The Five Secrets to Cooking with Stainless Steel

For the longest time I resisted the idea of cooking with stainless steel.  It’s ‘stick cookware’, right? And who wants to spend their time scouring pots and pans?  Let’s face it, once you’ve gotten used to non-stick pans, you get used to the idea of food not sticking to the pot and effortless clean up of the pans.

But there is something about stainless steel cookware.  Apart from the nice and shiny appearance, of course.

cooking with stainless steel

For one, you just can’t get the same sear on meats with non-stick as you can with stainless steel cookware.    And don’t ask me why but food does taste better when cooked in stainless.    And seriously, it’s pretty low maintenance… you can scratch it, stack it, use metal utensils, bang it together (those with kids will understand!) it’s still intact and still performs.

So it was time to look at cooking with stainless steel cookware as an option.  And that’s when I discovered:

The Five Secrets to Cooking with Stainless Steel!

1. Non-Stick.  The trick to making a stainless steel non-stick can be summarized as ‘hot pan, cold oil’.  Heat the empty pan on medium high till you can place a hand above the pan and feel the heat rising.  Add a bit of oil at room temperature, just enough to coat the bottom of the pan.   Wait for the oil to become hot.  You will notice a tiny bit of smoke coming out.  This tells you the pan is ready.  Voila, you just turned your stainless steel pan into a non-stick cooking pot.

 2. Searing: When searing meat, don’t force the food to flip. Meat will stick to the pan but will release when ready.

 3. Heat: Another secret to cooking with stainless steel is to cook on medium heat.  Cooking at too high a heat can also cause foods to stick.

 4. Cool off:  After you are done cooking, I know you are in a hurry to soak the pan so that nothing stays stuck (guilty!).  But wait!  Let the pan cool to room temperature before adding water.  Otherwise you could end up with warped pans.

5. Soak: Once the pan is cooled off after cooking, soak it in soapy warm water for a while.  Then when you are ready to clean, the food easily wipes off.

  1. Review by Bibliophile for Rating: Emeril Hard Anodized Nonstick Fry Pans, 8 inch (ASIN B00284B9OM, model E9200264,) 10 inch (ASIN B00284B9PG, model E9200564) and 12 inch (ASIN B00284B9Q0, model E9200764) are good quality pans with holllw-core handles. The handles are easy to grip and don’t conduct heat to the bare hand.All Clad, the parent company of the Emeril line, confirmed that the bonus sets (like 8 and 12 inch pans ASIN B00284B9QK, model E920S264) are of lesser quality with standard handles. Promotional offers are decidedly not of the same quality as the regular line. Another promotional offer of theirs is the 10-piece set (ASIN B00284B9KQ, model E920SA64). All Clad confirmed that the quality of this set is inferior to the holllw-core handles offered on the more expensive individual pans sold.Since all items have the same title and product description, there isn’t a way for to see the difference.Buyer beware; when you purchase a set or pair at a seeming bargain price, it’s because you’re buying inferior quality. If you seek the holllw core handles good for gripping, spend the extra on the individual pot or pan. Leave the sets alone.