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I'm taking the stainless steel plunge - kind of...

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    I'm taking the stainless steel plunge - kind of...

    So I found out our cookware mostly doesn't work with our new induction cooktop.

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    Yeah, yeah, it's my own fault for not checking. I thought our set that made up most of our cookware we bought at Sam's Club years ago would be good, based on its heft and such - I never thought of taking a dang magnet off the fridge and checking. <sigh>

    So what we're left with is 2 skillets (Anova) I got on Amazon a couple years ago and 2 cast iron skillets and an enameled cast iron Dutch oven.

    So The Wife and I went back and forth for a night and a day, I was trying to convince her to let me buy something good - looking at an All-Clad HA1 setup for $400. She was very very resistant to spending that much, and I get it, we have a whole lot of things to pay for right now, and it seems like all our vehicles keep breaking things ("our pets heads are falling off!!!!").

    I did finally convince her to let me get the All-Clad set. But a big issue is all the sets with enough pots also have skillets, which we don't need. But if you start buying pieces individually, you get up to the price of the set pretty quick. It's just frustrating.

    So I was looking at stuff, Tramontina, etc., but I really didn't want to do stainless. I like non-stick. I did NOT did NOT did NOT want to do stainless. I like non-stick. Can I say it again, I like non-stick? I dunno... I've seen a lot of people talking about how much they love their stainless, etc., but I've had one or two (admittedly very cheap) stainless pots over the years and they stick, they were not good. Did not like.

    Anyways, as I was about to push the 'purchase' button, I had an attack of conscience and decided I would get a cheap-ish stainless induction-ready set that I had seen a good review or two on. So if it turns out I don't like it, I'm not out a lot of money. And with family here from out of the country and Thanksgiving next week, we'll be able to put them through their paces and see if we can live with them.

    Here's the set I got, they'll be here this weekend, so I can try them out.

    Cook N Home 7-Piece Tri-Ply Clad Stainless Steel Cookware Set, Silver,2644

    I don't know if you can send back used cookware, can you??? I'll keep the packaging for a little while, and if we really hate it I'll try. Amazon's pretty good about returns.

    Like I said, I know they're cheap, I know there is better, and I would like to get the expensive(r) ones - but I think the nail in the coffin was finding out the new All-Clad HA1 griddle I just freaking bought a month ago is the ONLY piece in the HA1 line that is NOT induction capable. ARGH! Of course, at the time I wasn't looking for that, I didn't think I was gonna need induction cookware anytime soon - until our radiant cooktop went out in the interim. <sigh> Like I said, it even seems like our pets heads are falling off!

    Personally I loved my stainless and still have it in the basement, even though SWMBO has insisted on non-stick (which I like for frying pans, but not the rest). I justify keeping it for a) extras when we have lots of people like next week and b) cooking outside over flame that I don't want to mess up her indoor set on (even though I'm mostly using CI outside).

    I know mine wasn't expensive b/c my parents bought it for me, but it worked really well (they had a knack for buying me inexpensive things that were really good for the price...my first gas grill was the same way...but I digress). After how less than thrilled we've been with our current cookware I might win the argument next time. Plus we keep seeing things about how bad the chemicals used for non-stick are for us...


      I will say this. Non stick is fine in a skillet. I couldn't live without a couple of those in the kitchen. However, I am not sure why you would ever want it in a sauce pan or dutch oven. It just means throwing out the sauce pan or dutch oven at some point, versus keeping it for decades.

      In the past 2 years I've started gradually replacing the old stainless cookware we've had since we got married almost 32 years ago, and I've been buying Brazil made stainless Tramontina one piece at a time, as it had very good reviews and was essentially a Best Buy type recommendation over on the ATK website when I still had a membership over there. So far I've just done a few sauce pans (2 and 3 quart), but they work well and are induction compatible. I also replaced our crufty old skillets with Oxo good grips non-stick skillets (8 and 12) and kept my Lodge cast iron. The Oxo is not induction ready though... What I like with the newer pots is that they have metal handles versus the old black plastic stuff so they are oven safe.

      The kind of stuff you do in a pot isn't usually something you worry about sticking. And the beauty is that it washes right off the stainless, and worst case, bust out the steel wool. Those non-stick pots won't last 30 years like the stainless.

      Anyway, most of this is meant to be an endorsement for the Brazil made (not China made) Tramontina cookware. I highly recommend it.

      All that said - I think the set you ordered is a really good buy. The main difference you will see from one set of stainless to another will be the number of layers for the clad stuff, what the core is, and the thickness of the walls.
      Last edited by jfmorris; November 18, 2021, 10:20 AM.


        OK….calm down!!!!!

        poor pretty bird……….


          Non-stick for skillets, stainless for pots and pans. It's been that way in my kitchen for 40+ years, and that's how it's going to stay.


            Depending on how many pots and pans you want, open stock is almost always cheaper then sets. All-clad is nice stuff but really, does it work that much better than stuff that is less expensive? I think marginally at best. It sure does look nice and sometimes that is factor that needs to be considered. I do 90% of the cooking and my wife has her stainless set, I have my mixed collection. Other than Chefutainers on TV, you won't see expensive All-clad in working kitchens.

            I know you said you don't need any skillets, but a big ol' heavy cast iron frying pan isn't very useful as a sauté or omelet pan. You just can't hold it in one hand and flip the food around (unless your built like The Hulk). I would at least consider a 10 or 12 inch carbon steel frying pan.


              We *really* like the $10 "restaurant style" non-stick pans we picked up at Sams Club this year (in their industrial area, not the housewares aisle). Whether they'd work on induction or not, we don't know.

              Knowing what we know now - we agree, buying pot sets may seem like the right thing to do, but you'll end up with pieces that you may not need/use.

              Alternative to buying a set: contemplate hitting up some estate sales in your area to see if you can pick up those one off pieces you could use


              • efincoop
                efincoop commented
                Editing a comment
                +1 I used to cater and use these. They are actually rated pretty well. I have 4 in different sizes. 2- 12”, 1 - 10” and 1 8”.

              Is carbon steel out of the question? It’s lighter than CI and I see a lot of folks who love them.


                Problem with carbon steel is the cleaning and maintenance. She doesn't like messing with it. My cast iron has to be cleaned by me because the 16 y/o is too stupid/lazy/uncaring and The Wife doesn't want to mess with it. My sister-in-laws are here right now and my cast iron is hidden away. Last time they were here, one of them threw it in the dishwasher. DOH!

                We don't need skillets, have them covered.

                I understand the cleaning of the pots, but the non-stick has never been a problem. We have a set from Sam's Club (it's Member's Mark, and I THINK it is still on their website) we've had for probably 10 years or more and still is great.

                As for cooking things in pots that stick - well, my wife is from the Caribbean and they do a lot of sauces and such, some start with sugar and get caramelized - stuff can stick. But, we'll see how this set works out, we're doing the stainless thing, at least for a little while.


                • barelfly
                  barelfly commented
                  Editing a comment
                  My wife and I have two sets of cooking pots/pans. Stainless steel, which I rarely use these days because of the CI and carbon steel I have. She has 2 non-stick, which is the only skillets she will use. She refuses to use the CI because she’s afraid she will mess them up . And…..I also don’t let anyone clean them, just so no one has to worry about that part. I don’t mind doing it either.

                All Clad is having a factory seconds sale. Everything I have gotten on these sales has been top quality.


                • DogFaced PonySoldier
                  DogFaced PonySoldier commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I looked at that earlier - nothing in the list I can use.

                When we switched to induction, I got a 10? Piece set of All Clad base model stainless steel pots and pans. Between a 10 and 8 in skillet, two sauce pans, and smallish stock pot, it has held up well but I did add two sauce pans and a big stock pot along with several pieces of cast iron. We did also spring for one non stick pan though it probably gets the least use.

                I highly recommend the factory store. I got all my AllClad off of there and haven’t ever found any appreciable issues. https://homeandcooksales.com

                They do sales fairly regularly, especially this time of year. TJ Max, Marshall’s, and HomeGoods are also good places to pick up decent deals on stainless steel be it allclad, calaphon, or the like.


                  Go to thrift shops or garage sales and find some Revereware.


                    I think you'll enjoy the new pans. I'm finding with mine that with proper temperature control for what I'm cooking, sticking is very rare on my new stainless. There's a little learning curve on what settings to use on the induction set-up, but you'll get dialed in pretty quickly. I recommend a can of Bar Keeper's Friend powder if you haven't picked some up yet for cleaning when things do go wrong. Scratching the inside surface of the pans with abrasives only makes issues for later down the road.


                      I’ve had a set of All Clad stainless for 20 years. Love every piece. The issue with sticking is largely due to the fact that stainless is very finicky. Don’t heat it up right and everything sticks. But the right way…

                      I can make an omelette that slips and slides around that only needs a quick wipe of the pan when I’m done.


                        I gotta say, I'm pretty impressed with my $100 Amazon stainless steel set. 3 pots w/lids and a skillet, and they're heavier duty than I expected and seem good quality. And cooking with stainless, the little I have done so far, seems to be ok. I'll reserve judgement completely, but initial impressions are pretty decent.



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