Whether you're an iron chef in the kitchen or someone who could burn water, finding the right size and style of cookware can be intimidating. Name brand pots and pans can be incredibly expensive, and the generic cookware generally sacrifices quality. The most important thing is to pay attention to is the entire package — price, material, uses, and durability. The Le Creuset line may be on the pricey side, but if you're someone who loves to make stews or roast chickens, this will be an investment that will easily pay for itself. The same is true of other cookware and baking dishes for your kitchen. Consider the following while considering a new cookware purchase:
1. How much will you actually use this item? 2. How often are you going to need to clean it? Do you hand wash, or use a dishwasher? 3. How long will this item realistically last?
There a variety of available styles, shapes and sizes of cookware and bakeware — here’s a small guide to get you started:
Glass bakeware is generally used for more delicate dishes made with eggs, or any acidic ingredients. Baking pans made with metal can sometimes react with these foods and cause them to discolor.
Metal baking pans conduct heat wonderfully, so use them when you want to get a nice brown color on a baked good, or when broiling something.
Ceramic dishes are great because when they're glazed, they provide a non-stick surface. Some ceramic dishes come unglazed, which tends to create a steamy environment while cooking — adding more moisture to the food.
Dutch ovens are deep, heavy pots with a lid, that are designed to recreate oven conditions inside the pot itself. They are great for stews, soups, and anything that needs low heat and slow cooking.
Skillets are great for pan frying and sautéing food. They usually have sloped sides, rather than a saucepan, which tends to have vertical sides for simmering sauces.
Stockpots have sides that are at least as tall as their diameter. They're great for boiling and simmering large quantities of liquid.
Depending on what you usually like to cook, you can also buy a griddle, wok, roasting pan, casserole dish, souffle dish — and many other cookware items. Find what you’re looking for by searching here through our recommended products.