Best (moderately priced) Stainless Steel Cookware

cbarkstonAugust 21, 2006

I'm looking for recommendations for a stainless steel cookware set. I'd like to hear opinions from you, but also if you are aware of any ratings from cooking magazines or consumer magazines, I would like to hear about those as well. I could probably spend a couple hundred dollars. Thanks so much in advance!

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Consumer Reports did extensive testing on cookware--think it was in the mag about 6-8 months back (maybe around the holidays?) You should be able to find the issue at your library. They did have a couple of moderately priced lines that they were impressed with. You definitely want to read the article, because some of the brands were very dangerous--under some conditions, the bottoms could liquify and spill melted metal down over your range, and anyone standing nearby. YIKES!

I use All-clad and love it--really worth the price if the budget will stretch that far. But before I got this set, I used Farberware for about 30 years, and was very satisfied with it.

One thing I'd really recommend, though--look for a brand that has metal handles, so you can use the pots both on top of the range, or in the oven. That's one of the things I really love about the All-Clad--the Farberware handles weren't oven safe, so it's a nice change to be able to sear something on the range, then just set the pan in the oven to finish off the cooking.

    Bookmark   August 21, 2006 at 10:59PM
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I have a few pricier pieces (Le Creuset, All-Clad, Calphalon, Scan Pan) and chose each for it's particular use. For everyday cooking chores (making irish oatmeal, grilled sandwiches, etc.) I have been very pleased with the Kirkland set my husband brought home from Costco. We saw a similar set at Marshal Fields (okay, I refuse to say Macy's yet) for over twice the cost. These do have metal handles.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2006 at 2:00PM
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Are you 100% sure you need a set? In many---perhaps most---cases, the items that are in a set don't fit your cooking style.

You might, instead, want to make a list of the pieces you actually need, then buy them from open stock. Personally, I have no use for All Clad. But there are a great many other brands to choose from.

Of those I've used, I really like Henckels. Their skillit design, particularly. fits me better than any others. And the prices are right.

I only have one Calphalon piece---a small saucepan. But, for what it's worth (I mean, how can you really tell from such limited experience) I like the design and the quality.

    Bookmark   August 25, 2006 at 2:09PM
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I've lurked around here for the past year or so before joining and have read that some people don't like All-Clad for whatever reason. I personally love my Stainless Steel AC :) I've bought some on sale at CutleryAnd More and some at Cookware&More which are irregular pieces at a reduced price.
I have a few pieces of Le Creuset too. Now if I could just find a wife who could help me use it...

    Bookmark   August 25, 2006 at 5:19PM
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I have the Members Mark set, which is very similar to All Clad. Some folks think the handles are better than AC. I'm no gourmet cook, and this does fine by me. Like others, though, I have a few pieces of Le Creuset, too.

    Bookmark   September 8, 2006 at 8:15PM
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I purchased a set of good quality SS. May not be AS good quality as All-Clad...but for the price (and I did my research) I purchased "Tools of The Trade" (Belgique/Classique) For $129.00 I got a set of 12 and it came with a bonus sauce pot & glass lid. I purchased my set at Burdines/Macy's. Watch the sale adds - they offer them on special quite a bit. They have larger pieced sets too for a few dollars more. I am very happy with the set I chose. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2006 at 11:49AM
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