Stainless steel is a timeless classic. Its vessels, cutlery, and cookware have been in use in nearly every household since ages. The reasons are many – going by its name, it’s stainless, so you never need to worry about your vessels looking dirty, faded, or discoloured. Also, steel is durable and robust.
However, as time changes, new products enter the market and start luring people. One such example is the highly-stylish ceramic cookware that’s doing the rounds these days. While the material has gained immense popularity in households, can it replace the ageless stainless steel still used in daily cooking? Which of them is better, and why?
To answer such questions and more, here’s a detailed comparison between the two. It might help you make an intelligent decision about your purchase the next time you plan to buy a new cookware item for your kitchen.
Ceramic Vs Stainless Steel Cookware
It might be hard to categorically state, which is better among the two because both have their benefits as well as not-so-good points. Let’s take a look.
- Non-stick property: The advent of newer forms of cookware, such as ceramic, has been hailed by many. This is because of ceramic brought in the much-needed non-stick coating in cooking vessels, something which steel had been lacking in so far.
- Heat-bearing efficiency: Ceramic cookware is best used at low-to-medium heat to protect its delicate non-stick coating. This might sometimes result in slower cooking as well. Steel, on the other hand, is much tougher that way and can be used at any heat without causing much damage to the vessel.
- Ease of use: Most novice cooks feel slightly uncomfortable using steel cookware in the beginning. This is because until they get used to the heat range to work at, they mostly tend to cook at higher flames, often resulting in burnt food. In this case, the non-stick ceramic-coated vessels are preferred because of their non-stickiness of food. Even the amateurs can try their hand on the cookware without much worry of cleaning up after.
- Health values: As more people become increasingly aware of healthy food and its immense benefits, they tend to shift more to ceramic cookware, the reason being that these vessels require extremely less or no oil at all during cooking. Non-greasiness means convenient cleaning as well.
The contrary, steel vessels involve more use of cooking oil when compared to a ceramic one. And of course, while it may taste delicious to start with, it’s not suitable for your health in the long run. Plus, more greasy vessels mean stressful cleaning hassles later on.
Which Is Better?
When it comes to deciding between ceramic vs stainless steel, one can say that the choice can’t be as easy as black or white. Both have their pluses and shortcomings as detailed above. But it can be comfortably said that both have their specific uses which can’t be replaced one with the other.
For instance, if you wish to deep fry stuff, stainless steel cookware is undoubtedly the best. You can place the pan on high heat and deep fry puris or pappadums without worrying about the vessel getting heat damaged. The same cannot be done in a ceramic pan, the non-stick coating of which might be at risk of being damaged if placed on high heat.
However, for delicate food items such as fish or paneer tikkas that require mild shallow frying, you might be better off using ceramic cookware. They mostly need low to medium heat for cooking and taste better when cooked on slow flame.
Also, whenever you wish to whip up scrambled eggs for breakfast, doing so on steel pans may need some trial and error to attain perfection. They tend to stick easily to the cooking surface and can be quite a struggle to be removed later when you wash the dishes. On such occasions, cooking eggs in a ceramic pan may save you all the unnecessary hassle since the non-stick coating would leave no undue remains behind.
Here are some common questions a lot of people ask about the two cooking materials before making up their mind on which to go for, hope it helps you to make a wise choice.
1. Is ceramic cookware safer than stainless steel?
Recent studies and researches are leading people into thinking hard on whether the shiny stainless-steel pots and pans they’ve been using since years are safe for health. It is believed that stainless steel, which uses several metals in its composition, can cause potential health hazards when these metals get rubbed off during cooking. They tend to expel some very harmful toxins that get mixed up with the food we eat.
Ceramic cookware, which essentially claims to be made from clay baked in kilns, propagates itself as a healthier and safer alternative to steel and other metal cookware. It’s believed to be naturally made of clay, water, and gas, and is, therefore, free of any metallic toxins.
2. Is ceramic interior microwave safe?
The best part about using ceramic cookware in your kitchen is its versatile use. It can be used anywhere – on the stovetop, direct inside the microwave or oven, under the broiler, on the grill, in the freezer, refrigerator, and even dishwasher. It is generally safe in all these circumstances and doesn’t tend to lose shape at all.
3. What kind of spatula do you use for ceramic pans?
Ceramic cookware can last for years if used with care. Use only plastic, silicone, and wood spatulas when cooking in ceramic pots and pans to prevent abrasive scratches and damage to the coating.
As you can see, each of the two – ceramic and stainless steel – has their specific usability. Picking one over the other may not be so easy. Weigh out all your options, your particular need in cooking and then go for the one you think would be ideal in for your kitchen. If you do decide to buy a ceramic cookware, you can check our reviews on some of the ceramic cookware sets.