Joyce Chen J21-9978 14-Inch Carbon Steel Wok

Last updated date: August 4, 2020

DWYM Score
8.6

Joyce Chen J21-9978 14-Inch Carbon Steel Wok

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We looked at the top Joyce Chen Woks and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Joyce Chen Wok you should buy.

Overall Take

In our analysis of 27 expert reviews, the Joyce Chen Joyce Chen J21-9978 14-Inch Carbon Steel Wok placed 5th when we looked at the top 7 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note August 26, 2020:
Checkout The Best Joyce Chen Wok for a detailed review of all the top joyce chen woks.

Expert Summarized Score
6.0
5 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
7.6
697 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
The 1.5 mm gauge carbon steel body is designed to heat evenly and is safe for gas, electric, and induction stoves.
- The Kitchen Professor
The Joyce Chen 21-9978 wok comes with a wide top and narrow bottom that requires less use of cooking oil.
- Cookware Stuffs
Because its natural carbon steel, it distributes the heat evenly and you will not find any hot spots
- 111Reviews
It is compatible with electric, gas, and induction stovetop. No doubt, it is versatile in this regard.
- The House Talk
Generous cooking surface
- BestReviews
What experts didn't like
The interior of this wok does not come pre-seasoned
- The Kitchen Professor
One user complained that “after seasoning, the handle is unacceptably loose and feels like it will fall off any second”.
- 111Reviews
Not cleaning it thoroughly may lead to rust and ruin the surface.
- The House Talk
Durability may be compromised at extremely high temps
- BestReviews

From The Manufacturer

1 5 mm gauge Carbon Steel body. Natural Carbon Steel, 14 inch diameter Wok

Overall Product Rankings

An Overview On Joyce Chen Woks

In addition to cooking Asian-inspired dishes, woks can be used to toss a salad, knead dough, cook meat for taco night, steam lobster and scramble eggs for a healthy breakfast. If you’re in the market for one of these versatile cooking instruments, you’ll want to consider Joyce Chen’s line of woks.

Determine which size wok works best for your needs. You’ll want to think about how many people you need to feed and the size of your storage space. If you plan on cooking for just yourself and one other person, a 10-ounce wok is fine. The Joyce Chen 14-Inch Carbon Round Bottom Wok is a good choice, as it serves four and comes with a removable bamboo handle that makes it a cinch to store. A 16- or 22-inch wok is best for large families and dinner parties.

Check the wok’s handle next, as you want to make sure it’s comfortable to hold. The Joyce Chen Standard 14-Inch Flat Bottom Wok not only uses an ergonomic handle that stays nice and cool to the touch, but it also comes with a helper handle. The helper handle allows you to control the wok and maneuver it as needed during the cooking process. As an added bonus, this model’s handle has a built-in loop for hanging.

Review the wok’s construction. You want a model, like the Joyce Chen Classic Carbon Steel Nonstick Wok Set, that’s made from 1 1/2-millimeter gauge carbon steel. This metal is able to heat up quickly, as well as disperse the heat evenly throughout the wok. The cooking surface is also nonstick, which means your dish will slide off the wok and onto your serving platter with ease.

Consider purchasing a wok that comes with a host of extras. For example, the Joyce Chen Pro Chef Excalibur Non-Stick Wok Set comes with 10 pieces that expand what you can do with the wok. It has a 14-inch wok with matching lid, a Tempura rack, a bamboo spatula, a set of chopsticks, a steaming rack, a rice paddle, a set of tongs and a recipe book.

DWYM Fun Fact

Joyce Chen, affectionately known as the “Julia Child of Chinese cooking,” was an accomplished chef and television personality. She immigrated to Cambridge, Massachusetts from Beijing, China, where she taught cooking classes to students at Harvard University.

In 1958, Chen opened her very first restaurant, which quickly grew in popularity. Just a few short years later, Chen published her first cookbook, simply titled the “Joyce Chen Cook Book.” By 1966, Chen was demonstrating her cooking techniques on television. Then, in 1970, Chen patented her very first wok. Today, shoppers can easily purchase a variety of cookware that was designed and inspired by Chen.

The Joyce Chen Wok Buying Guide

  • Each of the Joyce Chen woks requires seasoning before you use them.
  • Once your wok has fully cooled, you can hand wash it using mild dish soap and hot water. Stick to a non-abrasive sponge or washcloth, as steel wool scrubbers will damage the surface of the wok. If you encounter any stuck-on foods, you can create a cleaning paste from baking soda and water. Always dry the wok immediately after each cleaning.
  • Never place your wok in the dishwasher.
  • Joyce Chen woks are susceptible to staining when foods are left in them for prolonged periods, which means they do not double as food storage containers. You’ll need to transfer any leftovers from the wok to food-safe containers before placing them in the refrigerator.
  • It’s best to stick to plastic and bamboo cooking utensils when using Joyce Chen woks.  
  • The company reports that heat expansion may cause the screw that secures the handle to the wok to become loose. All you need is a screwdriver to tighten the screw and secure the handle firmly to the base.
  • Take the time to preheat your wok before you use it. You’ll know it’s ready for your ingredients when a drip a few drops of water in the wok and it evaporates instantly.
  • Never overcrowd your wok, as this can cause the temperature to drop.
  • You’ll find the Joyce Chen woks come in a variety of prices. Price is based on the size of the wok, as well as any included extras. The Joyce Chen 14-Inch Carbon Round Bottom Wok is the most affordable, and a great choice for beginners. You’ll pay a moderate price for both the Joyce Chen Standard 14-Inch Flat Bottom Wok and the Joyce Chen Classic Carbon Steel Nonstick Wok Set. Since the Joyce Chen Pro Chef Excalibur Non-Stick Wok Set comes with 10 pieces, it’s able to command the highest price tag.