What are the Best Brands of Chef Quality Professional Stainless Steel Pots and Pans You Can Buy


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If you have ever watched cooking shows on TV, you know how easy it is to become a fan. As I write this I have one eye on the computer and one on The Rachael Ray Show after having watched The Chew.

Just watching these professional chefs turn out culinary masterpieces makes me want to acquire those kind of skills tokeep food from sticking take my cooking up a notch, or at least to own the pots and pans they use to help me get there. If nothing else, watching the shows adds to my repertoire of recipes that I may never make, but still, I can dream….

So what type of cooking ware do these professionals use? Some TV chefs have their own lines that are sold to the public which surprisingly aren’t always rated highly, but if you are looking for top performing cookware worthy of a top culinary chef, you will find that there are certain types of cookware that they consider indispensable.

Cookware Brands Professional Chefs Use

ALL CLAD

The New York Times did a survey of NY area chefs and 3/4 of these chefs listed All Clad Stainless steel cookware as either their first or second choice.

If you want to invest in top quality pots and pans that are popular not only with professional chefs, but also with serious cooks, then All Clad is a good place to begin. It’s the only brand of stainless steel cookware sets made in the USA and the company has been around since 1971.

One of the features that makes All Clad pots and pans perform so well is its tri-ply layering. They have several different collections with with varying amounts of layering (cladding) but all of them use premium quality SS for the outer layers which is a very healthy material to use when cooking. It gets very good reviews from owners.

The Copper Core

collection has an impressive five layers–magnetic stainless steel, aluminum, copper, aluminum and 18/10 stainless steel. Copper distributes heat extremely well but is very expensive. Aluminum also conducts heat well. SS is an excellent material for cookware because it is very durable, does not dent or show wear easily.

However it does not conduct heat well, so the added copperAll Clad Copper Core plus aluminum really makes this line exceptional. The layer that actually touches food is made of stainless steel. This insures that food does not react to the material like some metals do and the outer layer of SS makes it durable enough to be passed down to subsequent generations.

The D5 collection

also has five layers–magnetic stainless steel, aluminum, stainless steel, aluminum, 18/10 stainless steel. Like all of the brand’s SS cookware, it is suitable for use on all types of stoves: gas, electric, ceramic and induction. However, I am not sure what advantages the inner core of SS adds to the set since SS is not a good heat conductor. The aluminum layers allow heat to be distributed throughout the pots and pans so that you won’t have hot spots where food does not cook evenly.

The Stainless Collection

has the more typical tri-ply construction of magnetic SS, aluminum, 18/10 SS. This is quite sufficient for evenly cooked foods that heat quickly. The collection, like the other brand’s lines, has a thick gauge necessary to prevent food from burning easily.

All of the pots and pans in All Clad’s collections are rather heavy to lift and the handles are not the most ergonomically constructed to make holding very comfortable. If lifting heavy objects is a problem, this may not be the right cookware for you. Overall these negatives are minor compared to the superior construction and performance that this brand delivers.

Mauviel

Mauviel is a French company dating back to 1830. It began as a copper manufacturing company and today its primary product is copper cookware ware. Their products are of premier quality mostly because very expensive copper heats better than other cookware materials. It’s also beautiful to look at. The company specializes in pots and pans for the commercial and professional chef as well as the home cook. It’s not as well known among home cooks as All Clad, but it, too, gets very good reviews.

The M Heritage Copper M150s Collection

This set is for home use and the exterior is made of 90% copper and 10 percent stainless steel. The interior parts are completely SS which is not reactive. Copper is a reactive metal and when cooking acidic foods like tomatoes, copper can make give your food a metallic taste.

However, copper makes your pots and pans heat very well and Mauviel Copper & Stainless Cokwareand adjusts to changes in temperature quickly. That means you can turn the burner down from medium to low, etc. and get immediate response like when you remove the pot or pan from the heat source, it immediately cools down.

One disadvantage of copper, though, is that it tarnishes easily. If this happens, copper can loose its heat properties. So it is best to hand wash and must be dried immediately in order to keep its pristine coating. It is also recommended to periodically clean it with special copper cleaners.

SITRAM

Sitram is another highly-regarded French cookware manufacturer. Perhaps it’s fitting that France produces such quality pots and pans considering its reputation for fine dining. Sitram began manufacturing stainless steel cookware in 1960. It’s a well-known commercial kitchenware brand in Europe, but not so much among the home cook. Reviewers generally leave it very good marks.

Profiserie Collection

The Profiserie Collection is constructed of commercial grade stainless steel that is extremely durable, won’t warp and can handle the demands of a commercial kitchen. It’s superb heating core is a disc base made of aluminum sandwiched between two layers of SS. The disc is rather small but still manages to put out superb heating performance.

Sitram’s handles are a little unusual in that they are welded to the pan. Welding is the best possible construction for handles for strength. Welds are also easier to clean than riveted Sitram frying panhandles as food particles cannot lodge in the tiny areas like they can in handles with rivets. This collection gets extremely high reviews online especially for its saute pan.

The Catering Collection

This line provides all the great benefits of the Profiserie including the same commercial grade surgical SS construction. However its core is constructed of stainless steel, copper, stainless steel. The added copper is what makes it more expensive than the Profiserie collection. The pots and pans are safe for use at temperatures up to 800 degrees. They are also safe to use on gas, electric and glass stovetops as well as induction.

Professional Chef Quality Cookware Without The High Price

All of these brands have great features and any serious cook would be proud to own them. But if your budget isn’t quite ready just yet for these luxury brands, not to worry, there are still some very good, less expensive alternatives that will deliver top-notch, even cooking performance. Check out this review.

How To Cook Steak In A Stainless Steel Pan With No Sticking

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