't think the enameled steel will work, but I do have a breadpan of that material that I can check - as soon as I find a magnet. Moving is so much fun. 8-)
solarpowered - I guess by size you were referring to capacity. I think about 20 quarts or a bit larger.
20 quarts. That a LOT of pasta!
I got a 16 quart, induction-capable SS stock pot from Instawares for about $45, a little over a year ago. The brand is "Johnson Rose". (And I think they tack "Crown Select" or something like that, somewhere in the name.) I've only used it once so far, but it did a quite fine job of making stock. I remember that they have a 20 quart stock pot for not too much more. (And larger pots as well).
I think the diameter of my 16 quart pot is around 11 inches.
For pasta, I picked up an 8 quart Tramontina set from Walmart for about $35. That price included a pasta insert, and a stacking steamer. I'm not entirely happy with this one--while it is dishwasher safe, it really doesn't get clean in the DW. (Unlike my Demeyere Atlantis, which cleans up quite well in the DW. And costs a lot more.)
I got a Le Creuset Stockpot from Tuesday Morning for about $40, last year. Mine is gray, it's enamel on steel, so it's not nearly as heavy as their cast iron. (I would never buy their stuff otherwise, it's way to expensive for me, but this was a good deal).
Look around at places like Marshalls, Tuesday Morning, etc, you may find one. Apparently, their discontinued colors end up at these stores.
I have a single induction cooktop that is my fifth burner, and I use this pot on it. It's wonderful.
I really like this Tramontina set. I got it a few years ago at Sam's Club for around $40, which I thought was a good price for the quality.
I haven't tried it on my cheapo induction hot plate but this web site lists it as being induction capable.
Nice and heavy, sturdy, well made; and I use the steamer insert fairly often (it's big enough to steam a whole chicken).
Please note I don't know anything (good or bad) about this vendor, I just googled "tramontina" and this was one of the sites that came up.
Here is a link that might be useful: tramontina pasta set
take one of your stronger kitchen magnets with you when you shop ... place the magnet on the bottom of the pot you're considering ... if the magnet really grabs the pot, it'll work on induction ... but if the hold is weak, the pot will not work satisfactorily ... try this on your current pots.
Now maybe someone can tell me if stainless steel had to be polished when it is magnetized for use on induction cookware.
Thanks everyone. I've about reconciled myself to actually spending a little money again, so I'll probably pick up one of these soon. I've found that I can cook enough pasta for two in a 4 quart pan, as long as it's in small pieces.
momj47, I didn't realize that Le Creusets stockpots were made differently than their other pans. Since I can barely lift their smaller pans (in stores) I'd never even looked at their stockpots!
I wonder if it would work to use a cast iron frying pan underneath a smaller pot.
I have a lovely glass kettle that I would love to use on my induction hot plate.
toronto, I think that would work just fine. Please let us know how it works for you. You might be interested in this discussion.
Here is a link that might be useful: device allows use of non-induction cookware
Interesting - thanks for the link.
I will let you know how it works for me.
I want to thank you all again. I got the Tramontina stainless pasta set and am very happy with it. We haven't tried washing it in the DW yet, so I don't know how it will do. It is not as smoothly finished on the inside as my All-Clad stainless, so that may be the difference for good cleaning in the DW.
It should be easy to find cheap stainless steel pots to use with induction. It's the more expensive stainless pans that might not work.
Stainless steel that doesn't include nickle is magnetic, and is supposed to work with induction. It's also much cheaper than the stainless steel that does contain nickle. Companies used to use the more expensive stainless with nickle on pans before induction became popular, because it was stronger and more durable. But the expensive stainless steel doesn't work with induction because it's not magnetic. So now a lot of companies are using the cheap stainless on the bottom of the pots, so their pots will work with induction (even on expensive pots).
The cheap magnetic stainless steel should be labeled as either "magnetic stainless steel" or "18/0". Buy something with that on the bottom. Or just do as was suggested here: bring a magnet to the store and test any pots you're interested in to see if they're magnetic.
(Note: You can still get pans with top quality stainless on the bottom that will work with induction, if you're willing to spend big bucks. Companies can do a special process to make the expensive stainless magnetic. But this really adds to the cost. If top quality stainless is not a priority to you, there's no reason you should need to pay extra for pots and pans for induction.)
Price has little to do with wether stainless is magnetic or not. The magnetic properties of stainless steel are determined by it's crystaline properties. There are two crystaline forms of interest to cooks-austenitic and martensitic.
The numbers 18/10 (or 18/8 or 18/0) deal with the percentages of Chromium and Nickel in a stainless steel. The first number is the percentage of Chromium and the second is the percentage of Nickel, so an 18/8 stainless steel contain 18% Chromium and 8% Nickel.
Pots and pans are generally made of austenitic stainless. It is the most common form of stainless, and is most commonly seen as 18/10 or 18/8, though 18/0 is also available. During manufacturing, it is cooled slowly. It is more corrosion-resistanic because of the large amounts of Chromium and Nickel, which is why it's used in pots and pans, which get heated, and thus are moe prone to corrosion.
Stainless knives are usually martensitic stainless. It is cooled rapidly which changes it's crytalline structure, and is thus (usually) magnetic. The rapid coolins also make the steel tougher but harder to form. It contains less Chromium than austenitic steels, and much less Nickel. It is not as corrosion-resistant as austenitic stainless. Howver, it is machainable (austenitic is generally not) and magnetic.
Thus, in a kitchen, we (usually) have pans made of austenitic and knives of martensitic stainless. This is why most stainless pots will not hold a kitchen magnet, but knives can be stored on a magnetic strip.
Here is a link that might be useful: Stainless steel info
Apply a magnet to any pot you would like to use with your induction cook top; if it sticks to the bottom of the pot, it will work. How well the magnet attracts indicates how well the pot will work.
To use any pot (even aluminum), buy an "induction interface" for about $20 from Bed Bath & Beyond. The interface is a round magnet attracting stainless, iron core, disk with a handle. I use my old porcelain stock pots and steamers, as well as all our heavy cast iron pots; all work great!