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The Best Stainless Steel Cookware | 2023

Last updated on January 11, 2023

We looked at the top 12 Stainless Steel Cookwares and dug through the reviews from 98 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best Stainless Steel Cookwares.

Best Stainless Steel Cookware

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Our Picks For The Top Stainless Steel Cookwares

Show Contents
Our Take
Experts Included
Pros
Cons
  Top Pick

Tramontina 80116/249DS Aluminum Core Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece

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Tramontina

Aluminum Core Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece

Overall Take

High-End OptionThe pieces in this stainless steel cookware set are oven-safe in temperatures of up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit.

Experts Included
DWYM Kitchen Experts plus New York Times Wirecutter, Consumer Reports, Epicurious. Along with user reviews from Amazon, Walmart and Target.
Pros
" The Tramontina is a durable pan that’s comfortable to hold."
Cons
"Ease of cleaning was poor."
  Runner Up

Amazon Basics BPA-Free Stainless Steel Cookware, 11-Piece

Amazon Basics

BPA-Free Stainless Steel Cookware, 11-Piece

Overall Take

Economical PickWhen shopping on a budget, consider this affordable stainless steel cookware set.

Experts Included
DWYM Kitchen Experts plus . Along with user reviews from Amazon.
  We Also Like

Cuisinart MCP-12N Oven Safe Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece

Cuisinart

Oven Safe Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece

Overall Take

Three-Layer Construction This stainless steel cookware set has triple-ply construction that has unsurpassed heat conductivity.

Experts Included
DWYM Kitchen Experts plus Stone Frying Pans, Kitchen Sanity, BestReviews, Think Cook, Pots And Pans Place, The Kitchen Advisor and 9 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon and Best Buy.
Pros
" Cuisinart MultiClad Pro is a less expensive option, comparatively, while it still heats as evenly as All-Clad Stainless and has the high-end features of All-Clad Stainless."
Cons
"Rivet plate on pans may capture liquid and lead to corrosion"
  Strong Contender

T-fal C836SD Venting Lids Stainless Steel Cookware, 13-Piece

T-fal

Venting Lids Stainless Steel Cookware, 13-Piece

Overall Take

Durable and Easy-to-Clean OptionThis 13-piece stainless steel cookware set has multi-layer strength and is dishwasher safe.

Experts Included
DWYM Kitchen Experts plus Cookware Diary, Think Cook, Julie Pro, Home Tale, Cookware Ninja, My Classy Kitchen and 12 more. Along with user reviews from Amazon.
Pros
" Unlike other stainless steel cookware, this set does not develop stains after cooking; or burn food easily. So, it’s easily cleaned with regular dishwashing soap and scrubber or sometimes some lukewarm water."
Cons
"The copper at the bottom may flake if not taken well care of"
Don't just take for granted what one reviewer says. Along with our own experts, DWYM analyzes the top expert reviews of the leading products and generates a score you can actually trust.
19

Products Considered

We identified the majority of the stainless steel cookwares available to purchase.
12

Products Analyzed

We then selected the leading and most popular products for our team to review.

View All Product Rankings

98

Expert Reviews Included

In addition to our expert reviews, we also incorporate feedback and analysis of some of the most respected sources including: New York Times Wirecutter, Consumer Reports, Epicurious, The Kitchen Advisor, The Cookware Advisor.

40,342

User Opinions Analyzed

We also incorporate user reviews from the leading retailers including

Our experts reviewed the top 12 Stainless Steel Cookwares and also dug through the reviews from 98 of the most popular review sites including and more. The result is a ranking of the best of the best Stainless Steel Cookwares.

DWYM is your trusted roduct review source. Our team reviews thousands of product reviews from the trusted top experts and combines them into one easy-to-understand score. Learn more.

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Look for the DWYM seal for products that are the best in their category.

The Best Overall

Tramontina 80116/249DS Aluminum Core Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece


Our Expert Score

7.1
3 expert reviews

User Summarized Score

8.7
261 user reviews

Our Take

This stainless steel cookware set works on all cooktops, including induction stovetops. With the set you'll receive frying pans, sauté pans, sauce pans and stock pots to prepare everything from fried chicken to minestrone soup. The pieces are also outfitted with holes in the handles for hanging to make storage easier.

What other experts liked

The Tramontina is a durable pan that’s comfortable to hold.
- New York Times Wirecutter
Handle temperature was excellent.
- Consumer Reports
Tramontina's 12-inch try-ply stainless steel skillet offers serious performance at a relatively affordable price.
- Epicurious
January 14, 2019 | Full review

What other experts didn't like

The Tramontina has a smaller cooking surface (it’s about 8½ inches across) than our main pick, which can be limiting.
- New York Times Wirecutter
Ease of cleaning was poor.
- Consumer Reports
At 8.25 inches, the Tramontina had the smallest interior of all the pans we tested. As a result, the skillet felt a little crowded when searing a package of chicken thighs, and that lack of breathing room made browning more...
- Epicurious
January 14, 2019 | Full review

The Best Bang For Your Buck

Amazon Basics BPA-Free Stainless Steel Cookware, 11-Piece

User Summarized Score

9.2
567 user reviews

Our Take

The first thing you'll notice about this 11-piece stainless steel cookware set is its shine. That's because it's forged from a heavy-gauge 18/8 stainless steel and has a mirror finish. Home chefs will love that the pans are oven safe to temperatures of up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and that they distribute heat evenly for a perfect bake every time!

Our Stainless Steel Cookware Findings


Tramontina 80116/249DS Aluminum Core Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece

What We Liked: This stainless steel cookware set works on all cooktops, including induction stovetops. With the set you’ll receive frying pans, sauté pans, sauce pans and stock pots to prepare everything from fried chicken to minestrone soup. The pieces are also outfitted with holes in the handles for hanging to make storage easier.


Amazon Basics BPA-Free Stainless Steel Cookware, 11-Piece

What We Liked: The first thing you’ll notice about this 11-piece stainless steel cookware set is its shine. That’s because it’s forged from a heavy-gauge 18/8 stainless steel and has a mirror finish. Home chefs will love that the pans are oven safe to temperatures of up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit and that they distribute heat evenly for a perfect bake every time!


Cuisinart MCP-12N Oven Safe Stainless Steel Cookware, 12-Piece

What We Liked: This stainless steel cookware set has a pure aluminum core which ensures maximum heat retention and even heat distribution. The cool-grip handles ensure you can move the pots safely.


T-fal C836SD Venting Lids Stainless Steel Cookware, 13-Piece

What We Liked: This stainless steel cookware set is made with several layers of copper, stainless steel and aluminum. This results in fast and even heat throughout, without any hot spots. Keep in mind that the copper at the bottom can flake if not well cared for.


Duxtop Stay Cool Handles Stainless Steel Cookware, 10-Piece

What We Liked: This 10-piece stainless steel cookware has whole-clad, tri-ply stainless steel construction, eliminating any hot spots. The handles stay cool during cooking. The surface can scratch easily so it’s best to use plastic or wooden utensils.

Our Expert Consultant

Julie Chernoff
Culinary Expert

Julie Chernoff is a long-time member of Les Dames d’Escoffier (past president of the Chicago Chapter, and current co-chair of the LDEI Legacy Awards Committee), the Association of Food Journalists (AFJ) and the International Association of Culinary Professionals.

Chernoff is the dining editor of Better, a lifestyle website and print magazine. Her journalism started in the test kitchens of Weight Watchers Magazine. She holds a BA in English from Yale University and is a graduate of the California Culinary Academy. She has spent the last few decades styling, photographing, teaching, developing recipes, editing, thinking and writing about food.

Our Stainless Steel Cookware Buying Guide

Whether you’re a beginner cook learning to make simple recipes or a professional chef working on complex cuisines, a set of stainless steel cookware is a great addition to your kitchen. While many cooks prefer to have non-stick pans or cast iron as their cookware of choice, there are definite benefits to going the stainless steel route.

According to food editor and journalist Julie Chernoff, stainless steel cookware is easily cleaned and generally dishwasher-safe. For those cooks who want a speedy clean-up after standing next to a hot stove, the ability to throw their pots and pans into the dishwasher is a major benefit. Chernoff adds that stainless steel is also lighter and more easily maneuvered than cast iron. If you have problems with your wrists or hands and don’t want to burden them by carrying around heavy dishes, stainless steel is a good choice.

What can you do with a stainless steel pan, exactly? “Stainless steel is great for browning meats and poultry, making soups and stews, sautéing veggies, and roasting and braising in the oven,” says Chernoff. “It’s incredibly versatile cookware that can help with almost any recipe in the kitchen.” Stainless steel pans can also be used on induction cooktops, adding additional flexibility.

For many cooks, the main concern about using stainless steel is food sticking to the bottom of the pan. “Stainless steel is many things,” says Chernoff. “One thing it isn’t? Non-stick. But if you remember to heat the pan before adding your cooking oil, you shouldn’t have any problems.”

For many cooks, the style and visual aesthetic of the kitchen are as important as the functionality. The pots and pans need to match the décor and work with all of the other elements in the kitchen. “Stainless steel is pretty,” says Chernoff. “It’s shiny. It’s easily cleaned to a sparkle and it goes with any kitchen decor.”

If you’re in the market for a durable cookware set, then look no further than stainless steel. “Quality stainless steel cookware is expensive for a reason — it lasts,” says Chernoff. “You won’t find anything more durable, as it won’t crack, warp, or scratch.” Plus, stainless steel cookware holds up better than other options. “It doesn’t rust as iron does, and no chemicals will leach into the food as with some non-stick surfaces, because the surface can’t be compromised,” explains Chernoff.

DWYM Fun Fact

Stainless steel cookware is incredibly versatile and durable. However, there are specific ways to make the most out of your stainless steel cookware. When cooking, be sure not to use high heat; go with medium heat instead. Once the pan has heated up, add a thin layer of fat to the pan. This will ensure that your food doesn’t stick to the surface of the pan.

After you’ve completed your recipe, allow the pan to cool off. Don’t soak your hot pan because that may cause the sides to warp. In order to clean your pan, add in warm soapy water and let it sit for a few minutes. Any stuck-on food should just wipe right off after. Be sure not to soak your pan for too long, as that will cause pitting.

While you can certainly serve food from your stainless steel cookware, it’s not a good idea to store food in it – especially acidic foods. Anything that has tomatoes or vinegar may react with the metal in your pan.

If your pan has any stains or a white filmy deposit, you can clean it off with water and vinegar. This is a great way to keep your stainless steel pans looking shiny and new.

The Stainless Steel Cookware Tips and Advice

  • When you’re on the hunt for the best stainless steel cookware, be sure to pay attention to the thickness of the material. “Stainless steel absorbs heat quickly and evenly, so food cooks evenly as well,” says Chernoff. “Look for a substantially thick bottom for best results, preferably one with a tri-ply bond (often with aluminum and/or copper), as this will prevent hot spots.” Some models offer multi-layer strength, as they’re made with several layers of copper, stainless steel and aluminum. This results in fast and even heat throughout. The copper bottom helps to channel heat from the center outward. Options with a pure aluminum core ensure maximum heat retention and even heat distribution, eliminating any hot spots.
  • Be sure to take a look at what kind of handles your stainless steel cookware has. For many cooks, it’s important that the handles stay cool during cooking, so it’s easy to move the pots and pans around. “Avoid screw-on handles and knobs that loosen with use, and opt instead for metal so that the pots and pans are oven-friendly,” adds Chernoff. Look for a set that has riveted stainless steel handles that are fully secure. They are typically ergonomically designed to provide comfort while lifting. Another option is a set with cool-grip handles that are secured with stainless steel rivets, making it easy to carry the pots while they are still warm.
  • Tight-fitting lids are a necessity with your cookware. This helps to keep moisture and heat in while cooking. Consider sets that have self-basting and tight-fitting lids. The lids for some models are made out of tempered glass, so you can see how the food is progressing without having to release any heat during cooking.

About The Author

Anam Ahmed 

Anam Ahmed is a professional copywriter and essayist based in Toronto. She has been writing on technology, travel, parenting, and business for over 10 years, and works with a number of high-profile organizations. As an avid home cook who loves making magic in the kitchen, she values finding the best products to make people's lives easier. Anam earned a master's degree from the University of Toronto and a bachelor's degree from Queen's University.